Edward Pontyfix farmed at Downley Farm and would regularly attend Wycombe market. He dressed somewhat showily, wearing a large watch on a chain and rings on his fingers,. On this occasion, in the middle of January, he walked to the Wycombe market accompanied by his 13-year-old son. Having finished his business he set off home as dusk was falling, after first visiting the Antelope public house where his wealthy appearance was noted by two strangers to the town. As Edward Pontifyx and his son entered Tinkers Wood he was attacked by the two strangers, later identified as Thomas Marsh and Richard Marshall, one of whom shot him dead. In the gathering darkness his son managed to hide and subsequently raised the alarm.
The two murderers were later caught trying to sell the watch at the very shop where it was made. This led to their arrest, and being tried for murder. They were found guilty and executed at Aylesbury. Their bodies were brought to Wycombe, and hung in chains at the east end of the Rye. The son was able to identify the murderers by the flash from the pistol shot which had lit up their faces.