Assault By An Ex-Police Officer

March 1886

Mexborough and Swinton Times March 5, 1886

Assault By An Ex-Police Officer.

John Booth, Wood Turner and Joseph Coddington, an ex-police officer, both of Conisboro’, were summoned on a charge of assaulting Harry Wilson, a gentleman, also of Conisboro’.

Mr. Hall appeared for the complainant, and Mr. A. M. Wilson (Sheffield) for the defence.

Complainant stated that he use to be in partnership with Mr. Booth, a sickle manufacturer. On Thursday, the 18th February, he went into the Station Hotel, and after he had been there a short time the two defendants went in, and Booth in a very insulting way asked him what he was doing for a living, and on the question being repeated, he told Booth to mind his own business. Booth then approached him in a threatening manner, and witness got up to defend himself, on which Coddington caught his hand from behind and pinioned him whilst Booth struck him in the mouth, cutting it, and making it considerably swollen. Shortly afterwards Coddington apologised, and said he was sorry for what had taken place.

In reply to Mr. Wilson, complainant said he was sober at the time and did not wish to have anything to do with Booth.

Isaac W. Hurlow, acting stationmaster at Conisboro’, who said that he lodged at the Station Hotel, deposed that he was present when the disturbance took place. He generally corroborated complainant’s statement.

In cross examination, witness sad it appeared to him, to be a family quarrel. It looked like a planned arrangement that Coddington should hold Wilson while Booth struck him.

Mr. A. Wilson said after what had been said he could not carry the charge any further. There was no doubt the row would never have taken place had it not been for Booth, but both parties lost their temper for a moment. He repudiated the idea of the assault being planned.

Mr. Hall and his client did not want any vindictive penalty imposing, but left it entirely with the Bench.

Lord Auckland described the assault as very cowardly, and imposed a penalty of 10s. each and 27s. 6d. costs, or in default one month each to prison with hard labour.