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—HUM—Mwiiiifiwf7TifTr man…

Assault on .Swansea Police.

Fochriw Curate's Home-Coming.

Judge and the Jury-box.

Swansea Gifts to the Queen.

11—,„,|___ CHAMBERLAIN'S REPLY.

Hot Weather at Porthcawl Camp.

Fforestfach Publican Sued.

Swansea Education Committee…

MERTHYR MURDER CHARGE,

IfrisonerTcquitted,

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frisonerTcquitted, Pathetic Scenes in Court. The Merthyr murder trial was resumed before Mr. Justice Kennedy and a jury at the Glamorgan Assizes at Swansea on Thurs- day. The evidence already taken against the prisoner, Thomas Edwards (36), haulier, showed that the deceased man, James Ed- wards, the father of the prisoner, came home drunk on March 16th, followed about, two hours afterwards by the prisoner. Prisoner was seen by a neighbour to be thumping his fist either on the kitchen table or into his other hand, and almo&t immediately after- wards the deceased rushed out of the house into the street with his arms folded. Shout- ing wildly, he fell bleeding lrom a wound in the chest. Many times he called for his wife, and, according to the prosecution, said "He hath killed me," and "They have finished me now." According to the cross- examination, the expression was, "1 am finished now." Whilst deceased was in a dying state, his wife passed out of the house and went to a married daughter's where she alleged her husband, who had, it seems, threatened suicide on many occasions, had stabbtd himself. The accused, too, also came on his father's doorstep and then went back into the house without assisting his father, who, according to a statement pris- oner volunteered, "had done it himself." A blood-stained table-knife was found on th6 kitchen floor. Mr. Lloyd Morgan, M.P., and Mr. Roland Vaughan Williams, for the prosecution, ani Mr. B. Francis Williams, K.C., Mr. St. Jobs Francis Williams, and Mr. J. C. Gaskeli for the defence, were again the counsel in tho case, and the jury had been locked up over- night. DOCTOR'S THEORY AS TO CAUSE OI DEATH. Dr. Penrv Forster James found deceased in an unconscious state, and bleeding pro- fusely from a. wound in the chest. Deceased died shortly afterwards and on the follow- ing day witness, with the assistance of Drs. Webster and Flood, made a post-mortem ex- amination and found the wound to be situate between the third and fourth ribs, three- quarters of an inch long and two and three- quarters in depth. The Judge What was the cause of death? Witness The knife penetrating the lung and causing hemorrhage. < Witness explained that when the post- mortem was made the lung had closed so that proba.bly the wound was from three to four inches in depth. The direction of the wound was backwards, downwards, and sideway, and the wound might have been caused by the table-knife (produced), "but," added Dr. James, "I don't think it was bent." The Judge (testily) Nobody said it was. Mr. Lloyd Morgan: Do you think the wound could b;ve been 'caused by tho de- ceased man falling on a pocket-knife? i Witness: No; I cannot imagine how it could be done. Mr. Lloyd Morgan: Do you thinlf much force was used? Witness replied, "Not much force," and The Judge seemed surprised, and put it to the witness that the knife passed through the clothing and nearly four inches into the man's chest. Witness then admitted there was force. "Much or little?" asked the Judge. Witness It required force but I don't know how much. In cross-examination, witness explained that the knife had only passed through the shirt. And between the fibres?" said Mr. Fran- cis Wftliams, referring to the muscles. "Not the fibres of the shirt" said the wit- ness, and the judge gave a look of annoyance. Mr. Francis Williams It is a fact, isn't it, from what you saw of the wound it might have been self-inflicted? Witness Yes. J'he appearances were equally consistent with the wound having been inflicted either by nimself or soro-ebodv else?—Yes. Re-examined: .Although deceased was a I right-handed man witness would still ex- pect to find the wound on the right side of II tho cheat. In answer to the Judge, Dr. James ad- mitted that at the time he and other medical men discussed the question the jury had to dec;de -whether it was murder or suicide. He also said that he had never before had to form opinions as to whether wounds weTe self- inflicted. John Edwards, timber-man, another son of the deceased, said that his father was a right- handed mat In cross-examination he stated that his father had often threatened to commit suicide and on one occasion he (witness) bad to take a table-knife from him. Police evidence was called and this showed that no pocket-knife was found on the de- ceased though one was found on the prisoner who denied having killed his father, whom he added he saw in the street with two men carrying him and thought he was drunk. This concluded the case for the Crown EVIDENCE TO SUGGEST SUICIDE. Without addressing the court, Mr. Francis Williams at once called Mrs. Mary Edwards I the widow of the deceased. A frail little 'I' body, she was assisted into the witness-box in a sobbing stale, and for the first time the prisoner showed emotion and burst into tears. Her story wa. a straightforward one. The deceased, on the night, m question, came home "as drunk as he could be." He wanted food, and several times hit the knife (produced and the same that was afterwards found with bloodstains upon it) unon tha kitehen table. Mr. Francis Williams: Before that had there been any words between you and him? Witness Yes, sir he was all the week at me to get some insurance my brother was dead in the house at the time. He was in such a temper and behaved himself half mad, as he always did in drink, and he caught hold of this knife and he struck it like this, and I heard the blow. (Here witness showed I how deceased stabbed himself.) j After he struck himself in that way what if anythiug. did he do?—He rose from off' the chair and. went out. I rose immediately after him, and he said, "Mary, Mary, 1 havo finished myself now." Witness, continuing, said that, she Went straight to her married daughter's house in the next street. "I did not turn my face back." the old woman said, "and I ,1on't know how he went, afterwards." "What did you go to your daughter's for?" asked counsel. "I had such a shock," wa.s the reply; "I could hardly stand on my feet." Witness, continuing, said deceased stabbed himself within a very few minutes after her daughter (Mrs. Evans, a previous witness) had left the house, and during that night ,she (witness) did not sec her son (the prisoner) in the house at all. The Judge here asked the witness if she would like a seat. "I ,youlcl," she sobbed; "I am nearly falling." A chair was provided, and tha cross- I exs-miuation opened. I Mr. Lloyd Morgan, however, failed to shake the old woman's story. Counsel en- deavoured to elicit from her the fact that deceased and prisoner often quarrelled, and that deceased had on one occasion asked a policeman to turn the prisoner out of the house. "It was the deceased who ought to have been turned out," she .said, "as he quarrelled with all of us. He was not in his senses when in liquor, and we had to run out be- cause we were afraid of hini. He was always threatening suicide, but fr did not be- lieve it or I should have left hirn. He was carrying a razor, a knife, or something always with him." Another witness named Mrs. Frances Jones was too ill to appear, and the evidence closed. MR. FRANCIS WILLIAMS' ADDRESS FOR THE PRISONER. Mr. Francis Williams then addressed the jury on behalf of the prisoner. "Whatever the* verdict," counsel began in solemn tones, "if forms another sad illustration of the evit of excessive drinking." Counsel dealt with tha evidence in detail, and urged that Mrs. Lee. the chief witness for the prosecution, had imagined that it was a case of murder, whereas instead of her seeing from across the street the prisoner thumping his fist on the kitchen table, it was in reality the deceased man hitting the table with a knife, for the accused was not in the house at aJl. Nobody but Mrs. Lee, he further stated, heard the deceased say. "Mary, Mary, he hath killed me," and he invited the jury to say that the iaaJ expression was that sworn to I i by the widow*"Mary, Mary, 1 have finished I myself now." The supposed callousness of the prisoner in looking on while his father wa.s dying, counsel suggested, was the strong- est piece of evidence of innocence, for it showed no desire to shield himself from the consequences of an alleged murder, while, moreover, prisoner at the time thought the old man was drunk. "There are ccrtain elements in the case," said Mr. Williams towards the close of his speech, "the jury want, in order to make the siorv of the prosecution one that you can accept. The prosecution have supplied no motive for the death of this old man. They have entirely broken down in it." It was said that the "evil that men do lives alter theujt," and Counsel asked the jury to say that the evil that the, deceased did, by his drink, by his threats, and by the act he did probably to terrorise his wife into giving him the in- surance money for more drink, would live. "The one person the old man calls i.pon, concluded Counsel, "is the wife of 30 odd years, the mother of his six children, and his last words arc 'Marv, Mary,' as life is ebbing from him. To her he turns in his last hour, and to her I ask you to give credit for the only verdict you ought to return, and that is a verdict of not guilty. MR. LLOYD MORGAN REPLIES FOR THE CROWN. Mr. Lloyd Morgan, for the Crown, re- minded the jury of the deceased's statement, sworn to not by one, but by several witnesses, "Mary. Ma'y, they have finished me now," and described as a remarkable circumstance that the prisoner, who stood by and heard it, did not contradict it. Although, accord ing to the defence, accused was not in the house at all, he did say, "Perhaps you think I've done it, but he done it himself by falling on a pocket-knife?" Where, asked counsel, did he get that, idea from? It was for the jury to say whether the widow had a notion for saying her son was not in the house a,t, the time, and give their verdict accordingly. JUDGE'S SUMMING UP. The Judge deferred his summing up till after lunch, and at this time considerable public interest was manifested in the trial. In deliberate terms his Lordship reminded the jury of the great principle, upon which the criminal justice was founded in this country. In civil cases it was sufficient for the jury in order to come to a juot verdict to have an intellectual preference upon the mat- ter, but in criminal cases it was a sacred principle never to be violated, that they could not rightly pronounce a prisoner guilty of any criminal offence, least as well as greatest, unless they were, after careful and honest thought, possessed not only of a preference to the one view or the other; but an opinion beyond all reasonable doubt that the guilt had been proved. There was no middle turn for the- expression of their judgment. Having said this, his Lordshin seemed to raise the eL- niciits of dohht in the case. The wound, he said, was consistent with either suicide or murder, and adcl"d that, there was a good deal of evidence of suicide when the de- ceased 8..5 dominated by the power of orink. Had the man a tendency to use dan- gerous weapons? When, earlier in the day, h" said, alluding to the other corpse that was then in the house, "Aye, and there 11 be another corpse there before the night is out," did he say it as a mere drunken out- burst, or had he the idea of seif-destruction ready formed in his mind? The case against the, prisoner was, first, that he was pointed out that if prisoner had killed his father he would have shielded himself by showing an anxiety for him in his last moments. Was the prisoner in the house at, the time or not? The evidence showed he] was there, but it not follow that accused had done more than said what was untrue in that respect. Whether or not it was the prisoner or the decea,sed_,who was striking the table, it was for the jury to say, but one could not see from Lee's evidence how. in such a short time, a quarrel between father and son could have got to such heat as to induce one of them to stab the other. there secondly, that he gave an explanation, which was untrue, that deceased fell upon a pocket-knife; thirdly, because he did not repudiate the, expressions made use of by the old man and, fourthly, his conduct in not helping his father in his dying moments. On the last point, the Judge put the view, "1 have slain him. and therefore God forbid that I should touch him" and also the one taken bv the counsel for the defence, who The slight discrepancies in the evidence of what was said by the deceased and prisoner were alluded to, and the Judge observed that it only showed, in a»cb a scene of wild confusion, that one had to be very careful how much was baliaved. The Judge, in conclusion, pointed out that the widows evidence had not, been shaken, and Kaid that if the deceased was strong enough to make use of the expressions attributed to him, one might have expected prisoner's name on his lips, and not such vague expressions as "he" and "they," although they implied that somebody had inflicted the wound and not the deceased himself. The summing up lasted exactly an hour and 55 minutes, and the jury at cnce re- tired. "NOT GUILTY" PATHETIC SCENES, After an absence of 15 minutes the jury returned into court, and the foreman in a eicar voice gave a verdict of "Not guilty." There was immediately a. rush for the doors on the part of witnesses and others, and in the courtyard outside pathestic scenes followed. Here was the old mother of the accused, and quickly the news was told her. she burst into tears and could scarcely be lieve it; not that she did rot know how innocent her son was of the terrible charge that had been preferred against him. 'He's free," sa.id several, and men and women around were in tears. Edwards bad not yet left the court, but a few moments later he appeared in the vestibule. At once his hands were seized by friends. At the same moment a young woman with a baby pressed him to her and kissed him. This was to much, a.nd the strong-lookmg fellow burst into tears. Literally dragged along, ho was then taken into the refreshment room of the ves- tibule. and subsequently had a painful in- ter-view with his old mother, after which the party drove to High-street Station m a cab.

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