In the spring of 1955, the British public was shocked by a high-profile crime in the style of American gangster action. The bright blonde on the street took a revolver out of her purse and coolly released the clip at her lover. At the trial, the former fashion model behaved so worthily that she managed to win the hearts of even the most prim supporters of law. Ruth was the last woman to be executed in Great Britain, and her case is still considered one of the most significant for the 20th century.
Ruth Ellis's stormy biography seemed to have tempered her heart. However, this story shows that an all-consuming passion can also capture a woman who has seen in her lifetime, probably, all manifestations of carnal relationships. Since childhood, the world was not turned to her by the brightest side: a large family, a musician father who interrupted himself with odd jobs, regularly drank and sometimes beat his family. By the way, in full accordance with modern psychology about the choice of life mates, then all Ruth's men behaved in the same way.
At the age of 15, the girl went to work as a waitress in a cafe, but then decided to “conquer the big city”. It is not entirely clear with what talents she was going to shine at the same time, but, repainted in a bright blonde, young Ruth plunged into the whirlpool of London entertainment. Her story was rather banal. Very soon the girl was abandoned by a Canadian soldier (her first love), leaving a child "in memory". In 1945, Ruth had a boy. The young mother decided to master the profession of a photo model and became it, however, most often the photo sessions were held in the nude style.
In this genre popular at all times, Ruth really achieved success (at least financially). She made many acquaintances in various circles, her name became known in the show business environment. The next step for the woman was to work as an administrator in one of the prestigious clubs in London. At this point, Ruth was able to show what an active and modern young woman is capable of, very soon she acquired a husband. The elderly dentist George Ellis seemed to have given her the long-awaited stability, but this did not happen, because her husband turned out to be a drunken drunkard. Despite the birth of a daughter, the marriage lasted less than a year, and the bright blonde again found herself in a "free flight", already with two children in her arms.
This was followed by a series of regular, but fleeting romances. Ruth went through men until, in the early 50s, she met someone who was able to truly capture her heart. The woman, wise in life, absolutely lost her head from race car driver David Blakely. The chosen one was a little younger than her, had an aristocratic pedigree and an official bride. It seemed that for a divorced model with a tarnished reputation, he might not be the right option, but Ruth, apparently, really fell in love for the first time in her life. Therefore, she boldly rushed into battle and, as always, won - the young lover soon moved to her.
I must say that this case perfectly illustrates the saying "love is evil." Great love Ruth turned out to be an infantile and depraved young man. He brought little money, but at the same time, like the rest of her men, he drank heavily. In relationships, he was fickle and optional. She had no chance of marrying a young aristocrat. Nevertheless, it was this man that she loved so much that she even decided to kill him when she realized that he was breaking off their relationship.
Exhausted by the constant betrayal, partying and disappearance of her lover, Ruth took tranquilizers, sometimes washed down with alcohol. It is possible that this was also the cause of the unfolding tragedy. It is sad that at this very moment another man appeared in her life, who, perhaps, could have given the restless beauty the cherished "safe haven", but the woman was completely blinded by passion. Desmond Kassen, a successful entrepreneur, was for some time among her boyfriends and, apparently, Ruth even used this man to organize her only crime.
The tragedy played out on a beautiful Easter day in 1955. The young lover promised to take Ruth and the children on a trip, but, as often happened, he simply disappeared. She smashed his car, knocked on the house of friends, where he was actually hiding from the disgusting relationship, but David never came out. A few days later, on April 10, a second lover brought her by car to the Magdala pub. Ruth had a loaded Smith and Wesson.38 revolver in her purse. The mistress was waiting for Blakely for a while, and when he came out, she released the whole clip at him. Most of all in this case was struck by the composure of the woman, who committed the crime "in a fit of passion." The killer calmly waited for the police and asked to arrest her.
The journalists were delighted: a bright blonde, shooting in the street, fatal passion - all the components for the public's interest are there! True, the criminal herself in her behavior at the trial was more like a respectable and well-bred mother of two children than a vicious woman with a dark past and promiscuous relationships. Ruth simply captivated the audience. At the hearings, she always appeared with the perfect hairstyle (the woman in prison even dyed her hair) and in strict suits. She behaved incredibly restrained and dignified. When asked about the possible death penalty, she replied: - These words were then quoted many times.
The feeling was that she was deliberately going to her death. The defense tried to categorize her act as "manslaughter," but Ruth's cold-blooded answer about the gun in her purse:, dashed this hope. In fact, the woman herself signed the death warrant for herself. In 1955 British law, premeditated homicide implied only one punishment - the death penalty. The audience sobbed both in the courtroom and over the headlines. The indifference with which a young and beautiful woman meets death seemed incredible. After the verdict was passed, Ruth told the lawyer that Desmond Kassen had given her the gun, he also taught her to shoot in a couple of days. Why the second lover needed this and why he did not dissuade the woman from the crime remains a mystery.
On the day of the execution, July 13, 1955, about a thousand people gathered at the gates of the prison. At that time, disputes about the necessity and legality of the death sentence were flaring up, and the case of the 28-year-old beauty was on the crest of the wave. Ruth Ellis became the last woman in Britain to climb the scaffold, and later, in 1969, English law abolished the death penalty as a punishment for murder. This case is still considered one of the most high-profile crimes of the 20th century, and Ruth Ellis has more than once become the heroine of novels, both detective and romantic.
Another famous criminal Russian aristocrat Maria Tarnovskaya even made love a profitable business.