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Illustrated Police News
30 June 1883

THE ATTEMPTED MURDER OF A NEWLY MARRIED WIFE - Police-Inspector Poule of the G Division, reported to Mr Barstow, the magistrate at Clerkenwell Police-Court on Saturday, that the woman Sarah Ann Kelly, alleged to have been stabbed in the neck by her husband, James Kelly, at 21, Cottage-Lane, St. Luke's, was in a dying state, almost all hopes having been given up of her recovery. Mr. Barstow, accompanied by the inspector and the chief clerk, at once drove to St. Bartholomew's Hospital, in order that the injured woman's depositions might be taken down in writing. When the prisoner, James Kelly, (who has only been married to his wife for a fortnight), was charged with attempted murder on Friday, evidence was given by his mother-in-law that in consequence of a quarrel with his wife he stabbed her under the left ear with a pocket-knife, inflicting a deep wound. The woman has since died, and the prisoner stands remanded until Friday.


At the Clerkenwell Police-court, on Friday, James Kelly, twenty three, an upholsterer, of 21, Cottage Lane, St. Luke's, was charged with attempting to murder his wife, Sarah Ann Kelly, by stabbing her in the neck, at the above address, on the previous night. Police-Inspector Maynard said that the prosecutrix was lying at St. Bartholomew's Hospital, and was too much injured to attend. Mrs. Sarah Brider, mother-in-law to the prisoner, said that Kelly had only been married to his wife a little over a fortnight. She lived in the same home with them. On Thursday night they were all in the parlour, and the prisoner accused his wife with keeping the company of girls of loose character at Islington. There had for a day or two previously been a slight quarrel between them. She said in reply, "I won't live with you any longer. You are unkind and cruel." The prisoner said, "You won't leave me; I'll stop you from going," and added that he would "knock her down." Nothing further was said at the moment, but after the lapse of a few minutes he asked her to forgive him, and sat by her side on a couch. She said she could not forgive him, and witness saw him put his arm around her neck and drag her head down to the floor. He then ran out of the room, and his wife fell down on the carpet in a swoon, bleeding very much at the neck. A doctor was sent for and she was taken to the hospital. Dr. Raynor said that on the prisoner's wife being admitted to the hospital she was in an unconscious state. She had a puncture wound below the left ear nearly three-inches deep. Her life was very much in danger. The prisoner was taken into custody by the police on returning into the rom. A pocket-knife was found on the floor with the blade broken sharp off from the handle. Mr. Barstow remanded the prisoner.

Related pages:
  James Kelly
       Message Boards: James Kelly 
       Press Reports: John Blunts Monthly - 16 December 1929 
       Press Reports: Morning Advertiser - 20 October 1888 
       Press Reports: Times - 2 August 1883 
       Ripper Media: Jack the Ripper: A Suspect Guide - James Kelly 
       Ripper Media: Jimmy Kelly's Year of Ripper Murders 
       Ripper Media: Prisoner 1167: The Madman Who Was Jack the Ripper 
       Suspects: James Kelly