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            MONDAY, JANUARY 27.
Before W. H. KITCHIN (presiding), and T.
    William CREAR, 17, labourer, Scalegill, was
charged with stealing one cock and two hens
at Moor Row between 8 p.m. on the 25th and
9 a.m. on the 26th January, the property of
John BLAIR, farmer, Moor Row.  John BLAIR
said yesterday morning he went to his fowl
-house about half-past nine and found that
the staple of the lock had been drawn.  He
missed three hens and a cock.  They were of
no special breed.  He valued the lot at two
shillings each.  He knew the prisoner.  He
had never worked for witness and he had no
business about the premises.  He recognised
the bird produced as one of the four he had
    P.C. WALKER said from information received
he made inquiries and went to the prisoner's
mother's house, at Scalegill, on Sunday morning,
about eleven o'clock.  He found a quantity of fea-
thers in a tin in a pantry and the hen produced
under a mattress in a back room bed.  He took
the prisoner into custody and charged him with
the offence.  In reply to the charge he said "I know
nothing about it."  On the way to the Police Station
he said "I'll tell you the truth.  About two o'clock
this morning I went to Blair's hen-house. I drew the
staple, killed a yellow cock and two black hens and
brought them home.  My sister and I pulled the
cock, cooked it, in the oven and ate it."
    Mr. BROCKBANK:  How did they manage to
cook it at that time in the morning?
    Witness:  In the oven.
    Mr. BROCKBANK:  Did he say that?
    Witness:  Yes, sir.  The prisoner further said:
 "We burned all the bones and most of the fea-
thers.  The feathers you got in the pantry in the
tin were feathers that were left.  I don't know
what has come of the other hen.  I put the two
hens in the bed."
    The Chairman:  Is the prisoner's father living?
    Witness said prisoner's father was a collier
and working at Newcastle, having been away
for some time.
    Mr. BROCKBANK:  Where do you work?
    Prisoner:  No spot.  I worked at Croft Pit
    Witness, in answer to Mr. BROCKBANK,
said the prisoner's father sent a little money
home, but they were very badly off.  Prisoner
did not try to work.  He simply "loafed" about.
In fact, one never saw him until it was dark.
Prisoner last worked for Mr. HARTLEY, farmer.
    Mr. MACHELL:  How have they been living,
    Mr. BROCKBANK:  satisfying a taste for
poultry, sir.  (Laughter).
    Witness:  It is quite evident they have.
    Supt. KELLY said some poultry had been
missed before in the neighbourhood.
    The Bench fined the prisoner 20s, with the
alternative of 14 days with hard labour.