Saturday, January 10, 2015

Highway robbery committed upon Mr. & Mrs John Hepworth 1876

John Hepworth
1 Jan 1822 - 9 Jan 1904
Only a few more postings about 2nd Great Uncle John Hepworths' family and I am going back to posting about my 2nd great grandfathers Hepworth’s family. 

In doing newspaper research I found several incidences where criminal activity happened to the John Hepworth family. 
 Deseret News 10 Oct 1876
[John was age fifty four and Frances Amelia
 was forty eight years old when this happened.] 

[Highway robbery committed upon Mr. and Mrs John Hepworth]

  Garroting, -- This morning, at 10 o;clock, before Justice Pyper, Frank Treseder and Charles Howard were arraigned, charged with Highway robber, committed last evening, upon the person of Mr. John Hepworth, of this city.  The witnesses were Mr. and Mrs. Hepworth and police officer Alexander Burt.  It was developed that the two young men were seen together as if watching or waiting for someone, just previous to the robbery; that Treseder was positively the party who throttled Mr. Hepworth and called to his accomplice to "go through him;" that so far as the darkness of the evening and the attendant circumstances would admit of a conclusion, Howard answered the description of the other party; that Mr. Hepworth's gold watch, worth $189, was taken from his pocket, the robber breaking a string with which it was tied to Mr. H.'s vest to get it away, the fragments of the string attached to the watch when produced in court and that remaining upon the vest corresponding exactly. The watch was correctly described by Mr. Hepworth, and identified in court as his property, and it was further developed that Mr. Burt took it from the person of Treseder upon searching him after the arrest. 
     Two defendants were arrested by Mr. Burt just as they were in the act of entering the Occidental Saloon. the robbed man pointing them out to the officer and recognizing Treseder as being beyond doubt one of the parties.  Both pleaded not guilty, and were separately arraigned for examination. Howard conducted his own case, basing his defense upon the fact of Mr. Hepworth being unable to swear positively that he was the person who accompanied Treseder.  General Barnum having been sent for the latter defendant appeared and waived examination where upon the justice held each of the parties to answer to the grand jury of the district court, fixing the amount of bond in both cases at $1,000.  In default thereof committed jail.

Funny, even in 1876 criminals deny wrongdoing because of 'Unable to Swear  Positive Identity'  when the circumstances are certain it was him. I wonder if John got a black eye or any cuts or bruises?  Do you think Amelia was so frightened she couldn't scream or did she put up a terrible fuss?  I would like to know the story they told their family.