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Posts Tagged ‘highwayman’

“Jack Lett Is Given Ten Years In Prison,” Toronto Star. November 22, 1918. Page 02.

Canadian Express Co. Robber Also Pleads Guilty to Robbing Union Bank.

Jack Lett, the embryo highwayman who robbed the Canadian Express Co. of $20,000 on October 23, was to-day given ten years in the penitentiary. He withdrew his plea of not guilty and pleaded guilty to robbing the Union Bank and stealing an automobile. For these crimes he also received five and three years respectively. The sentences are to run concurrently.

His brother, Walter Lett, also withdrew his plea of not guilty and pleaded guilty to having received $1,000, which he knew to be stolen. This money he gave to his wife. He was let go on remanded sentence provided he gives $1,000 security and finds two other securities of $1,000 each.

James Gordon Dougall is to spend not less than one year and not more than two years in the Ontario Reformatory.

In addressing Jack Lett, Chief Justice Meredith said: ‘I have no desire to add to the severity of your sentence by lecturing you. I regret that I have no testimony as to your mental capabilities, so I must judge you as I have seen you. The main trouble with you seems to be inordinate vanity. In opening your case your counsel has pictured you as a pigeon-chested, varicose-veined misfit, who is undeveloped both physically and mentally.

Looking Into the Future.
‘Your picture of yourself is that of a bold highwayman. It is to cure you of this delusion that you are to be disciplined. If you were allowed to go free that gun of yours might go off some time, and then some judge would be talking about Jack Lett being hanged by the neck until he was dead.

‘If there had only been a ‘man’ in that express car who would have given you a good thrashing, taken away your pistol, and thrown you out you would have been cured. The only thing to do now is to seek to cure you by the panacea of hard labor.

‘Jack Lett, you were not made for a highwayman. You were given freedom of that express car. Afterwards you went wandering about like a frightened child, and impressed the first man whom you met as a thief. Moreover you left your plunder right under the very nose of those who suspected you. 

‘Walter Lett, you certainly did not do all you could to save your brother, and let me tell you the offence to which you plead guilty is a serious one.

Severe Words For Dougall.
‘James Gordon Dougall, your case has caused me a deal of thought. You were the chief clerk, you held a responsible position, and you can understand that your connection with this crime will cast suspicion upon your associates and inferiors. You were leading a disgraceful life. Don’t you think one should be horsewhipped for a life of that kind.

‘You were found guilty of the lesser offence, but a jury might well have found you the instigator in this farce.’

All the prisoners refused to say anything in their defence, and received their sentences in silence.

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“Two Years at Kingston,” Toronto Globe. September 12, 1918. Page 03.

Highway Robber Pleaded Not to be Sent Back to Burwash.

(Canadian Press Despatch.)
Brantford, Sept. 11 – Clarence Brackenbury was sentenced to two years in the Penitentiary at Kingston by Judge Hardy to-day, on charges of highway robbery while in possession of a loaded revolver, of theft, and of damage to a St. George schoolhouse. He and a young lad set out as Dick Turpins on stolen bicycles, and held up a farmer near St. George. Brackenbury had previously broken jail at Simcoe, and was captured again at Burwash. He begged for a chance to go overseas, and when this was refused, pleaded not to be sent to Burwash, where, he alleged, he had been badly treated, the food he claimed, being very bad. His request was granted, and he will go to Kingston for two years.

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“Knife and Revolver, A Mask and A Rope,” Toronto Star. January 9, 1919. Page 02.

The Weapons of a Highwayman, Who Lands a Three-Year Term in ‘Pen.’

‘This man ought to go to the penitentiary,’ declared Crown Attorney Corley, in regard to William Smith, about 30 years old, who was armed with a loaded revolver and a knife, with mask and a rope, attempted to hold up a pedestrian, but was caught by two civilians.

‘That’s where he will go,’ agreed Magistrate Denison, who sent Smith to the penitentiary for three years.

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“Constable Held Up,” Toronto World. January 1, 1909. Page 08.

Highwayman Said He Was Driven to Act by Hunger.

BRANTFORD, Dec. 31. – (Special) – Constable Portland, while in civilian clothes, was held up here last night on Dalhousie-street by Garfield McCrae, who demanded his wad.

The hold-up evidently mistook his man, as Portland arrested him after a lively fight.

The prisoner, who said he was suffering from hunger, was sentenced to thirty days this morning by Magistrate Livingston.

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