Juan Ignacio Blanco  


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Classification: Homicide
Characteristics: No motive
Number of victims: 1
Date of murder: October 15, 1925
Date of arrest: Same day (surrenders)
Date of birth: 1869
Victim profile: Miss Ida Taylor (his partner of the last fourteen years)
Method of murder: Stabbing with knife
Location: Birmingham, West Middlands, England, United Kingdom
Status: Executed by hanging on January 5, 1926

1926 January 5th: John FISHER (58)


Fisher, a machinist, shared an immaculately kept terrace house in Small Heath, Birmingham, with Miss Ida Taylor, his partner of the last fourteen years, and Jessie Dutton, a young girl who lodged with them.

A kind, well liked and immensely houseproud man, why he suddenly turned into a vicious killer is a mystery.

One day in October 1925, Jessie Dutton was sitting in the lounge opposite Fisher, while Ida busied herself doing the housework. Some sixth sense told Jessie that something was amiss and she got up, put her coat on and left the house. It was an act that saved her life.

Minutes later, Fisher rose from his chair and attacked Ida with a carving knife, cutting her throat. He then washed the knife, tidied up the house and closed the door behind him.

After spending the afternoon wandering the streets, during which time Ida's body lay in the house undiscovered, he boarded a tram car. The only available seat was next to a policeman, and when the officer rose to alight, Fisher told him that he had committed a murder.

At his trial at Warwick Assizes before Mr Justice Talbot on 4 December, Fisher pleaded insanity and confessed that he had planned to kill both women in the house. The defence failed and he was sentenced to death.

An appeal was made, backing up the insanity plea by revealing that Fisher had been discharged from the army with epilepsy, but this too was rejected. He was hanged by William Willis and Robert Wilson.

Willis later recalled that he very nearly caused the most remarkable accident in the history of British execution. Fisher was led to the scaffold in a daze, and in order to prevent him collapsing, two warders stood very close to the prisoner.

In his haste to carry out the execution, Willis attempted to place the white cap and noose around the neck of the nearest guard. He realised his mistake at the last moment and within seconds the drop fell. If he had succeeded in noosing the guard, the speed at which executions were carried out was such that in all probability the guard would have hanged.



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