At Hitchin Petty Sessions, Ebenezer Albert Fox, one of a pair of famous (or infamous) Stevenage twins, was charged with stealing 5 fowls. He pleaded not guilty.
A Mr Reynolds of Langley Hill Farm kept fowls in a fowl-house near his house. They had been safely locked up the previous evening.
A Police Constable saw Fox on the afternoon of New Years Day, and Fox had bulging pockets. The policeman searched him and found 2 fowls in one pocket. In the other coat pocket, he found just a bundle of feathers. Fox could not account for these, other than to say that he had found them in a sack at the back of a public house in Langley.
The Magistrate asked the Constable as to what had made him suspicious, and the Constable said “Well sir, you know his character as well as I do, and seeing his pockets so full, I suspected him”. There was much laughter in court.
The Magistrate did not believe Fox’s explanation of the sack. He sentenced Fox to 6 weeks in gaol – to do his ‘bird’.