John Richardson.
3rd September 1684
Reference Numbert16840903-22

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John Richardson , a Tinker , living at Killingham , in the County of Middlesex, Indicted for killing his Wife Martha Richardson . The Neighbours who came as Witnesses proved that he, on the 22th of July last, threw her violently down upon the Ground, kick'd and beat her on the Head, Neck, Stomach, and Belly; of which Blows and Bruises she languished from the said 22th of July, and Languishing died on the 6th of August following. The Sister of his wife proved, that she, on her Death-Bed, charged him with her Death, and desired, if she Died, that it might be revenged by her said Sister. All the Neighbours Positively Swore, That all the time of the Womans Languishing, she still laid her Death at her Husbands Door, and would never be induced to Pardon him. The next Day after her Beating, she spit Blood Extreamly; and at the time of her Beating, she Bled at least a Pint and a Half: which as was given in Evidence, she endeavoured to Wash and scrape from the place were the same was Shed, but could not get out the Marks thereof. The Prisoner made no material Defence, but said his Wife was Drunk at the time she pretended she was Beaten, and had fell Down: But the Witnesses for the King Swore positively, that they see him drag her along the Street by the Heels, to his own Door, and when he came there, he laid her Head over the Threshold, and then turn'd her Heels after her, shutting the Door to him. This Fact was the more Barbarous in that the Woman that was thus Kill'd, was a Young Woman, not above 25; and said to be of a very good and Honest Life and Carriage; the Prisoner about 50 or upwards: and that after she was thus Beaten, he never took the least Care of her; but declared, that if he had not thereby done her Business, she should have it some other time. It was further said, that this Fellow was supposed to have Murthered his former Wife; for that the Neighbours Testified she had Died Suddenly, and was found under the Bed of the Prisoner, with her Hair about her Ears. The Fellow had a very ill Look and Character; by all that appeared against him upon the whole Evidence; which was Plain. He was found Guilty of Willful Murder.

[Death. See summary.]

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