"LIKE A KNOCK-OUT IN BOXING."
Robert CARRUTHERS, (61), head husbandman, employed by Mr. Robert ELLWOOD,
farmer, Hill Farm, Crosby, died on Saturday, as a result of a kick by an
agricultural horse. Deceased was a married man with two children.
Mr. D. J. MASON held the inquest at Hill Farm on Monday morning.
Eleanor CARRUTHERS, Mawbray House, Crosby, deceased's wife, said her husband
left home for work at 5-30 a.m. He was quite well then. She did not see him
Henry WATSON, a student at Hill Farm, and a second horseman, said that on
Saturday morning he and CARRUTHERS were ploughing the same field. They took
their horses to the stable about mid day. Witness was feeding a horse in a loose
box opposite the stable door, when CARRUTHERS was unharnessing his horse.
He had not noticed CARRUTHERS horse uneasy. Witness heard a groan from the
stable and on going in found CARRUTHERS lying against the wall behind his horse,
three or four yards away. He was lying on his side curled up. He just gave
another graon and was quiet. The horse was standing quietly. Deceased had
complained the morning before that the horse had struck out at him while it was
feeding. Witness had always found the horse perfectly quiet. Witness called for
assistance, and he and CROSTHWAITE carried CARRUTHERS into the house.
Witness thought he was dead then. There was a dirt mark on deceased's waistcoat
which might have been caused by the horse, but there was no imprint of a shoe.
Dalton CROSTHWAITE, Lowside, Crosby, cowman, employed by Mr. ELLWOOD, said
WATSON called him into the stable and said CARRUTHERS had been kicked by a
horse. Witness found CARRUTHERS in a sitting position being supported by WATSON.
He was taking short gasping breaths, but stopped breathing before they got
him into the house.
Dr. F. W. CLARK said he found the man dead when he was called to the Hill
Farm. Witness could only find two bruises, a small one on the forehead and one
on the back of the right hand. There were no fractures and nothing to suggest
internal injury. On the left side of the chest, just below the heart, witness
found that the cartilages of the 7th, 8th, and 9th ribs had been driven
inwards and detached from the corresponding ribs - the result of violence. The
blow in that region, heavy enough to cause that injury, was sufficient to cause
death from shock. The cause of death was quite clear. It was just like a
knock-out blow in boxing.
In reply to the Coroner, witness said it was a well known fact that a blow
on a yielding surface, particularly on the abdomen, did not necessarily cause
The Coroner found that the cause of death was shock and said that the only
inference that could be drawn was that deceased had been kicked by the horse.
His death was accidental.