Unsolved Murders

William George Jefferies

Age: 37

Sex: male

Date: 7 Aug 1915

Place: River Avon, Hanham, Bristol

William George Jefferies was found dead in a river. He had suffered head injuries.

William Jefferies was married with one child and had lived in Derby Street, St. George. He had been unwell and depressed and instead of returning home from work on 7 August he had gone eastwards to Hanham.

Apparently once there he had written a note saying, 'I have had enough of it', presumably referring to the pain he had suffered, and the next thing a camper heard a splash and saw William Jefferies struggling in the water.

William Jefferies was however a strong swimmer and at his autopsy the doctor found wounds to his head which could not have been self-inflicted. The doctor said that the wounds were a contributory factor in his death and had happened just a few minutes before his death.

It was noted that his injuries bore a remarkable coincidence to those of Sydney George Hawker who was found dead in a shop in Bristol a few miles away in August 1915. The doctor who carried out the post-mortems in both cases said that they were both the same adding that both skulls had been fractured and they appeared to have been inflicted from behind with a sharp-pointed instrument. He also said that it might have been only a curious coincidence.

*map pointers are rough estimates based on known location details as per Place field above.

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Gloucestershire Echo - Saturday 21 August 1915

see Sunday Post - Sunday 22 August 1915