Unsolved Murders

Uriah Cottle

Age: 73

Sex: male

Date: 19 Jun 1906

Place: Blackmoor Farm, Okehampton

Uriah Cottle was found on the barn steps with his head blown nearly clear off.

He had lived at Blackmoor Farm with his two sons.

One of the sons, who after being cautioned by the coroner, said that he last saw Uriah Cottle at about 6am on the Thursday morning when he passed through his bedroom at which time Uriah Cottle was in bed. He said that shortly after he went to work with his brother in the fields and that when they returned with some vetches for the horses they heard the report of a gun and then hurried to the house to find Uriah Cottle dead on the barn steps.

At the inquest, the other son said that Uriah Cottle had been very restless the whole of the previous night and had had a cough. He said that Uriah Cottle often complained of worry since his wife suddenly died.

A policeman that came out said that he saw Uriah Cottle in a sitting position on the steps with a gun across his body and a walking stick under the gun. He said that one of the barrels had recently been discharged and that Uriah Cottle was fully dressed except he had no boots on and that there was no sign that any struggle had taken place.

The doctor that examined his body said that Uriah Cottle was quite dead from a gunshot wound when he saw him, and that the shot had carried away his right eye and stated that his death would have been instantaneous.

A third brother, the eldest brother, said that he had left the farm about two years earlier and that at that time there had been frequent quarrels between his other brothers and Uriah Cottle.

The jury returned an open verdict, stating that Uriah Cottle died from gun-shot wounds, but that there was not sufficient evidence to show by whom they had been inflicted.

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

see www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

see Western Times - Tuesday 19 June 1906