A Stray Sovereign

October 1882

Mexborough and Swinton Times, October 13

A Stray Sovereign

Thomas Heathcote, a young man, was said to have stolen a sovereign from James Baxter.

They are Colliers, of Denaby, and Baxter, not present, was said by Mr Hall, who appeared for the defence, to have bolted with another man, Bob.

A witness, the owner of the sovereign was ready to be sworn, and told that Baxter slept in his house during the night, and had come with him part of the way to the court, but then had turned another way.

“Yes,” said Mr Hall, “he has found that the best thing to do” – and he related that a bet had been made, and that a sovereign was deposited with a man from whom Baxter, took it, and that Heathcote had had nought to do with the matter.

It appeared that on the previous Tuesday night there was a party in a public house at Denaby, when a bet was made, and the money, a sovereign, was handed to Baxter as the stakeholder.

While the bet was being decided a row took place, in which Baxter took a chief part, and after the scuffle was over he stated that someone had stolen the sovereign from him; and he afterwards charged Heathcote with stealing it and he summoned him.

The casse was put aside a while. But at the end of the court Baxter didn’t appear and the magistrates had no case to deal with. Mr Hall asked that the costs should be granted for Heathcote and his wife, saying of him that he was a respectable man who had dwelt in or near Mexborough several years. He added of Baxter “He has evidently done this to get out of the charge himself.”

The magistrates allowed Heathcote 10s 6d, Baxter to pay this when he was found.