Symud i'r prif gynnwys
Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

11 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



fSrecottgiure* BRECONSHIRE SPRING ASSIZES. Before Sir Jous TAYLOR COLERIDGE, Knight. These Assizes were opened with the usual forms at Brecon, on Saturday last. After dining at the Swan Inn, the High Sheriff, John Lloyd, Fsq., of Dinas, escorted by his friends went out with the expectation of meeting his Lordship, but returned about eight o'clock in the evening, on learning that his Lordship had been detained at Carmarthen by the number of causes until a late hour. His Lordship arrived about 10 o'clock that mght, and attended divine service at St. Marys Church on Sunday morning, when the service was read by the Rev. Archdeacon Davies, after which tuo m. Price, of Llanarth, the Sheriffs Chapla»'> preached from Matthew vi. 10. MONDAY. The court was opened at 10 o'clock, and the follow- ing gentlemen were sworn on the grand jury: PENRY WILLIAMS, Esq., Penpont, Lord Lieutenant of the County, Foreman. C C. Clifton, Esq. John Lewis. Esq- ,T. D. e F-,q., Captain D. Price, R.N. Henry Lucas, Esq., M.D. Henry Allen.jun., Esq. Thomas Parker. Esq, E. W. Seymour, Esq. D. Watkins Lloyd, Esq. J Duncan Thomson, Esq. Thomas Rat ford. Esq. John Parry Wilkins, Esq T. Farmer Roberts, Esq. Charles White, Esq. William Morgan, Esq. J. Jeffreys Wilkins, Esq. J. Prosser Snead. Esq, Philip P. Williams, Esq. Hooper Dixon, Esq. Walter Maybery, Esq. Rees Williams, Esq. Howell Jones Williams, Esq Her Majesty's proclamation against vice and pro- faneness having been read. His Lordship addressed the gentlemen of the Grand Jury and said—that though the calendar was not large, yet, when the size of the county was considered, and that the winter bad been mild, he could not con- gratulate them especially as in the large county of Carmarthen, through which he had last passed, he had found but three cases, and in the county of the borough of Carmarthen, not one. Although there were 11 cases on the calendar, none of them pre- sented any difficulty on points of law, which, in the prospect of the great pressure of business, would war- rant his detaining them with any remarks. His Lord- ship then said, that having alluded to the pressure of business, which was so great, that, although he had allotted an unusual period for it, was likely to render it difficult to finish in time, he could not help making a remark on one subject of considerable importance to the administration of justice in this county. He understood that the magistrates, in consequence of the great inconvenience of the present hall, intended erecting a new building; he was sure that his learned brethren, as well as hiinself, would always be ready to render all the assistance which their practical know- ledge would enable them to give as to the interior ar- rangements. He thought the propriety of making a second room, which could be used as a second Court, worthy their consideration. In future ca3es of a pressure of business, similar to the present, though there could be but one Judge, lie could avail himself of the assistance of a member of the bar, in the trial of the minor cases, as the leading Counsel were hut seldom engaged in criminal cases, and their names were always included in the Commission for the purpose. Though there were no points of law connected with any of the cases which called for notice, yet there were peculiar facts to which he begged to call their attention. The first was case c No.8, Samuel Powell, who was charged, by the Coroner's Inquest, with the serious crime of wilful murder. The evidence was entirely of a circum- stantial nature, and would appear rather complicated to persons who were unacquainted with the local- ities. The prisoner was, probably, the last person seen with the deceased who was found dead at a place where the prisoner had passed with his team. This, of course, would go for little or nothing; but there were two species of evidence with which it was sought to strengthen the case against the prisoner. The" first was based upon declarations made by the prisoner, inconsistent, with each other, of having said or done things which it seemed tie had not so said or done; another, his rather remarkable conduct after the finding of the body of the deceased. There was a very strong feeling of dread, strongly indicative of guilt, supposed among the lower order of society, to exist on the part of the murderer at beholding the corpse of the victim. This idea was very consistent with the feelings of human nature, and it appeared in evidence that the prisoner said he had seen the body at a time when he had not, which proved that he was fully aware of the value of the belief that he had seen it. There are other circumstances, such as his tremour and nervousness when he did see ie o( y, also the position in the room in which lie chose to place himself to view it, which presented a fair case for enquiry. But if no more than a suspicion that he was the guilty person occurred to their mm s, or if there was a prospect that a little fur ie 0 would throw a stronger light on the traiisac ion, 1 ivould be better to throw the bill out; or once tried and acquitted, whatever light !s J tained, lie would not be again indicte • w«u t be, therefore, perhaps, better for the en » o jus^ ice, and might, at a future time, prevent'tl e P'IC scandal of a man walking the street with impunity, though known to have committed a serious crime. It might also be a matter of consideration whether the crime amounted, if committed by murder or manslaughter. One human being mi„bt perish by the hand of another without any^pre-.ou. intention of the kind, or by self-defence, came manslaughter. It would, in tba 'V the accused to reduce the crime to the o and, strictly speaking, it might be gene" y leave that part of the enquiry to thepe though indicted before them for murder» •. o find him guilty of manslaughter. Of. course they would not throw this burden on the prisoner unless they found sufficient grounds to warrant the heavier charge. There were circumstances connected with this case which might, in the course of the enquiry, lead to reducing the charge. The deceased and pri- soner, when last seen together, were intoxicated; they did not appear to have any previous grudge; they were then apparently on good terms; struggles IInd a quarrel were heard on the road; it was, there for, not too much to suppose that blows may have taken place, and given such provocation as would bring down the crime to manslaughter. The evidence of the surgeon was very material, and his Lordship said he was happy to see on the Grand Jury, a medi- cal gentleman of high standing in his profession whose great talents, he had no doubt, would be of very great assistance in the inve«tur'>+inn A wmmd which he begged to call their particular attention. Case 4, that of Rees Thomas, charged with stealing lambs, would, from the number stolen, he a severe one anywhere but in this part of the kingdom, where the open commons were so extensive, without any possibility of inclosures. farmers were frequeutly sub- jected to very great losses. It appeared from the de- positions that there had been a great deal of tamper- ing with the prosecutor to induce him to compromise now, though this sort of improper dealing might throw discredit on the evidence, they might, after all, see good grounds for sending the case to trial. It ap- peared that the lambs were found in possession of the prisoner; their ear-marks had been disguised; they were taken from the cow-stable by breaking a door and one which could be better identified had been carried away by a iiiall on horseback, believed to be the prisoner; if all these things weie made out to their satisfaction, a bill ought to be found. No. 5, that of Rees Williams, only required comment from there being several charges which would make it ne- cessary that different bills should be brought in. These his Lordship believed were all the cases that called for any notice from him. In reading through the depositions he found, with one exception, no no- tice of the prisoner's examination. It was the impe- rative duty of the committing magistrate to examine the prisoner, though not to endeavour to extract any thing from him. The statute required the examina- tion of prisoners, in all cases, something after this manner: after the evidence lie should be asked what have you to say in your defeu.-e ?" If he declined stating anything, it should be so mentioned in the de- positions; and when he said anything, the exact words used should be given not merely the purport or the impression on the magistrates' mind. It was most important that when the Judge read the deposi- tions, they should be correct, that when the trial pro- ceeded he might be able to see that all things were going on in a similar manner to the proceedings, before the magistrates. This was more essential since the law entitled the prisoner to a copy of the depositions There was one other circumstance to which he wished to call their attention. He had received a report from the inspector of prisons stating that he, in con- sequence of the damp state of the cells in the county gaol, ought to sentence no prisoner to more than 3 days' solitary confinement This should not be al- lowed to continue, though there was great difference of opinion as to this or "that system of punishment. He could not but see that there was no hope of pro- ducing an impression on some characters without a degree of solitary confinement; his hands were now completely tied from trying anything of the kind, as he would not risk the health of any person by sen- tencing to confinement in places described as unfit to keep men in for more than three days. He should, therefore, prefer abstaining from solitary confinement altogether. He hoped they would excuse his advert- ing to those topics, as his duty rendered it necessary. His Lordship concluded by requesting the Grand Jury to take the short bills first, and if they could not finish in the course of the day, he hoped they would have 110 objection to sit next day at his lodg- ings, in order that Mr Wilson might be enabled to sit in the Grand Jury Room to assist in finishing the business in time. The criminal cases were then proceeded with as follows:- John Meredith was charged with feloniously steal- ing a gelding, the property of Magdalen Davies, in the parish of Llangorse, on the night of the 18th of August. 1836. Howell Powell exrmitied.- Is a farmer, and resides at Crygie. Magdalen Davies is his sister, and is a widow; on the 18th August he borrowed from her a brown gelding, which he rode on Sunday, and turned it into a meadow that night; he missed it next morn- ing; he made enquiries, went to Brecon, Crickbowell, and other places, and got handbills printed, offering a reward; from information he received, he went to Leominster, in Herefordshire, on Friday, the 24th of August; he saw the horse in Mr Powell's stable there (witness then described the marks, which were rather peculiar); he knew the marks, when he saw him; was quite sure; saw the prisoner in custody at Leominster; spoke to him, after lie had been before the magistrates; did not use any threat or promise; asked him what time he took the horse, and he said about three o'clock in the morning. By the Court—Knew the horse since it was a colt; had known the prisoner when a boy, but not latterly; prisoner resided about four miles from Crygie; the field adjoined a bye-road, but did not open into it, the gate leading to another field; there were tracks of the horse having passed over the hedge; it was not given to fence breaking. Thomas Powell: is a grazier residing at Leomin- ster; on the 20th of August was on the Middle Marsh at Leominster; the prisoner was leading a horse up and down the Marsh for sale; inquired the price; prisoner asked £10; bought it ultimately for eS iss. (witness then described the marks;) brought the horse to his stable; told the prisoner he hoped lie had not stolen it; he said his master, a Captain Gwynne, had sent him to sell it, and would be in Leominster the next day; witness said he would not pay until his master came, and gave the prisoner into the charge of a policeman as lie had suspicions. Mr Howell Powell came on Friday and claimed the horse. ivilliall, Sydney Smith: is superintendent of po'ice at Leominster; prisoner was given into his custody on the 20th August; before the horse was claimed prisoner knocked at the cell door, and desired to speak to him; he said he had stolen the horse hut did not know from whom witness cautioned him to tell the magistrates, not to tell him, but he went on and said that the next farm to that where lie took the horse from was occupied by Mr bvan Powell, and if witness could write to him he could tell the owner he wrote accordingly, and Howell Powell (whose brother Evan Powell was) and his brother came to claim the horse. By the prisoner: did not say to him it would be better to send to where he found the horse, but cau- tioned him; prisoner had made true statements; once he said he was drunk when he found the horse in a lane By the Court: when prisoner knocked at the cell door witness was the person who went to him. Howell Powell, re-called Evan Powell is his bro- ther, but not the one who went with him to Leomin- ster; he occupies a farm in the neighbourhood, but not the next t" Crygie- Magdalen Davies corroborated the evidence of Mr Howell Powelt. Verdict—Guilty. T11 consequence of the prisoner having been already imprisoned for S iven months, his Lordship said he should only sentence him to 12 months imprisonment with hard labour. CTo be continued in our next, j "'#('1/## PARLIAMENTARY DIVISIONS. Votes 0/ Members for boutn Wales, Monmouthshire and Herefordshire. BRISTOL AND GLOUCESTER RAILWAY BILL.—TUESDAY, MARCH 19. Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time;"—Amendment proposed, to leave out the word now," and at the end of the Question to add the words upon this day six months:—Question put, "That the word 'now' stand part of the Question —The House divided; Ayes, 118; Noes, 57. AYES. Burr, H. I Jones, J. Graham, Sir J. Vivian, J. H. Guest, Sir J. I Williams, W. A. NOES. Greenaway, C. I Somerset, Lord G. REFORM OF PARLIAJlIENr.-THURSDA Y, MARCH 21. Act (2 William IV., c. 45) read;—Motion made and Question put—" That leave be given to bring in a Bill to amend the said Act." The House divided —Ayes, 50; Noes, 85. NOES. Guest, Sir J. Joneg, j. xiothain, Lord J -# The Earl of Cawdor vesterday week, in the House of Lords, presented a petition from the magistrates of the borough of Na.rn in favour of an uniform penny postage. J ABERYSTWITH AND LONDON MAIL.The town of Aberystwith is on the point of profiting by the opening of the Birmingham Railroad. A mail to London is to start on and after the 6th of April next, every morning at eight-via Llanidloes and Newton -and return every evening at six thus effecting a saving of about three hours upon the quickest tra- velling to London yet known from that place. WAF,ES.-It is surprising (says a correspondent, one of the Deputation of the Wesleyan Centenary Committee,) considering the proximity of Enghnd that there should be such a difference, not only in language, but in customs and rnanner,a,-in scenery, roads, and cattle,—reminding us sometimes of other and less civilized lands. I may be incorrect, but I think there ought to be a greater effort to spread tliq Lnglish language, as the medium of instruction, both as it respects this world and that which is to come. Literature and divinity, in their own tongue, they have none, and therefore must remain in comparative ignorance till they shall have translations, or acquire our own. The prediction as to the proceeds of the Centenary Meetings was very discouraging; but at Llanidloes, on the evening of the 12th utt.,the liberal sum of £65 16s. Id. was contributed, and the good people confessed they never knew before what great things they could do. At Aberystwith, to our sur- prise and joy, the amount was £83 2s.; and at f imnntn. U u, I — 4. L 't CARMARTHENSHIRE SPRING ASSIZES. These Assizes commenced on the 16th inst., before Sir J. r. Coleridge, Knight, one of the Justices of Her Majesty's Court of Queen's Bench at Westmin- ster. His Lordship arrived about six o clock in the evening, attended by the High Sheriff, J. E. Saunders, Esq., and a very respectable cavalcade of gentlemen; and immediately proceeded to the Town-Hall, when the commission was opened with the usual formalities. On Sunday his Lordship attended divine service at St. Peter's Church when a very eloquent sermon was preached by the vicar, Archdeacon Bevan.










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