Isle of Wight Observer December 3 1881

William Henry Woodford, a telegraph clerk, of Ryde, was charged with stealing growing turnips from a garden cultivated by James Spencer. – PC Carter stated that on the 20th inst he met the defendant in Star-street, Ryde, carrying a bag. He asked him what he had, and he replied “Only a few turnips.” On being further questioned he threw the bag down and ran away. Witness caught him and took him to the police station. He afterwards received the tops and bottoms of the turnips from PC Evans, and on comparing with the turnips found them to correspond. – There was some amusement in court at this stage owing to an attempt to show how the tops and bottoms united with the turnips. – PC Cousins stated that on the 21st inst he went to a piece of ground at Oakfield, and found the turnip tops and bottoms which he handed over to the last witness. – James Spencer, occupier of the land in question, said he never gave the defendant permission to take the turnips from his garden. Defendant had called on him on Thursday, and desired him to withdraw the summons. He applied again on Friday, and offered to pay the costs if he withdrew it. – Mr Joyce addressed the court for the defendant accounting for the possession of the bag of turnips by saying he had found them both in the road. – The Chairman said the court were of the opinion that the case had been made out, and they should fine defendant 2s 6d and costs.

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