Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 02 October 2022), December 1893, trial of JOHN ALTON (22) (t18931211-117).

JOHN ALTON, Breaking Peace > wounding, 11th December 1893.

117. JOHN ALTON (22) , Unlawfully wounding George Sadler.

GEORGE SADLER . I am a printer, of 16, Griffin Street—on Saturdays November 11th, I was at the Sloper's Arms with some friends—the prisoner and a friend of his were very noisy, and I asked him to be quiet because they could not get on with their singing—he went out on the landing, and I thought I would get out of the place, I did not want to stop any longer—I saw him on the landing with a knife in his hand, a kind of penknife, with the blade showing—he said, "This will stop your gallop"—the proprietor came up and said, "Take your friend out"—I said, "He is no friend of mine"—we tried to hustle him out, and he stabbed me on my neck—I was taken to King's College Hospital insensible—the proprietor and the potman were hustling him out; I was not. helping.

Cross-examined by MR. WARBURTON. The landlord is not here—he has not given evidence at all, nor the potman—I had been in the room about two hours, at a benefit for a man who was laid up—I hail three glasses of drink—I left Great Sutton Street at 7. 30; I had no drink there; I had not long had my tea—four of us were together—I had never seen the prisoner before—I am positive he is the man who wounded me—I did not hear him sing a song—I was not making a great row and arguing, with the people beside me, nor did I order the prisoner and another man to go out—I did not deal him a severe blow on his head, and knock his hat off—I was not at all in drink—I did not want to charge another man at the station—I saw the prisoner strike me with the knife.

(Re-examined.) I am sure he is the man who struck me—I was perfectly sober; there is no truth in the suggestion that I was quarrelling—I do not know the man whose benefit it was, but I am a friend of the chairman, and he asked me to come.

WILLIAM SADLER . My real name is Frank Kitto—I am a printer, and live in the same place as the last witness—I was with him on this night—there was a row upstairs between the prisoner and another man, and going downstairs he pulled a knife out, and said to my friend, u This will atop your gallop," and as I followed him out I saw him strike the blow—I think it was a pocket knife—I am sure the prisoner is the man.

GEORGE KELLY . I am a porter at Lant Street, Borough—I was at the Sloper's Arms on this night—I saw the prisoner in front of me; he was rather noisy and was requested to leave—he wanted to fight, and somebody called out, "He has got a knife"—I saw a knife in his hand on the landing—the master of the house told them to go downstairs—I think I was the last to go out, and I saw my friend bleeding from his neck—his friend ran away—the prosecutor called out that he was stabbed.

Cross-examined. Sadler was perfectly sober—there was no scuffle in the room, but the prisoner and his friends were making a noise—Sadler was not arguing with them; I did not see Sadler strike the prisoner—the prisoner sang a song at the concert.

CHARLES CLARK (515 City). On 11th November I was on duty in Shoe Lane, and the prisoner run by me and about sixteen after him—there was a cry of "Stop thief!"—I ran after him into Fleet Street, and he was stopped at the corner of Bride Lane—on the way back he said, "I have got no knife; this is all I have got on me," showing me a ring on his little finger—nothing had been said about a knife—I did not know what the charge was—when the charge was read he said, "lam innocent."

WILLIAM HENRY FEAR (444 City). On November 12th, about 12. 40 a. m, I found this knife in Shoe Lime, about twenty yards from Fleet Street—there were no stains of blood on it—the inspector showed it to the prisoner at the station—he made no remark—he had passed the spot where I found it—it was about fifty yards from the Sloper's Arms.

CRANBY MORTON PERRY . I am house surgeon at King's College Hospital—I saw Sadler there on the night of November 11th—he had a punctured wound on the left side of his neck, over the carotid artery, about an inch and a half deep—the hemorrhage had been stopped—it was a dangerous wound; if it had been a little more to the left or right it would have caused instant death—the artery is only one and a half or

one and three-quarter inches deep—it must have bled profusely—it might have been caused by this knife, or any pointed instrument, or by a table-knife if it was worn down and was pointed—in my opinion this is not the knife, I should expect to find blood on it.

Cross-examined. The prosecutor was sober, in my opinion.

The prisoner requested to be allowed to make his own statement to the JURY, and said that the prosecutor ordered him out of the room, and struck him on his head, knocking his hat off, and that he ran away, as the prosecutor teas drunk, and the policeman took him.


He received a good character. Ten Months' Hard Labour.