Daniel Raven's wife had just given birth to their son.
On evening of Monday 10th October 1949 Daniel Raven took his wife
parents to visit her and their four day old child in a maternity home in
Muswell Hill. After spending some time with his wife Marie he then drove
his in-laws home and using the heavy base of a television aerial he beat
them both to death.
Daniel Raven was a 23-year-old Jewish advertising
agent with a reputation for always being immaculately turned out. His
wealthy in-laws, 49-year-old Leopold Goodman and his 47-year-old wife,
Esther, were both Russian Jews.
After the murder Raven went home but was surprised
when he received a telephone call from police about 10.30 that night
asking him to come to his in-laws' house in Ashcombe Gardens. He had not
expected the bodies to be discovered until the next day at the earliest
so taken by surprise he had to quickly change into smart, clean clothes,
stuffing the bloodstained, dark blue suit he had been wearing into the
boiler. Unexpectedly Mr Goodman's business partner, Frederick Fraiman,
along with his wife and daughter, had called at the house at about
9.55pm to inquire about Marie and the baby. Getting no response to his
ringing Mr Fraiman climbed in through an open window and found the
savaged bodies of the Goodmans in their blood-soaked dining-room.
Police investigating the killings noticed the smart
way in which Daniel was dressed and it certainly did not look as if
these clothes had been worn all day. The obvious question in their minds
was why had he changed so late in the day. On checking they soon
discovered that it was not the same clothes he had worn earlier in the
day. A search of Raven's Edgewarebury Lane house soon turned up the
remains of the blue suit in the boiler. Forensic examination of it
showed bloodstains on the trousers and also on a pair of freshly-scrubbed
shoes hidden in the garage. The driver's seat of Raven's car had also
He was arrested and charged with the joint murder of
his inlaws. At his Old Bailey trial that opened on Tuesday 22nd November,
his defence was that, like Mr Fraiman, he had entered the house after
getting no reply to him knocking and had discovered the bodies, got
blood on the suit when he knelt by his mother-in-law's body and had fled
On 24th November he was found guilty and sentenced to
death. An appeal, supported with evidence of insanity, was dismissed and
Raven was hanged at Pentonville Prison on Friday 6th January 1950.