Thursday Flashback

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1914 court

At the Scarborough Police Court today, Robert Cartwright (20), labourer, 19, Asquith Avenue, was charged with having embezzled £1 10s, received by him for his master, Alfred Speck, 16, Falsgrave Road, on August 25th.

Prisoner wore the blue uniform of the Army. He pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutor said the prisoner took some coal and sticks to a house in Albemarle Crescent for him on the date in question. The amount due was 27s. Defendant was only engaged for the day, and later he collected the account from the householder, unknown to witness, and retained the money.

Mrs Simpson, the householder in question, gave evidence. About six o’clock on the day the coals were taken, she said, Cartwright went and asked her if it would be convenient to settle the bill. She had only 37s, and Cartwright had no change, so she told him it did not matter, Mr Speck could make it right later.

PC Scott said he arrested Cartwright at Farnham. Charged with having embezzled £1 17s (the amount as originally stated), he replied: It isn’t 37s, it was £1 10s; that is where he is wrong.

Cartwright said he could pay 15s, now, and 6s a week later.

Replying to the Clerk, Cartwright said that he had joined the Army two months since.

The Chief Constable said that after getting the money Cartwright absconded. There were several previous charges of theft and stealing whilst bailed, against him.

Mr Hunt, on behalf of the Committee of the Discharged Prisoners’ Aid Society, said they had no sympathy with the prisoner, but the latter had enlisted, and as every unit was necessary at the present moment he thought if the magistrates considered the matter they might allow him to go and fight for his country.

His brother, who was in the terrible fighting in Belgium, and was wounded, was in court, and was anxious to pay the prosecutor.

The magistrates, after retiring, sent Cartwright to prison for six weeks at hard labour.