The case of the Camberley cadaver - by PAT FRANKLIN
January 08, 2004
The stories of two grisly murders are told in a new book, ‘Cadaver in Camberley, Demise in Deepcut', by local historian Ken Clarke.
Both crimes are still unsolved, the area's oldest "cold case files".
Mr Clarke, who lives at Frimley Green and served for more than 30 years in the Surrey Police, has done painstaking research into both baffling murders, and has arrived at his own conclusions about the identity of the killers.
The first case is the murder of Mary Ann Hogg, an eccentric spinster, in 1906 in the London Road, Camberley mansion which she shared with her sister Caroline.
Mary Ann was found dead with her throat cut, after her sister, also dripping blood from a cut to the throat, ran screaming from the house. The "red-faced" assailant with dark eyes described by Caroline was never found and no one was ever charged.
Mr Clark has put together a fascinating account of the mystery and, since all the people involved are long dead and cannot sue for libel, he makes an educated guess as to the identity of the murderer - the sister, Caroline, who inherited Mary Ann's fortune.
The second case, in 1931, involved death by strychnine poisoning, with the poison inserted in a partridge. The victim was a young artillery officer, Lieut Hubert Chevis, at Deepcut. Both he and his wife had convulsions after eating some of the foul-tasting birds, but she recovered.
The plot deepened when a telegram from Ireland arrived for Lt Chevis' father on the day of the funeral saying: "Hooray hooray hooray."
Here again, Mr Clarke takes a stab at guessing the murderer. The lieutenant's grave is in Aldershot Military Cemetery, marked with a stone cross.
Both cases were exhaustively covered by local and national newspapers, which were able then to report far more than is legally allowed now, but no amount of investigation or publicity yielded the evidence necessary for police to bring a charge of murder.
Mr Clarke's book is his twelfth about the history of Camberley. It has 37 ilustrations and includes many hitherto unpublished facts. He is a member of the Camberley Society committee, as well as treasurer for Surrey Heath Local History Club.
The book, price £4.99, is available from the Surrey Heath Museum in Camberley, Ottakars in the town, or Goddard and Grant, 37 High Street, Frimley.