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\ CHRISTCHURCH, April 15. At the Magistrate's Court yesterday Wiliiam Hoft was charged with the theft, 011 April. 2, of a horse, valued at £8, the property of John Ellis Boyce, Doric, Rakaia. Mr J. A. Cassidy appeared for accused and Chief-Detective M'Uveney conducted the case for the police. John E. Boyce, farmer, said accused had been in his employ at Doric for eleven weeks. Accused then left. He gave accused no authority to take away a grey mare and the saddle and bridle. Witness was ill in Ashburton when the theft was committed. He recognised as his property the saddle and bridle produced in Court. He had not seen the mare at the police station. :- -' In* answer to Air Cassidyf" witness said the mare was five years old and £20 was not too much for her as* "she was a good animal. Charles Alfred Allan, farm manager for Mr Boyce at Doric, said accused had left Mr Boyce's employ on March 20. On April 2 the loss of the mare was reported, and witness also discovered that the back of the motor shed was pulled off and the saddle and bridle had disappeared. On April 5 witness saw accused riding the mare along Idris Road, Fendalton. He called out to accused to stop, but he rode on at a gallop. Mr Boyce's brother was coming along in the rear in a motor car, and | he and witness set out after accused. After some difficulty they found him. Accused asked if they were looking for him, and witness said he was certainly looking for the mare. ' Accused further said he had taken the mare to look for work and stated that he had written to Mr Boyce and told him that he was going to take the mare. When asked what he intended doing with the mare, accused said he was going to put her in iPyno and Co's paddock. Witness advised accused to ride on ahead, and he and Mr Boyce would follow in the car. As the matter had been reported to the police, witness rang up from the Riccarton Hotel and informed them of the whereabouts of "William Jackson," by which name accused was known at the farm. When "Jackson" got back to the Riccarton Hotel in the car he was taken into custody. Witness recognised the saddle and bridle produced as those belonging to Mr Boyce. He had not seen the. mare at the police station. To Mr Cassidy: He had never personally dismissed accused. When witness met accused in Idris Road the latter claimed that 'Mr Boyce owed him money, witness replying that he thought the amount was very small and was wanted by the storekeeper. Accused did not mention any specified sum as owing to him. He told accused Mr Boyce was in Ashburton and did not know when he would return home. . On Chief-Detective M'llveney's request John E. Boyce was recalled, and stated that he had never received a note from the accused relating to the marc. He had received a threatening letter about wages alleged to be owing He had paid accused all the money owing to him by cheque. Detective Fade gave evidence as to arresting accused on the evening of April 5. ,7i Accused reserved his defence, pleaded not guilty, and was committed to the Supreme Court for trial. Bail was allowed, self in £50 and two sureties of £50 each.

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Bibliographic details

MISSING HORSE, Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9587, 15 April 1919

Word Count

MISSING HORSE Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXXIX, Issue 9587, 15 April 1919