BURGLARY AT MIRFIELD.
HENRY HARGREAVES (32) was indicted for having, on the 1st October last, at Mirfield burglariously broken and entered the dwelling-house of Ann Sharp, and feloniously stolen therein five pieces of Irish linen, one hundred pairs of black worsted stockings, fifty pairs of men's worsted stockings, four pieces of stuff, one hundred cotton handkerchiefs, six ends of muslin, and four pairs of men's shoes.
Mr. INGHAM and Mr. OVEREND were for the prosecution; the prisoner was undefended.
The prosecutrix, Ann Sharp, keeps a linen draper's shop at Mirfield, which was broken into on the night of the 1st October, and the articles mentioned in the indictment were stolen there from. The prisoner lodged with his brother at Kirkheaton, about a mile from Mirfield, and this brother and his wife, together with a man called Godfrey Hudson, were the principal witnesses against him. From their evidence it appeared that on the night of the 4th of October the prisoner went to his lodgings, having a bag with him, and after getting his supper he went out again, and the following morning, about six o'clock, he returned without the bag. The same morning the prisoner had some conversation with his brother, who had heard of the robbery at Mirfield, and to him he acknowledged that "the stuff" he had in the bag had come from Mrs. Sharp's house, and said that he had sold it to Hudson, of Deighton, and got the money; but he threatened him that if he ever said any thing about it he would take his life. Hudson, when called into the witness-box, deposed that he had bought a pair of shoes and a pair of stockings from the prisoner, for half-a-crown, on the 5th of October: which, when the constable came to search the house in which he (Hudson) lived, he threw out of the window. The shoes and stockings were identified, and some other evidence was adduced in confirmation of the previous witnesses, but it was not of a very definite character.
The prisoner cross-examied the witnesses with considerable tact, and elicited that his brother and wife were actuated by vindictive feeling against him, and that they were also people of bad character; and that Hudson's house had been searched on previous occasions for stolen property. The latter also in reply to a question from the Judge, admitted that when he bought the shoes and stockings, he had some suspicion that they were stolen.
In his address to the Jury the prisoner merely asserted his entire innocence of the charge.
The JUDGE in his summing up cautioned the Jury against placing too much reliance on the evidence of the prisoner's brother and his wife, and of Hudson, which might be given from interested motives; and directed them to examine closely the amount of corroboration it had received.
The Jury retired to consider their verdict, and after being absent nearly an hour. returned a verdict of Guilty.
A previous conviction was also proved against the prisoner.