Unsolved Murders

James Arnold Bull

Age: 25

Sex: male

Date: 28 Jul 1931

Place: Knightsbridge Barracks

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

James Arnold Bull fell 50 feet from a window.

He was a Lance-Sergeant in the Royal Army Pay Corps.

An open verdict was returned.

His father said that he was not in the habit of sleep walking.

He was found at 5am by a man that was passing and heard someone moaning and then looked to see him lying inside some railings seriously injured. The man immediately informed a sentry that was on duty and James Bull was taken to hospital by ambulance.

His roommate said that he had last seem James Bull on the Wednesday night and said that when he saw him he seemed quite normal. He said that he had been in bed reading a newspaper and James Bull said to him 'You are in bed early again'. His roommate said that he thought that James Bull had got up early based on all the cigarette ends that he found about.

A policeman said that he thought that James Bull had climbed out of the window and hung by his fingers and dropped. His room was on the fourth floor. He said that he thought that it had been a deliberate act saying, 'There were finger marks on the window sill which showed that a person must have suspended himself from the sill and drawn his hands outwards'.

However, the Coroner said that there was no motive for suicide and said 'I think it is impossible to say exactly how this man came by his death, and I shall record an open verdict. There is not sufficient evidence to say whether his death was accidental or suicide'. He went on to say 'There is only one significant thing, and that is the marks that were found outside the window. These were made by a hand being drawn outwards as though a person had been hanging by his hands and his fingers had traced the marks. It is not likely that anyone could fall accidently out of such a window as this. The only possibility is one of suicide of sleep-walking. This young man had no such history. He may have been dreaming and got up under the impression that he had to get out of the room. He may have been brooding over some matter that he kept to himself. On the other hand, people do commit suicide without the slightest motive.'

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

see Derby Daily Telegraph - Tuesday 28 July 1931

see Nottingham Evening Post - Tuesday 28 July 1931