A drunken workmate who played a prank on a colleague that caused his death was convicted of manslaughter.
The incident happened Weber's foundry in Wapping on Thursday 26th February 1847 when two friends, James Moore and John Berry, returned to work after drinking on their break. Berry, a 46 year old metal polisher was ascending a ladder through a trap door from the first to second storey where 35 year old Moore was working as a painter.
Moore decided to play a joke by pushing the ladder back and standing it upright, but Berry lost his balance and fell off, fracturing his skull. Berry was taken to his home in Grosvenor Street and died from his injuries the following Wednesday. The next day an inquest was held and the jury returned a verdict of manslaughter against Moore, who lived in Bevington Bush.
At the South Lancashire Assizes on 30th March Moore was found guilty and sentenced to one months imprisonment, to be served in solitary confinement.