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FATAL OC ¡ J.\.Lti\ CE AT…


FATAL OC ¡ J.Lti\ CE AT NEWPORT. A dreadful accident occurred on Monday night) at Newport, to a poor woman named Sophia Thomas. An Inquest was held on Tuesday before 3Ir, Brewer. Mr. Davis, from the firm of Birch and Davis at- tended on behalf of the accused. JOHN O'DWYER, Foreman. Herbert Wibiams Edmund Morgan Thomas Walker Henry Thomas Daniel Evans David Lewis. sen. Henry Evans David Lewis, jun. Ebcnezer Jenkins Tliomas Sherra-n Jams Gough I George Stephens The Jury having been duly sworn proceeded to view the body, and having done so, the witnesses were called in, the following are their statements Ann Francis, sworn, states:—I am a servant, in the employ of Mr. John Williams, accountant of this town; he had another servant named Sophia Thomas; On Monday evening last, between four and five 0 clock, 1 was in the upper kitchen I had been in the lower kitchen about ten minutes before; I saw deceased and John Pembridge there deceased was washing the dishes I heard the report of a pistol I went down to the kitchen and saw deceased sitting in a chair she said I am ruined I am killed I am killed I observed blood on the ground and some on the wall; I did not see the boy there when I went down first; when I saw her I ran back; I was frightened when I went down again there was a policeman, and two other persons there; Master John Williams and Miss E. Williams also came down, they saw deceased fall down I went down to the room again in five minutes deceased was then on the ground and dead; there was a deal of blood near her; the deceased was very agreeable the boy, John Pemhridge and deceased were very good friends and had not quarrelled when I was on the top of the stairs, the boy passed me by and said I've let off the pistol;" Oh! I am mad. let me go for a doctor," and he went in search of Dr. Morgan I saw a pistol there a week ago it was deceased who put the pistol in the dutch oven; the pistol was taken out by John Pembridge some day last week, and deceased said. put it back I am afraid it is loaded, he immediately did so; I had seen it in a dresser drawer previous to this it was from there deceased brought it, and put it in the place from whence the boy took it; I never knew the deceased and the accused to quarrel, they were always on the best of terms. Mr. Thomas Fletcher Williams, sworn:—I live with my brother, Mr. John Williams I was at home on Monday night last; I heard the report of fire arms; I ran down to the kitchen and observed the boy and deceased there: I heard the deceased say, Oh am killed," I am killed;" she was sitting in a chair; the boy ran for a doctor, Mr. Herbert Wil- liams, and Mr. Richard Brewer came in I observed deceased move her mouth; she died immediately; I know the pistol, it was my brother's; the last time I saw the pistol was in a drawer in my brother's room about six weeks ago the boy and deceased were upon friendly terms. By Mr, Davis; -The boy bears a good character; I the policeman picked up the pistol, when I first went into the kitchen I only observed the boy and deceased there I heard screams from above stairs, but that was only from the children who were frightened the screams from below were from deceased and John Pembridge she was sitting in a chair by the glass- door I observed heir bleeding from the neck; alter I returned the second time she was on the floor dead I was not absent above two minutes; it is a month or six weeks ago I saw the pistol in the drawer. By a juror: -1 cant say whether the boy admitted he had shot her I did not ipake any enquiries about the pistol; I thought my brother had it. Seih Francis:-l am a policeman, of Newport; I was coming up Commercial-street, when I heard the report of a pistol I ran to Mr. Williams's house; I went down to the kitchen and saw deceased on the ground, she was not quite dead; I took hold of a knife and cut her gown open I found the pistol in a le knife-box; the ball was drawn out of the wall by Mr. Brewer, and given to me; when I opened her clothes I observed a vyotjnd on the peek j I prodqpe the pistol and the ball. By Mr. Oavis This pistol did not appear to have been ptt there by any person 1 should have said it might have blown out of the boy's hand, or have been dropped by accident. The poor boy after being duly cantioned by the coroner proceeded to state the following account:—My name is John Pembridge; I know the deceased we were both servants to Mr. Williams, and upon very good and friendly terms; I was in the kitchen, and deceased sent me on an errand for her; 1 returned and was in the kitchen she was washing the dishes I do not know what made me take the pistol; I had it iu my hand about a week or a fortnight ago before; I was not aware it was loaded I do not know how it went off"; byits going off it look a piece of mg finger away I never quarrelled with deceased; I ran for the Doctor as soon as I could I was taken in custody in the Doctor's house; deceased told me to put the pistol down. This being the whole of their evidence, Mr. Davis was about proceeding to address the jury on behalf of the unlortunate boy, when the Coroner and Jury stated that, they were perfectly convinced that the occurrence was purely accidental, and a verdict was returned of Accidental Death The boy was cautioned by the Coroner as to evpr meddling with fire arms, and he also took the oppor- tunity of requesting Mr. VVdliains to be more cautious for the future as to the custody of his fire-arms.





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