Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 13 August 2020), January 1849, trial of PATRICK SHEEHAN (t18490101-375).

PATRICK SHEEHAN, Breaking Peace > wounding, 1st January 1849.

375. PATRICK SHEEHAN , feloniously cutting and wounding William Fenge, with intent to do him some grievous bodily harm.

WILLIAM FENGE . I live at 2, Suffolk-street. On 21st Dec. I was employed as a labourer at the London Docks, and the prisoner also—we were each to receive 2s. 3d. wages—the man put down four shillings and a sixpence for the two of us—the prisoner took it up and gave me two shillings, and was to give me the other 3d.—we went out of the Dock, and he said, "I will go in here and get some rum," and asked if I wanted any—I said, "No"—he went in, came out, and said, "I have got a bad shilling, I can't give you your threepence until I get the shilling exchanged; come into the Dock with me, and see if they will change it"—I said, "I don't want to go into the Dock again; give me my threepence"—he said, "I will see you d—d first before I will give it you"—I said, "I must go into the Dock with you"—we went in, but the man would not take any notice, and threw the shilling down—we stood talking—the prisoner said he would not be the loser of the shilling—I asked him for my threepence—he said he would not be the loser of the shilling and threepence too—I said, "I can't help that," and asked him to give it me—he said, "Come down in the morning and see if they will change it"—I said I must look after work somewhere else—we walked together, and I asked him again to give it me—he said, "I b—d if I do; you will not get it out of me"—I asked him for it again, and lifted up my hand, and just touched him with my open hand over the mouth, but not with any violence—he pulled out a knife and swung it round two or three times—he said, "You b—r, take that!" and cut me across the chin—I said he had cut my throat, and called out to the people not to let him go—he was given in charge—my throat was bleeding.

Prisoner. Q. Did not you strike me three or four times? A. Only once—I did not cut you; I had no knife—no one was with me.

WILLIAM BREEZE (policeman, H 59). On 21st Dec. I was on duty in Fast Smithfield—there was a great crowd—I saw the prisoner there—a man

said he had a knife out, and I had better not go near him—the prisoner said to a man who was going to seize him, "You beggar, if you come near me I will put it into you; if you don't stand back, and not come near me, I will put it into you and cut your head off your shoulders"—the young man and I closed on him, and he said, "You beggar, I will put it right into your heart" and made a thrust with the knife—I seized both his hands with the knife in them, got it, and took him to the station—in going along he said it served him right if he had cut his head off his shoulders—this is the knife, it had this string hanging to it; not round his wrist—I found a bad shilling and 1s. 6d. in silver together in his pocket.

Prisoner. Q. Did not I tell you to take him in charge? A. Not till I took the knife from you—you said he assaulted you—you did not say four persons did so, till next day.

PETER GOWLLAND . I am house-surgeon at the London Hospital. On 21st Dec., about seven at night, Fenge was brought there—he had a clean incised wound on the lower border of the chin, about two inches and a half long, penetrating to the bone—it was not dangerous, a blow has a tendency to rise.

Prisoner's Defence. Fenge is a fighting-man; he struck me, and a man with a basket also; three of them said, "Turn him up and take it out of him," and I took out the knife; even now I would not give up the threepence, I would suffer death first.

WILLIAM FENGE re-examined. I have never been engaged in fighting—nobody interfered before I was cut—it is not true that two or three men were assaulting him.

GUILTY but under circumstances of considerable provocation. , Aged 35.— Confined Eighteen Months.