Sunday, 26 July 2015

Tenant Kills Landlord Over Weeks Rent

A tenant who was angry when his landlord refused to allow him to leave his property unless he paid a week's rent threw him into the middle of the street. After the landlord died from complications which resulted from the injuries received, the tenant was convicted of manslaughter.

The unfortunate incident happened on Saturday 31st July 1858 when John Doyle, a middle aged man, told his landlord Francis Smith that he intended to leave his property in Zante Street, Everton. Francis demanded a week's rent and when this was refused, sat on the steps to prevent Doyle taking out his belongings.

A frustrated Doyle punched and kicked 71 year old Francis, then picked him up and threw him into the middle of the street.  Francis was removed to the Infirmary with a broken thigh, while Doyle was taken into custody charged with violent assault.

At the police court on the Monday morning Doyle was remanded for seven days as Francis was too ill to give evidence. The following day the old man died, a post mortem determining that the cause of death was congestion of the lungs, arising from the injuries he has received.

On 13th August Doyle was at the assizes before Baron Pollock charged with manslaughter. He maintained that he had been provoked and had not intended to cause any harm to Francis, but was found guilty. The judge then sentenced him to four months imprisonment.

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