Unsolved Murders

Kitty Jane Davis

Age: 37

Sex: female

Date: 9 Jan 1926

Place: 63 Alcombe Road, Northampton

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Kitty Jane Davis died from blood poisoning after a suspected illegal operation.

She died fourteen hours after she was admitted to Northampton General Hospital with blood poisoning. A doctor said that she had found signs of an abortion when Kitty Davis was admitted to the hospital and that at her post-mortem they found a wound in her womb that had been inflicted with a sharp instrument which had produced the abortion. she said that the interior of her body was gangrenous and that that had been the cause of her death.

A doctor that had treated her initially said that he had found no traces of wither a miscarriage or an abortion and that he had ordered her removal to the hospital because he thought that she had a clot of blood in her veins. He said that he had no suspicion then that an instrument had been used, although didn't doubt the later evidence regarding the puncture wound and cause of death.

Her husband was a clicker and said that the doctor was sent for on the morning of 7 January 1926 and that he had arrived at 10am. He said that the pains in Kitty Davis's limbs however became worse and she was ordered to be removed from hospital. He said that Kitty Davis had an idea that she was going to be confined.

He said that the previous Saturday, 2 January 1926, he had been to a football match at the County Ground between 2pm and 4.30pm, and that when he had returned he found his wife sitting at the tea-table and said that she told him that she had fallen down the stairs and that she it had shaken her up and although he said that she didn't refer to the fall to him again.

He said that he had known nothing about the abortion.

He said that he had been to work on the Wednesday at Kitty Davis's request and said that later that night she became very bad and was losing a lot of blood. He said that as far as he knew she had not taken the advice of anyone else other than the doctor and that no one other than their own people had been to the house to see her.

The husband said that they had two children aged four and six and that Kitty Davis was a splendid mother and that she didn't resent being a mother as far as he knew and added that the whole case was inexplicable and baffling to him.

He also said that he had checked her bank pass book and said that there had been no large sum drawn out since the previous July towards the end of the month just before the August holiday.

Kitty Davis's sister said that she had been to see Kitty Davis on 3 January 1926 and found her in her normal health and said that she didn't mention anything about a fall to her. However, she said that Kitty Davis had declined to go shopping with her. she said that she knew of her sister's condition but that she knew nothing about an illegal operation or of scissors being used.

The police said that they had made discreet inquiries as to whether or not anyone had visited Kitty Davis on the Saturday between 2pm and 4.30pm whilst her husband was out at the football match but failed to find anyone that had.

They had also searched the house and found a pair of scissors in a cupboard in the living-room that had a shred of dirty material adhering to its screw. They also found some blood-stained underclothes. Both the underclothes and the scissors were examined under a microscope.

The cause of death was given as septicaemia through abortion. The doctor said that her womb was inflamed and that he had found an inflamed wound through which he had been able to pass a probe through into the interior of the cavity.

The doctor said that the scissors, which were produced in court were a perfect match for the hole and passed a quarter of an inch into the cavity.

When the doctor was asked if he thought that the wound could have been self-inflicted he said that it was possible, but that it would have been very difficult to do.


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


see Northampton Mercury - Friday 22 January 1926