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1859 - Proceedings of the Old Bailey (1)

Date 1859
Topic Policeman assaulted in Robin Hood Court, Shoe Lane
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Site of Robin Hood Court, Shoe Lane, Holborn.

By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2018-06-18. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2018-06-21.


[4 Jul. 1859:]
ALEXANDER BENNETT (City policeman, 248). On Saturday night, 4th June, I was in Robin Hood-court, which leads from New-street into Shoe-lane, about 100 yards from Holborn-hill—I saw the prisoners there about a quarter past 12 o'clock—I had known them by sight these 3 years, and have been in the habit of seeing them repeatedly—they were swearing and making use of most abusive language, and I said, "You had better move on; I cannot allow that swearing here at this time of the morning"—Dennis struck me a violent blow on the left ear, and David struck me on the back of the head at the same time, from the effects of which I fell to the ground, and my head came in contact with the kerb—I was rendered insensible, and recollect nothing further—the prisoners were dressed as they are now—David has a very hoarse voice—I was taken to the hospital the same night insensible, and remained there till 18th June—I am not able to attend to my duty yet.

Cross-examined by Mr. BARRY. Q. Was David drunk? A. No; they were both quite sober, and were swearing at each other—I did not see or hear a woman there—there were no people about; they had all gone; the prisoners were the only two there—I had been about the neighbourhood all the evening—I did not touch him before he struck me—Walthrop was with me—if you wish to know, I have seen Dennis at a police-court, accused of assaulting a civilian in Hatton-garden—he was not convicted; the prosecutor never appeared—that was on 18th December, 1858—I helped to take him in custody—I wished a woman good night as she passed me—I had been in no house since I left the station-house—I said nothing to the prisoners but "Move on"—it was dark, but there were plenty of lamps—I stated the prisoners' names at once as soon as I recovered, but did not describe them—I knew where they lived—they were taken on the Sunday morning—my brother officers also knew where they lived very well—when I was first asked about them, Dennis was in custody—David was taken on Tuesday, but I was not there.

Mr. POLAND. Q. What are they? A. Costermongers; they live at 3, Union-court—they are known to my brother officers—Union-court is on the right hand side going up Holborn, and Robin Hood-court is on the left.

ELLEN WIDMORE. I am the wife of Charles Widmore, of 12, Robin Hood-court, Long-lane—on 4th June the policeman passed me in the court, and I saw two men and women by the milk-shop, using bad language—I had never seen them before, but one had a white jacket, something similar to that (Dennis's)—the other one spoke coarsely—the policeman told them to move on—I saw the policeman struck to the ground by a blow from one of them, I cannot say which, and when he was on the ground they kicked him—I said, "Do you intend to do for the man; do you intend to murder him right Out"—they ran away, and said that I knew them.[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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