In 1890 a man whose wife insulted him after she pawned his boots to buy beer killed her in a fit of anger, leading to him being imprisoned for fifteen years.
Robert Lynch was a 40 year old who lived in Fernie Street, Toxteth with his wife Theresa. He had always worked at sea but a hand injury had limited his ability to be taken on and the family began to struggle financially.
On the afternoon of 26th August 1890 Lynch sent his wife to pawn some boots and when she returned she gave him a shilling, saying it was a shame he would only buy beer with it. Theresa was carrying a bucket and was chased out of the house by Lynch, who stabbed her in the side with a small pocket knife. She fell into the arms of a neighbour named Harriet Nelson and was taken to the Southern Hospital.
Lynch was arrested and told the police officer he had only kicked her, but after Theresa died on 1st September he was charged with murder. A post mortem had determined that the cause of death was peritonitis which had set in following the wounding.
Lynch appeared at the Liverpool assizes on 15th September, where his defence solicitor told the court that the killing had taken place with sudden impulse. This led to a verdict of manslaughter being returned and he was sentenced to fifteen years penal servitude.