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MYSTERIOUS AND DREADFUL MURDER IN ST. GILES'S. On Monday morning great excitement was ex- perienced in the neighbourhood of the Seven Dials, owing to the discovery of a boy, apparently about six years of age, who was found doad, suspended by the neck, and with his hands tied behind him, in a cellar, at No. 1, Neal's-pasaage, Earl-street. r Neal's-passage is a poor neighbourhood, in which tile tenements are ltJU uuo in supttcaiio uyanuiaucs. For the facility of those who might be out late, the street-door is constantly open, or such means afforded for opening as would render a key unnecessary. One cistern of water supplies each house, and is situated in a kind of cellar approached by eight or nine stairs, and in which place there is a convenience." In mid- day, when the sun may be shedding its rays on the exterior of the few houses in the row, the place to obtain the water is scarcely discernible. The discovery of the dead boy was made by a young girl named Mary Ann Cotter, living in the first floor of No. 1, Neal's-passage. She went down-stairs to obtain water for breakfast for the family-the time being about five miniates past Beven-when she saw in the indistinct light something hanging by an up- right post which was placed beside the cistern. She ran up the stairs into the street in a state of alarm, and aroused the neighbourhood. A plumber living the next door or so went down, and there saw the dead body of a boy suspended by the neck with a stout cord to the post mentioned—not to a nail or hook, but noosed round, the weight of the body tighteni-ng the noose. The hands were tied behind the back with part of a red silk handkerchief —not closely together, but six or eight inches apart. Life appeared extinct. The man turned the body round by the chin for the purpose of cut- ting it down, but found he was without his knife. Some one went for the police, and in his agitation he seemed to lose all power. He, however, saw that the boy's head was about 5ft. from the ground, and that his eyes and mouth were olosed. The police speedily arrived, when the body was cut down, and medical assistance called by one of that body, Dr. Harvey, the divisional police-surgeon, of 3, Southampton-street, Strand, being brought to attend. The body was pronounced to be dead, and having been stripped, it was conveyed to the dead- house of St. Giles's Workhouse. There are many opinions as to how the murder was committed. It was said that more than one was con- cerned in depriving the poor boy of life, as even if his hands were aannraf) withnnt screams being heard in the house, the rope could not have been placed roand his neck and noosed to the post at five feet from the ground without assistance to suppress cries or other- wise. Another theory advanced is that, judging from the closed eyes and mouth, the placid countenance of a good-looking boy, and the hands tied, but sepa- rated, that previous means were used to procure in- sensibility before the murderous and effeotual attempt was made. The boy, it appears, was seen playing in the neigh- bourhood of Neal s-passage on Sunday evening, but no particular notice was taken of him. It has been further stated that the deceased was fetched away on Sunday night from his grandmother's, somewhere bordering on Holborn, and subsequently taken to his sister's up till two o clock, when he was fetched away by his father. No person saw the deceased with either man or woman after that time. It is stated that the parents of the deceased are separated, and that the mother is living in concubinage at Kennington.. The case is one of a very mysterious character which the police are attempting to unravel. Up to Tuesday evening the stepfather of the poor lad who is supposed to have either been murdered in No. 15, Neal's-passage, or taken there after having been strangled, has not been arrested by the police. The cistern in which the body was found hanging is situated on the basement floor. This compartment is in a wretchedly filthy state, containing every kind of refuse, and except by the people residing in the house, an entrance to the place is only obtained with the aid of a light of some kind. The door of the house is left unsecured at night, and access to the cistern could not have been attended with difficulty to any one acquainted with the place. The stepfather and I mother of the boy are not known in Neal's-passage. The aunt of the boy, who, with the mother, is in cus- tody, states that the stepfather called at her house about two o'clock on Monday morning, and brought the lad away, saying that he wanted to take him into the country.




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