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1850 - Proceedings of the Old Bailey (5)

Date 1850
Topic Policeman beaten with a poker in Robin Hood Lane, Poplar
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Robin Hood Lane, Poplar.

By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2018-06-15. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2018-06-21.


[25 Nov. 1850:]
ROBERT BACKHOUSE (policeman, K 151). On the night of 30th Nov. I was attracted to a house in Robin-Hood-lane, Poplar, by cries of "Murder!" and "Police!"—I and serjeant Timpson went to the house—I saw a woman's head out of the window—she said, "For God's sake, policeman, don't go away; there will be murder done"—I said, "What is the matter?"—she said, "That man of mine," or words to that effect—directly the prisoner opened the door and rushed out with this short poker in his hand, and struck me three or four blows on my head, cheek, and temple—he said, "You are the b——r that had me before"(I had had him about two years and a half ago)—I became insensible—I did not draw my staff, or speak to him at all.

Cross-examined by MR. PLATT. Q. What sort of a neighbourhood is this? A. Very low—there are a good many Irish there and a good many rows—we did not go with our staves out—there was scarcely a soul in the lane—the woman is the prisoner's wife—she did not say, "Go away; it is only a row"—she was in her night-dress; her upper part was naked— we heard the cries three or four times—I had a staff—the sergeant had his cutlass and truncheon—on my oath neither cutlass nor staves were drawn previous to my being struck; I cannot say what was done afterwards—there was no other policeman with us—I did not hear the prisoner inside, before the door was opened, saying it was only a drunken frolic—I heard a mingling of voices—it is a sort of lodging-house—I never demanded the door to be opened—I had only asked the woman what was the matter, and then the prisoner burst open the door—I think he must have heard what was said—it was about a quarter before twelve o'clock.

JOHN TIMPSON (police-sergeant, K 25). On the night of 13th Nov. I went with Backhouse to 28, Robin-Hood-lane—we heard a woman calling, "For God's sake do not go away, there will be murder"—the prisoner and his brother came to the door—the prisoner said, "You b——r, you had me before"—the brother held my arms while the prisoner struck Back-house—I saw the prisoner take the iron out of his pocket and strike him—I got to him as soon as I could, and found him on the pavement bleeding very fast—I saw only one blow given, as I was grappled by the brother—nothing had been said to the prisoner before the blows were given.[1]

Source notes

IRHB has silently regularized the use of spaces before punctuation marks in the quotation and corrected the HTML text at Proceedings of the Old Bailey from the PDF of the original printed edition.



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