was responsible for the death of an innocent person, Alice Wiltshaw died
from blows delivered with a poker in order for him to steal her
valuables and jewellry. He had once worked for the Wiltshaws and so knew
when the 62 year old lady would be on her own, a crime that had been
Ex-Borstal boy Leslie Green was found
guilty of the brutal murder of Mrs Alice Wiltshaw and was hanged at
Stafford Gaol, on 23 December 1952.
Mr and Mrs Wiltshaw lived in a large 14 room house
called 'Estoril' at Barlaston in Staffordshire. On Wednesday 16 July
1952 Mr Cuthbert Wiltshaw came home from work to find the body of his
62-year-old wife lying in a pool of blood in the kitchen. She had been
hit over the head and her skull was smashed, her jaw broken and she had
been stabbed several times in the stomach. Her body also showed other
The murder weapon, a poker lay next to the body and
nearby was a pair of blood-stained gloves, in which the left one had a
tear in the thumb. It looked as if robbery seemed to be the motive as
£3,000 worth of jewellery and a number of other items were missing. Also
missing was an old RAF raincoat that Mr Wiltshaw kept for wearing when
he was gardening.
Detective Superintendent Reg Spooner arrived from
scotland yard and took charge of the case. When the murder had taken
place all of the domestic staff were off-duty, the house also showed no
signs of forced entry, this made it look as if the murderer knew the
domestic routine of the house.
The police then set about the laborious task of
contacting all former staff at the house and slowly eliminated them from
the inquiry. The only ex-member of staff they could not locate had
worked at the house up until two months ago as the chauffeur. His name
was Leslie Green who the Wiltshawws had sacked for using the car for his
own purposes. His name was not unknown to the police as he had been in
trouble before and spent time in borstal. Green's picture was released
to the press and he later walked into Longton police station to 'clear
Police found a witness who was able to give a
description of a man seen near the house on the day of the murder which
fitted Green. They also found that he had given some rings to his
girlfriend that matched those stolen from the house. Gordon's alibi was
that he had been sleeping in a park in Stafford prior to catching a
train to see his girl-friend in Leeds.
Spooner calculated that Green had time to get to
Barlaston and back in time to catch the Leeds train. Backing a hunch, he
asked the Railway Police to try and trace the missing overcoat. A couple
of days later the blood-stained coat was found in a lost property
office. A porter had found it on the Stafford-Holyhead train. When
Spooner checked Green's hands he found that Green had a recently healed
cut on the thumb of his left hand, exactly matching the cut in the glove.
His rubber-soled shoes also matched bloody footprints found in the
His trial at Stafford Assizes took three days and the
evidence was overwhelming. He was hanged at Winsom Green prison on 23
December 1952 by Albert Pierrepoint.