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Family Notices

APPOINTMENTS FOR THE ENSUING…

NOTICES.

BRECONSHIRE RIFLE ASSOCIATION.

THE LORDS' "AMENDMENTS" TO…

THE DOWLAIS ATURDER.

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THE DOWLAIS ATURDER. Watkins, the murderer of his fellow-lodger Hender- son, at Dowlais, is not to be hung. To be strictly correct, a respite has been granted but when this is the case it is comparatively seldom, or never, that the extreme penalty is afterwards inflicted. What has influenced the Home Secretary in his decision we are not in a position to say. It has been stated that some members of the murderer's family have been insane, and that he himself has been seen under circumstances which would lead the beholder to doubt whether he was in full possession of his mental faculties. It has also been urged that the crime was not premeditated, but committed in a fit of jealousy and Watkins him- self says that he had no intention of murdering the man. Whatever weight these circumstances-have had with the Home Secretary in influencing his decision, we believe that the majority of our readers, at least, will hear with satisfaction that his life will not be forfeited. There may be some dissentientsâthose who think it is both lawful and expedient, in the in- terest of the public at large, and the protection of life, to "visit yith death all who take the lives of their fellows. The #iu$bey ,c-f such, however, we believe to be small; and, for our own part, we welcome-as an exhibition of a growing feeling on the part of those in authority to abstain from taking life-the instances we have lately had in which the lives of condemned criminals have been spared. The claims of justice and the claims of the people to protection do not, in our humble opinion, render a hangman necessary. The wiping off our statute book the punishment of death for treason and murder will not multiply the number of these offences. The sacred burden of life will not be esteemed less sacredâblood will not be spilt like water-because we do not commitâwhat some term-judicial murder. In matters of this kind when reason fails, or is indecisive, experience must guide us. And experience has shown that milder sentences do not provoke crime. On the contrary, we may fairly assume that in proportion to the sacred- ness in which life is held by the Government, in the same proportion will the people themselves hold it sacred. It must not be forgotten, either, that in many cases a verdict of guilty has been returned, the sentence carried into effect, and then, when it was too late, it was discovered that the innocent had suffered. It has thus been shown that innocence may look like guilt, and that although the chain of circumstances seem to be unbroken, the facts fitting into each other with almost mathematical precision, and leading apparently to the inevitable conclusion of guilt; yet, spite of all this, they may be deceptive in their character, and may lead us astray. With the facts before our mind to which we have only alluded, and the possibility that we may condemn the innocent, are we to go on disregarding the teachings of experience, and as it were snuffing out, as we would a candle, life after life, which, for all slips of theirs," might yet, with training, become a thing of beauty ? Are we to do away with all possi- bility of expiation on the part of our criminals, and any attempt to repair or lessen the evil they have done, and give up attempting to reform them ? We hope not, and we are glad to see that the signs of the times point in the direction of blotting out from the statute book the dread penalty of death.

LOCAL INTELLIGENCE.

FASHIONABLE WEDDING.

RESPITE OF THE CONVICT WATKINS.

LIST OF WINNERS.

LIST OF WINNERS.

THURSDAY.

BRECON TOWN COUNCIL.