Peasenhall Murder

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Peasenhall Murder

Post by ophion1031 on August 5th 2015, 11:58 pm

The murder of Rose Harsent is more often referred to as the Peasenhall Murder. Rose Harsent was a servant girl at a central home in Peasenhall, Suffolk, England. On the night of May 31, 1902 at approximately midnight and during a thunderstorm, Rose Harsent was murdered. Rose was found stabbed to death and it was soon discovered that she was six months pregnant at the time of her death. At first the police called to the scene believed it was a suicide but their investigation soon turned up other theories. Local Methodist preacher William Gardiner was believed to have been having an affair with Rose in 1901 and was also alleged to be the father of her unborn child. At the time of the murder, Gardiner had a wife and six children and lived just down the street from the home where Rose worked as a servant. Police arrested Gardiner twice as a suspect in Rose’s murder, once in 1902 and once in 1903, however, both trials resulted with a hung jury and the trial was acquitted. Very few people in the case history of English law have ever been tried for murder with the result being no verdict at all. In 1941, Gardiner died without ever being convicted of Rose’s murder. Some believe that Gardiner was innocent after all and it was his jealous wife who murdered Rose, but no one was ever formally convicted of the crime.

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