British Executions

Charles Benjamin Backhouse

Age: 23

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 16 Aug 1900

Crime Location: 75 Piccadilly, Swinton, Rotherham

Execution Place: Leeds

Method: hanging

Executioner: James Billington


Charles Benjamin Backhouse and his brother Frederick Backhouse shot John William Kew a policeman who later died.

They were both found guilty and sentenced to death but Charles Backhouse was reprieved because he was only 17.

Charles Backhouse and Frederick Backhouse had a reputation for violence and Frederick Backhouse was served a summons by John Kew for an assault on his brother's wife. However, he didn't show up for court and was fined 40/- in his absence.

Later Charles Backhouse brought a revolver with 9 cartridges and were seen to be using it to threaten people around Piccadilly.

When John Kew heard about this he went to investigate and when he saw the brothers leaving Piccadilly he attempted to search them for the gun. Charles Backhouse who had the gun then stepped back and pulled it out and shot John Kew in the stomach. However, John Kew still managed to grapple Charles Backhouse and place both his hands behind his back in which he was still holding the gun. However, Frederick Backhouse then joined in a took the gun and shouted 'Here's another for you' and shot John Kew again.

John Kew was taken to his house which was nearby but later died.

Both Charles Backhouse and Frederick Backhouse were convicted for murder and sentenced to death but Frederick Backhouse was recommended to mercy on account of his age and was reprieved. However, Charles Backhouse was executed on 16 August 1900.

see Murder UK

see National Archives - HO 144/946/A62012