‘Bottle King’ denied stealing a bucket

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1913 Police Court

John Rushton (54), labourer, 34, Dumple Street, known locally as “The Bottle King”, was charged on remand at the Borough Police Court today with stealing from the back of 11, Westborough, a zinc bucket and a sack bag, value together 2s 3d, the property of John Watson Rowntree, and others, between the 26th of May and 3rd of July.

The magistrates on the Bench were Alderman Pirie and Mr RH Butterworth.

Prisoner pleaded guilty to the charge of stealing the bag, but not the bucket.

William Edwin Popple, 2 St John Street, engaged as a porter at Messrs Rowntree, Westborough, said that since the 26th of May he had missed the bucket and bag produced from the back yard. There were several buckets and bags stored in the yard, including those produced.

On the 26th of May, 
between 8am and 9pm, he was locking up when he saw 
prisoner in the inner yard. When asked what business he had there, the prisoner said he had been “sent some things” but he would not say what.

Prisoner said witness did not see him take anything from the yard.

George England, an 
assistant with Frank Hopkins, marine store dealer, Dumple Street, gave evidence as to buying the bag for a halfpenny from the prisoner.

Harold Foxton, 34, Dumple Street, said that prisoner lodged at the same house. One night he came into the kitchen, and said he had a bucket to sell. Asked where he had got it from he said from an empty house. Witness bought it.

Prisoner denied that he had got the bucket from Rowntree’s yard. He had picked it out of a dustbin outside the Hull Drug Stores, Westborough.

George Gibson (13) gave 
evidence which upset this statement, and Mr Popple 
was certain as to the identity of the article.

Detective Inspector Yeoman gave evidence as to the arrest.

The Chief Constable 
remarked that this was a trivial offence, but the prisoner, who was known as “The Bottle King”, went about clearing people’s backyards without permission.

He had appeared twice at that Court previously.

The magistrates sentenced prisoner to 14 days without the option of a fine, and expressed the hope that this would be a warning.