A case of apple thieving
The last few months of 1908 saw a spate of convictions relating to apple thieving occur in the town of Watford.
On the 16th September, a man named Joseph Ford, of Watford, was brought up before the court at Bushey to answer to a charge of unlawfully stealing “a number of apples of the value of eight pence” from the garden that was situated on the property of a Mrs Kynaston.
As punishment for his crimes, Mr Ford was ordered to pay a fine of two shillings and sixpence to Mrs Kynaston to compensate her for the apples he had taken from her garden, as well as the further sum of two shillings and six pence for costs, to be paid to the court by the 30th September 1908. The judge then also ordered that, if Mr Ford failed to pay his fines in on time, he would be imprisoned at His Majesty’s pleasure at St Albans gaol for one week of hard labour.
A few weeks later, on the 6th October 1908, Robert Grass, Frederick Grass and Thomas Noakes, all residents of Watford, came up before Watford Magistrates Court to answer to charges of unlawfully stealing apples worth a total of three shillings from a garden situated in the property of Julia Sarah Sexton.
The three men were ordered, as punishment for their crimes, to each pay the courts two shillings and sixpence, and a further four shillings and four pence in the way of costs. Similar to the first case, the defendants were warned that if they did not pay their fines they would be sent to St Albans gaol for seven days’ hard labour.