1915 Police Court
At the Borough Police Court today, before the Mayor (Mr CC Graham), Mr AJ Tugwell, Mr George Rowntree, Mr H Sinfield, Cllr Hopwood, Alderman Rowntree, and Alderman Ascough.
Arthur Clinton (26), hotel porter, James Street, Wetherby, was charged with receiving from a trooper of A Squadron Yorkshire Dragoons a pair of riding breeches and a pair of putties on the 19th April, and further with being in possession of a military overcoat in contravention of Section 156 of the Army Act, on the 20th April.
Prisoner pleaded guilty.
The Chief Constable stated that prisoner was until Monday last a member of his Majesty’s Forces. He was discharged on that day and should have gone away. He had a pass to take him back to his home, but was found in Scarborough on Monday night and arrested on Tuesday morning. He had in his possession the articles mentioned in the charge. The breeches and putties were given to him by a trooper of the Yorkshire Dragoons, who had no right to give them, but that would be dealt with by the military authorities. When called on to account for the overcoat he said it was given to him by a barman at Leicester. He (the Chief Constable) was satisfied that statement was not correct. The overcoat had never been issued to him.
A trooper of the Dragoons stated he had a set of spare putties and breeches, and gave them to prisoner. They were Government clothing. Prisoner was in plain clothes, and witness did not know then that he had left the Army.
A sergeant from the barracks stated that he saw prisoner off by the 1.17pm train on Monday for Wetherby, but at a quarter-past seven in the evening of the same day he saw him again in the town.
Lilly Scales stated that prisoner left the overcoat at her house last week. It was a wet night, and she promised to dry the coat for him. A few days later he called for the overcoat.
Prisoner stated he joined the Army last September, and was served with blue uniform. He was anxious to get hold of khaki.
He bought the overcoat whilst quartered at Leicester from a man who had left the Army. When he was seen off by train by the Sergeant on Monday he went as far as Seamer and returned to Scarborough.
He intended leaving the following day.
He did not know he was committing an offence by taking the putties and breeches as a gift from a trooper.
The magistrates having retired, the Mayor said that they suggested prisoner should withdraw his plea of guilty in the second case with regard to the overcoat.
Prisoner then pleaded that he was not in legal possession of the overcoat, and this case against him was dismissed.
On the first charge he was fined £2, or one month’s imprisonment. He paid the money.