Date Of Execution: 26 Apr 1905
Crime Location: 37 Compton Street, St Pancras, London
Execution Place: Pentonville
Executioner: John Billington
Alfred Bridgeman was convicted of the murder of Catherine Ballard 44 and sentenced to death.
He cut her throat at 37 Compton Street, St Pancras, London on 4 March 1905.
She was the mother of a girl that he had been walking out with for some years.
Alfred Bridgeman had been a bottle-washer by trade and had been engaged to marry the girl but she broke off their engagement.
He had the initials ILMB tattooed on his arm which stood for, 'I love Mary Ballard'.
He had recently been in prison having been convicted of assault and sentenced to one month and after he was released he went to 37 Compton Street on Tuesday 28 February 1905 but was refused admittance.
However, he went back on Saturday 4 March 1905 whilst Catherine Ballard was alone and it was thought that he cut her throat whilst she was in the act of lighting the fire.
It was said that a top floor lodger had heard Catherine Ballard scream and that when she looked over the balusters that she saw Alfred Bridgeman leaving Catherine Ballard's room and raised a cry of 'Murder!' and then followed him into the street. It was said that Alfred Bridgeman's hands had been dripping with blood as he ran along Compton Street as he was pursued by the woman and several boys who cried out, 'Stop him! Stop him!', however, he ran down a side turning and was lost.
A policeman that arrived soon after went into a back room on the second floor where he found Catherine Ballard lying dead in a pool of blood.
Alfred Bridgeman was arrested the following day. When a policeman said, 'You will be charged with the murder of Mrs Ballard in the second floor back room of 37 Compton Street about 1 o'clock yesterday by cutting her throat', he replied, 'Yes. I understand'.
The police noted that there were bloodstains on Alfred Bridgeman's trousers, boots and socks which were then taken as evidence.
Alfred Bridgeman then said, 'I went and bought my discharge on Wednesday and intended to go straight but I heard she had been saying things against me. I have been walking about all night in Islington and passed several policemen and saw about this on the papers. I am ready to swing when the time comes'.
Compton Street has since been renamed Tavistock Place.
see National Archives - CRIM 1/97/4
see Western Times - Thursday 27 April 1905
see Wells Journal - Thursday 16 March 1905
see Dundee Evening Post - Thursday 09 March 1905