Charges of Stealing Eight Sheep.

January 1882

Mexborough and Swinton Times January 13

Charges of Stealing Eight Sheep.

At the West Riding Quarter sessions held at Sheffield on Friday, Thomas Crabtree, 35, farm labourer, was charged with having stolen 8 sheep, the value of £24, the property of Godfrey Walker at Conisborough.

Mr Heaton Cadman prosecuted.

The prosecutor had 50 sheep in a field called Lime Kiln Close, which was seen by the Shepherd to be all right at six o’clock on the morning of 1 October last. Shortly before nine o’clock that morning the prisoner was seen driving eight or 10 sheep marked with “ruddle” between the shoulders on the highway leading to Doncaster. About two hours afterwards, he was met by a farmer named Yates of Bentley.

In the course of a conversation. The prisoner said he had bought the sheep for two pounds each, and offer them to Yates at the same price. It was agreed that Yates should look at the sheep in the evening, and they were taken to his farm. He did not get home until it was getting dark in the evening, and he objected to pay for them until he saw them in daylight. The prisoner borrowed 15 shillings on the sheep, and left them with Yates to be decided whether he should buy them are not.

At our past eight o’clock on the night of 3 October he was seen by a policeman driving the sheep along the Selby and Doncaster road and when asked when he got them and where he was driving them to he said he got them from Syke House and was taking them to Warmsworth.

The prisoner briefly addressed the jury and said he found the sheep straying on the highway. He drove them on the way to Doncaster in the hope that he could find the owner. The money given to him by Mr Yates was not on account of the sheep but for services which he had rendered him as a farm labourer.

The jury found a verdict of not guilty

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