25th October 1869
Reference Numbert18691025-917
VerdictGuilty > lesser offence

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917. JAMES GOBEY (23) , Feloniously wounding Mary Ann Chalmers, with intent to do her grievous bodily harm.

MR. TURNER conducted the Prosecution.

MARY ANN CHALMERS . I live at 44, Cornwall Street, St. George's—I have known the prisoner for some years, and lived with him—on 9th September last I left him, from his cruel treatment, and went to live with

my mother—on the following Sunday, the 12th, the prisoner came to my mother's house, about 9 o'clock in the morning—he asked my mother if she would allow me to go home and live with him again—she said not with her consent—he then asked me to go home with him—I said no, because he would never behave any kinder to me than he had done—he came, and stood alongside of me, he did not speak to me—he stood alongside of me some few minutes, and he drawed a pocket-knife out from his right coat pocket, and struck me in the collar bone; I was giving the baby the breast it the time, and my frock was not fastened up—I ran out and called my mother, and told her he had stuck me with a knife—the wound is quite well now—I feel a pain if I press on the bone.

Prisoner. What she says is false, I have been living with her three years, and she has had three children by me—I allowed her 15s. a week, and found her in what was necessary—her mother and sister erected her away from home, and left me in dirt and filth, and without food—the altered a little for about a month, and then they led her away again—I could not stand it any longer, and I got a drop of drink—I went to bar at her mother's, and asked her to come back and be comfortable again—she would not, and I said I would go and get a ship and go to sea—she spat in my face, and said, "Take that you—swine"—I drew out my knife, and said I would cut my throat, and she kept saying, "Do it, do it," daring me for three or four minutes—she caught hold of my wrist, like that, and cut herself—she then said, "Do it now, you—swine; I have you now, and you shall die," and she struck me in the chest, and here are the marks.

Witness. I did not strike him; after he had stabbed me he drew the knife across his own throat, but no blood came—I did not handle the knife or handle him at all—I did not spit in his face—there was only our two selves present; my mother was passing from the kitchen at the time—I bled, and the doctor dressed my wound that dressed his.

MR. TURNER. Q. When the prisoner struck you were you standing of sitting? A. Sitting on the chair by the side of the fire-place, with the baby on my knee, giving it the breast—he was solid and sober at the time; he had joined the pledge on the Friday night before.

HARRIET COLLIER . I am the wife of James Collier, of 44, Cornwall Street, and am sister to the prosecutrix—the prisoner came therein Sunday morning, 12th September, about 9 o'clock, just as we were sitting down to breakfast—I heard him ask my mother if she would allow my sister to go home, and he would behave better to her—mother said, never with her consent, in regard of his not giving her sufficient to eat—he asked my sister whether she was of the same opinion as my mother—she said yes, for she did not think he would ever behave any better—he said, "Try me once more"—I had his child in my arms, and put it down against the door, and he took it up and kissed it, and nursed it several moments—I called to my mother, and told her not to leave the two together, for he looked rather wild—I was going up the stairs, and I heard my sister say, "Oh!"—I came down, and mother said, "He has struck her with a knife"—my sister was then making her way to the front door, and he was coming towards her again, with the knife open in his hand, when I shut him in the kitchen, and kept him there—my sister was bleeding—I held the door and called to my husband to come down, but he would not, and I opened the kitchen door again, the prisoner drawed down hw neck handkerchief, and

out his neck across, and I went and fetched a policeman—I did not see my sister strike or stab the prisoner.

Prisoner. You were not in the place at all. Witness. I was, and never left the door till you were gone—it is not true that your home is broken up—your landlady holds the home now for 2s. 3d.—I am married—I have my marriage lines here (producing them.)

ELIZABETH CHALMERS . I am the prosecutrix's mother, and live at 44, Cornwall Street—I was present when the prisoner came there, on 12th September—he asked me if I would allow my daughter to go home again—I said, "No"—he said, "For why"—I said, "to be half starved, and kept naked"—he asked my daughter if she was of the same mind—she said yes, she would stop at home with me—as I was going backwards and forwards from the kitchen to the cupboard, I heard my daughter call out, "Oh, mother, he has got a knife—and as she ran to the door I pushed her out—she was bleeding—I did not see the knife.

RUDOLPH TATHAM . I am a surgeon, at 273, Cable Street—about 10 o'clock on the morning of 12th September I was called to 44, Cornwall Street, and saw both prosecutrix and prisoner—he had two wounds in the middle of his throat—one was superficial, injuring the skin only—the other was deeper and of longer extent, and was bleeding profusely, that was perhaps half an inch deep—I stopped the hemorrhage—I had him removed to the hospital—I did not notice any wound on his chest at that time—he did not complain of any—I subsequently examined his chest and found three marks—I could not give an opinion whether they were self inflicted or not—the prosecutrix had received a stab immediately over the collar bone—I should think the blow would have come strongly on the bone, because the covering of the bone was divided—this knife (produced) would came such a wound—when I first saw the knife it was lying open on the table—the plaintiff had possession of it—the prosecutrix's wound has healed favorably—it might have been serious—there is always danger where the covering of the bone is injured—I should not call it a dangerous wound—it was of very slight extent—it was in a part that is dangerous—if it had misted the collar bone it would have been a very serious matter—it is just possible it might have been caused in a struggle—I should infer, however, that it had been done with some force.

WILLIAM LYE (Policeman K 325). I was called to this house and found the prisoner bleeding from a wound in his throat—I found this knife there, it was open—I saw the prosecutrix—there was some blood running down her dress from her right breast—the prisoner said something about the mother would not forgive him—I can't say exactly what it was—there was no charge made at that time—I sent for a stretcher, and had him taken to the hospital—after I came back from the hospital the prosecutrix made the charge against him.

Witnesses for the Defence.

WILLIAM MORRIS . I lived for a year and five months in the adjoining room to the prisoner and prosecutrix—he behaved to her like an upright, hard-working chap; and not cruelly—it was all her fault, because he had the fever, and was not able to work.

MRS. MORRIS. I lived in the same house with them for a year and five months—and always found him an honourable young man—she kept him and the children very dirty—she left him on 9th September, because be Lad the fever—it was all her fault.

The Prisoner, in his defence, repeated hit previous statement, and added that he was almost out of his senses at the time, from excitement and want of food.

GUILTY of unlawfully wounding Nine Months' Imprisonment.

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