Unsolved Murders

Arthur James Petty

Age: 2

Sex: male

Date: 24 Oct 1917

Place: 56 Storrington Head, Wormington Road, North Kensington

Arthur James Petty died from gas poisoning.

His mother was tried for his murder but was found not guilty. At the trial the judge said that he failed to see upon what grounds the jury returned such a verdict.

Arthur Petty's father came home at about 6.16pm on 24 October 1917 and found his wife and children on the floor of a top floor back room apparently dead from the effects of gas poisoning. 

When the police arrived they found Arthur Petty was dead but that his mother was still alive and she was taken to Kensington Infirmary. 

At the inquest it was heard that Arthur Petty's father had been habitually cruel to his wife although Arthur Petty's mother was charged with murder. However, when she was tried she was found not guilty.

Her husband had been a discharged wounded soldier.

Arthur Petty's mother had written a note stating, 'I have not had a day's happiness since he came home, but God pays debts without money'.

There had been allegations of infidelity against her husband and at the inquest the jury considered that he was deserving of severe censure for his brutal conduct towards his wife.

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

see discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk

see National Archives - MEPO 20/1

see Newcastle Journal - Friday 23 November 1917