Victorian Powys for primary  schools
Powys Digital History Project
Hay and district
Crime and punishment
  James Riley pleads 'Not guilty'  

When James Riley was accused of stealing the watch and chain from William Gore he claimed that one of the other men in the Bell Inn had passed the watch to him, without the owner noticing. He was trying to pass the blame to someone else.
He pleaded 'Not guilty' to the charge of theft, and his statement to the court is shown here...

Part of

Quarter Sessions paper
Watch and chain

"I am not guilty of stealing the watch. It was given to me by one of the four men who were with me. It was handed to me James Riley signature behind the prosecutor's [William Gore's] back, and as soon as they gave it to me they walked out".

The other four men who had been drinking together in the Bell Inn with James Riley and William Gore had already gone when the Landlord and the Police Sergeant came on the scene. This made it much easier for Riley to blame one of them !
But he was being a bit optimistic if he expected the court to accept the idea that someone would steal a watch, hand it over to a stranger, and then leave !
But still, he might have been feeling lucky. See the next page...

What happened to James Riley ?...


Back to top
Go to Hay menu