Getting away with murder

On 20 February 1478, gentleman George Gray of London took sanctuary at the parish church of All Saints, Marsworth, Buckinghamshire.

All Saints, Marsworth. Source

Gray confessed to the coroner that more than a year before he had killed one John Skynner with his dagger in the parish of St Martin in the Fields – which was, indeed, then in the fields, near Charing Cross. He abjured but by 1480 he was caught in the realm again. At King’s Bench, asked to explain himself, he pleaded clergy and was handed over to the archdeacon of the abbot of Westminster for imprisonment (he would have been held in the Gatehouse).


In 1484, however, he managed to escape – and I haven’t found any record that he was ever found. #howtogetawaywithmurder

TNA, KB 9/354, m. 46; KB 9/952, m. 41; Freeman, “And He Abjured,” 290-91. Top image British Library.

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