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1882: Thief caught wearing shirt made from stolen Cuckfield lodging house blanket!



Before Major W.Sergison (chairman) and Mr T.T.C.Lister


Joseph Carmino, an Italian, who has lately been “awaking the silent echoes” of Haywards Heath and vicinity with an accordion, attended by his “faithful friend and boon companion” the monkey, was charged on remand with stealing a blanket from a lodging house, near the Wheatsheaf Inn, at Broad-street, Cuckfleld.—

Mrs. Williamson, keeper of the house, stated that prisoner slept there on Saturday and Sunday nights, and after he left on Monday morning she found he had cut one of the blankets in two, taking one half away and leaving the other. The half-blanket produced corresponded with that left, and it was subsequently discovered that prisoner was ingenious enough to make shirt of the half.

Wheatsheaf lodgings c1910 (colourised)

—Superintendent Avery traced the prisoner to Handcross, and eventually overtook him near St. Leonard's Forest, finding the half-blanket produced on him, and £1 10s. 8 1/2d. in money.—

Prisoner pretended not to understand the charge, but after some time said he would rather have it settled at once, and the Magistrates fined him 5s. damage, and 25s. expenses.

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