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ASSAULT.

At the Resident Magistrate's Conrt, on Friday morning, Mr. F. W. Merriman appeared to answer a charge of assault, preferred by Mr. Robert Thompson. The ease j was one of considerable length, and vre are compelled to ■confine our report of the evidence to the examinations in chief. Robert Thompson, deposed— On Tuesday, the 20th instant, I went to Mr. Merriman to ask him for a document he had of mine. Mr. Merriman and Mr. Newman were speaking together at the time, outside his office. I asked Mr. Merriman for the document ; he said, he had'nt got it. I said, yes you have ; Mr. Cox, your clerk, told me that he had looked it out. and that you had put it in your pocket. Mr. Merriman then said, — from your impertinence yesterday, I havn't got your document. I said, surely you do not mean to serve me in this as you did with the promissory notes. I was going in to speak to Mr. Cox about it, when Mr. Merriman interposed, and said, — I ■will not allow you to go into my office. I was then standing with one foot on the door step, and another on the threshold of the door. He then called Mr. Newman into the office — both passing me as they went in. I said, let me speak to Mr. Cox, for fear you have mislaid the paper. He replied, no, I will not let you in. I rather pressed upon him to allow me to see Mr. Cox, on which he shoved me off the step, and came out with me. When he pushed me out I believe I caught hold of some part of his clothing to save myself from falling. He followed me into the street, and struck me on the face with his fist. From the effects of the blow, the hand must have had a ri lg upon it. He-then left , and went into his office. The witness was cross-examined by the Defendant and the Bench. Peter Lamb, carpenter, deposed — On Tuesday last, about five minutes past one, I saw complainant and defendant opposite Mr. Merriman's door. The complainant was standing vrith one foot on the step, and the other on the threshold of the door. Presently the door was shut nearly close, and a hand visible outside, with a ring upon it. In a few seconds I saw the defendant come out, and stiike the complainant on the face. The defendant then went into his office, and complainant turned round to strike defendant, but the latter, by this time, was inside. Complainant then went forward to the step of Mr. Merriman's door, but without using violence. A young man then came out and stood on the step, and complainant walked past. This having closed the case for the complainant, the defendant called Joseph Newman, who deposed— On Tuesday last Mr. Merriman and myself were talking together. The complainant came up at the time. Some quarrel took place between the complainant and Mr. Merriman, with the nature of which I was unacquainted, and of which I took very little notice. The complainant then moved towards th? door of defendant's office ; defendant sprang to the

doorway, and *aid— -you shall not enter my office, further conversation ensued. My business not being settled, the defendant asked me to step in, which I did. Shortly afterVrards, the complainant attempted to follow, and the defendant attempted to push him out In the scuffle that ensued, the defendant vras pulled outside the door. He soon, h'dwever, with the assistance of Mr. Jackson and another person in the office, succeeded in shutting the door. Samuel Jackson, solicitor, deposed — On Tuesday last I was in Mr. Merriman's office, writing, and heard a noise outside. I heard complainant charge defendant with ha ring some papers of his. Defendant said that he had not, and added — on account of your impertinence, yesterday, you shall not enter my office on any account. Complainant expressed his determination to go in at all hazards. I heard the same expressions over and over again. I then heard a struggle at the door, and went to see what was the matter. I saw the complainant having hold of defendant's coat, and defendant attempting to close the office door, which complainant was preventing. I then took hold of thedoox handle, pulled the door open, anil said to the complainant, Mr. Thompson, you must go out. I then thrust him out, and, in going, he pulled the defendant out with him into the street Defendant then struck at complainant, and complainant struck at defendant, but neither of them hit each other, so far as I ciuld see. Philip Levy, depoiied — On Tuesday last I was attracted by a noise on the other side of the strpet I saw complainant and defendant outside the office of the latter. I heard defendant order complainant away several times; he would not go away. The defendant then went in and attempted to shut the door ; the complainant tried to force it open. The door then opened and complainant took hold of defendant's collar with both hands, and sidd, — if I go, you go too. Complainant pulled defendant outside, and the latter struck complainant on the arms, or face,— l cannot tell which,—t° get himself free. This having closed the evidence for the defence, the defendant made a statement of the circumstances, which coincided with the evidence of his own witnesses— closing with the words — No doubt I did hit him, in an effort to get myself free, and, in so doing, I conceive that I was perfectly justified. It was only his own violence that biought the blow upon him. Mr. Beckham, who had consulted two other magistrates, — The evidence is clear that the complainant was very wrong in the part he took. The assault was obviously brought on by his own indiscretion and wilfulness. If the complainant feels aggrieved the fault is his own. The decision of the Court is that the case be dismissed. The cross-examinations in this case were lengthy, and the result voluminous. To give the whole would occupy too much space ; while, by confining ourselves to the ex-aminations-in-chief, we do not think that either party receives injustice at our hands.

Youxg Men's Chkistian Association.— The Anniversary Meeting of this Association was held, in the Odd Fellows' Hall, on the evening of Friday, the 23rd instant. The Chair was occupied by T. S Forsaith, Esq., who introduced the business of the meeting by a few appropriate observations— referring, in particular, to the effects of the Home Society, and expressing a hope that the child would follow fast in the footsteps of the parent. The general and financial reports were then read, fiom which it appealed that the Association proposed to erect, at an expense of £300, a building suitable for a library and reading-room, of which amount upwaids of £200 was already subscribed, f ..e geneial prospects ot the Association were also represented as highly piomising. These reports, on the motion of the Rev. A. McDonald, seconded by the Rev R Ward, weie unanimously adopted The next resolution was proposed by the Rev. J. II Fletcher, and seconded by the Rev. T. Hamer. It called upon the meeting to thank the Almighty for the past success of the Society ; and to look forward with hopeful anticipation to the ultimate benefit which it was calculated to impart The third was in effect, that this meeting cannot contemplate, without solicitude, the moral, intellectual, and spuitual exigencies of the young men of Auckland, and believes that the piiuciples and practice of this Association— its unsectarian. and evangelical characterare eminently adapted to promote the highest interests of this important portion of society. This motion was ably proposed and seconded by the Rev. A. Reid and Di." Bennett, the lattei of whom took occasion to pass a well-merited eulogium on the hon. secretary of the Society. The last resolution was proposed by Mr. J. Gorrie, seconded by Mr. Paice, and w as> expressive of thanks to those gentlemen who, as lecturers and as chairmen, had i end end such import mt services to the Association. A \ote of thanks to Mi. Forsnith, as chairman, ha\ing been proposed and canied, and pi aver ha\ing been offered, the meeting separated. The attendance was good indeed, although more a mixed audience than the title ot the Association w ould, perhaps, lead one to anticipate.

Inoi.i.>t —An inquest was held on Fiiday afternoon, at the O0,(l Fellows' Aims, on the body of Emily Nicholas, a half-caste gul of smeii oi ei»;ht cais of age. The child lesuled with her parents in Field's lane, anil was last seen alive by a Mrs. Seen ell, at about 11 or 12 o'clock on Thursday. Between 2 and 3 o'clock, the same afternoon, she went to the well to draw a bucket ot water, and, on looking down.saw the body of the child floating on the surface. She gave the alarm, which was heard by a shoemaker, named Hi chard Donovan, who | reached down and took the body out— the distance not j ha\ing been more than about 3 feet. Dr. Matthews was sent for, and was immediately on the spot. For nearly an hour he was engaged in employing the usual means of resuscitation, but without avail. The Jury leturned a verdict of " Foirnd drowned," and added a rider upon the unsafe condition ot the well.

Presbytekhx Mission- Fu.vd.— ln our notice of the fact of this fund being in course of formation, we mentioned the introduction of the Rev. Mr. Nonie as a consequence of its establ shmpnT, whereas the inverse rathfr was the case That gentleman, having felt a desire foi the missionary work, was sent to this colony by the Free Church of Scotland, and it was the prospect of his arrival, and the opening field which presented itself lor others, that piompted the idea which is now being carried into effect.

A Wholes \Lr Pilferer.— On Fiiilayanil Saturday, at the Resident Magistrates' Court, a man named Francis Rowett was examined on three sep irate cha ges of laiceny— two preferred by Mr. R. W. Weston, and one by Mr. Wm. George. The prisoner had been in the employment of Messrs. Weston and Keightly, and had availed himself of the opportunities he possessed to steal onecircinwle, rmebiidle, two whips. SiX pocket-handker-chiefs, and one neckerchief, the property of one or both of those gentlemen. The circinsle was found at the lodging-house of Mr. Rogers, where he had left it, tied up m a handkerchief; the bridle he had given in a piesent to Mr Isaac L°vv ; the whips %vere found under his bedclothes in Mr Johnson's workshop ; and the handkerchiefs were taken from his box, on its being searched in the police guard -room. The third charge was for stealing a watch. Mr. George deposed that, in May last, a small gold watch was lost from his father's house. It was hanging in the room next the shop. The prisoner was lying on the sofa at the. time, His box was searched, but without avail. Mr. Weston proved that he had seen the prisoner y ear the watch in question, or one very similar to it. Sergeant Poley, of the armed police, deposed to having taken the prisoner to the ffuard-room, and, immediately afterwaids. to having found the watch outside the door. No one else could have placed it there This was the evidence on the three charges ; but Sergeant-major Brown having stated to the Bench that the police were in possession of two watches, also supposed to have been stolen by the prisoner, and that, if time were allowed, evidence of another theft would probably be produced. Mr. "Reckham ordered the prisoner to be remanded till Tuesday. (this mornhurV

Impounding. — A case of some importance was heard on Friday, at the Resident Magistrate's Court. Mr. George Grimsley sued Mr. Tutty, for illegally impounding sheep, under the following circumstance,— Mr. Merriman appearing for the former, and Mr. George for the latter. Complainant was the owner of 108 sheep which were running in a paddock adjoining the garden of the defendant. These 9heep broke into the gai den, and were sent to the pound, thus involving the complainant in an expense of £7 15s. Bd., and depreciating the value of the sheep 3s. 6d. per head The extent of depreciation was proved by Mr. Wells, who deposed that on the Friday he had offered 18s 6d. for the sheep, and on the Tuesday following, he had purchased them for los. But for the defence it was sought to be shown that the loss in quality arose solely fiom the owner of the sheep having allowed them, knowingly, to remain in the pound four days. The principal question, however, — at 3 pact to the public— related to the fence that divided the paddock from the garden. The fence was of a threefold character — post and rail at one end, and a good stone wall at the other ; but an intervening space consisted of a natural fence, composed of scoria that had been thrown up by volcanic agency. Th> grand question was whether, within the meaning of the Act, this was a fence at all ; and, if so, whether it was a sufficient fence. The evidence, as to the exact description of this natural enclosure, was conflicting. The complainant said that parts between the scoria were so level that a sheep could walk in ; and Mr. Makepeace deposed that there were spaces between the scoria as flat as a table. The witnesses for the defence testified that the stones were sufficient to exclude horses and horned cattle ; they did not speak positively a* to sheep, but thought it very doubtful that they could get through without jumping. The counsel for the complainant and defen- ; 'dant having addressed the Court, the Bench reserved judgment until Monday.— Yesterday, the decision of the

! Court Was giTen. It regarded the fence, that is, the] natural barrier we hAte described, as an insufficient fence, 1 and held, therefore, that the sheep Were illegally impounded. It consequently awarded to complainant the amount paid by hi nto the pound keeper— £7 155. 8 d. But, inasmuch as the sheep rema ned in the pound by the plaintiff's own desire, the Bench could not view the depreciation in the value of the sheep as the result of any act of the defendant, and declined to award the amount claimed for damages.

j Mbmbeus op Council.— We hear that petitions have been presented against Mes9rs. Allan K. Taylor and \ May, for the Northern Dnision, <nld agmnst Messrs. Goodfellow and Graham, tor the Southern Division ; but being, like the Superintendent's, several days beyond the legal time, we hear they have been sent , back, to to the Returning Officer— the proclamation | declaring " That no such petition shall be noticbd" unless presented within the prescribed period of 21 days I from the day of Election.

FitEsii Arrival of Natives.— On Friday last, two Chiefs of the Maketu tribe, named Tiiiapo and Te Puehu — persons of consulerible influence — ariivcd in town by two native vessels, accompanied by about twenty followers. They came on their own business, not hating previously heard of the death of Kerara. Being of the same triba as the deceased, they were, of couise, immediately appealed to in the matter, and. on Saturday, held a meeting at Okahu, at which Wiremu Mar&h and others were also present. The fatal event was fully discussed, and the chiefs in question showed themselves to be peaceably disposed. It was proposed that another meeting, at which all interested parties might be present, should be held in Mechanics' Bay, but the suggestion was ovenuled by Taiapo, who preferred visiting the various parties at their own settlements. Not only is there an aversion to meetings being held at European settlements, but there is sometimes an inclination on the part ot the young men to avail themselves of any temporary excitement to commit potty depredations —an inclination which the chiefs are always anxious to repress. It was therefore decided that all meetings should be held at the native settle- , mentfi, and, accoidingly, Taiapo and Te Puehu, with their attendants, lelt yesterday morning J.»r the North Shore, there to meet with llotere and his men — the party who took charge of the body, and to bew ail the dead.

SoiuEr.. — A soiree, in connection with the Freedom of Religion Society, was given last evening, in the Mechanics' Institute. It was well attended, and the company listened with interest to a number of very excellent speeches. We shall add one or two particulais in our next issue.

K.WYAU.— The Wonga Wonga, oa hei last tup, brought "25 passengers tiom KawMu— operations in the Coppor Mines th.eie, having, we understand, been susDemicd.

Coxcr.KT. — We observe that, on next Monday, a Concert will be given in the Odd Fellows' ILiH by Mr. G. Wilkinson. Those who have heard Mr. Wilkinson sin» will antieipato a tie.it on th. occasion.

MrLiT.YRY THEATiuj.— .La-.t evening, to a crowded house, a performance was given in this Theatre, Mrs. Foley'and Mr. Buckingham taking the principal pai ts. In our next we shall notice, at greater length, this very cxcella'-t ppiformance.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/DSC18551127.2.9

Bibliographic details

Daily Southern Cross, Daily Southern Cross, Volume XII, Issue 878, 27 November 1855

Word Count
2,885

ASSAULT. Daily Southern Cross, Volume XII, Issue 878, 27 November 1855

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