Unruly Denaby Defendant – Behaviour in Court – Threatens to Kill his Wife

July 1905

Mexborough and Swinton Times July 22, 1905

An Unruly Denaby Defendant
Behaviour in Court
Threatens to Kill his Wife

A Denaby miner named Joseph Bennett, was summoned by his wife Ellen, for persistent cruelty. She also applied for a separation order and maintenance. The defendant, who be removed to the cells for his behaviour in the previous case was brought in and continually interrupted the evidence. He appeared to be very excited, and the efforts of two constables were required to curb him. When he saw his wife and the witnesses he exclaimed “They have to go through it when I come out, I know that I am out of work and I don’t care.”

His wife, Mrs Bennett, in answer to the chairman, said they had been married four years in November, and there was one child living aged eight months, a girl named Mary Elizabeth. Her married life had been most unhappy, the defendant repeatedly thrashing her. He had abused and threatened her frequently. A fortnight before she was confined in 1901, he gave her a black eye. He was convicted shortly afterwards and sent to prison for poaching.

The defendant frequently interrupted, and said to the constable, “All right, all right; I’m not talking to you, I’m talking to this gentleman (the Chairman). I’ll tell the – – – – – truth.”
The complainant said on July 1 this year she went to Mexborough with her mother, and when they got there they went into a public house to have a glass of beer. Defendant walked in, but did not say anything until they got home, when he commenced ill using her. He took the child out of her arms and threatened to dash it’s brains it out against the wall.
Defendant: “Yes, and I would have done it to, and yours too if I had got outside.”

The defendant continued his instructions acutely wife of and been intimate with the lodgers at her mother’s house. He could prove it if he had the money
The complainant, in the course of further evidence, said on July 6 defendant knocked her down.
The defendant: It’s her mother and her father who have caused it.

The complainant said she was not living at home.

The defendant again interrupted, threatening what he would do to his wife.

The chairman (exasperated): Oh! Do be quite, you silly ass; you’re only doing yourself harm.

Defendant: I know that Sir but I don’t care if I get 10 years.

The Chairman: Probably you will get it if you don’t mind yourself.

The defendant: I don’t care if I do.

Jane Cooper said on six July the complainant came to her house, West she had since remain. She was marked, and she had seen the defendant assault

Jane Cooper said on July 6 the complainant came to her house, where she has since remained. She was Mark, and she had seen the defendant assault her.

Mrs Palmer gave evidence.

PC Ransom said on the July 1st he heard the defendant as he was coming from his wife’s mother’s say that he would do four years for somebody. He did not hear who that somebody was.
The complainant, asked by the Chairman and watch the defendant earned, reply between £2 and £2 5s.

The defendant: 2 pound 5. He again made accusations against his wife. He added: “She will come back tomorrow if I had work.”

Complainant: No, I should not; I have finished now.

Defendant: Oh, so you’ve finished, have you? Yes and I shall finish you when I come out.

The Bench again spoke to the defendant about his conduct, and told him that he would have to pay the costs 23s, and a separation order will be granted, and he would have to pay 7s 6d per week maintenance for his wife and child. His wife would have the custody of the child.

The defendant: I shall not pay; I shall have to go to prison.

He was then removed.