From the Dover Express and East Kent News, Friday,
28 February, 1868.
THE CASE OF CONCEALMENT.
In the case of Jane Walters, remanded from the previous Monday,
charged with concealment of birth, there was a medical certificate
signed by J. Walter Esq., from which it appeared that she was still too
unwell to be brought before the Magistrates, and the investigation of
the charge was therefore further adjourned till this day. (Friday.)
THIS DAY.- (Before E. F. Astley, J. F. Crookes and W. R. Mowll, Esqs.)
THE CHARGE OF CONCEALMENT.
Jane Walters was charged with concealing the birth of her male child
by putting it in a heap of rubbish, in Round Tower Lane.
The prisoner, who seemed in a very delicate state was accommodated
with a seat.
James Tremere, a boy 12 years of age, said he was in Round Tower
Lane, about one o'clock on the afternoon of Sunday week, when he kicked
against a paper parcel which was lying in a heap of rubbish. He picked
the parcel up and finding, on opening it, that it contained something
like a child he dropped it, and called out to two young men who were
passing at the time. They called Mrs. Clements, who keeps a shop close
by. Several boys were there by that time, and Mrs. Clements, having
taken up the parcel and examined it, threw it over a wall close by.
Susannah Clements, wife of Stephen Clements, said she lived in
Paradise Street, and that on Sunday week, in the afternoon, her
attention was drawn to Round Tower Lane, where she saw, among a few
ashes which had been shot into the street, the dead body of a child. She
picked it up, and put it over Mr. Clerk's wall till she could give
information. She afterwards told a policeman, and went to the yard of
Mr. Clark, and she saw the policeman take it away.
William Clark, a butcher, said his back yard abutted on Round Tower
Lane. He was in the yard on Sunday week, when the body of the child was
thrown over his wall. He sent for a policeman, and on the policeman and
Mrs. Clements coming the officer took the child away.
Police-constable Alfred Levett deposed to taking possession of the
Jane, wife of John Charles Young, who keeps the "Princess Maude," in
Hawkesbury Street, said the prisoner was in her service. She came to
live with her about seven weeks ago and remained till the morning of the
16th. Between three and four in the afternoon of that day witness had to
go through the prisoner's room to get to some other rooms at another
part of the house, and from the appearance of the room she believed that
birth had been given to a child. The side-door of the house leads into
Round Tower Lane. The back-door is bolted, but a person indoors could
always get out. The prisoner had left the house at half-past one to go
to Canterbury, having asked on the previous Friday for permission to go.
She returned from Canterbury the same night at ten o'clock. On witness
questioning her she said nothing, and a policeman, who was in the house
then took her into custody. Witness had no suspicion that the prisoner
was enceinte (pregnant), and she had done her work as normal in
The prisoner on being asked if she had any questions to put to the
witness, said she had not.
Police-constable Smith said he took the prisoner into custody. She
did not say anything. He conveyed her to the police-station in a cab.
The Superintendent took the charge, and read it over to her, cautioning
her in the usual way, when she said, "Yes, I did put it there." The
child, which had been brought to the station-house, was shown to her,
and she said, "Yes, that is mine."
Susannah Howse said she acted as female searcher at the
station-house. On the night of Sunday week she searched the
prisoner by directions of the Superintendent. Witness knew what prisoner
was charged with. She found that the prisoner required a medical
attendant, and the prisoner was then put into a cab and driven by Mr.
The prisoner had no questions to ask either of the two foregoing
John Walter, Esq., said that on the night of Sunday, the 16th, the
prisoner was brought to his house in a cab by Mrs. Howse, and at Mrs.
Howse's request he examined her and found that she had been recently
delivered of a child, and that the afterbirth had not been removed. He
took her to the Union, where the delivery was completed. He saw the body
of the child, which was still-born. No assistance had been rendered at
the birth. The child was not full-grown, but was between the eighth and
Police-constable Smith, recalled, said he searched the prisoner's box
on the following day, and found not the slightest trace of preparation
for the birth of a child.
The prisoner, who had no defence to offer, was formally committed for
trial at the nest Maidstone Assizes.