Friday, April 18, 2014


Murder by Poison

Poison is said to have been a popular choice for murder, because detection was difficult, but as forensics advanced so did the ability to detect even the most clever murderer. 

FYI – here's a list of the top ten most popular poisons:

Cyanide – Strychnine – Arsenic - Snake Venom – Hemlock – Heroin - Pufferfish Venom - Fiddleback Spider Venom – 
Belladonna - Castor Bean.

According to the website – Daily Cognition.

The case I've chosen to highlight involves Dr. Shipman, whose poison of choice was morphine. He is believed to have murdered 265 people. The exact number may never be known, especially since he was a doctor for 30 years – some say the number could be as high as 1000. His friends claim he had a morbid fascination with the process of death, and even the family's grief.

Dr. Harold Shipman is known as Britain's most notorious and prolific serial killer. He was only discovered because greed got the better of him, via a forged will that left him one million dollars richer. His story is remarkable and creepy. You can read all about Dr. Shipman by following this link.

If undetectable – which poison would you choose?

A favorite resource

You'd be surprised by the number of household items that are poisonous, and the curious looks from friends and family when they see this book on your coffee table!

What's your favorite poison?

If you want to join in on the fun of Arlee Bird's blog hop The A to Z Challenge just go HERE!


  1. I'm going to go with arsenic, LOL; I'm remembering the play Arsenic and Old Lace :)


  2. I'm going with arsenic for the same reason Betty did. :)
    I'd never heard of Dr. Shipman. Horrifying.

  3. Greed always gets them in the end. Dr. Shipman was all over the media here in the UK. Nobody could believe he had been getting away with these murders for so long.

  4. I remember this case! Definitely the preferred method if one absolutely has to bump someone off. Curare would be the first option if access wasn't a problem :)

  5. I remember the Shipman case well. As Sally said (above), it was all over the media here in the UK. He looked emotionless whenever seen on TV. It was frightening to think that he had used the confidence of his patients to kill them.
    I don't have a particular favourite in poisons, but if I was to bump somebody off, it would be for good reason, because they were a real badass - so I'd use something that took a while, and was extremely painful.

  6. I always like to hear about poisons and not just because I'm a writer. I like it when I watch movies or read about how someone used poison because it's like learning new clues. Great post! Happy #atozchallenge2014

  7. There was one time when hubby was seconded to Brixton Prison in London. There was a young man there who was considered to be the top expert on poisons. He killed people just to see how the toxins would work. In the prison they had him making tea and he gave Matt a cup before Matt knew who he was. He wasn't too happy. Especially when offered sugar.

  8. I should put this book out on my coffee table the next time my critique group meets at my house. I'll set a bowl of candy next to it. :D


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