British Executions

Charles Augustin Howell

Age: 30

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 7 Jul 1903

Crime Location: Colchester

Execution Place: Chelmsford

Method: hanging

Executioner: William Billington


Charles Howell was convicted of the murder of his girlfriend Maud Luen 19 and sentenced to death.

He cut her throat on Whit Monday night 1 June 1903 in Colchester after she rejected him.

They had been seen to be walking together earlier but had separated, Maud Luen being left crying. She went to a pub with a friend and because she was crying the friend took her out of the pub to go for a walk but Charles Howell followed them.

Charles Howell then went up to them and asked Maud Luen to forgive him which she did and he then put his arm around her and asked her for a kiss and then cut her throat.

When he had gone up to her he had said 'Will you forgive me Maud?' and she had replied 'Yes, willingly, if you will go away'. He then said 'Kiss me, Maud' and she kissed him and he then drew out a razor and cur her throat from ear to ear. She cried out 'Oh, my God!' and fell down dead. He then said to her friend 'I have done for Maud'.

A picket who was passing then took Charles Howell to the barrack room and he was then arrested.

Earlier that evening Charles Howell had said to a bugler 'I will see that that woman does not live till morning'.

When he was arrested and gave a statement he said 'I do not care about anything except my poor old mother. It will be the death of her'.

They had been seeing each other for about 3 months.

Charles Howell was a private in the Suffolk Regiment.

see National Archives - HO 144/712/109157

see Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser - Saturday 16 January 1904

see Western Times - Saturday 20 June 1903

see Exeter and Plymouth Gazette - Wednesday 10 June 1903

see Derby Daily Telegraph - Saturday 20 June 1903