Date: 24 Aug 1961
Place: Dyfatty Park, Swansea
Stephen John Watt was found injured in Dyfatty Park and later died.
He was a single man and had lived in a flat over a grocery shop in Fabian Street, St Thomas, Swansea and had been a Checker-Loader employed by British Road Services at Skewen in Glamorgan.
He was found seriously injured in Dyfatty Park at 8.15am on Friday 18 August 1961. His outer clothing appeared to have been torn from him and thrown over a wire fence surrounding a bowling green. His pockets contained nothing and when he was first found his identity was unknown. He was immediately taken by ambulance to Swansea General Hospital where after a cursory examination he was transferred to Morriston Hospital in Swansea and detained.
In addition to him having suffered injuries he was also in a severe state of shock from having lain in the park all night in his underclothing and was also suffering from exposure. He remained seriously ill and died at 10.55am on Thursday 24 August 1961.
He gave no indication before his death as to how he came by his injuries although he was able to give certain information and on 20 August 1961 was questioned by the police.
Stephen Watt had been a homosexual and had lived about one mile away from Swansea town centre. He had three convictions recorded against him in respect of indecency between males, the last being at the Glamorgan Assizes on 14 July 1953 when he was sentenced to 18 months' imprisonment for gross indecency, attempted buggery, the offence taking place at 11.15pm on 25 April 1953 in a bombed building in the town centre, the culprits having just previously met in a public urinal.
It was noted that on 27 May 1960 Stephen Watt had been taken to hospital suffering from a fractured nose and other injuries after which a 21 year old man was charged with unlawful wounding and subsequently fined £10 and ordered to pay £1 1 8d costs. His defence was that Stephen Watt had invited him to go for a stroll near a dance hall in the town centre at about 10.30pm on 27 May 1960 and that they had walked together for half a mile to the beach where they had both indulged in acts of gross indecency, masturbation, but that the 21-year-old man had been dissatisfied with the payment offered by Stephen Watt and in his resentment gave Stephen Watt a thrashing.
It was noted that the 21-year-old man had been sentenced to 15-months imprisonment for housebreaking on 29 June 1961 and was therefore in custody on 17 August 1961 when Stephen Watt was attacked.
It was said that since that incident that Stephen Watt seemed to have entertained his men friends in his flat late at night and appeared to have made acquaintance with them in various public houses or cafes in the town centre.
He was described by all who knew him as a hard worker, genial by nature, extremely kind and good natured.
On the evening of 17 August 1961 Stephen Watt left his work with a colleague at 9pm and arrived at the Red Cow public house in High Street, Swansea at about 9.40pm where he remained drinking until about 10.30pmwhen he left with his workmate after which they split up to go to different bus stops to get buses for their respective homes and from that moment on no person could be traced who saw Stephen Watt again before he was found injured in the park the following morning.
Dyfatty Park was situated about ¼ mile from the Red Cow public house in the opposite direction to which Stephen Watt was last seen walking off in to catch his bus home. It could have been reached either by the main High Street or by a detour via High Street, Alexandra Road, New Orchard Street and then into Dyfatty Street. It was at the time set amongst a collection of bombed sites, about one acre in size and fenced in by iron railings which were in poor condition, several being missing, which made it easy to access when the gate was closed.
Stephen Watt was discovered by a 50-year-old man employed by the Swansea Corporation after he unlocked the park gates at 8.15am on 18 August 1961. The employee said that Stephen Watt had been wearing no trousers and had been lying on the path between the children’s playground and the enclosed bowling green. The employee didn't touch Stephen Watt but instead called to two workmen on a nearby building sites who in turn called an ambulance and the police.
One of the workmen, a 35-year-old labourer employed by John Laing, builders and contractors at their Dyfatty Park buiding site said that he was called over by the park employee at about 8.10am on 17 August 1961 and saw an injured man lying on the pathway. He said that he noticed that the man had been only wearing a shirt, underpants, boots and socks and that the man's face was in a battered state.
He said that he then immediately arranged for the clerk of the building site to call an ambulance and the police and then remained near Stephen Watt to render what aid he could. He said that he noticed scattered around Stephen Watt, on the footpath, there were a full set of dentures, a cap, haversack and a few coppers. He said that he also found a jacket and blue overalls in a torn condition strewn on the border of bushes inside the bowling green fence.
A police constable arrived at the park at 8.15am and took Stephen Watt by ambulance to Swansea General Hospital.
On his arrival Stephen Watt was examined by a doctor and found to be unconscious and could not be aroused and owing to his injuries it was decided that he should be transferred to Morriston Hospital which was their usual practice where head injuries were involved.
The casualty officer at Morriston Hospital received Stephen Watt at 9.45am on 18 August 1961. On admittance he was found to be unconscious, suffering from shock and multiple bruises. He was then treated for shock with intravenous transfusions and detained.
When Stephen Watt was examined on Monday 21 August 1961 by a doctor he was found to be in a generally poor condition with bruises over his face, neck, left groin and genitiliae (private parts) and haematuria (blood in the urine) was also found. As such, in view of his deteriorating condition and the diminutive amount of urine, examination of his urinary system was carried out under general anaesthetic which was followed by an exploration of his left kidney which revealed the contusion of the abdominal wall associated with the laceration of the left kidney. However, it was not considered justifiable to remove the kidney and so he was treated conservatively, ie, no operation. However, the treatment was unsuccessful and on Wednesday 23 August 1961 it was decided to implement the use of an artificial kidney which brought about an improvement in his condition for the first few hours. However, his condition then suddenly deteriorated and resuscitative measures were undertaken throughout the night and the Thursday morning.
However, the measures were of no avail and Stephen Watt died at 10.55am on 24 August 1961.
The medical cause of his death was given as acute renal failure due to prolonged severe hypotension following injury to the left kidney and other bodily injuries.
His post mortem was carried out the following day and his cause of death was given as:
The doctor clarified the findings, stating that with regards to the reactionary haemorrhage that after the operation Stephen Watt improved and started to bleed because of the improvement in his general condition but that because of the conditions present that the natural mechanism for the arrest of haemorrhage failed to operate, noting that the injuries were not very clear or distinct.
The post mortem added that a possible cause of his injuries was that he had been attacked.
Following his post mortem, an inquest was opened and evidence of identification by his niece was heard.
It was noted that from the moment that Stephen Watt was found unconscious in Dyfatty Park that it was realised by Swansea police that his injuries might prove fatal and enquiries commenced immediately in an effort to trace the person or persons responsible.
The scene of the crime was visited by detectives and all necessary action was taken to obtain and preserve anything that could lead to the detection of the offender.
When Stephen Watt was found it was noticed that a pair of bib and brace dungaree overalls, which it was determined he had been wearing the night before, had been torn from him causing them to completely separate into two halves along the seams and thrown over the wire fence into the bushes surrounding the bowling green. The items along with a cap, jacket and haversack, samples of blood and excreta were collected and conveyed to the Forensic Science Laboratory in Cardiff for examination,
Shortly after Stephen Watt was admitted to hospital he was able to supply his name and address but was in no condition to be questioned on how he came by his injuries. However, on 20 August 1961 he was able to make a statement.
In his statement he said that he had left his place of work at 9.05pm on 17 August 1961 and had travelled on a bus with a work mate from Skewen to High Street Railway Station and that they then both entered the Red Cow public house in High Street and after a few beers and a whisky that they left together at 10.30pm. He said that when they left that his workmate crossed the street to catch his bus home and that he had had every intention of carrying on down the High Street to catch his bus home at St Thomas. It was noted that although he was strenuously questioned, Stephen Watt persisted in stating that he had no recollection of meeting anyone or where he went after saying goodnight to his friend outside the Red Cow public house. It was noted that he could remember what he drank in the Red Cow public house, how much he spent and the fact that he should have had about £10 on him when he had left the pub. He also remembered and described a pair of spectacles and case that he normally carried for reading purposes and explained that he was wearing his overalls over his underclothing as he didn't wear ordinary trousers in the summer months.
Stephen Watt was seen on many occasions whilst he was in hospital by the police and persistently questioned, but he could not or would not give any explanation of why he had been in Dyfatty Park which was a distance of 300 yards from the Red Cow public house and in an opposite direction to that in which he should have gone to catch his bus.
It was thought that he might well have been suffering from genuine amnesia, the possibility of which was supported by the doctors, but the police said that there was no doubt at all that his visit to Dyfatty Park was in some way connected with his homosexual activities and that in his semi-conscious condition his natural instinct would provide him with a mental defence mechanism that the police could not break through. It was also noted that the police were handicapped by the fact that the doctors, although giving the police full co-operation, had to take into consideration the danger to Stephen Watt of persistent interrogation.
It was noted that in the hope of gaining some useful information all fellow patients in the ward where Stephen Watt was detained, nurses and ward-maids were all interviewed as to any conversation that they might have had with Stephen Watt before he died or any ramblings that they might have overheard when Stephen Watt had been in a state of semi-consciousness, but nothing useful was gained.
One of his closest friends, the work mate that he had gone to the Red Cow public how with on the night he was attacked was allowed to visit Stephen Watt alone in the hope that he would disclose information that he would not impart to police and he was also questioned by his niece with no police present, but at no stage did he give the slightest information which would assist in the enquiry.
The last person known to have seen Stephen Watt before the assault was his workmate, a 32-year-old single man who lived with his mother in Gwtnedd Avenue in Townhill, Swansea. He was employed as a checker and loader at the British Road Services Depot in Skewen where Stephen Watt was also employed in the same capacity and they worked the same shift and were well known to each other. On 17 August 1961 they should have finished duty at 9.30am but as their work was completed by 9pm the foreman decided to allow anyone in their gang to leave at 9pm if they wished to do so and Stephen Watt and his workmate decided to clock off and call in at the Red Cow public house in Swansea which was on their way home.
The workmate stated that they had arrived at the Red Cow at about 9.45pm where they drank three pints of beer, one bottle of beer and a single whisky each. They sat at a table with another man and it was said that nothing untoward took place whilst they were there and the conversation gave no indication that Stephen Watt had any appointment or had any intention other than going straight home afterwards.
The police said that the workmate was questioned as to his association with Stephen Watt, especially in view of the fact that he was a single man, but said that there was nothing to indicate that his relationship with Stephen Watt was anything other than normal, merely that of work-mates.
The workmate gave the names of several work-mates and friends of Stephen Watt as well as the names of several work-mates and friends that he recalled having visited Stephen Watt's flat three years earlier when he held a party to celebrate the engagement of a mutual friend and work-mate.
It was noted that when Stephen Watt was found that his pockets were completely empty and his work-mate was asked if he could give a description of any property that Stephen Watt normally carried but he was unable to do so.
It was also noted that the sexual weakness of Stephen Watt was known by his work-mate as well as his other work-mates, and that in consequence of that Stephen Watt suffered much 'leg pulling' from them which he was said to have taken in good part. He was also never seen in a bad temper and was described by all who knew him as inoffensive, kind, good natured and of a very friendly disposition.
The night of 17 August 1961 was described as not being busy at the Red Cow public house and five people were traced who had been there when Stephen Watt and his work-mate had visited:
However, they were all questioned closely and the police said that they were fully satisfied that they had had no contact with Stephen Watt after he left the Red Cow and could not assist the police in the identification of his assailant.
The police also made enquiries at the British Road Services Depot in Skewen which was situated about five miles outside Swansea.
The manager there, who had lived in Mwanza, Birchgrove Road, Llamsamlet, Swansea, spoke well of Stephen Watt as a workman, saying that he was polite, respectful, conscientious and very thorough. He noted that about 12 months earlier that Stephen Watt had been away from work for some weeks owing to an injury that he sustained after he was attacked by a young man with whom he had indulged in an indecent act. He said that he met Stephen Watt in the street in Swansea in June 1960 and said that Stephen Watt had been very distressed and that in conversation with him he gathered that Stephen Watt was thoroughly ashamed of himself.
Another work-mate was questioned and he said that he had been to a public house with Stephen Watt and the rest of the staff as well as having gone to Stephen Watt's flat the previous Christmas to have a drink . He said that they had been alone at the flat and that no one else called but that no indecent suggestions were made by Stephen Watt.
Another fellow worker that had lived in Goronwy Road in Townhill, Swansea said that he had started working at the depot in March 1958 and that Stephen Watt started there at about the same time. He said that although they had always been employed on different shifts that he knew him well as a work-mate and knew that he was a bit 'queer'. He said that he had been to Stephen Watt's flat on one occasion in the early part of 1960 and had tea and played records but said that no improper suggestions were made whilst he was there. He noted that he had heard Stephen Watt saying such things as 'There's a nice ass you've got', or, I bet you got a big cock, too big for my ass', but said that when such remarks were passed at work that they were treated purely in a jocular fashion. He added that he never really thought that Stephen Watt would carry out any homosexual practices. It was noted that on the day of the assault on Stephen Watt that the man had started work by 9am, at which time Stephen Watt had ceased working.
A number of other workers were questioned but they all regarded Stephen Watt as a sociable, jovial and good fellow. They knew of his 'queer' habits but said that he never made any indecent suggestions to them and took any indecent remarks made by him as a joke. Some had been out drinking with him on occasions outside of working hours but nothing of a homosexual nature took place.
The police determined that Stephen Watt had a close friend, a 26-year-old man that had lived in Danygraig Road, St Thomas, Swansea and who was a lorry driver at British Road Services, North Dock in Swansea. He said that he had met Stephen Watt about four years earlier whilst working at that same depot. At that time the lorry driver had been single and living in lodgings but after some trouble with his landlady he spoke to Stephen Watt and was invited to share a flat with him for twelve months until he was married on 14 March 1959.
The lorry driver admitted that whilst he had been living with Stephen Watt that Stephen Watt had made several attempts to interfere with him, all of which he said he repulsed. However, the police said that it was difficult to believe as there was no doubt that they had had a strong bond of friendship between themselves despite the disparity of their ages.
The association between the two men continued after the lorry driver got married but following the incident in which Stephen Watt was assaulted in 1960 it seemed that the lorry driver had taken his wife's advice and only met Stephen Watt on the odd occasion.
The lorry driver said that whilst they were sharing the flat that Stephen Watt had a number of men visiting his flat to see him, many of whom Stephen Watt had picked up in the street and that some were British or foreign seamen. When the lorry driver was asked about what had happened when Stephen Watt had brought the men home he said that they merely partook of refreshments and listened to gramophone records. However, it was noted as a fact that during that period that the lorry driver had been courting and had not been present on many occasions when Stephen Watt had visitors.
When the police looked into what the lorry driver had been doing on the evening of 17 August 1961, the day of the assault, they found that according to his firms records that he had spent the night in Newport having completed his maximum period of driving for that day. However, he admitted to having parked his vehicle near his home, as was common amongst long distance drivers, and spending the night with his wife, something that was verified and the police said that they had no reason to think that he had met Stephen Watt that night.
The lorry driver said that the last time that he saw Stephen Watt was on 14 August 1961 when he attended the funeral of Stephen Watt’s sister.
Stephen Watt's closest relative was a 32-year-old aunt who lived in Alltwern Road, Pontardwe. She was a married woman and a factory worker. She described Stephen Watt as being friendly by nature and very kind hearted and said that he would enter into a conversation and become friendly with any stranger. She said that on 10 August 1961 that her mother died and was buried on Monday 14 August 1961 and that during that period that she saw Stephen Watt on several occasions before and after the funeral. She said that she had expected to see him again on Saturday 19 August 1961 but that on the evening of Friday 18 August 1961 as a result of information received from the police that she visited Stephen Watt at Morriston Hospital. She said that she spent about half-an-hour beside him and that although he mumbled something she could not understand what he was saying. She noted that his face was damaged and that owing to his injuries that he could not open his eyes.
She said that she next visited him on Saturday 19 August 1961 and that on that occasion he said to her, 'Is my face swollen much?', and that she then told him that it was and asked him, 'What happened', but said that Stephen Watt didn't answer. She then told him that he didn't have his teeth in and that Stephen Watt requested she ask the nurse where they were. She said that before she left that Stephen Watt said to her, 'I had £10 on me, ask the Sister where it is'.
Stephen Watt's aunt said that she visited Stephen Watt again on Sunday 20 August 1961 but that his condition had deteriorated and that no conversation passed between them. She made further similar visits on Tuesday 22, Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 August 1961 and on Friday 25 August 1961 she attended the mortuary at Morriston Hospital where she identified his body to the coroner and the police.
The landlord of the premises where Stephen Watt had lived in Acacia Road in West Cross, Swansea had carried on a business as a grocer below Stephen Watt's flat at 5 Fabian Street, St Thomas. He said that he had met Stephen Watt seven years earlier when he was employed by Swanmor Wholesale Provision Merchants in Wassail Square, Swansea and that about six years earlier Stephen Watt had informed him that his mother had died and that he was looking for a flat. He said that the flat above the shop at 5 Fabian Street had been empty at the time and that he offered it to Stephen Watt at £1 per week rental unfurnished. He said that Stephen Watt proved to be a good tenant and paid his rent regularly and caused no trouble.
The grocer gave details of the occasional visitor to Stephen Watt's flat as well as that of the man that had stayed there with Stephen Watt for 18 months. He added that he was fully aware of the peculiar habits of Stephen Watt but saw nothing to justify any complaint.
He said that on the morning of 17 August 1961 at about 11.30am that Stephen Watt settled his grocery account with cash and that that was the last time that he saw him.
The first and most interesting piece of information that the police received in the case following the assault was from a 50-year-old carpenter that had lived in Dyfatty Street, Swansea in a house almost opposite Dyfatty Park and about 100 yards from the entrance to Dyfatty Park towards Carmarthen Road. He was a widower and the only other person in his house was his teenage daughter. The house was situated on a raised terrace that over-looked the building site that adjoined Dyfatty Park. He said that at about 11.55pm on Thursday 17 August 1961 that he had entered his daughter's bedroom which was situated in the front of the house and which was about 25 feet above the pavement level and that when he looked out of the window he saw a man walking along Dyfatty Street from the direction of the Park towards the traffic lights at the junction with Carmarthen Road.
He said that as the man passed that he noticed him take a handkerchief from his breast pocket and polish an article that he had in his hand. He said that the man had been walking quite casually as he did that but that as he reached No 46 he saw him throw an article into the front garden of that address. It was noted that the front garden of that address was about eight feet above the level of the footway. He said that the man then walked casually on towards the traffic lights and was under the impression that he turned left into Carmarthen Road towards Cwmbwrla.
The carpenter said that the following day, 18 August 1961, on reading of the incident in Dyfatty Park, that he went to the front garden of No 46 and saw a spectacle case lying on the grass and informed the police. The spectacle case was then collected by a detective who found that the case contained no spectacles but that it did have the name and address of Stephen Watt in it.
The police stated that there could be little doubt that the article seen by the carpenter thrown into the garden had been Stephen Watt's spectacle case and the fact that the man had polished it before throwing it away strongly pointed to the man as the person who committed the assault on Stephen Watt.
The man was described by the carpenter as:
The police said that from his description it seemed that the suspect was respectably dressed. It was noted that the carpenter said that he would know the man again if he saw him under similar circumstances.
The man was taken to the police station where he was shown a number of photographs, but he did say that it was extremely unlikely that he would recognise the man again by his features and it was for that reason that it was not considered a suitable case where the 'Idneti-Kit' could be used to advantage. However, the police said that he had been very co-operative and had stood for many hours every evening at the bedroom window in the hope that he might see the man again.
A 68-year-old widow that had lived at the Vicarage in Seaview Terrace, Swansea said that at about 9.45am on the Friday morning, 18 August 1961, the morning that Stephen Watt was found injured, that she had been walking along Carmarthen Road when she found what appeared to be a pair of spectacles on the wall of the doctors surgery and about 100 yards north of the Dyfatty Street traffic lights. She said that she had been of the opinion that someone had picked them up from the footway and placed them on the wall for safety. She said that when she later passed that same spot that she saw a side piece of a spectacle frame lying on the pavement and that she was of the opinion that it was part of the pair that she had previously seen on the wall of the doctors surgery. She was later shown a pair of spectacle frames that were thought to be similar to the ones that Stephen Watt had worn, but the woman said that she could not say if they were the same type to the ones that she had seen.
An 80-year-old widow who lived in Dyfatty Street, Swansea said that she had also been in Carmarthen Road on the morning of 18 August 1961 at about 11.30am and also noticed the side piece of a pair of spectacles on the pavement and the police said that it was quite possible that the spectacles, which had obviously been destroyed, had been the property of Stephen Watt and thrown away by his assailant shortly after he had disposed of the spectacle case by throwing it in the garden of 46 Dyfatty Street.
It was noted that the spectacle case had been thrown away at 11.55pm which it was said was important in view of a statement made by a 36-year-old shop manager that had lived in Vy-Nor, White Walls, Three Crosses in Gower. He said that he had left the Glanmor Club in Sketty with his wife at 11.25pm on Thursday 17 August 1961 and driven through the High Street in Swansea at 11.33pm, arriving in Dyfatty Street near the park at 11.35pm. He said that as he was passing the park he saw what appeared to be two men fighting. He noted that the street at that point narrowed somewhat and that he had had to give his full attention to his driving. However, he said that he got a further glimpse of the fight as he was passing a gap in the trees at the further side of the park at which time he could clearly see both men.
He said that one of the men was a short thick-set individual in shirt sleeves with a distinctive, round full face and that the other man appeared to be much taller. However, the police noted that it needed to be borne in mind that the shop manager had not informed the police of that incident until ten days after the fight by which time a photograph of Stephen Watt had appeared in the local press.
The shop manager accompanied the police at midnight on 27 August 1961 over the route that he had driven on 17 August 1961 whilst a police superintendent went into the park in his shirt sleeves and stood gesticulating at the spot where he alleged he had seen Stephen Watt fighting the other man. However, the police stated that whilst they could clearly see the police superintendent by reason of his white shirt, they said that it was impossible to distinguish any features or stature and concluded that the shop manager had somewhat enlarged upon what he had actually seen.
It was also noted that he had made no comment of what he had seen to his passenger at the time. However, the police said that it did seem probable that the shop manager saw something which coupled with the story told by the carpenter, leading to the assumption that Stephen Watt received his injuries between 11.30pm and 11.45pm on the night of 17 August 1961.
However, the police noted that they were later informed by a friend of the shop keeper that the shop keeper was a neurotic subject and could not be thoroughly relied upon.
Suspect One - Unemployed Man
The first person to come under suspicion in the matter was a 25 year old unemployed man with a criminal record and of no fixed abode. He had been staying at a common lodging house on 17 August 1961 at 61 Alexandra Road in Swansea known as Jimmy Wilde's. He was a married man and a native of Manchester and his wife had recently left him and come to Swansea to live with her family and had been saying with her grandmother in Maliphant Street in Swansea. Her parents had lived in Islwyn Road.
The room at Alexandra Road where the unemployed man had been staying was shared by a 29-year-old labourer who had no previous convictions, a 48-year-old driver/mechanic with a criminal record and a 32 year old plumber.
The police determined that on the night of 17 August 1961 that after a tour of several public houses that the labourer and driver returned to Alexandra Road at about 11.20pm where they had a meal. They determined that shortly after the labourer had gone to bed that the unemployed man returned in a belligerent mood and started an argument and that shortly after that the plumber returned and also went to bed.
When the labourer later got out of bed to go to the toilet he was met by the unemployed man who gave him a severe beating with his fists and probably his head causing the labourer to fall to the floor unconscious. He was then taken to the hospital by the lodging house proprietor where he was treated for injuries to his right eye, mouth and ribs.
The police report stated that it was difficult to understand why the assault took place and that none of the room's occupants told the same story, it being supposed because they had all been in various stages of intoxication. The matter was reported to the police on the morning of 18 August 1961.
Later on the night of Friday 18 August 1961 the unemployed man's father-in-law, a 46-year-old dock worker that had lived in Islwyn Road, Swansea had spent the evening drinking in the Villiers Arms public house in Hafod with two of his brothers. He had left the pub at about 10.15pm to get his bus home and whilst waiting the unemployed man came out from the other side of the road and said, 'You called me something' and then struck him several blows in his face with his fist causing the dock worker to fall to the ground in a dazed condition. The police arrived at the scene soon after and separated them after which the unemployed man said, 'Fucking police, fuck off', to one of the police constables and then struck him on the right side of his mouth with his fist.
The unemployed man was taken to the police station where he was charged with being drunk and disorderly and with assaulting a police officer and he later appeared at Swansea Magistrates' Court on 19 August 1961 and remanded in custody for a week.
The police report stated that owing to the ferocious nature of the attack made by the unemployed man on the labourer and the dock worker and the fact that he had been drinking in the Full Moon public house opposite Dyfatty Park on the evening of 17 August 1961 and that he arrived at 61 Alexandra Road, a distance of 300 yards from the Full Moon public house forty five minutes after closing time, that they decided to thoroughly investigate the unemployed mans activities.
He was first interviewed after he appeared in court but in his statement he denied all knowledge of the man found injured in Dyfatty Park on the Friday morning, saying that he had entered the Full Moon public house at 5.30pm on the evening of 17 August 1961 and had stayed there until 10.30pm, noting that he was of the opinion that he had left at 10.40pm and that he had then walked down High Street alone to the fish shop where he had bought some fish and chips after which he had gone back to the lodging house and gone to bed.
He then went on to say that after he went to bed that he started an argument with the labourer about religion and cigarettes and that when the labourer got up to go to the toilet that he followed him and thumped him after which the lodging house proprietor took the labourer to the hospital and told him that he was going to inform the police.
He said that he then got dressed and went out to buy some cigarettes for the plumber and that the next thing he knew was when the plumber woke him up on the Friday morning after which they left the house together and went to a cafe that faced High Street Station. He said that he then visited the railway station and went to John Laing's building site at Mount Pleasant to draw some wages that they owed him and where he was told that he would have to return at 4.30pm.
He said that he next went to his wife's aunt's address in Byron Crescent by which time he was hungry but didn't ask for anything to eat. He told her of the fight with the labourer at the lodging house and said that he had slept the night in Dyfatty Park which he said had the desired effect and he was offered a meal. He stayed at the house until 4.30pm that afternoon and then went to Laing's and collected the wages owed to him, £2 15s 0d.
He then went to Ricki's Cafe in Alexandra Road and bought some tea and then again visited the Full Moon public house where he stayed until 9.45pm after which he walked to Maliphant Street where he saw his wife. After seeing her he left and shortly after met her father who he assaulted.
Before he was taken to prison he was given a complete change of clothing and the clothes that he had been wearing were taken to Cardiff Forensic Laboratory for analysis.
When the woman at Byron Crescent was questioned she said that the unemployed man called at her house between 10am and 10.30am on Friday 18 August 1961 with blood over his hands, arms and trousers and noted that his clothing was damp. She said that he seemed very distressed and said, 'I am going home to my mother, I've got £6 coming from Laing's as wages and that will pay my fare. I had a fight with a man last night, I put my head into his face and I cracked him on the side of his face. He fell down after I put my head in but got up and I was surprised to see him get up so I cracked him another and he went down a second time'. The woman said that she replied, 'Go on, you are romancing'. However, she said that he then showed her the blood on his hands and arms and told her that he had fought the man in Dyfatty Park and had slept there overnight.
She said that he then washed and shaved himself and that she helped him sponge the blood from his trousers. The woman concluded by saying that she was definite that the unemployed man had told her that he had fought the man in Dyfatty Park and had slept there overnight and added that he had told her that he had quarrelled with the man over cigarettes and religion.
However, it was noted that after Stephen Watt died the woman would only say that the unemployed man had led her to believe that the man he had fought with was in Dyfatty Park.
When the unemployed man was later questioned whilst on remand he admitted telling the woman in Byrn Street that he had slept in Dyfatty Park but denied telling her that he had fought a man in the park, noting that the purpose of telling her he had been out in the park all night was to gain her sympathy in order to get a free breakfast.
It was noted that he told the police that he had been wearing his trousers at the time that he had assaulted the labourer at the lodging house and that as such one would expect that they would bear blood stains. The unemployed man also emphatically denied that his wife's aunt had helped to sponge any blood from his trousers.
It was noted that the following people had the following blood types:
The Cardiff Forensic Laboratory found traces of both groups of blood on the unemployed man's trousers.
When the unemployed man's wife was questioned she said that she had married him in Manchester on 23 August 1958 and that they had two children aged two and nine months. She said that in January 1961 that she had an accident and went into hospital and sent their children to her parents address in Swansea and that whilst she was in hospital the unemployed man paid no rent and sold up most of their furniture and that by the time she was discharged in March 1961 an eviction order had been issued and that after staying with the unemployed man's mother in Manchester for a week that she returned to her parents’ house in Swansea.
She said that the unemployed man arrived in Swansea shortly afterwards and that they lived with her grandmother. However, she said that her husband walked out on her in June 1961 and that they had not lived together since. She said that she was aware that he had returned to Manchester and then again to Swansea but said that owing to his cruelty and laziness that she refused to accommodate him at her grandmother's home and that he went to live at the lodging house although he visited her daily to see the children and beg a meal.
She said that on the evening of Friday 18 August 1961 at 10pm that the unemployed man called to see her and said, 'I'm in awful trouble' and then asked if she had read the newspaper and on being told 'Yes' said, 'You know the man in Dyfatty Park, I done it',
She said that she then read a piece out of the newspaper, The Evening Post, about a food bag, Stephen Watt's haversack, and that she said, 'Shut up, things are bad enough now'. She said that she then told him to go home or to the police if he was telling the truth and that he replied to the effect that he had drawn his wages and cards from Laing's and that he had a ticket for Manchester. She said that he then swore at her, told her to mind her own business and left the house.
She said that her brother later called to see her at about midnight that night and told her of the assault by her husband on her father at the bus stop.
The police report stated that the statements of both the woman from Byron Crescent and his wife were thought to have been a little exaggerated. It stated that there was no doubt that the unemployed man had told them that he had seriously assaulted a man on 17 August 1961 and that he had told the woman at Byron Crescent that he had slept in Dyfatty Park, but noted that at the time there was a great deal of local press publicity of the park incident and that both women seemed to have readily jumped to the conclusion that he was responsible for the attack on Stephen Watt.
It was noted that when the unemployed man had told the woman at Byron Crescent on the morning of 18 August 1961 that he had slept in Dyfatty Park, Stephen Watt had only just been found that that he might not have known that and that as such his mention of Dyfatty Park was a strange but unfortunate coincidence.
The police report stated that both women knew the unemployed man as a braggart and that didn't surprise either of them when he led them to believe that he was in serious trouble over the assault on Stephen Watt.
It was noted that both women were seen again on the morning of 4 October 1961 when they made further statements, the only important point arising from which being the fact that on the morning of 18 August 1961 that he unemployed man had been penniless and hungry.
The police stated that they made every effort to trace and check the unemployed man's movements on the night of 17 August 1961 and questioned the three men that he shared a room with.
The driver said that he worked for Messes Moss Limited, Sub-contractors, London and that at the time he had been engaged in re-construction work in High Street, Swansea. He had said that on the evening of 17 August 1961 that he had been drinking in the Full Moon public house and that he had seen the unemployed man there with a number of other men and that he had returned to his lodgings at about 9pm, leaving the unemployed man in the Full Moon.
He said that at about 10.30pm he and the labourer went out to a Chinese Restaurant for a meal and returned to their lodgings at 11.15pm when they went to bed.
He said that the unemployed man then came in at 11.30pm and sat on his bed and started to argue with the labourer. He said that the labourer then went into the wash-room and was followed by the unemployed man but that he didn't see the fight. He noted that he was of the impression that the unemployed man had been lying on the bed with his clothes on until at least 3am and that he was certain that he didn't go out.
He noted that the unemployed man appeared to be a heavy drinker and that he had a number of empty beer and spirit bottles near to his bed.
In a later statement he said that when the unemployed man had come into the bedroom at about 11.40pm that he had appeared to have been in a bad temper and that he had kept hitting his right hand into his left hand and that he had some blood on his right hand. He said that the unemployed man then removed his jacket and trousers and got into his bed in his underpants and vest and that after he got into bed he had started shouting at the labourer.
He said that the unemployed man asked for a cigarette but didn't get one and that he kept abusing him but that the labourer didn't respond. However, he said that the labourer later got out of bed to go to the toilet and that the unemployed man followed him in his underpants and then returned and jumped back into bed. He said that he then saw the labourer follow and noticed that his face was covered in blood. He said that the labourer was then taken to hospital by the landlord.
He said that when he woke up at 6.50am he saw that the unemployed man was sleeping in his bed fully clothed and that when he later entered the room at about 9am the same morning he saw the unemployed man sitting on the bed normally occupied by the plumber and was holding his head between his hands and said that he then said, 'Do you know, I am bloody sorry that I done that bloke last night, I didn't boot him that's one sure thing'. He added that he was sure that the plumber had been in bed when he and the labourer had got back from the restaurant at 11.20pm on 17 August 1961.
In his last statement the driver said that he had gone to the full Moon public house on the night of 17 August 1961 and had left them both there when he had later returned to his lodgings at about 9.15pm. He said that after he and the labourer had gone for the meal at the Chinese Restaurant that they had returned to their room and gone to bed and fallen asleep and that he was later awakened by the quarrel between the unemployed man and the labourer at which time the unemployed man had been undressed and had been calling the labourer an Irish Bastard.
He said that he then saw the unemployed man jump out of his bed and go after the labourer who had gone to the toilet and that he heard banging and thumping after which the unemployed man returned to his bed followed by the labourer who came in badly beaten up and covered in blood.
He said that the landlord then took the labourer to the hospital and that they both later returned and the labourer went to bed. He said that he then heard the landlord telling the unemployed man off about his conduct and that it all then went quiet and that he went to sleep.
He said that when he awoke at 7am on 18 August 1961 that the unemployed man had been lying on his bed fully dressed and concluded his statement by stating that he didn't know whether the unemployed man had left the premises after his fight with the labourer.
It was noted that his second statement was in complete conflict with his first statement in which he had said that he had seen the unemployed man sitting on his bed looking wild, thumping his right hand into his left and bearing bloodstains, instead saying that he had been asleep when the unemployed man had come in and that he had been awakened by the quarrel.
The police report noted that the driver was like the majority of residents at 61 Alexandra Road and appeared to be sodden with drink and that little reliance could be placed on him.
The plumber had been a Scotsman and had been known as Jock, but he left 61 Alexandra Road on the Saturday 20 August 1961 for an unknown destination and it was not known where he had gone. However, he was later traced and it was determined that he had a criminal record for being drunk and disorderly, assault on police and wilful damage. He had been a plumber by trade and had lived in Dumfries Avenue, Dumbarton and by the time his true identity was known he had been arrested in Newport for being drunk and disorderly but he failed to answer his bail at Newport Magistrates Court on 28 August 1961 and he was at the time the police report into Stephen Watt's death was written still missing, his whereabouts being unknown.
It was noted that in one of the visits that the police made to the unemployed man whilst he was in prison that he had said that he had remembered leaving the Full Moon public house on the night of 17 August 1961 and meeting a cockney lad at about 11pm at the junction of Alexandra Road and High Street. He said that they had stood about talking to the attendant of the public lavatories arguing about football and attempting to persuade the attendant to make them some tea. He said that the attendant refused to make tea as it had been nearing time for him to finish duty and so he and the cockney lad entered the Curry Inn that adjoined the lodging house.
The unemployed man said that he could not name the cockney lad but had believed that he had been staying at 61 Alexandra Road and following enquiries the police determined that he was a 24-year-old labourer with a criminal record who had since left Swansea and who had by then been residing at the Church Army Hostel in Cambridge Terrace, Oxford.
The police report noted that a statement had been taken from him by police officers in Oxford in which he said that he had been in the Full Moon public house from about 6pm on Thursday 17 August 1961 and that the unemployed man had entered about fifteen minutes later with a 'little Irish lad' believed to be the plumber, but that he didn't join their company and left the pub between 9.30pm and 10pm, leaving them there.
He went on to say that at about 11pm that same evening he had been standing at the corner of Alexandra Road when the unemployed man had approached from the direction of the Full Moon public house. He said that the unemployed man had been alone and that after greeting each other that the unemployed man told him that he had just 'done a Chink up'. He said that nothing further was said of that incident and that he then entered the public toilet which was located at the centre of the Alexandra Road High Street junction. He said that as he was leaving the lavatory that the unemployed man had been talking to the lavatory attendant and another man about football and that he left them talking together and went into the Curry Inn for supper where the unemployed man joined him at about 11.45pm saying that he was starving but didn't buy anything. He said that he then gave him the rest of his supper and then left the restaurant and went to bed. He said that he got up later the next morning at 6.45am and went to work but knew nothing of the fight between the unemployed man and the labourer.
It was noted that the name used for homosexuals in the Swansea area was 'Punk' and that on receipt of the 24-year-old labourer's statement from the Oxford Police it was thought that there was the possibility that the unemployed man had told him that he had done a 'punk' up and mistakenly thought that he was referring to a 'Chink' and so he was seen again by the Oxford police but he said that he was certain that the unemployed man had used the word 'Chink'.
The police report noted that they had no information that a Chinaman was in fact beaten that night and noted that although there were a few Chinamen employed in Chinese restaurants in the Swansea area, their enquiries showed that none of them had been attacked.
The police later questioned the lavatory attendant on 20 August 1961 who had lived in Carmarthen Road, Cwmdu and who was employed bu the Swansea Corporation at the public conveniences at the junction of High Street and Alexandra Road in Swansea.
He said that he had been on duty on 17 August 1961 from 2pm to 11.45pm but that he could not recall speaking to any man on that particular night about football. However, he later returned to the police station on 27 August 1961 and asked to amend his statement saying that he recalled being approached by a young man between 10.45pm and 11pm on 17 August 1961 who said, 'What about brewing up', which he said he took to mean 'making tea', but said that he had told the man that he was going home shortly and was making no more tea.
He said that after that they were joined by a third man and a discussion about football started but that after ten minutes they dispersed, saying that he didn't know where the two men went.
When he was shown a photograph of the unemployed man he said that he believed that he was the man that had asked him to make the tea and described the other man as a cockney aged between 25 and 30 years of age.
It was noted in the police report that when the lavatory attendant made his additional statement that the unemployed man had been in prison and that the Cockny lad had been in Oxford and that as such there could be no question of either of them having approached him after he was first interviewed by the police.
The proprietor of The Alexandra Guest House at 61 Alexandra Road in Swansea was seen on several occasions but was unable to add anything useful to the enquiry. He was an ex heavy-weight boxing champion in Wales but was by then stupid and punch-drunk. He weas noted for having many minor convictions for larceny, receiving, threats to murder and motoring offences. However, it was noted that his fingerprints had never been taken owing to the fact that his hands were in a permanent clenched condition and that he could not straighten his fingers.
It was stated that he had kept a low class boarding house that was frequented by thieves, drunkards and drifters passing through the borough.
It was noted that as in the case of the unemployed man, many of his boarders had been on National Assistance and that their board was paid to the landlord directly by means of Public Assistance vouchers.
The police report noted that the unemployed man caused the police considerable work in eliminating him from their enquiries for Stephen Watt's murder. It was noted that he had become a suspect for the following reasons:
However, in spite of that, the police report said that they were firmly convinced that the unemployed man was not the man responsible for the assault for the following reasons:
The unemployed man appeared at Swansea Magistrates' Court where he was charged with assault on the labourer and his father-in-law and he was sentenced to a total of six month's imprisonment and due to be released on 26 December 1961.
Suspect Two - Mentally unstable man
At 1.25pm on 29 August 1961 the police received a message from Ammanford police station in Carmarthen to the effect that a 29-year-old man was detained there having been given into custody by his aunt as a suspect for the assault on Stephen Watt. The police said that when they saw the man at Ammanford police station that they at once realised that he was mentally unstable and that it was impossible to obtain a statement from him. However, they noted that questions that were put to him and his answers were recorded.
His aunt, who lived in Bron-y-Nant, Grenig Road, Glanamman and who had been a housewife had lived with the mother and father of the man, both of whom were mentally retarded.
His aunt said that the man had left home on 1 March 1961 after a domestic quarrel over his refusal to pay for his board and lodging but later returned to collect his belongings on Good Friday 1961 at which time he struck his aunt and was struck back by his uncle. Nothing more was heard of him until 29 August 1961 when he arrived back at the cottage at about 11.30am. When he arrived his aunt asked him what he wanted and he told her that he wanted to say goodbye to his parents. His aunt said that he called to his mother and told her that he was there but said that she didn't want to see him.
The man was then given a meal and two cups of tea which he drank and then put his hands to his face and said, 'Oh! my God, I didn't do it. I didn't do it'. His aunt then asked him, 'You didn't do what, are you connected with this man who was assaulted in Swansea?' to which he replied, 'No, I was not'. She then said, 'You answer the description of a man they want in the Western Mail' to which he replied, 'Well, you know all about it do you?'. His aunt then said, 'Well I had an idea it might have been you because your brother, when he read the paper said, 'If this isn't our brother I'll eat my hat'. You know the man is dead, died in hospital'.
She said that the man then put his head in his hands and said, 'Well they haven’t got my name and they'll never find out'.
She said that her husband then came into the room and she told him of the conversation that she had just had and her husband asked the man why he was on the run and he told him he was on the run for non-payment of rates. He said that he then advised the man to give himself up to the police and he left the house.
The aunt then telephoned the police and the man was detained in the street and taken to Ammaford police station. However, the police said that their conversation with the man proved to be very unenlightening and that they could find nothing to connect him to the assault on Stephen Watt.
The police determined that he appeared to have been working in Carmarthen for Messrs TP Jones Ltd as a labourer and that he had been at work there until 5pm on 17 August 1961. He had then taken the following day off, 18 August 1961 and when he returned on 19 August he was discharged. He then went to Pembroke Dock and apparently stayed in that town until the day he returned to his aunt's house.
When the police went to speak to the manager of TP Jones Ltd, who had lived in Abergwili Road in Carmarthen, he stated that he had employed the man as a labourer on 17 July 1961 and discharged him on 19 August 1961 stating that he had taken the day off on 18 August 1961 without permission and given the excuse that he had been sick. The manager said that as that was not the first occasion that he had taken the day off during that month's employment he was discharged. The manager described the man as an erratic worker who needed constant supervision.
The police report noted that whilst the man had been working for TP Jones Ltd that he had been sleeping rough in car parks and railway carriages in local sidings.
The police stated that due to the man's mental condition that, in agreement with a local doctor, he was taken to St David's (Mental) Hospital as a voluntary patient in order that further enquiries be carried out. It was noted that he was no stranger to the hospital or the medical staff as he had been a patient there previously.
Police enquiries in Pembroke Dock further noted that the man had been stopped there on 24 August 1961 at 11.40pm by a police officer as he was sleeping rough and he was questioned respecting his movements on 17 August 1961 and satisfied the officer that he had not been in Swansea on that date.
The police also saw another of the man's aunts, a woman that had lived in North Street, Bufferkand in Pembroke Dock. She said that he had called at her address at 10am on 27 August 1961 and had told her that he had come to Pembroke Dock by bus and was working in Carmarthen and had lodgings in Ammanford. She said that whilst they were having a meal that he told her that his aunt and uncle had bought his house and had thrown him out and that it was his intention to look for work in the Pembroke Dock area.
She said that at about 11.30am she invited him to stay for dinner but that he declined, saying that he had paid £4 4s 0d in advance at his lodgings and that his dinner would be waiting for him and that he then left.
However, she said that at about 9.30pm the same day that he called again and that the first thing that he said was, 'I don't want to die', or words to that effect and that he then explained that the police had picked him up outside Pembroke but he could not remember when. She said that he appeared very upset and that she became concerned about his condition and that she then gave him two Phensic tablets and a cup of tea and told him to pull himself together. She said that he later left her house at 10.45pm saying that he had to be in his lodgings by 11pm but said that he returned at 11.45pm saying, 'I have been locked out. I can't get an answer'.
She said that he was then let in and that he then said, 'Have you seen the papers today' and kept repeating, 'What do you think about it?'. She said that he then started to turn over the pages of the newspaper and the word 'murder' was mentioned in the conversation'. She added that although she didn't know what he was talking about she did think that it was her that suggested that the police might be looking for someone that answered his description.
She said that by that time that the man was in a very bad state and that the whole of his body was shaking and he could not keep still. She said that he didn't appear to be frightened but that he did walk around the kitchen for several hours and that he later started talking about a church in Pembroke Dock and kept repeating, 'Why is the ladder there?'.
She said that he later went out for a short walk at about 4am and returned a short while later and that he was apparently normal from 4am to 7am and no mention was made of the previous conversation. She said that he then left the house at 7am after having a meal stating that it was his intention to catch the 7.30am train to Glanamman.
When the man was detained he had been in possession of two suitcases containing personal belongings and was dressed in a green suit that had obviously been recently cleaned. From the cleaner's label, which was still attached, the police were able to prove that the suit had been cleaned by the Replacement Cleaners prior to the date of the assault on Stephen Watt.
The police said that they were also able to establish that on the morning of 17 August 1961, the day before the man had been absent from his work, that he had withdrawn the sum of £9 from a Trustee Savings Bank at Carmarthen.
On his admission to St David's Hospital the medical superintendent there advised the police not to interview the man until he had had the opportunity to treat him and the police later went back on 31 August 1961 when he was questioned by the police, the doctor and his aunt. It was said that whilst there had been a marked improvement in his condition that he still adhered to his original story that he had not been to Swansea and that he had no connection with the assault on Stephen Watt.
The police report noted that the man had no convictions for crimes reported against him and that he was a man of very slight build, extremely nervous and that it was difficult to imagine him being capable of inflicting such a savage assault as was received by Stephen Watt. The report stated that apart from the man's own strange behaviour with his relatives that there was nothing whatsoever to connect him with the enquiry.
Suspect Three - Man from Neath
It was noted that from the nature of the injuries to Stephen Watt that there was a probability that he had received a kick in the kidney and that during the police enquiries information was received regarding a 23-year-old man from Neath that had a criminal record that he had received an injury to his foot on or about the date of the assault on Stephen Watt. The man had lived in Valley View, Cimla in Neath, Glamorgan and had been married. Further enquiries showed that the man had been on remand for breaking and entering a dwelling house in Neath on Saturday 12 August 1961 and that he was due to appear at Neath Magistrates' Court on 4 September 1961 and after his appearance he was interviewed by the police at Neath police station.
The police report stated that they found the man difficult to deal with but that after some persuasion by a detective that knew the man he agreed to make a statement covering his movements on the night of 17 August 1961.
He had insisted that on that date he had left his home at 7pm with his wife and visited his next door neighbour where they watched television and later returned home at 10.30pm. He said that the following morning at 10.30am he went to the Employment Exchange to draw his dole and that at about 1pm he and his wife left Neath to visit his mother's address in Berw Road, Mayhill in Swansea.
He said that at 2.30pm he then visited Laing's building site opposite Dyfatty Park with his father where he was promised work and that whilst on the site that he had met an acquaintance who had told him that a man had been found injured in the park that morning.
He said that just after 6pm that evening he left his mother's home alone and visited the Albion Inn, the Gardeners Arms and the Row Cow public house in High Street although it as later ascertained that he had meant the Red Cow public house in Carmarthen Road. But that time he had met up with two friends and after leaving the Red Cow public house they made their way to the Colosseum public house where they stayed until 10.30pm, stop tap time (closing time).
He said that as he left the Colosseum public house that he saw the wife of a friend of his who was at the time serving a prison sentence who was in the company of five men, all of whom were strangers. He said that he then had an argument with the woman over her behaviour who then left in a motor car with three of the men. He said that the other two men then walked off up Little Wind Street towards a car park and that he followed them and that there was then a fight during which at one point he fell to the ground and was kicked by one of the men and that he retaliated and in doing so injured his right foot.
He said that he then left the vicinity of the public house and as the last bus had gone he walked to his parent's address with another man, noting that his foot gave him pain but that it was not serious.
However, he said that the following morning that his foot was worse and so he visited a doctor who in turn sent him to Swansea Hospital where his foot was X-rayed. He noted that when he saw his doctor he told him that the damage to his foot was caused by him tripping over a kerb.
He concluded his statement by denying all knowledge of the man Stephen Watt and insisting that he did not associate with 'queers'.
When the police spoke to the man's neighbour, a 26-year-old housewife in Valley View she said that it was quite possible that the man had spent the evening of 17 August 1961 at her house watching television but added that she could not be certain. However, her husband, a 31-year-old plasterer, said that the man and his wife did visit his home on the evening of 17 August 1961, noting that he himself left the house at 7pm to visit the Wyndham Hotel in Neath with it being arranged that the man would follow him later but said that he didn't and that the man later made the excuse, when he saw him back at his house at 11.15pm 17 August, that he had had insufficient money to go out drinking and had stayed at his house with his wife and his own wife.
The police report noted that if the plasterer could be believed in that he had seen the man at 11.15pm, which was twelve miles from Swansea, that it cleared him entirely of any connection with the assault on Stephen Watt.
The police report stated that every effort was made to trace the two men that the man was supposed to have had the fight with but without success.
As such, the police interviewed the woman that he had seen out with the five men. She was a 23-year-old woman that had lived in Cromwell Street, Mount Pleasant, Swansea. Her husband had at the time been serving a three year sentence for housebreaking. She said that on Friday 18 August 1961 that she had been in the Colosseum Hotel with another woman and that whilst there a man spoke to her and bought them drinks and that they stayed until closing time. She said that the man was a stranger but that she believed that he had been a sailor. She said that after closing time they had stood outside the public house talking when the man from Neath came out and asked her if she would have supper with him. However, she said that she declined the offer and that the man went back into the public house and that the sailor then called a taxi and escorted both her and her friend to her address where he left them.
When the woman was further questioned she said that it had been about 10pm when the man from Neath had spoken to her and they left the public house and that after she declined to have supper with her that he did tell her that it was not right to associate with another man whilst her husband was in prison. However, she denied having been with five men on the night and had no knowledge of any fight having taken place.
The police report noted that her story was supported by her friend, a 24-year-old woman who was separated from her husband and who was living with her in Cromwell Street. She said that she recalled seeing the man from Neath talking to her friend but said that she saw no sign of any fight.
The police also spoke to a 22-year-old student who lived in Pentregethin Road, Swansea and who was employed as a taxi-driver employed by Glamtax Services Ltd during his summer vacation. He said that at about 10.30pm on 18 August 1961 that he had picked up a fare at the garage which was 100 yards from the Colosseum public house made up of two women, a female child and a man who he took to Cromwell Street where the two women and the child got out.
He said that the man then directed him to the Cwmbwrla police box in Carmarthen Road where he got out, noting that before he did so that the man asked him to examine his face and shirt to see if he had any traces of lipstick or powder on him, remarking that his wife would play hell because he had been out drinking.
The police report noted that it seemed that the woman had been wrong in describing the man as a sailor and noted that he had not been found and that it was doubtful that he could assist in the enquiry anyway.
Statements were also taken from three men, all of whom had criminal records, who had spent the night of 18 August 1961 out with the man from Neath. Two of them recalled seeing the woman whose husband was in prison at the Colosseum public house, but said that they knew nothing of any fight involving the man. One of them noted however that the following day that he saw the man from Neath and said that he told him that he had been involved in a fight.
The man was later convicted of the housebreaking offence at the Glamorgan Quarter Sessions on 5 October 1961 and sentenced to 9 months' imprisonment.
When the police went to see him on 6 October 1961 and told him they could find no corroboration whatever of the story that he had told of being in a fight in Little Wind Street he refused to discuss the matter any further.
The police report noted that as in the case of the unemployed man, the man from Neath was not the sort of man who would go to the trouble of luring a man like Stephen Watt into Dyfatty Park, which was on the other end of town frequented by him and that taking everything into account they were of the opinion that the man from Neath could be eliminated as a suspect.
The police report concluded that other than the three possible suspects identified, the unemployed man, the mentally unstable man and the man from Neath that there were no other suspects identified.
Stephen Watt's Habits
The police report noted that it had been established that Stephen Watt would spend many hours roaming the town looking for companionship and that they had learned that a week or two before he received his injuries he had been seen in the company of two young soldiers who were both later traced to Belfast. and statements taken.
The first of the two soldiers was a 22-year-old butcher from Knockenden Crescent in Belfast who said that he had been attached to the Territorial Army for the past 18 months. He had been attached to the 245 Ulster Light AA Regiment(TA). On 29 July 1961 the unit had left Northern Ireland for Penally Camp near Tenby in Pembrokeshire on a two week course. A 19-year-old friend of his who lived in Cooneen Way, Cregagh Road, Belfast, had also been attending that course and on 5 August 1961 a special bus supplied by the Regimental authorities took a number of the men into Swansea for the day. The soldier said that at about 1pm they entered Woolworths Stores in High Street and went upstairs to the cafe, noting that the place was fairly crowded at the time and that whilst they were sitting at a table that Stephen Watt, who they didn't know, brought his meal to their table and asked if he could join them.
The soldier said that he introduced himself as 'Steve' and said that they had dinner together during which Stephen Watt spoke of a visit he had made to Ireland. He said that after the meal that the three of them went to the Cross Keys public house near the Castle Gardens in Town Centre where they stayed until 3pm at which time the two soldiers left him after arranging to meet him later in the Castle Gardens at 5.30pm.
The two soldiers kept the appointment and Stephen Watt invited them to his flat for tea which they did after which they went to see an Irish friend of Stephen Watt. The soldier said that Stephen Watt invited his Irish friend to accompany them for the evening but said that he declined, making the excuse that he was preparing for the christening of his baby.
The two soldiers and Stephen Watt then spent the rest of the evening visiting public houses in Swansea, with it being noted by the 22-year-old soldier that Stephen Watt was spoken to by someone in almost every public house they went to.
The soldier said that they missed the last bus back to Camp and were forced to hitch-hike their way back and didn't see Stephen Watt after midnight.
The Territorial Unit returned to Belfast on 13 August 1961 and neither of the soldiers visited Swansea since. It was not nown whether either of the soldiers were homosexuals and they did not explain how they came to miss their last bus or what happened between closing time, 10.30pm, and midnight.
The police report stated that their enquiries showed that Stephen Watt spent many hours drinking alone in various public houses and that he was always affable and sociable and that he would often buy another person a drink just to join in a conversation. It was also found that it seemed that after closing time that he would wander around the town centre obviously looking for company.
A 62-year-old gent's outfitter and Justice of the Peace who lived in Glassfryn, Heathfield in Swansea said that he had been standing outside his shop premises in the High Street on a Friday, either 4 or 11 August 1961, at midnight when he was spoken to by Stephen Watt, saying that Stephen Watt said 'Good evening' and introduced himself. He said that they had some conversation in which Stephen Watt stated that he knew his late father very well and that with a pleasant 'Goodnight' Stephen Watt then sauntered off down High Street.
A 55-year-old man who lived at Rhoshill in Beaumont Crescent, St Thomas, Swansea, said that on Sunday 13 August 1961 that he had met Stephen Watt at Pontardawe at 10.30pm whilst they were both waiting for a bus to Swansea. He said that Stephen Watt was well known to him as he had a chemist shop near to where Stephen Watt lived. He said that during the journey to Swansea, which took about twenty minutes, that they spoke of the death of Stephen Watt's sister and that Stephen Watt told him that he was attending her funeral the following day.
He said that when they arrived at Swansea (High Street) Railway Station, that Stephen Watt prepared to leave the bus and that as he was doing so he asked him why he was leaving the bus at that stage, noting that the stop was about a quarter of a mile from Castle Gardens where the bus for St Thomas left, and said that Stephen Watt remarked that he had a call to make and that that was the last that he saw of him.
The police report stated that there was little doubt that on both of the previous occasions that Stephen Watt had spent the evening at his niece's address at Pontardawe and that on arriving at the Town Centre at Swansea and before catching his bus to St Thomas, he had wandered around the town looking for companionship, with his remark to the chemist of 'having a call to make' probably being cover for a late night stroll.
The police report noted that after public house closing time that a favourite meeting place for sexual perverts was the public toilet situated in Welcombe Lane, High Street near Castle Gardens, which was also the main bus stop for buses going to St Thomas and it was noted that after having left the Red Cow public house that Stephen Watt should have passed the toilets in order to have caught his bus home.
The police report noted that in two or three nights they rounded up about twenty of those types from Welcombe Lane and brought them to the police station where questionnaires were completed by them. The men were:
It was stated that it was hoped that by interrogating the men that evidence would be obtained of an association with Stephen Watt or some information regarding persons likely to assault, rob, blackmail or otherwise intimidate those types of people.
It was stated that whilst the people that they interrogated openly admitted their homosexual tendencies, that they were surprised to find out none of them knew Stephen Watt and that none of them would admit that they had been intimidated in any way. The police report noted that as it would appear from the ages of the men brought in, which ranged from 18 to the middle 50s that it would appear that Stephen Watt was in a slightly different category and that it was possible that he had no particular boyfriend amongst the local sex perverts and that he might have preferred to pick up total strangers.
Area Around Red Cow and Dyfatty Park
It was noted that the High Street from the Red Cow Inn by the bus stop to St Thomas was in the main shopping centre and had been brilliantly lit and well frequented at that time of night and that one of the most astounding aspects of the enquiry was that no person saw Stephen Watt after he said 'Goodnight' to his friends at the Red Cow public house.
The police enquiries showed that Dyfatty Park was used during the late evening by courting couples and prostitutes from the Full Moon public house, but the police report stated that they were satisfied that by 10.40pm on the night of 17 August 1961 that the known women that habitually performed there had caught their last buses to their respective homes. It was stated that it could be assumed that Stephen Watt and his companion, whoever he was, had arrived at the park at 11pm at the earliest and that there was no doubt that the park was at that time deserted.
The Full Moon public house was the nearest pub to Dyfatty Park and was in Upper High Street and was described as a low class public house that was frequented by the following prostitutes:
The police report said that each of the women had been seen and interrogated and that they were satisfied that none of them had been in Dyfatty Park after 10.30pm on 17 August 1961. It was noted that they had all been brought to the police station on many occasions in the hope that they could be used as informants but that that had produced no results although the police stated that they were convinced that they would have helped if they could.
Full Moon Public House
It was noted that the Full Moon public house received strong attention from the police during the investigation due to the fact that twelve years earlier in January 1949 37-year-iold Ernest Clifford Melville, who was also a homosexual, was also killed in similar circumstances to Stephen Watt.
It was noted that Ernest Melville was murdered on a bombed site between High Street and Dyfatty Park and that his murder was still unsolved. Ernest Melville had been a frequent user of the Full Moon public house and had in fact spent the evening there prior to his death which occurred after closing time and thought to have been at 11.30pm.
The police report stated that although they could find no evidence that Stephen Watt ever used the Full Moon public house, they did not overlook the possibility that the offences were connected and several people interrogated in the Ernest Melville case were seen and interrogated and cleared from suspicion in the matter.
The police interviewed a 54-year-old woman that had lived in Dyfatty Street, Swansea and whose house overlooked Dyfatty Park and Croft Street which connected High Street and Dyfatty Street and ran at the side of the park.
She had said that on the night Ernest Melville was murdered that she had been standing on her front doorstep at 11pm when she had seen three men on the park side of the road brushing each other’s clothing and examining their clothing by striking matches. She had described the men as being between the ages of 20 and 25 years, one being very tall, about 6ft, with a slim build, with the other two being a head shorter than the taller man and stockily built. She had said that they had been dressed in dark clothing but that as she didn't see their faces that she would have been unable to identify them.
The police report stated that they had also received information through an informant some time earlier, that the persons responsible for the murder of Ernest Melville were:
It was stated that at the time of Ernest Melville's murder that the three men had been 25 years old and all actively engaged in crime.
Ernest Melville was murdered on 21 January 1949 and the 2nd and 3rd men were interviewed by the police on 4 February 1949 with the 1st man, the tallest, being interviewed a fortnight later on 19 February 1949, a month after the murder. Their statements showed that they had had spent the evening of the day of the murder visiting public houses and finally a fish and chip shop after which they caught a bus and alighted at the Zoar Chapel in Carmarthen Road at 11pm, which was only a matter of 100 yards from the scene of the murder. It was noted that considering the lapse of time between the murder and the dates the statements were taken that it was remarkable how much detail they were able to supply on how they had spent their evening with each statement corroborating the other to the slightest detail.
The police report noted that from the experience of the police that it was practically impossible to obtain a clear statement from such types as the three known criminals after a lapse of only a few days after the assault on Stephen Watt, it being stated that there was little doubt that they had carefully rehearsed their stories before being interrogated. The police noted that the 2nd and 3rd known criminals had spent many hours with them being interrogated on both the Melville and the Watt cases and that they obviously held secure, which it was said was not surprising after twelve years. It was said that the 1st known criminal had been in London and had yet to be interrogated.
A Series Of Robberies
The police noted that the fact that Stephen Watt had undoubtedly been robbed of all his personal possessions, that they had not lost sight of the possibility that the assault could have been one of a series of robberies committed by one or a group of persons and all known cases of robbery in the Swansea area during 1961 were looked into, especially the following, all of which occurred after the public houses had closed:
On Friday 16 February 1961 at 12.35am, a 38-year-old man that had lived in Park Street, Stourbridge, and who had worked as a leading hand employed by the Standard Cable Company in Swansea was taken to hospital after suffering from a suspected fractured jaw. The alleged sum of £20 had been missing from his wallet. He had been very drunk after spending the evening in public houses in Swansea and was found in the roadway by a passing motorist some four miles from Swansea. When he was questioned, all he could say was, 'I must have been taken in a car. I know they are Welsh bastards'.
On Thursday 8 June 1961 a 63-year-old coal trimmer at Swansea Docks who lived in Onkerman Street, St Thomas, Swansea had been out enjoying a weeks' holiday and had spent the whole day drinking and according to him entered most of the public houses in Swansea. The last public house that he had entered had been the Gower Inn in Nelson Street, Swansea. It was said that he did not drink in company and apparently preferred drinking alone. He said that he faintly remembered leaving the public house at 10.30pm. He noted that he could usually get home after a drinking bout but admitted that on one or two occasions he had had to be escorted home by the police. He said that on the night of 8 June 1961 that he had the faint recollection of some person in a motor car saying to him outside the Gower Inn, 'We are going over your way'. He said that he thought he remembered seeing a man outside the car with a flat nose but remembered no more of anything that happened that night. He said that he woke up in bed the following morning at about 10am and that when he examined his face in the mirror he saw that his nose and mouth were swollen and that his false teeth, which were still in his mouth, were broken.
He said that he then realised that he had been beaten up and that when he checked the contents of his suit he found that over £20 in cash and a gold watch and chain valued together at £20 were missing. He said that he later attended a doctor and that he had not yet resumed work. It was noted that he man didn't report the incident to the police and that it only came to light as a result of the enquiries into the assault on Stephen Watt.
The police report stated that every effort had been made to trace the gold watch and chain stolen from the coal trimmer in the hopes that it could lead to his attacker as well as to the person responsible for the assault on Stephen Watt. The police had also gone out to public houses with the coal trimmer in the evenings in the hope that he might be able to identify his assailant. However, the police report stated that the coal trimmer had been so drunk on the night he was attacked that they had no success.
The coal trimmers landlady in Inkerman Street said that she had had him as a boarder for the last 15 years and described him as a heavy drinker but noted that when he drunk he was not quarrelsome. She said that about two years earlier that he had arrived home with facial injuries and that on that occasion he had told her that he had fallen from a bus. She added that at about 1am on Friday 9 June 1961 that she had opened the door in response to a knock and that the coal trimmer had stumbled in apparently drunk and gone to bed. She said that she didn't see his face but said that when she saw him the following morning at 12 noon when he got up that she found that his face was a terrible sight and that he told her that he had been beaten up and robbed.
On the morning of Tuesday 11 July 1961 the police were called to Swansea Hospital where they saw a 49-year-old shop's greaser of no fixed abode. He had been detained in hospital after suffering from injuries to his face after being found staggering in the road at 2am that morning near the Ivorites Hotel in Carmarthen Road, Fforestfach. On arrival of the police at the hospital it was found that the greaser had not been in a fit state to be questioned as to how he came by his injuries and he was later seen on 12 July 1961 when a statement was taken.
It was determined that the greaser had been paid off the MV British Sportsman at Swansea on the morning of Saturday 8 July 1961, receiving wages amounting to £70 cash, and that he had then spent the whole weekend drinking and making a general mischief of himself. He had been taken back on board the MV British Sportsman on the Saturday night, drunk, and allowed to stay for the night but was told the following morning not to return.
On the Sunday he visited the Merchant Navy Hotel in Swansea at which time he had bottles of whisky in his pocket, was drunk, and kept brandishing a roll of notes. He was later ejected from the club at 10pm Sunday 9 July 1961.
It appeared that he then spent the whole of the Monday 10 July 1961 drinking from public house to public house in Swansea. He said that he dimly remembered leaving a public house on the evening of Monday 10 July 1961 and getting into a black motor car. He said that sometime later the car stopped and that he got out and the driver offered him a cigarette after which he received heavy blows in the face, but did not know who from.
It was said that the attack on the greaser took place once more about six miles away from Swansea on the Carmarthen Road near Fforestfach and that as far as could be ascertained the greaser came out of it £50 worse off.
The police report noted that it was somewhat significant that although he could not give a description of the motor car, that he was under the impression that the man that had been in it had been about 39-years-old, 5ft 9in tall and of heavy build, a description which was described as comparable to that of the man who attacked the coal trimmer.
On 27 July 1961 a 65-year-old man that had lived in Wallace Road, St Thomas, Swansea, and who was a retired wagon repairer, having finished working for British Railways in October 1960, had been out drinking when he was later robbed. He said that he had left his home at about 8.30pm and visited the Cornish Mount public house, The Strand, Swansea, although he only had two pints of beer and that after closing time he assisted the licensee to collect a few glasses and lock up.
He said that after leaving the public house at about 11pm he roamed around the town looking for a fish shop and a urinal but found that both were closed and so he began to walk home nd on the way selected a dark spot near the New Cut Bridge in order to urinate and that the next thing that he knew was that he was coming to and finding himself lying on the ground.
He had sustained injuries to his face and both his eyes. His wallet which contained five £1 notes and the loose cash in his trousers pocket had gone.
He arrived home at 11.45pm and went to bed without disturbing the rest of his family and reported the matter to the police the following day.
However, he was unable to describe any person and said that in fact that he didn't know how he received his injuries.
The police report noted that bearing in mind that two of the victims were obviously conveyed by car to the Fforestfach area before being attacked and the fact that Stephen Watt was also attacked by a man who they believed was seen walking away in the same direction, concentrated enquiries were made at public houses, cafes, taxi services and of local residents in the Fforestfach district with a view to establishing the identity of any likely suspects, and especially of any aged about 40 years and owning a motor car, but without result.
It was noted that Swansea was a seaport and that seamen had a reputation for being associated to various degrees with sexual perversions which coupled with the fact that it had bene ascertained that Stephen Watt sometimes took seamen to his home, the difficult task or interviewing all the seamen in Swansea on 17 August 1961 was undertaken by a squad of CID officers. However, it was noted that by the time that Stephen Watt had died that numerous seamen had sailed and that although the great majority had been interviewed, there were still a few outstanding.
The police report stated that there had been in all twenty ships in port on the night of 17 August 1961 and that the crews of all the ships totalled just over 500 and that about 75% of them had already been interviewed and answers to questionnaires obtained from them. It was noted that although a vast number of them had criminal records, that they did not come across any with any convictions for serious violence.
It was noted that the majority of ships that used the Port of Swansea were coastal vessels and oil tankers and that unlike those in the Port of London, they only remained for short periods.
It was further noted that from observation that seamen tended to use the public houses at the dock end of town which was at the opposite end of town to Dyfatty Park.
The police report noted that there was no evidence or suggestion that a seaman had been involved in the assault on Stephen Watt and that they found it difficult to check up their explanations as to how they spent their evenings. The report noted that a full list of the ships in port and the seamen interviewed along with their completed questionnaires were retained at the Central Police Station in Swansea.
The police report stated that from the commencement of the enquiry there had been a marked lack of information, there being no telephone calls, anonymous or otherwise, that gave even the slightest useful information and that the enquiry had been handicapped from the start due to the fact that a week elapsed before Stephen Watt died. The report further stated that they gained the impression that the general public of Swansea, or at least the ones that could have been in a position to assist the police, had either lost interest or had little sympathy for Stephen Watt.
It was noted that it was a noticeable fact that from Thursday evenings to Saturday evenings that many young men travelled from villages into Swansea for an evening’s entertainment at Bingo Halls, dances and the more lively public houses and that there was the strong possibility that Stephen Watt had met one of those men after the public houses closed and that they had agreed to take a walk together.
The police report stated that they were inclined to think that Stephen Watt had sex on his mind and that his companion robbery. The report stated that they thought that Stephen Watt had been possibly well deceived by his companion who had no doubt declined to go to the flat at St Thomas and that they were probably walking in the direction of the other man's home.
It was also noted that the attack had taken place in Dyfatty Park which was quite an appreciable distance from Stephen Watt's address and in the opposite direction and that it seemed therefore that Stephen Watt had been lured rather than him being the lurer himself.
It was noted that although the man that had seen the person walking from the direction of the park had stated that he could not identify the person that he had seen, that he was quite prepared to see what he could do in making up a composite picture with the Identi-Kit outfit and it was decided to do so in order that it could be printed in the local press and on the local news of the BBC and TWW television programmes.
As such the man was taken to Cardiff where a picture was composed, mainly on hair style and colour and shape of face and a picture was released on Friday 6 October 1961, however, it brought extremely little response even though it could have resembled any young man from 20 to 30 years, with very few people with information coming forward and the suspects mentioned by the callers were quickly eliminated.
The police report stated that they had had received every co-operation from the Press and Television Authorities, but that even they didn't seem to assimilate any interest amongst the general public and concluded that one was forced to the fact that the only person who had knowledge of the case was the man responsible for the offence and that provided that he kept his mouth closed that he was not in danger.
It was further noted that owing to the similar circumstances between the attack on Stephen Watt and that of Ernest Melville in 1949 that a special notice was published in the Police Gazette dated 2 September 1961, requesting information of any similar attacks on homosexuals, particularly in seaport towns and it was stated that useful information was received from Chesterfield Police, Cardiff City Police, Hull City Police and the Port of London Authority Police, giving particulars of persons arrested for assaulting or robbing homosexuals. However, the report noted that some of the persons had been in prison at the time of the assault on Stephen Watt and that those at liberty were eliminated.
It was noted that in connection with the investigation, some 350 statements were taken and that questionnaires in the house to house enquiries totalled 1,960.
Stephen Watt's inquest was held on Tuesday 10 October 1961 at which some difficulty was experienced in obtaining from the medical witnesses the exact cause of death. All the doctors agreed that the injuries received by Stephen Watt were in themselves not of sufficient severity to cause death, it being noted that after the operation involving the use of the 'artificial kidney' which necessitated the use of an anti-clotting substance, that internal haemorrhage commenced and that the natural mechanism for the arrest of haemorrhage failed to operate.
It was noted that in the option of the pathologist that the injuries received by Stephen Watt fell into three groups of varying severity. He suggested that the first were caused by blows to the face with the fist, the second a fall to the ground on the right temple which caused the intra-cranial disturbance and thirdly, a solitary injury in the region of the left kidney that had caused a fracture to the left ninth rib and a contusion to the kidney.
He went on to say that the third and most serious injury could have been caused either by a kick whilst Stephen Watt had been on the ground or by falling against the gate leading to the bowling green.
The police report stated that one suggestion, which they thought was the most probable, was that after the assault and robbery that the assailant had ripped off the bib and brace overalls from Stephen Watt, which was borne out by the fact that the buttons and clasps were torn from the material, removed all the money and other articles from the pockets and had then thrown the clothing over the fence in order to prevent immediate pursuit by Stephen Watt. The report stated that bearing in mind the recent experiences that Stephen Watt had had with the police and his employer that it would have been uppermost in his mind to retrieve his clothing and leave the park without attracting any attention and that in his desperation that it was quite possible that Stephen Watt had attempted to climb over the fence or gate whilst in a semi-conscious condition and that in doing so had caused further injury in the region of his left kidney by falling against the gate or the wire fence.
It was further noted that the night was showery and appreciated that Stephen Watt had lain on the asphalt path from about midnight until shortly after 8am when he was discovered.
At the inquest the Coroner summed up and concluded that there was little evidence of murder and after a short retirement the jury returned and recorded an open verdict.
Stephen Watt's funeral took place at Cockett Cemetery in Swansea on Tuesday 29 August 1961 with his body being interred in grave number SW83.
The police report concluded in saying that it should be realised from the foregoing that should the identity of the offender be ascertained that the evidence for the prosecution would rely solely on an admission. As such, it was stated that for that reason that it was decided not to call the man that had seen the main suspect throw the spectacle case into the garden to give evidence at the inquest and that for the same reason that piece of information had not been disclosed to the press.
The report further stated that the offence was at the time still classified as a 'murder' and a crime report to that effect had been submitted, but the police report stated that they were certain that they would never be able to sustain a charge of murder if the offender was ever apprehended and that it was therefore suggested that the classification be amended to one of 'manslaughter'.
A final note in the report by a different officer it was noted that a peculiar feature of the case was that Stephen Watt had not disclosed how he came by his injuries even though it was felt that he could have done so if he had so wished. The note stated that whether that was due to a form of amnesia or a deliberate witholding of information by him it was difficult to conclude but the in trying to assess the pros and cons of that due weight should be given to the open verdict at the inquest.
see National Archives - MEPO 2/10444