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Maria Louisa David and Sarah Rhoda Jenkins

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Maria Louisa David and Sarah Rhoda Jenkins

Post by Karen on Sat 4 May 2013 - 18:06

On Friday last our Bridgend contemporary, the Cental Glamorgan Gazette, contained the following: -


Last week information reached us of an outrage of which the victim was the lady who acts as schoolmistress at St. Mary Hill. Two men, it appears, made a dead set on her as she was returning from Tondu after visiting her friends a few days ago, and, despite her struggles, left the poor lady with shattered nerves and torn raiment - to use common parlance, "her clothes were almost torn from her back." It is full time that these
"Jack the Ripper" attacks were stayed. Is there no means of keeping such outrages under check? The authorities are, doubtless, on the alert, but as yet no capture is recorded.
Upon making inquiries into the matter, our reporter was informed that the lady referred to in the above paragraph has been at Llanelly (about 40 miles away from the scene of the alleged "outrage") since July 29, and that nothing is known of such an occurrence at he St. Mary Hill address. No information of any such outrage has been given to the authorities, so that the statement "that they are, doubtless, on the alert, but that no
capture is recorded," is void of foundation. A sensational paragraph like this, unless it contains a full and particular account of the event to which it relates, is of little value. Two other cases of violence being offered to females in this locality have been reported to the authorities, and the arrest of the culprit has been effected, as will be seen from a report of the police court proceedings in another column of this issue.


The Bridgend police have for some time been engaged looking for a man who had assaulted two young ladies during the past month. Their efforts were crowned with success on Sunday evening when Sergeant Row and Police-constable Thomas Brown acting on information received went to search for the culprit who was arrested by Police-constable Brown at Mile-end. It appears that the officers decided to separate, Sergeant Row going down the Merthyrmawr-road,
and Police-constable Brown taking the road to Ewenny by which means it was hoped they would catch the accused which ever way he took. It was whilst Police-constable Brown was going down the road from Bridgend, in accordance with this plan, that he met a man whom he arrested on suspicion. It was then about ten o'clock p.m., and the man stoutly denied all knowledge of the offence alleged against him - viz., of attempts to indecently assault Miss M.L. David,
of Watertown, on Sunday evening, 7th inst. With great difficulty the prisoner was conveyed to the police station, still persisting in declaring that he was innocent, and saying that the police should take the right man. On Monday morning the prisoner who gave his name as Henry Summers, and said he was lodging at 40, Park-street, Bridgend, was confronted by Miss David who at once identified him. Prisoner was also identified by Miss Jenkins, of Ewenny Pottery,
as the man who had indecently assaulted her on Sunday night, July 31st. Upon being taken back to the cell prisoner admitted his guilt, and asked to be forgiven.
On Monday morning prisoner was brought before Mr. C.P. Davies, when the following evidence was taken: -

Miss Maria Louisa David said: - I am a single woman, and am 29 years. Last Sunday week, the 7th of August, I had been in chapel in Bridgend, and was returning home about 25 minutes to nine in the evening. It was dusk. I was on the public highway in Watertown-lane. Before I went to the lane I had walked along the main road from Bridgend towards Cowbridge. In passing I saw a man standing alone by a gate not far from the mouth of the lane. I had not seen the man before,
to my knowledge. As I was walking down the lane I heard footsteps coming after me. I turned and looked, and found they were the steps of a man. I thought he was the same man I had seen at the gate. I first of all took him to be the servant man from Watertown Court. I looked back a second time, and the man was within two yards of me. He looked as if he was going to attack me, and he said to me, "Good night, Miss." I told him not to insult me on the road, and that I didn't
wish him to speak to me. He walked a few paces alongside of me, and, without a word, flung me down into the ditch. It was a dry ditch. I fell on my side, and I screamed. He tried to put his hand on my mouth. I struggled, and got free out of his grasp, and I got right out of the road and got hold of a stone - a small stone - and I knocked him in the face with it. I ran away towards home. After going a little distance I met Miss Emery and a young gentleman with her. I asked them
why they didn't come to help me. They said they didn't think there was anything particular about the matter. They came back with me. The man was then gone. The man didn't do anything indecent to me. He didn't do anything to his clothes. He didn't attempt anything indecent to me. The man was gone, but we met Mr. William Thomas and Mr. Thomas Lewis Roberts. I complained to all of them. I had never seen the man before. The defendant is the man. He was dressed much as he is dressed now.
I never saw him afterwards until today, when I saw him at the Police-station. I recognised him at once. I have not the least doubt about it. I knew his voice, too. The sergeant asked him to speak to me, and told him to say "Good evening, Miss," and he did so. There is a peculiarity in his walk. He walked before me today, and I observed it then, and I also observed it when he was walking after me in the lane. I was very much frightened.
Thomas Lewis Roberts said: I live at Coychurch-road, Bridgend, and am a grocer's clerk. I and William Thomas were walking last Sunday week about a quarter to nine or so - between two lights - on the Cowbridge-road. We heard a scream from down the lane - a female voice. We were then about the mouth of the Watertown Lane, and we saw a man coming up the lane. He was walking rather quickly, and breathing heavily as if he had been running. He was excited. Wm. Thomas asked what was the matter
down there. He said, "Nothing; I didn't hear anything." Wm. Thomas and I went further down the lane to see if there was anything, and about 200 yards down the lane we saw Miss David, Miss Emery, and Anthony Powell. Miss David was crying at the time. We asked her what was the matter, and she complained to us to the same effect as her statement here today. Just as we were near her I picked her umbrella and hymn book up from the ditch, and Wm. Thomas picked up her gloves. She appeared much excited.
The defendant is the man, and wore the same clothes. I can't say I had seen him before, but I saw him last night and recognised him. I followed him for about two miles to see where he would go. On Sunday week, after what William Thomas and I had seen, we went to the police-station and gave information there and a description. After I saw him last night I went to the police-station and gave information there that I had seen the man.
Prisoner, who is 28 years of age, 5ft. 10in. in height, and said that he was married and that his wife and child lived at Exeter, was then remanded in custody until Saturday upon the charge of committing an aggravated assault upon Miss David.
We are informed that the charge for assaulting Miss Jenkins will then be gone into.

Source: South Wales Star, 19 August 1892, Page 3


Henry Summers, labourer, Park-street, Bridgend, was charged on remand with assaulting Miss David, of Watertown. - Complainant stated that the evidence she gave at the first hearing was true, and she had nothing to add to it. - The evidence of Thomas Lewis Roberts, as reported in the STAR last week, was read over, witness adding that he had not seen any other man between where he met prisoner and where he saw Miss David.
Police-constable Thomas Brown stated that from information received he arrested the prisoner about 9:30 p.m. last Sunday, on the Ewenny-road. He charged him on suspicion with attempting to commit an indecent assault upon Miss David on the night of the 7th. In answer to the charge prisoner said "I am not the man." Witness then took him to the station, and all the way he persisted in saying that he was not the man. Near the station he resisted very much, but witness got him into the station.
On the following morning prisoner confessed, and said that he hoped Miss David would forgive him. - Prisoner did not ask any questions.
Prisoner was then charged with assaulting Miss Sarah Rhoda Jenkins on July 31st on the Ewenny-road, Bridgend. Prisoner said "I know nothing of this charge."
Complainant said she was a dressmaker, and lived at Ewenny. She saw prisoner on the 31st July on the Ewenny-road about 9:15 p.m. It was on Sunday evening, and she was going home. Complainant was with her cousin - a lady - and they overtook prisoner, who said "good night." She answered him. They walked on, and he overtook them about ten minutes walk from where they had first seen him. He said it was a nice evening, and witness said it was, and they turned in to the Uchelolau gate. He asked them how long
were they going to be, and she told him that they were not going any further. Prisoner then caught hold of her, and he "roughed" her about. He never said a word. She screamed and struggled, and got loose. She then ran up to the house, and the servant man went with them. The prisoner had gone, and they did not see him again. She identified the prisoner as being the man by his clothes for one thing. She had not the slightest doubt about it. She identified him by having a dark moustache, and he walked awkwardly
like the prisoner. - Prisoner: "You've made a mistake. You've got the wrong man." - Complainant said that when she told prisoner at the police-station that he was the man, he made no reply.
Prisoner was then remanded in custody until Saturday next, bail being refused.

Source: South Wales Star, 26 August 1892, Page 6

Karen Trenouth
Author of: "Epiphany of the Whitechapel Murders"
Author of: "Jack the Ripper: The Satanic Team"

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