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The Evidence File

CASE:Move to Murder DATE:1931
Persons of Interest
Julia Wallace: Victim
Julia Wallace

Age: 69. Housewife.

Wallace believed his wife was about 52 years old. Could this large age difference have a bearing on a possible murder motive for Wallace? Did he feel trapped in an elderly marriage? Over 30 years of Julia's life before she met Wallace is largely a mystery.

William Wallace: Suspect
William Herber Wallace

Age: 52. Insurance agent and chess player.

Geeky and aloof, Wallace had few friendships. Because of the nature of the attack, described by Professor MacFall as frenzied (i.e. emotional), and his suspicious behaviour in searching for Qualtrough, Wallace was the prime suspect. Died in 1933.

Joseph Marsden : Suspect
Joseph Marsden

Age: 28. Bookmaker's clerk.

Joseph Marsden is a shadowy figure in the case (no photograph of him has ever been published). He knew the domestic arrangements of the Wallaces. He also had a connection to a man called Qualtrough. Coincidence or suspicious? Died in 1967.

Gordon Parry : Suspect
Gordon Parry

Age: 21. Insurance agent and amateur actor.

Parry had known the Wallaces for five years, and appeared friendly with Julia. He had an alibi for the night of the murder but misled police as to his whereabouts on the night of the Qualtrough Call. Refused to talk about the case until his death in 1980.

Hubert Moore : Chief Superintendent
Hubert Moore

Age: 50. Ex-miner, he joined the police in 1900, becoming head of Liverpool C.I.D. in 1930.

Believed in Wallace's guilt almost from the start. Instrumental in "helping" milk boy Alan Close recontruct the time he saw Julia Wallace on the night of the murder. Appears not to have thoroughly cross-checked Parry's alibi.

John MacFall : Expert Witness
John MacFall

Age: 57. Chair of Forensic Medicine at University of Liverpool and advisor to Liverpool C.I.D.

Caused scandal when he married his secretary, 30 years his junior, in 1935. A key figure in the trial, MacFall was careless in estimating the time of death, yet insisted it occurred before 6pm, contradicting other testimony. Died in 1938.

Edward Hemmerde : Prosecutor
Hubert Moore

Age: 59. Barrister, politician and rower.

Provided a dramatic narrative of murder in court, and his opening and closing speeches were pivotal moments of the trial. All of the prosecution's evidence was circumstantial but, he claimed, it could only be interpreted one way: Wallace was guilty.

John Parkes : Witness
John MacFall

Age: early 20s at the time of the murder.

A year before he died, Parkes talked to author and broadcaster Roger Wilkes and claimed that Parry had visited his garage on the night of the murder, demanding his car be cleaned inside and out. Did Parkes find a bloody glove incriminating Parry?

Index of Evidence