Offence: Killing > murder
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315. + John Rigleton , of Stanmore Magna , was indicted for the wilful murder of Margaret his wife , by giving her one mortal wound with a knife upon the throat, of the breadth of 4 inches and an half, and the depth of half an inch, of which she instantly died . July 9 .
Zachariah Price . I live with Mr. Truman, a brewer. I went down to Stanmore to see my friends, and was drinking at the Vine, a publick house on Tuesday last. A quarter before 12 at night Prisoner's daughter came into the house in her and said her father was her mother to pieces. I run out of the house and met the Prisoner at the bar, about 40 rob from his house; he had his coat over his arm, and nothing on but his shirt, and his shoes buckled, without stockings or breeches; and his shut sleeves were all over blood. I asked him what he had been about; he said he had killed his wife. I laid hold of his arm, and said he must go along with me, and he did not refuse going with me. I took him to the sign of the Vine, and as he was going along he threw his knife into a pond.
Q. Did you see him throw it into the pond?
Price. I saw him throw something, I asked him what it was, and he said it was his knife. A constable was sent for, and he was secured. He had locked the door, and had the key in his pocket, and I took it out. About a quarter of an hour afterwards several of us went to his own house and went into a lower room, where he and his wife used to lie, and her body lay upon the bed, partly naked, without any bed clothes over her, and a chamber pot standing upon a chair, as I suppose, for her to bleed in; though her head did not be directly over it, for she bled on one side of it. Her throat was cut, and her belly ript up, and she had a place cut in her cheek.
Q. Did you observe whether the body was warm?
Price. Yes; it was warm and her throat and belly were bleeding. In the morning we carried
Prisoner. I don't say any thing against what he says. I was out of my senses, I did not know what I did. Something disturbed us so for several nights, that neither of us could rest or sleep.
Q. Did he appear to be fuddled?
Price. He appeared sober enough for any thing that I could observe.
William Wright . Mr. Price and I went out of the Vine together upon the alarm of the girl, and the sleeves of his shirt were as bloody as if they had been dipped in blood, and the some part of it was bloody. He had only his shoes and his shirt on; and as he was coming along he threw his knife into a pond; I saw where it went, and I went the next morning and took it out [it was a small knife with a round pointed blade.] He said he had murdered his wife, I asked him what made him do it, and he said he had been at work for the Lord.
Q. Was he crazy sometimes?
Wright. He was a little crazy sometimes - He was a labouring man, I have worked with him sometimes.
Q. Did you see his wife?
Wright. Not till the next day. I had only a glimpse of her. I did not care to see her.
Q. Did you sit up with him all night?
Q. Did he appear to be disordered in liquor?
Wright. He was very sober all night.
Q. Did he talk sensibly?
Wright. He said but little; but what he said he talked sensibly.
Q. Did his wife and he agree, or did they disagree?
Wright. They used to disagree sometimes - I don't know that he ever offered any violence to her before.
Prisoner. I did not know that I should do it till just that I went about it, for I was out of my senses, I was half mad. My wife said the devil was coming, and that frightened me, and so we went to fighting. I asked her for a halfpeny for a halfpeny candle, and she would not give it me, so I was in the dark, or else we used to have a light; I did it innocently. Guilty , Death .