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August Sangret



August Sangret


The Wigwam Murder


28th August 1913
Kill Total: 1

Kill date:

September 1942

Kill Place:

Elstead, Surrey






Joan Wolfe
D.O.B. 11th March 1923




Kingston Assizes


Justice MacNaughton











Not much is known about Sangret, other than he was a mixed race man, Canadian/French and native American., he was not educated and found getting work difficult. He had a previous conviction for assault and after joining the army in 1935 at the age of 22, he spent much time being punished for disagreeing with army discipline.


March 1940, Sangret was transferred to  England, and initially at Fleret in Hampshire, before being transferred to Aldershot, This is where he met Joan Wolfe.


Joan Wolfe was know to the police she had had many relationships with soldiers, and made a name s a bit of a trouble maker, she had been engaged to various soldiers at different times.


17th July 1942, Joan Wolfe met Sangret in a pub in Godalming, they had drinks, later had sex, and parted company. They met again on numerous occasions.


Sangret, with his Native American knowledge, built a wigwam tent round the back of the barracks, and Wolfe moved in, he would sneak off to see her as much as he could, even when he was supposed to be in camp.

At one stage they were discovered by military police, and the wigwam was taken down, this did not stop Sangret who built another wigwam elsewhere. The couple continued seeing each other at the wigwam or at rooms in local towns.


13th September 1942, Joan Wolfe disappears.


7th October 1942, Military police discovered a partly covered woman's body in a shallow grove at Hankley Commonn near Elstead, Surrey, used as a military training ground, the police were called.


Keith Simpson was the pathologist, he concluded that the victim had been stabbed with a knife many times, when she was laying face down she was hit on the back of the had by a large heavy object..


After a search of the area that turned up bits of skull, clothing and her bag, including a letter written to Sangret telling him she was pregnant, police realised they were looking at the body of Joan Wolfe, and that the suspect was Sangret.

They also found a birch stake which matched the size of a missing piece of skull, and would later show as having Wolfe's blood on it.


Sangret was arrested, bloodstains were found on clothes and his army knife with blood on it was found in a drainpipe.

He was taken to Godalming police station, where he gave a statement, so long that it took a policeman five days to write it out.


20th January 1943, The jury at Guildford Crown Court  took two hours to find Sangret guilty, although they did give as recommendation for mercy. The judge declined and sentenced Sangret to death.


13th April 1943, Sangret appealed to the Home Secretary, who rejected the appeal.


29th April 1943 Sangret was hanged at Wandsworth prison by executioner Albert Pierrepoint.




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