Brutal murder of a 10-year-old child discovered floating in a sack in the Mersey River.


Brutal murder of a 10-year-old child discovered floating in a sack in the Mersey River.

In a murder that shocked Liverpool, the body of a 10-year-old child was discovered floating in a sack.

On May 20, 1981, Nicholas Martin was killed and his body discovered in a sack in Sandon Dock, Mersey.

Nicholas had been observed the day before playing with a ball in front of his residence on Bridgewater Street near Queens Dock.

It was a pity that his brief, happy existence had come to a devastating and brutal conclusion just a day later.

We take a look back into the archives at a case that engulfed not only Liverpool, but the entire country owing to the depravity of what occurred.

WARNING: This narrative contains details that may be upsetting to some readers.

After 48 hours away from home, a dreadful find in the docks

Nicholas’ father worked as a foreman for a soap manufacturer.

The family resided on Bridgewater Street and had no enemies, but they were about to become the victims of a horrific and despicable murder.

Nicholas’ mother Ann left him playing football while she went shopping on the night of his murder.

But she couldn’t find him when she returned 90 minutes later.

At first, she assumed Nicholas had visited his uncle on Great Howard Street, as he did frequently.

After two days of silence, Ann went to the police station to report her son missing.

Hugh Macdonald, the dock gateman, was about to make a terrible discovery while detectives were investigating.

When the employee heard a splash in Sandon Basin, he was on duty.

Mr Macdonald questioned a colleague whether they had heard the loud boom, but it was dismissed as nothing.

He observed a sailor’s black kit bag floating near an island in the basin two hours later. He grabbed a rope and hauled it to the beach.

When I opened the bag, a big amount of blood-stained water spilled out.

Mr Macdonald then reached into the bag and found a grey blanket and the handle of a saw.

Mr Macdonald saw some “fat, marrow, and bloodstains” on the teeth of the saw when he pulled it out.

He only peered inside the bag after that and made the decision. “The summary has come to an end.”


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