Saturday 13th September, 1879
A Stupid Fellow.
At the Croydon Police Court on Monday, William Thomas, labourer, of Tooting, was brought up on a charge of disorderly conduct and obscene language in London-road, Mitcham, on Saturday.
—Prisoner said he knew nothing about it.
—P.-c. 382 W said at twenty minutes past ten on Saturday night a young woman complained to him of the prisoner’s language to her. He found prisoner in the spot indicated to him entertaining a crowd of persons with very obscene language, and as he refused to leave upon being requested he was taken into custody.
—P.-c. Neighbour corroborated the evidence of the other constable.
—Prisoner conducted himself in court in a very stupid manner. The only reply he returned to the questions of the Bench was that he was “All alone by himself.” He repeated the word “myself” several times, and to further impress his meaning upon the minds of the Bench proceeded to spell the word, marring his orthographical performance, however, by additional and unnecessary final “e.”
—The magistrates naturally inquired, after this exhibition, what prisoner had had to drink this morning, and Thomas replied that he had had nothing, “Only walk over here from garret.”
—Dr. Carpenter remarked that prisoner did not appear at all sorry for his behaviour.
—Prisoner: Sorry, sir: oh, sorry. Sorry to find myself there [the police cell] when I woke up.
—Prisoner was then fined 5s. and 9s. costs.
Source: Croydon Advertiser and East Surrey Reporter – Saturday 13 September 1879 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)