Best Known For
Donald Hume is best known for beating a murder charge in England and then being caught for another murder in Switzerland.
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Setty, himself a former jailbird imprisoned under debtors and bankruptcy charges, was desperate to get back into business, despite the authorities impeding his attempts. Hume had never liked Setty, but felt compelled to work for him in order to enhance his own wealth prospects. Why Hume disliked Setty so much is not known.
Whatever the reason,
the worst thing Setty could have done was strike out at Humes beloved dog Tony.
Hume's terrier accidentally ruined a re-spray job on one of Setty's stolen cars, which prompted Setty to kick the dog in a fit of rage. For Hume, that one act of aggression towards his darling pet caused the brittle veneer of his friendliness towards Setty to disappear. His suppressed resentments gave way to hatred for something that most sane men would have forgotten in minutes. By the time he met up with Setty again he was ready to strike out at the slightest provocation.
On Tuesday, October 4, 1949, Stanley Setty was carrying out his usual business transactions at Warren Street in central London. He sold a new Wolseley Twelve saloon to a dealer for 1,000 pounds. The buyer gave Setty a check which later that day was cashed at a bank for two 100-pound notes.
Later that day Setty stopped off at Hume's flat to talk business. He usually let himself in. By the time Hume arrived home and saw Setty's car parked outside, he was already building up anger.
It is not known exactly what words were exchanged between the two men, only that a heated argument developed into a physical fight. According to Hume's later confession he picked up one of his wartime souvenirs, a German SS dagger, and aimed it at Setty in defense.
Setty called Hume's bluff and swiped at him. During a violent grapple Setty fell to the floor, where Hume slashed repeatedly at his chest. As Setty fought back by trying to break Hume's neck, he was stabbed in the chest and legs. Hume then lay back and observed Setty dying.
"I watched the life run from him like water down a drain," Hume recalled later in his newspaper memoirs. "I had to hurt him. This man who had kicked my dog."
Shortly afterwards, Hume dragged Setty's 182-pound body through the apartment to the end kitchen where he hid it in the coal cupboard. He then started to clean up the apartment trying to remove bloodstains, which had seeped into the carpet and into the floorboards. At one point, realizing that he had to dispose of Setty's car, Hume had to retrieve car keys from the dead man's jacket. He then drove Setty's car down Finchley Rd past Swiss Cottage and eventually to Setty's own home at Cambridge Terrace Mews. He was back home at around 10:45 p.m., where he pondered on whether he should go to the police. It dawned on him that he might have got away with the perfect murder.
Hume thought hard about how he could get the large body out of the apartment and dispose of it without been seen. He finally came up with the idea of dismembering the corpse, parceling body parts and dropping them in the sea by plane.
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