Brutal Conisborough Husband – Two Months for Cruel Assault on Wife

September 1923

Swinton & Mexborough Times, September 29

Brutal Conisboro´ Husband

Two Months for Cruel Assault on Wife

A shocking story was unfolded at the Doncaster West Riding Police Court on Wednesday, when a young Conisborough miner, John Henry Roach, of 4, Old Hill, Conisborough, was summoned by his wife, Ann Roach, for assaulting her on Sept. 14.

Mr. W. H. Carlile, who appeared for the complainant, said complainant had been suffering from influenza for some time prior to the date of the assault, and was being medically attended by Dr. McCure. On the morning of Sept 14 the doctor had seen her and had told her she must remain in bed. After having drawn his money at the pit the defendant came home and ordered her to get up and get him some food. She was not in a condition to do so, but he insisted, and she eventually got up and went out to do some shopping.

In the evening he made her go out with him. They went to the Star Hotel, where he ordered her a glass of old beer, and when she told him she did not want it but preferred lemonade, he told her he was not going to pay for any —- lemonade. While he was not looking she poured the beer away.

Later, while standing in the entrance, a young man asked her if she was looking for her husband, and at that time the defendant came up and said that was a fine game to be carrying on. He rushed at the man and struck him and then attempted to strike her, but a police officer came up.

She went to her father´s house, followed by the defendant, who threatened to murder her. After a time he quietened down, but as soon as they got home he banged the door and rushed at her. He knocked her down, struck her in the mouth, and kicked her. She was rendered unconscious, and did not remember anything more until she found herself in her father´s house, being attended to by the doctor.

Mr. Carlile described the assault as a dastardly one, ad asked for severe punishment.

The complainant, who bore marks of ill treatment and looked very ill, bore out Mr. Carlile’s statement. They were married she saidinDecember 1922. Her husband, when he came in, swore and said he wanted some food getting ready, and ordered her to get up.

He had often made her go out with them, and on this night he wanted to go drinking. She refused, but after a `terrible row´she consented to go. As a result of his treatment as described, she had a wound on the back of the head, a black eye, a lump over the other eye and her lips were cut and bruised.

Since, she had suffered from dizzy bouts and the other day, while cleaning the windows, fell through one and cut her hands.

Reply to Mr J a radically, defending, she denied she had been wanting to get rid of her husband for some time.

Evidence was given by complainant’s sister, Mrs Sarah A Whitehead, and George Redfern, a stranger to the parties, who said he saw the defendant bore striking and kicking his wife, who was leaning up against the wall near to their house.

PC Howard said he was on duty near the Star Hotel and saw defendant speak to his wife several times. She was standing near the jug and bottle department.

At 9.50, when the defending came out, the complainant was standing near two men, both of whom witnessed knew as respectable men. Defendant rushed over and struck him on the jaw, and his wife then moved away. Witness brought to the defendant and told him to behave himself.

He went away and 5 min later witness was called to the house and saw the defendant’s wife being carried away by some men. She was unconscious and suffering from a wound on her head, and her face was grazed. She had a black eye and her lips were cut. He went in search of the defendant and found him inside the house with the door barred. There was a large crowd outside and “it was a good job he did not come out.”

Mr Baddeley, for the defence, asked the magistrates to look carefully at the evidence, remarking that to say the least, it was extraordinarily contradictory. “The wives tale was very, very weird.

Defendant made a categorical denial of his wife statement, and said at teatime he asked his wife to go to the pictures, but she refused, saying she wanted to go for a drink.

She had been out earlier in the day, and it was not true he had made her get up as she was already up. He admitted when he came out and found her talking with two men he lost his temper. She told him she did not want him as she had someone else, and he attempted to strike one of the men.

His wife run away and when he got all she had locked herself in the house and was screaming, shouting at him not to hit her, and asking his forgiveness.

The defendant cross-examined by Mr Carlisle, said he never touched his wife. She came out of the house and he was going to hit her when a neighbour interfered and his blow caught him. He had no knowledge of his wife’s condition. He added, he could not “chastise” his wife without all are family coming up to the house, a remark which led Mr Pettifer (the Clerk) to ask if he considered he could “chastise” her because he was always in the right, because he had the greatest strength. He also asked him if he thought he had a right to chastise his wife, the defendant replying that he was her husband.

Mr Baddeley, interrupted said he saw the defendant did not mean what Mr Pettifer meant by “chastise” and defendant when the question was put to him, said he only meant talking to her.

Evidence was given by a neighbour Thomas Knighton and his wife, who said the defendant never touched his wife, and that he was outside the house while she was inside screaming.

The complainant, recalled, said they went into the house together. The door was not locked. Defendant knocked her outside, and assaulted when he got outside.

The Chairman (Mr John Dymond) said, there was not the slightest doubt that a serious assault had been committed without any justification, and the defendant would have to go to prison for two months.

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