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January 3, I899. Walter Bayard. Sentenced July 2, i897; county, Queens; crime, burglary, third degree, and grand larceny, second degree; term, two years and two months; prison, Kings County Penitentiary.
The crime was, in fact, petit larceny, to which Bayard pleaded guilty; but by reason of an erroneous entry by the clerk, sentence was imposed as for burglary and grand larceny.
January 9, i899. James T. Bates. Sentenced June i5, i897; county, New York; crime, grand larceny, second degree; term, four years; prison, Sing Sing.
Bates is a colored man. On December i2, i896, a colored man presented a check for $65.25, together with a pass-book, to the teller of a savings bank in New York. After some hesitation on the part of the teller, the check was paid. It was, in fact, a forgery, and in June, i897, Bates was convicted of grand larceny for fraudulently obtaining the money upon it. The district attorney has very grave doubt as to Bates' guilt. The teller who paid the check wholly failed to identify him as the person to whom he paid it, and all the evidence upon which the conviction was had was of an unsatisfactory character. The doubt as to his guilt is too great to warrant his further detention.
January i9, i899. Charles F. Butler. Sentenced February 24, i896; county, St. Lawrence; crime, grand larceny, second degree; term, five years; prison, Clinton.
Butler hired a livery horse and buggy to go and see his wife, who was dangerously ill and who died shortly after his conviction. Being without money to pay the livery bill, he abandoned the horse and buggy, leaving them under a shed, where they were recovered by the owner on the following day. There does not appear to be any reason for supposing that Butler intended to deprive the owner finally of his property, but the jury construed his act as a larceny, and as he had been previously convicted of petit larceny, imprisonment for five years was the lowest sentence the court could impose. The judge and the district attorney both regard the sentence as excessive, and recommend that a pardon be granted.
January 23, i899. Herbert Spear. Sentenced October 20, i896; county, Schuyler; crime, burglary, second degree; term, five years; prison, Auburn.
The physician reports that Spear is seriously ill, and that it is not probable that he will live out his term. The judge who imposed the sentence and the district attorney recommend that a pardon be granted.
January 24, i899. John J. Kane. Sentenced September 23, i896; county, Erie; crime, forgery, second degree; term, three years and six months; prison, Auburn.
If released now, Kane can obtain immediate employment, a desirable position having been secured for him. This he might not be able to do at the end of his term in May next. This was his first offense, and the judge and the district attorney urge that his application for clemency be granted.
Tanuary 27, i899. Benjamin Goldberg. Sentenced December 7, i898; county, Suffolk; crime, grand larceny, second degree; term, four months; prison, Suffolk County Jail.
The facts of this case, as stated by the county judge who presided at the trial, are that Goldberg, having been requested to deposit two checks for the complainant, delivered them, together with the complainant's pass-book, to the cashier, by whom the deposit slip was made out. The checks were properly credited on the complainant's pass-book, but the cashier, having inadvertently made the deposit slip in Goldberg's name, they were credited to him on the books of the bank. Several weeks afterwards the mistake was discovered, and as Goldberg refused to adjust the matter, he was indicted for stealing the checks. The county judge recommends a pardon, being doubtful as to whether the facts really constituted larceny.
April 3, i899. James Delaney. Sentenced October 9, i896; county, New York; crime, attempting to commit burglary, third degree; maximum term, twO years and six months; prison, State Reformatory.
Delaney has but fourteen days to serve to complete his sentence and is released now on account of the serious, probably fatal, illness of his brother. The district attorney recommended a pardon more than a year ago on account of mitigating circumstances.
July i0, i899. Thomas Morrissey. Sentenced May 3i, i899; county, New York; crime, assault, second degree; term, one year and six months; prison, Sing Sing.
Morrissey having been directed by his employers to eject the complainant from their premises, used more force than was necessary for the purpose. There does not seem to have been any deliberate intent on his part to commit a crime. He has always been a man of good character and has suffered a sufficient punishment for his act.
August 3, i899. John Wilson. Sentenced September i4, I
1893; county, Steuben; crime, burglary, second degree; maximum term, ten years; prison, State Reformatory.
In September, i893, Wilson, who was then sixteen years old, was convicted with one or two other boys of entering a building and stealing a small sum of money, and was sentenced to the Reformatory, from which institution he was recently released on parole. The parole does not permit him to leave this State, and the pardon is granted on the petition of his father, a resident of Pennsylvania, who desires to take him West and give him a new start in life.
October 9, i899. Edward L. Fendler. Sentenced May 5, i899; county, New York; crime, grand larceny, second degree; term, two years and six months; prison, Sing Sing.
Fendler's guilt is so exceedingly doubtful that his pardon is demanded as an act of justice. If the facts now clearly proved had been shown on the trial, he could not have been convicted. The district attorney and eleven of the jury ask for his release.
December ii, i899. William B. Turnbull. Sentenced August 3, i899: county, New York; crime, fraudulently obtaining employment; term, nine months; prison. New \ork Penitentiary.
Granted on the ground that the sentence was too severe. The prisoner applied for and obtained employment for several months under an assumed name in violation of section 570 of the Penal Code. No loss or injury accrued to any person and there were no circumstances calling for severe punishment.
December i8, i899. Daniel Noonan. Sentenced October 12, i899; county, Chenango; crime, assault, third degree; term, four months; prison, Albany County Penitentiary.
Granted on the application of the county judge, the committing magistrate and the complainant on the ground that, considering the prisoner's youth and previous good character, he has been sufficiently punished.
December 29, i899. John J. Hannigan. Sentenced January 2i, i898; county, New York; crime, assault, second degree; term, two years; prison, Sing Sing.
Hannigan, a police officer, was convicted of shooting a boy whom he was pursuing and endeavoring to arrest. Although there was evidence sufficient to sustain the conviction, there was considerable doubt as to some of the most material and important facts. There was certainly no intention on the part of the prisoner to commit a crime, the utmost that can be urged against him being an excess of zeal. He appears to be a man of excellent character; he has, by reason of his conviction, lost his position on the police force; and he suffered several months' imprisonment before going to Sing Sing. The Supreme Court, in affirming his conviction, say: " The sentence, in view of the facts and the jury's recommendation to mercy, was severe, and if we had jurisdiction it would justify a modification of the judgment; but it was within the power of the trial judge to impose it and is not a subject for our interference. The appeal in that regard must be addressed to the Executive."