Mexborough and Swinton Times March 20, 1915
Conisborough Hospital Burgled
Glass Hands Sent to Prison
A sentence of a month’s imprisonment was imposed on William Henry Briggs and Ernest Butcher, Glass hands of new Conisborough, and George D. Hunter, rope runner, of Conisborough, who pleaded guilty to stealing a quantity of articles, the property of the Doncaster and Mexborough joint Hospital board.
After the case had been outlined by Supt Minty, George Bingham, the caretaker of the isolation Hospital at Conisborough, stated that on February 16 he left the place securely locked, and on Tuesday March 8th he visited the premises and found that they had been ransacked and the door fittings had been taken away
Elizabeth Symington, the matron of the Conisborough isolation Hospital, was next called, and identified the following articles (produced) as a property of the board: nine blankets, three counterpanes, one sheet, 50 shirts, nine large nights, 6 tablespoons, 12 dessert spoons, 4 teaspoons, one carving knife and fork, two salt spoons, one lampshade, one lamb, two bedcovers, one wash lever, one door key.
P.C. WM. Raper spoke to receiving information of the robbery on March 8. He made enquiries and found some of the property produced in the cliffs at Conisborough, in a sack hidden beneath a large rock. On the same day. Accompanied by P.C.Franklin, he visited the house of the prisoner Butcher and there he found two table knives, and, upstairs a carving knife and fork, a blanket, and other artices. He asked him to account for them, and Butcher replied “Briggs gave them to me.” Witness later brought the man Briggs to the house and challenged him in the presence of Butcher. Briggs denied that he had given the articles to Butcher, who then said, “it’s no damn good; I will give the show away. We were all in it – me, Briggs, and Geo. Hunter. We broke in on Saturday night and brought the stuff away with was.” Witness then took Briggs and Butcher into custody and conveyed them to Conisborough police station where he charged them. Briggs replied “yes, we stole them. Hunter was with us.”
Butcher replied, “yes, all three were in it.” The following day he charged the three prisoners jointly and they replied, “we are guilty; we stole them.” –
P.C.Bertie Franklin spoke to visiting Hunter at his home. Defendant said “I suppose it’s about that hospital job?” Witness replied “yes.” – Answering the bench, Briggs said they had a drink of beer and that was what made him do it. Butcher and Hunter had nothing to say.