Unsolved Murders

Walter Harris Stockman

Age: 21

Sex: male

Date: 8 Jan 1931

Place: Highfields Farm, Woodhouse, Loughborough

Walter Harris Stockman was found shot in a field on his employer’s farm.

He was found with a gunshot wound to his head and a double-barrelled shotgun by his side. He was lying on his back with the gun pointing towards his head.

It was heard that the muzzle of the gun must have been in Walter Stockman's mouth when it was fired.

The Coroner asked a doctor whether he thought that if Walter Stockman had fallen backward could the gun have gone in his mouth and the doctor said ‘Yes’.

The man that Walter Stockman worked for said that Walter Stockman didn't have a care in the world. He said that Walter Stockman banked his money and his home was paid for. He said that Walter Stockman had married five months earlier and that he and his wife lived like a pair of doves. He said that Walter Stockman had worked for him for five years and was an exemplary employee.

He said that on the Thursday, Walter Stockman went to his dinner as usual, but failed to return at 1pm. He said that when he later went to the hut where Walter Stockman usually ate his lunch he found that a double-barrelled rifle which was frequently borrowed to shoot pigeons was missing. He said that he then started to become anxious and made a search and then found Walter Stockman dead at the side of a hedge in the field furthest from the farm.

Walter Stockman's wife said that Walter Stockman had no worries. She said that they were married in August 1930 and lived together very happily without financial or domestic troubles.

The Coroner's jury said that there was insufficient evidence to show how the wounds were inflicted.

The Coroner said that the theory of accident was not supported by the facts, and neither was the theory of suicide, and an open verdict was returned. He said 'I am afraid that the theory of accident is not supported by known evidence. I can see nothing that might have caused him to take his own life, but none of us know what is passing through the mind of another'.

He had lived in Old Woodhouse, Loughborough.

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

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Gloucester Citizen - Monday 12 January 1931

see Gloucester Journal - Saturday 17 January 1931

see Nottingham Journal - Monday 12 January 1931