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1886, Henry Mitchell - Unfit For Publication
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Below also see: Henry Mitchell, 1887

 

The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Sat 16 Oct 1886 1

MAITLAND CIRCUIT COURT.
————

    The sittings of the Maitland Circuit Court were begun at East Maitland, yesterday morning, before his Honor Mr Acting Judge MH Stephen, QC, his associate being Mr WR Bevan; Mr FE Rogers was the Crown Prosecutor; Mr JN Books, PM, acted for the sheriff; and Mr Walter C Stafford represented the Crown Solicitor. Messrs W Edmunds and AG Ralston, barristers, were also in attendance.

    The commission appointing his Honor was read, and Mr Rogers handed in his commission.

JURORS FINED.

    The following were fined 60s each for non-attendance as jurors:—John Head, coal miner, Jesmond; William Wilkinson, wine grower, Pokolbin; John Hickey, farmer, Farley.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 19 Oct 1886 2

MAITLAND CIRCUIT COURT.
————
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 16.
(Before His Honor acting-Judge Stephen.)

    The Court re-opened at 10 o’clock. Mr FE Rogers prosecuted for the Crown.

ARSON.

    Henry Mitchell, a youth, surrendered to his bail to answer the charge that he, on the 30th September last, at Chichester, did maliciously set fire to the dwelling-house of John Mitchell, [his grandfather], with intent to injure.

    The accused pleaded guilty.

    The Crown Prosecutor said that it appeared that the boy was living with his grandfather and grandmother, who had brought him up from infancy. On the night of the 30th September, and again on the night of the 1st October, there was evidence to show that he lighted a fire—on the first occasion outside the chimney of a slab-house, and next time on top of a skillion. When taken up he at first denied the charge, but afterwards admitted having lighted the fire. It was well that the accused should know that he might have been tried for his life, for his grandfather and grandmother—the latter an invalid— were in the house at the time. When charged he said that another boy put him up to do it. If the accused was sent to gaol he would doubtless come out a bad man, as if he (Mr Rogers) prayed for sentence the boy would no doubt have lengthened association with older prisoners. He was willing that someone should enter into a recognizance for the accused’s good behaviour fro twelve months. And it was well that both should understand that if the boy did not behave himself he would be called up for judgment on that charge , or might be tried for the more serious offence. If he led a better life he would not be called up for sentence. It was well that that should be thoroughly understood.

    His Honor: Have you any one here who will enter into a recognizance that you will be of good behaviour for twelve months.

    Accused: [Henry Mitchell] I will be a good boy all my life.

    His honor: I hope you will. I do not know what to think you were about. You did it twice.

    Accused: I didn’t know what I was doing myself.

    His Honor: Did you want to destroy your grandfather and grandmother?

    Accused: I did not, your Honor.

    His Honor said he hoped that the boy had no such intention. Accused might have destroyed his grandfather’s life and building. He could not understand what the boy was thinking of, and hoped that the person who entered into recognizance and the boy himself would understood the position of things. There were two offences with which the boy might have been charged—to one charge he had pleaded guilty, and there was another more serious charge on which he might have been placed upon his trial. To set fire to a house knowing that there was some person inside, was an offence punishable by death. The Crown had acted very mercifully towards the boy, yet very properly, for if he was sent to gaol, as Mr Rogers had said, he would probably come out worse than before. That case afforded another instance of the necessity for a reformatory.

    Mr William Smith, a relative, entered into a recognizance for the boy’s good behaviour, and the accused was released from custody. 

 


 

Henry Mitchell, 1887

 

The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 26 Apr 1887 3

MAITLAND CIRCUIT COURT.
————

    Yesterday the sitting of the Maitland Circuit Court was begun before his Honor Mr Justice Faucett, his associate being Mr Arthur G Plunkett. Mr WM Christian, JP, represented the Sheriff, and the Crown Prosecutor was Mr WH Coffey, who was assisted by Mr EH Wilshire, from the Crown Solicitor’s office. Messrs FE Rogers, W Edmunds, and Harold M Cockshott were the other members of the Bar present.
New Magistrate.

    Mr Francis William Reay, of Hamilton, was sworn in before his Honor, in chambers, as a magistrate of the territory.

ATTEMPTED BESTIALITY.

    Henry Mitchell, aged 17 years, was placed upon his trial on a charge of having attempted to commit this offence [with a cow] at the Chichester River, on the 23rd November last.

    The youth pleaded not guilty, and Mr Cockshott, barrister, kindly undertook to watch the proceedings on his behalf, for which he was thanked by his Honor and the Crown Prosecutor.

    As in the other case there was only one who witnessed the commission of the offence, Mrs Stanton, in whose husband’s employ the youth was at the time. The evidence was altogether unfit for publication in our columns.

    Mr Cockshott, in a brief speech, submitted that Mrs Stanton might have been mistaken in the matter as to the accused’s intentions and movements.

    The jury, after ten minutes’ deliberation, found the prisoner guilty. The foreman added: “We recommend the prisoner to mercy. We are of opinion that his early training has been neglected, and that he had not the advantages of home influence.”

    His Honor said it was hardly necessary for him to take the recommendation into consideration, though he was perhaps strengthened by reason of it. There was a great difficulty in dealing with such cases when the prisoner was young. No doubt the jury had struck at the proper course.

    The Crown Prosecutor mentioned that at the last Circuit Court, held in October, before his Honor Mr Acting-Judge Stephen, the prisoner was charged with having set fire to a dwelling house. He pleaded guilty, and on account of his youth, he was discharged on recognizance being entered into for his good behaviour for twelve months.

    The accused was remanded for sentence.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate, Tue 26 Apr 1887 4

MAITLAND CIRCUIT COURT.
———◦———
(Before Mr Justice Faucett.)

HIS Honor Judge Faucett opened the Circuit Court at Maitland yesterday morning.

    Mr WH Coffey was Crown Prosecutor, while Mr Arthur G Plunkett was judge’s associate. Mr WM Christian acted for the sheriff, and the other barristers present were Messrs FE Rogers, W Edmonds, and WH Cockshott.

UNNATURAL OFFENCE.

ANOTHER CASE.

    Henry Mitchell, 17 years of age, was charged with a similar [unnatural] offence at the Chichester River, on the 23rd November last. The prisoner pleaded not guilty, and Mr Cockshott kindly defended the youth, and received the thanks of his Honor and the Crown Prosecutor for his liberality.

    One person was the only witness of the occurrence, Mr Stanton, in whose employ the prisoner had been.

    Mr Cockshott stated that Mr Stanton might have been mistaken in her [sic] observation at the time.

    The jury, after a short deliberation, returned with a verdict of guilty, but recommended the youth to mercy, as they believed that his early training had been neglected, and that he had not the advantages of home influences.

    His Honor thought it was hardly necessary for him to take the recommendation into consideration, though he was, perhaps, strengthened by it. There was some difficulty about such a case on account of the youth of the prisoner.

    The Crown Prosecutor stated that at the court in October the boy pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to set fire to a house, and was discharged on his uncle undertaking that he would be of good behaviour in future.

    Prisoner was remanded for sentence.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Thu 28 Apr 1887 5

MAITLAND CIRCUIT COURT.
————
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 27.
(Before his Honor Mr Justice Faucett.)

    The Court re-opened at a quarter past ten o’clock.

SENTENCES.


    Henry Mitchell, convicted of a similar offence [bestiality], with a strong recommendation to mercy, made no statement. His Honor said that the consideration shown to him by the learned judge before whom he had been tried for a serious offence a short time ago had been misplaced, and he could not in the circumstances think of taking the course which had been followed on the last occasion. He had made enquiries as to the best place to which the prisoner could be sent, and found that there was no institution for the reception and care of young boys like the prisoner, and that the best place was Darlinghurst Gaol, where, he was informed, there was some kind of classification, and where the boy would be kept separate from ordinary prisoners. He would take into consideration the recommendation of the jury. At the same time he thought it was quite possible that if the jury had known that he had pleaded guilty on a former occasion to a very serious charge they would not have recommended him to mercy. The sentence of the court was that he be imprisoned in Darlinghurst Gaol for the term of eighteen months, and to be kept to hard labour.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Darlinghurst gaol entrance book, 1887 6 

Date. No. Name. Committed.
When. Where.
 10 May [1887]  3922  Henry Mitchell  25 April '87 Maitland CC
(Faucett)
Offence. Sentence. Disposed.
How. When.
 Attempt to commit bestiality  18 months labourer  By Remission  24 July [1887]

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Henry Mitchell, Gaol photo sheet 7

SRNSW: NRS2327, [3/5985], Maitland Gaol photographic description book, 1875-1930, No. 600, p. 110, R5129.


Gaol Photo Sheet - 
Transcribed Details

No. 600
[Maitland]

Date when Portrait was taken: 16th February 1887

Name: Henry Mitchell

Native place: Dungog P. O.

Year of birth: 1869

Arrived       Ship: –
in Colony }   Year: –

Trade or occupation
previous to conviction  } Laborer

Religion: Ch of E

Education, degree of: Nil

Height: 5' 5½"

Weight     On committal: –
in lbs     } On discharge: –

Colour of hair: Brown

Colour of eyes: Blue

Marks or special features:

Where and when tried: Dungog PO
29th November 1886

Offence: Bestiality

Sentence: For trial CC [Maitland] 25th April 1887

Remarks:

 (No. of Previous Portrait ...  ) 

PREVIOUS CONVICTIONS

Where and When Offence. Sentence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


1   The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Sat 16 Oct 1886, p. 7.

2   The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 19 Oct 1886, p. 3. Emphasis added.

3   The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Tue 26 Apr 1887, p. 4. Emphasis added.

4   Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate, Tue 26 Apr 1887, p. 6. Emphasis added.

5   The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser, Thu 28 Apr 1887, p. 4.

6   SRNSW: NRS2134, [5/1927], Darlinghurst Gaol entrance book, 1887, R2350.

7   SRNSW: NRS2327, [3/5985], Maitland Gaol photographic description book, 1875-1930, No. 600, p. 110, R5129.