Theft from a church

Hertfordshire Mercury, 20th February 1915

Transcript

William Bull (45), a groom, was indicted at Herts. Winter Assizes for breaking into Christ Church, at Hemel Hempstead, and stealing a piece of flannelette and other articles, the property of Norman Chivers, on 7th January.  The prisoner pleaded guilty to the theft, but not to breaking into the church.

Mr Ronald Walker, for the prosecution, said that plea was sufficient, if his Lordship would accept it.

The Judge: ‘I don’t find any evidence of breaking in.  You would have difficulty in proving it’.

Mr Walker: ‘I am content to take his plea’.

The prisoner acknowledged a previous conviction for arson at Taunton Assizes.

Mr Walker said that a collecting box was also found broken open in the church, but there was no money in it.  When charged with the theft the prisoner at first prevaricated, but afterwards said : ‘I don’t know what made me fool enough to do it’.

Supt Hassell said the prisoner was let out on licence a year ago, but he forfeited by getting drunk at Bristol, and returned to prison.  Then he was released on December 17th last, with 84 days to serve, and in January committed this offence.

His Lordship sentenced the prisoner to six months’ hard labour.

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