For thirty-one years, James Stryton was a police officer who served the public and worked long hours in difficult and dangerous conditions.
When he left the force in 1934 at the age of 50, he worked at the top of his hard-earned pension as an investigator for a furniture company.
By March 1946, James was looking forward to a well-earned retirement, especially since he had recently suffered a heart attack.
Glasgow Police Museum
In seconds World Jang, one of his sons was killed in the operation in Libya.
However, he reassured his second son by following in the footsteps of the police.
James joined the Lanarkshire Constabulary in 1903 and was transferred to Glasgow Police City.
By 1925, he had risen to the rank of Detective Sergeant in 1925, and the Chief Constable praised him ten times for his bravery.
The 62-year-old man and his wife lived in a clean seam in the quarantine on the East End of Edinburgh Road, Glasgow, and were well-known and respected in the area.
At about 8.30pm on Tuesday, March 26, 1946, his neighbors James and Annie Deacon arrived home by bus the following night.
As he approached the house, Mr. Deacon saw a light in his house.
They immediately suspected a break, as Annie had stopped everything when they first left.
James asked his wife to consult Mr. Stratton on what to do, knowing he was a policeman.
The former spy did not hesitate to explain his suspicions.
Even though it’s bad. Health He picked up his old police baton and immediately went to help his neighbor.
He had his own wife. the cinema And she was alone in her house at that time.
Mr Deacon was unable to open the front door with his key, confirming his fears that someone had entered.
He offered to climb one of the rear windows and open the door from the inside, while James Stratton covered the front.
Once in the house, Mr. Deacon turned on the down light and opened the front door.
At this point, he heard a noise and saw two men up the stairs.
One was armed with two rifles, which he carried in both hands.
When the intruders tried to flee the house, Mr. Deacon used his body to prevent them from escaping.
The eldest of the two armed intruders opened fire but escaped.
There was a violent struggle and James Stratton hit the gunman on the head with his old police baton.
The blow knocked the intruder to his knees, and in retaliation, he shot James Stratton in the abdomen.
The two intruders then fled, leaving the retired police officer dead in the gardens.
The gunman then shot Annie Deacon, who was near Garden Gate, but escaped.
Even after 10 pm, Mrs. Stratton did not return from the cinema and saw a large crowd outside her house.
She was shocked to learn of her husband’s murder. Chief Superintendent William Ewing, head of the Glasgow CID, interviewed Dickens, detailing the two intruders who brutally assaulted their neighbor. Was killed
He was taken to various hospitals in Glasgow as it was felt that the killer could be treated after James was beaten with a stick.
A search of the garden revealed that the thieves had climbed the drain and entered the upstairs room, and one of them had taken off his shoes to allow them to climb. Significantly, he also left them behind in the garden. Police also had three cartridge cases from a semi-automatic pistol used to kill James.
Two members of the public, a bus driver and his conductor saw the two men fleeing and tried unsuccessfully to catch them. Police not only had four eyewitnesses but also some good quality forensic evidence, including the killer’s shoes.
Of course, it won’t be long before criminals are behind bars.
However, five days later the trail began to cool.
There have been two previous robberies in the Denston area, including one involving a firearm that entered through a drain pipe.
In another, on nearby Golf Hill Drive, the gun was used to intimidate the owner after harassing him.
Superintendent of the Bureau of Identification, Gilbert McAlwick, decided to search for criminals between the ages of twenty and twenty-five who first broke into homes through sewer pipes.
The fingerprints of these people can be compared to a fingerprint that was left in their place on the brakes of Golf Hill Drive.
If they can get a match, they will have a credible murder suspect.
A total of 450 offenders were selected and the hard work of their fingerprints began the contest of each – giving the offenders more time to hide their tracks.
But all of a sudden, they got the progress that all murder inquiries need.
Just ten minutes later, Detective Constable Douglas Hamilton found the match on his fingerprint database.
Detective Chief Superintendent Ewing was told that the thumbprint belonged to John Caldwell, a 20-year-old absentee who lived in Felden Street, Bridgeton, Glasgow.
He was arrested at 2 a.m. on April 1, 1946, by Detective Lt. Robert Colcon, head of the Eastern Division CID, along with Detective Dow and Detective Inspector McCartney.
Following Caldwell’s arrest, detectives also arrested a 15-year-old boy accused of killing James Stratton.
The two men appeared in court the next day on separate charges of murder and theft.
Caldwell was detained in a Berlin prison awaiting trial.
Her father, James, 57, was also charged with breaking into a house and receiving large quantities of clothing and jewelry.
The funeral after James Stratton blocked Edinburgh Road as hundreds of people quietly paid their respects in the streets as the funeral procession headed toward the cemetery.
John Caldwell’s trial took place in Glasgow’s High Court in June 1946, and public galleries were filled daily to gather evidence.
If he had been found guilty, he would almost certainly have been hanged. Crime He was sentenced to death.
The 15-year-old accused of Caldwell was unable to stand trial and was instead locked in a safe hospital.
Fingerprint evidence along with ballistic evidence were key to the case.
James Straighten, a professor at Regis Professor of Forensic Medicine at the University of Glasgow, said James Straiton died after being shot in the abdomen, causing massive hemorrhage.
Prosecutor Douglas Johnston, an advocate, told the jury that there was evidence against him. Cold well Was tremendous.
However, Caldwell’s defense team asked the jury to accept that Caldwell was acting under “less responsibility” at the time of the murder and was not responsible for his actions.
The jury disagreed and after 50 minutes reversed the majority verdict of the ‘culprit’ for all charges, although they recommended mercy based on the killer’s age.
Caldwell did not express emotion as he was taken downstairs in cells – although his sister cried when the death sentence was read by a judge wearing a traditional black hat.
A subsequent appeal against the execution was dismissed by the Edinburgh Criminal Appeals Court shortly after 8 a.m. on Saturday, August 10, 1946. John Caldwell was hanged in Berlin Prison and his body was buried in the prison grounds. ۔
Retired Inspector Alastair Dinsmore, curator of the Glasgow Police Museum, said one should never forget to ignore James Stratton for his bravery and safety.
He added: “One of the things that stood out most was the courage and dedication shown by James Stratton last night.
“Here was a man in the early sixties, in questionable health, who had ‘done his job’ in the police for thirty years and was told to ‘stand up again’ to help the neighbor and Be counted
“He could have backed down from the challenge, but he wasn’t that kind of man, he wasn’t that kind of cop.
“It was the policeman’s sense of duty that found James Stratton irreparable and he paid the price with his life.”