Killing a duck

Hertfordshire Mercury, 5th June 1915


At Stevenage Petty Sessions on Thursday, two lads, named Eric N. Reed and Percy Brown, of Walkern, were charged with maiming a tame duck, the property of Mr R.W. Foster, value 2 shillings, at Walkern.  The evidence of Mr Foster showed that about 8.45 p.m. on May 22 he was in a meadow when he saw the boys coming along.  Reed had a duck under his coat, and when the witness asked him what he had, he ran away and threw the duck in a ditch, from which the witness recovered it, it being then dead.  The witness took the lads and the duck to a Constable, and in the presence of the Constable the boys admitted killing it out of mischief.  They also said they had told their parents, and that Mrs Brown had told them to go and fetch the duck so that the owner could be found.

The Bench convicted and ordered the boys to pay the value of the bird, the Chairman at the same time giving them a serious lecture on their behaviour.  Mr Foster remarked that the bird was a pure-bred Orpington drake, and when the parents handed him the guinea he asked the Bench to accept it on behalf of the local Red Cross fund.


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