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Colonial Cases








P. J. Bullock




PENANG, 1870.




"What !" said his astonished  interrogators, "do you mean to say you have been in the habit of altering Coroner's Jurors' verdicts for the last ten years?"

 "Yes," replied the imperturbable clerk, "I thought they were not proper according to the evidence !"

Source: STRAITS TIMES OVERLAND JOURNAL, 23 September 1870 (3); From the Straits Times, September 17th.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 22 January 1850 (4)

At between the hour of one and two on Saturday morning as Sallee, Police Jemadar, in company with a police peon, was going his rounds, he observed two men under the Verandah of a house in Victoria Street, near Faber's Bridge.  The two men on being challenged took to their heels, and by the aid of their lanthorns, the police observed three others also secreted.  The whole five were armed with spears and knives, and opposed the police in their attempt to capture them; Sallie fired at and shot one of the men, the shot passing through the trunk of his body, notwithstanding which he made for the canal and did not fall until after proceeding about fifty fathoms.  The wounded man was conveyed to the Thannah, but died before reaching there.  A coroner's inquest was held on the body on Saturday morning and a verdict returned of justifiable homicide accompanied by a recommendation that the conduct of the police on the occasion merited a reward.  On the body of the deceased (a Chinese) a gimlet, torch-paper and tinder were found, and his hand clasped a large knife.  Shortly afterwards, on the opposite side of the canal, another Chinese was captured on whose person was found some house breaking implements.

   Owing to the darkness of the night the companions of the deceased effected their escape.



7.  Last Saturday at one o'Clock in the morning, Police Jemedar Salleh and Madina, Police Peon No. 787 making a round had reached a part of Victoria Street at a short distance from Faber's bridge, when they heard a little noise from the verandah of a range of brick houses.  By the light of their lanthorn, they observed two Chinese, one standing and the other squatting in the Verandah, who finding themselves discovered ran away along the said Verandah round the corner and jumped into the Street.  The Policemen chased them, but unexpectedly discovered five men standing in the road, who appeared to be armed with sticks or spears.  The Jemedar called out to them to throw away their weapons, or he would fire at them.  On this the Chinese advanced in a warlike manner with couched or charged sticks towards the Policemen, who fired their pistols at them, when all the 5 Chinese ran away in different directions, but at a distance of about 50 fathoms, one of the two Chinese fell down and was immediately secured; he had a short common Chinese knife in his hand, and a pointed stick was covered by his body.  The Jemedar then whistled---3 Peons at once appeared---but the other Chinese in the mean time bolted.  The Chinese prisoner was wounded by a bullet which had entered the breast, and made its exit in the back, or vice-versa.  A Gimlet was found in his waistband, and a bamboo box with Chinese paper to make a light, was found close where he fell.  He was carried to the Rochor Station, but died before reaching it.  Another Chinaman was also secured shortly after; both were known bad characters.

   A Coroner's inquest was held ion the body, the verdict, Justifiable homicide, was found, and the Policemen were recommended for a reward. [continues, criticizing the verdict]



6.  Last Tuesday an inquest was holden on the body of a Chinaman, who died in a palankeen bon his way from the Rochor to a Doctor in town.  After a post mortem examination the verdict "died by natural causes" was returned.

7.  The same day another inquest was holden on the body of a Chinese found dead in the river near Campong Bugis;---No marks of foul play were discovered; but Reporter was not able to ascertain the verdict returned.

11.  An inquest was held on Wednesday last by the Coroner and a respectable Chinese Jury on the body of a Chinaman who resided in the back part of his master's house at Teluk Ayer and who in going to bed had fallen into the sea which washes the end of the dwelling and was drowned.  Missed when called to breakfast, he was found floating in the water without any marks of violence.




4.  Last Sunday some Chinamen were carrying the body of one of their countrymen, and the implements to dig the grave, when some Police-men meeting them on the Bukit Timah road on inspection discovered marks, which led to the discovery that the deceased had committed suicide by hanging himself.




2.  Last Friday a Coroner's inquest was holden on the body of a Malay boy, who died the preceding day in the Hospital.  It appears that 9 days previously the mate of a brig under repair at Tanjong Roo, fired off a musket, which he had loaded with small shot.  A number of these hit the boy, (who was in a boat at a very short distance from the brig picking up the copper nails, which had fallen in to the water,) in the head, while others struck him in both shoulders, and he appears to have died from the injuries received.  The Verdict Accidental death was returned, but the mate was again examined before the Sitting Magistrate on Saturday, was remanded and finally committed for trial for manslaughter.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 9 July 1850 (5)

ABOUT ten o'clock on the morning of Thursday last two Chinese Convicts were discovered in one of the Huts of the Convict Jail hanging by their neck, to the roof, quite dead.  It appears that in consequence of the heavy rain the convicts were not as usual taken out to work on the roads and the deceased availed themselves of the opportunity to effect their own destruction, which they must have gone about very deliberately: they had closed the door and having fastened two pieces of rattan at about six feet apart, they piled a quantity of blankets on each other on which they appear to have stood to adjust the rattan to their necks, and then kicked the baskets from under them---remained suspended at a short distance from the ground, the weight of the irons which they had on no doubt accelerated their death.---The deceased were named LIE AR-GUM and LIE ARCHOW and were convicts for life for piracy; they were 2 of the 25 convicts lately arrived from Hongkong by the barque Sir Edward Ryan.  On their passage they stated several times they would much prefer death to transportation.  A Coroner's Inquest was held on the same day on the spot and a Verdict of "Felo de Se" returned.




3.  Last Monday the body of a Chinaman, apparently dead from starvation, was found at Rochor, in an empty house and was directed to be buried without any inquest being held by the Coroner !




10.  Last Tuesday a Coroner's inquest was held on the body of a middle-aged Chinaman who died suddenly the preceding evening on the public Road.  It appears that a party of policemen making a round, when in Circular Road at about 10 o'clock p.m. saw the deceased walking towards them, but suddenly stopping and sitting down quietly.  When near him they questioned him, but getting no answer examined him and found him dead.  A post mortem examination showed that the brain was suffused with blood, and a verdict of "natural death" was returned.  REPORTER.




5. The body of a Chinaman was found on Saturday morning at low tide on a mud bank in the canal near Bukit Passo.  On a post mortem examination it was ascertained that the man had died of natural death and it is surmised he must have been thrown into the water to avoid burial expenses.  The coroner's jury sitting on the case returned the verdict of natural death.

6.  A Coroner's inquest was holden last Saturday on the body of James Pearson, a seaman of the ship Woodbridge, who the evening before at about 6 p.m. fell down the hatchway, and who was killed by that accident.  A verdict of accidental death was returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 22 October 1850 (4)

THE Settlement has been thrown into a state of great excitement by the occurrence of one of the most outrageous instances of murder recorded in the annals of crime.  A short time ago Saffer Ally (formerly interpreter in H.M.'s Court of Judicature and latterly acting in that capacity in the Police) Mahomed Ally, his son, and three servants were apprehended on the charge of burning the soles of the feet of a male domestic, under the most revolting circumstances.  [Details of previous events, all published in previous issues.]

   For several days past various conflicting and ugly rumours obtained currency relative to the fate of the lad, who was believed to have been made away with for the purpose of defeating the ends of justice.  The police has been untiring in its endeavours to trace the missing lad, and chiefly to the pains-taking enquiry, zeal and energy of Mr. Dunman, Acting Superintendent of Police, these researches were attended with success.  It would seem the lad was conveyed to Rhio, to be delivered there to the charge of a friend of the accused, probably until after the affair passed over; but, owing to the absence from Rhio of the person indicated, the lad was brought back to Singapore on Wednesday evening last.  That night the foul deed of murder would appear to have been committed.  Mr. Dunman, suspecting the body would be concealed somewhere in the Singapore river, procured drags, and commenced a minute search after the body.  On Saturday last, at about 3 o'clock in the afternoon, the body of the lad was found in the river with a large piece of stone secured strongly to it to prevent its floating.  There were observed various marks of violence on the neck and about the body, as also stains of blood in a boat which had been used by the parties implicated for the purpose of conveying the lad away. ...

   On Saturday evening last the Coroner held an inquest on the body, in an advanced state of decomposition, but the inquiry was adjourned until the investigation before the Police shall have terminated. ...




A great excitement has been caused by the discovery that the boy Aman, on account of whose disappearance the trial of Saffer Ally and five other prisoners charged with an aggravated assault and wounding, was postponed to the next Criminal Session, had been murdered; his body has been fished up by the Police in a creek in the Singapore river at a small distance from the Karat near the Powder Magazine.  He had a deep wound in his side, and other precautionary measures had been taken to despatch him and to conceal the foul deed if possible for ever; his feet were found tied together, and a very heavy stone was fastened to his neck and body by a kind of network.  [restates all the previous events.]

   A Coroner's Inquest was impannelled, the body was viewed and identified, and the Jury adjourned to Wednesday, in order to enable the Police to make the necessary preliminary enquiries, and 11 persons, amongst whom was Saffer Ally, were apprehended as concerned---some in enticing the boy out of the hospital, others in sending him to Rhio to avoid the trial at the Criminal Session, and some as implicated in the murder.  The Coroner's Jury on Wednesday brought in a verdict against four persons as being concerned in different degrees in the deed.




On Wednesday week a Coroner's inquest was holden on the body of a Convict, who died the day previous from the effects of a shot he received from his comrade at Changie.  It appears that this last named person was cleaning a musket, which went off unexpectedly, the bullet hitting the unfortunate man who was in the next room, in the cheek, and after fracturing the bones took a direction towards the throat. The sufferer expired while being carried to town for surgical assistance.  A verdict of "accidental death" was returned.

6. Last Saturday a murder and piratical attack was committed at a short distance from our shores, for the sake of a little rice, and a common prioh, or cooking vessel.  Three Chinese were returning to town in a boat from Kho Choo Kang where they had been cutting wood.  They left that place towards the evening and passed at dark along Tannah Merah bezar.  There they were attacked by the crew of a boat manned by persons in Malay dressers, 4 of whom jumped into the boat and struck the steersman with a spear in the arm; he fell overboard, the master of the Chinese who was pulling also jumped from mere fright into the water, and both men were picked up by a Chinese fisherman, who brought them on shore, where they reported the circumstances to some friends and got a boat to look after their own, which they found close to the spot where the attack had taken place.  Going on board they found their companion, the third man, dead in the bottom of the boat with a severe cut across the head.  Their wood was still in the boat and only a few provisions and a prioh had disappeared.  A coroner's inquest which was holden last Tuesday returned a verdict of "wilful murder against some persons unknown."  [Comments on "our Pigmy Water Police."]




Last Thursday a Coroner's inquest was held on the body of a Kling man who died on the Krama at Gaylang. Where he had gone a few hours previously, apparently with the intention of spending his last moments at that supposed holy spot.  A verdict of natural death was returned.

2.  The same day the body of an unknown person was washed on shore near Tanjong Kattong.  Deceased was found rolled up in a mat, and had apparently been thrown overboard from a Malay vessel, in order to save burial expenses.




Last Friday while a party of Convicts were cutting rattans in the jungle in the Changie district, a tiger sprang from behind on one of these unfortunate men, and lacerated his neck in such a fearful manner as to cause his death.  The animal escaped, the body was brought to town, where a Coroner's inquest was holden on it, and a Verdict of killed by a tiger returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 29 April 1851 (4)

A GANG ROBBERY took place on Saturday night last, in Garden Road, at the house of a Chinese situate in his fruit garden.  The inmates of the house were awoke about midnight by hearing some persons endeavouring to break open the door, which they soon accomplished.  About 209 armed Chinese then entered the house with knives and spears; they were met on the threshold by the owner's son who with a spear made a thrust at them, and then retreated under his father's bed.  The robbers seized the father and his cooly, gagged them, and placing knives to their necks threatened instant death if they made any noise or gave an alarm.  Others of the gang searched the house, but being alarmed at hearing the approach of some neighbours, they made off with a box containing thirty dollars in silver and some wearing apparel.  At daylight marks of blood were seen near the door and these being traced up led to the discovery of a man, distant 20 paces, who had died from a spear wound in his neck, supposed to be one of the robbers.  The body has not been identified, or has either the stolen box or the remainder of the gang been discovered.

   At a coroner's inquest held on view of the body a verdict of "Justifiable homicide" was returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 27 May 1851 (4)


On the 16th inst. an Inquest was held on view of the body of a Portuguese man named Louis, the servant of Mr. George Bain, when a verdict was returned "Died by the visitation of God."

   On the same day another Inquest was held on view of the body of a Kling boy found lying in a pond two feet deep with about a foot of water in it---Verdict "Accidental death."

   On the 21st. an Inquest was held on view of the body of a male Chinese, name unknown.  From the evidence of Constable Berthier it appeared that he found deceased near the Temple at Teluk Ayer, in an emaciated state, apparently asleep but in reality dead.  There were no marks of violence on the body, and from the testimony of Dr. Cowper it appeared the man died from want.  Verdict "Died from want of the necessaries of life."

   A fourth inquest was held on the 21st inst. on view of the body of a male Chinese named Loh Ah Wat who was found suspended by a rope from one of the beams of a house at Campong Glam.  Deceased had for some time previous been in low spirits and sick on account of being unable to send money to his friends by the Junks.---Verdict "Felo de Se."

   On the 23rd inst. another inquest took place touching the death of a man named La Boba; it appeared that he with four Bugis men were at Pulo Cremon cutting Kubit Tenga; one of their number Wal Takah remaining in the Sampan.  About noon the latter was heard to call out for help; the discharge of a musket was also heard, and shortly after about 16 men were observed in a prahu, chiefly manned by Malays.  They wounded deceased in the abdomen, and carried off the rice and other provisions in the sampan.  Deceased was conveyed to Singapore.  Verdict---"Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 29 July 1851 (2)

Collision steamship Pacha with the Erin; no bodies, no inquest.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 23 September 1851 (4)

We are sorry to learn that fearful ravages are being made in the rural and planting districts by the numerous Tigers infesting the jungle.  Two coroner's inquests were held last week on view of the remains of persons killed by these ferocious animals.  In most instances no portion of the bodies is recovered to enable us to determine the exact number of persons carried off, but a considerable number of natives employed in planting operations are missing.  The present rewards and other aids are manifestly inadequate to arrest the mischief, it behoves the executive to take immediate and active measures to rid the jungle of these savage beasts or planting operations will cease in parts beyond the immediate vicinity of the town.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 23 December 1851 (4)


... Finding the captain determined to do violence to himself his arms were opinioned, but inflammation supervening from the injuries caused by the gunpowder explosions he died and his body was carried into Pinang, where a Coroner's Inquest took place. ..... The Jury returned a verdict of "Died thro excessive drinking, coupled with injuries received from explosion of gunpowder."---Pinang Gazette, Dec. 13.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 27 July 1852 (5)


On the 19th July.  An Inquest was held on view of the body of a Male Chinese named Goh Ah Hoo, who had expired the day previous at Tan Tock Sing's Hospital, from the effects of wounds received from one of his countrymen on the 12th instant; the principal evidence was as follows:

   Un Lee Teo deposed, that he was a fisherman in the employ of Yeng Ah Seu who resides near the Ellenboro' Market; that on the 12th instant, at about 7 o'clock in the morning, he was disturbed from his sleep at his master's housie by hearing a noise as of persons quarrelling in then next room; he immediately got up and proceeded to the spot, where he saw the deceased and one Soong Ah Pow thumping and kicking each other; he called out to them not to fight and went up and separated them by standing between them; they continued to abuse each other & Ah Pow ran to a basket which was on the floor, about 6 feet from him, and took therefrom a knife or kind of chopper used by the Chinese to cut fish with and rushed towards Ah Hoo; the witness seeing the knife became alarmed and stepped on one side, when the two parties immediately rushed at and closed with each other; he saw Ah Pow strike Ah Hoo twice with the knife and Ah Hoo trying to wrest the knife away in which he did not succeed; the witness contrived to get behind Ah Pow and pulled him away when Ah Hoo fell on the ground; the witness immediately ran for assistance; he then returned to the house and endeavoured to stop the blood from the wounds of Ah Hoo and after a little time looked for Ah Pow and found him lying on his sleeping place in another room; he asked him why he had wounded the other man, he replied that Ah Hoo had irritated him so much he could not endure it, he had taken the knife and cut him; some Police peons shortly after arrived and both men were taken to the Police.  Has known Ah Pow for 2 or 3 months, he is in the same employ and lived with the witness.  Has known the deceased about a year---he lived near the Market and got his living by catching prawns.

   Matoo deposed, that he is a shopkeeper near the Ellenboro' market, on the morning of the 12th inst. about 7 o'clock a Chinese came  to his shop and informed him that Ah Pow had wounded Ah Hoo with a knife; he immediately went to the house and found Ah Hoo lying on the ground covered with blood, he asked the last witness who had done it, he replied Ah Pow; at this moment Ah Pow, came out of the room and said he had done it, the witness then asked him where the knife was, on which Ah Pow went to his sleeping place and brought it out from underneath; the witness then proceeded to the Police and gave information and 3 peons returned with him to the house where both parties were taken to the  Police and Ah Hoo afterwards sent to Hospital.

   Dr. Cowpar deposed, that the deceased was admitted into Hospital on the 12th instant with 3 wounds, two slight ones on the head and a severe one on the right shoulder of about 7 inches in  length, cutting into the shoulder joint and separating part of the head of the bone; the man progressed favorably till the 16th when the wound on the shoulder took an unhealthy action and he was attacked with fever; he also had fever on the 17th which continued and he expired on the 18th; considered the wound on the shoulder caused death, all the wounds might have been inflicted by the knife produced.

   Ah Pow declined making any defence.

   The Jury returned a verdict of Manslaughter against Soong Ah Pow, who was then committed to H.M. Jail on the Coroner's warrant, to take his trial at the ensuing criminal Sessions.

   An Inquest was held at the Auckland Hotel on Sunday last on view of the body of John Cottingham, Mate of the brigantine Acis.

   From the evidence it appeared that the deceased went to reside at the Hotel on the 16th June, where he continued till the 16th July when having obtained the situation of Mate of the Acis he left and went on board, he continued however to come on shore and sleep at the Auckland occasionally; this he did on Friday and retired to bed the worse for liquor; he rose and left the house between 5 & 6 on Saturday morning after having taken a glass of brandy; from thence it appeared he proceeded to Doctor Little's Dispensary, where he obtained 4 drachms of Laudanum, stating it was for his ship which was going to sail immediately; he paid for the Laudanum, returned to the Hotel a little after 6 o'clock; he had another glass of brandy and went up stairs; between 8 and 9 o'clock, the attention of one of the servants was attracted by hearing as he supposed a person snoring; on looking about he perceived Cottingham laying under the bed, he usually occupied, asleep; he had taken off his Coat and Waistcoat and had the bed pillow under his head; he was not disturbed as it was supposed he was sleeping off the effects of the liquor he had taken; he continued in the same state till between 6 and 7 in the evening when the servant went to rouse him to take his Dinner but on touching him he found his feet and hands quite colds, and becoming alarmed immediately called his Master, who, after seeing him at once fetched Dr. Little's Assistant, when life was found to be extinct.  It appeared the deceased was in the habit of taking large quantities of brandy and was frequently intoxicated, but it took a good deal to affect him, and also that he was given to the use of Laudanum to sleep off the effects of his libations; the vial in which he had procured the Laudanum was found empty in a Table drawer in the room and it is supposed he must have taken a larger dose than usual to procure sleep, but which proved fatal; he appeared not to have any quarrel with any one and there had been nothing unusual in his manner.---The Jury returned a verdict.---That the deceased died from the excessive use of Laudanum.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 11 January 1853 (4)

A Coroner's Inquest was held on Friday last on view of the body of Mr. Patrick McLachlan, a gentleman who arrived here the day previous in the P. and O. Company's Steam-ship "Malta."  The deceased was a passenger from Sydney by the "Formosa" and arrived at Galle, from whence he came on here in the "Malta."  About two years ago deceased was thrown from a horse, and suffered much from concussion of the brain; during the passage he exhibited frequent symptoms of insanity.  Every care was taken of him on board the steamer, and persons were appointed to watch over him; but during the momentary absence of the 2nd Steward, the deceased managed to wriggle himself through the small porthole of the cabin, fell into the water and was drowned.  Means were employed to restore animation, but without effect; although the deceased is believed to have been not more than two minutes in the water.  He was on his way from Sydney to join his friends in Java.  A verdict was returned "Death by drowning, while in a state of insanity."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 8 November 1853 (4)

On Saturday last a Coroner's Inquest was held on view of the body of Mr. Haller, a German teacher of Music, who put an end to his existence by inflicting upon himself sundry wounds with a Chinese knife, whilst labouring under delirium.  Verdict: Temporary insanity.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 25 April 1854 (4)

On Saturday last a Coroner's inquest was held on view of the body of a seaman belonging, to H.M.S. "Spartan," who being on shore-liberty, had indulged in immoderate quantities of intoxicating liquors, which caused his death.

   The drugged liquors sold to sailors at most of the low punch-houses about town are most deleterious, and some stop ought to be put to the pernicious practice.  We regret to observe the great and increasing number of these dens of infamy in almost every leading thoroughfare, and are at a  loss to conjecture upon what sufficient grounds they are licensed.  [continues.]


THE STRAITS TIMES, 12 December 1854 (4)


An instance of shocking murder occurred on Thursday last in the heart of the town, which up to the present moment has defied the efforts of the police to discover the perpetrators, or to account for the wanton murder of a quiet man, whose property remained untouched.  We annex an outline of the evidence adduced at the Coroner's Inquest.

   Deceased Satubah, alias Naik, a political convict from Bombay, aged about 50 years, lived in a shed in St. Andrew's church compound, and had charge of part of the furniture and materials of the church in his shed.  A light was burning in the shed every night.  A man named Gooroopah, (a convict) employed during the day at the Burial-ground on Government Hill, slept at night in the same shed with the deceased.  He quitted the hill nightly at gunfire (8 o'clock), and joined the deceased at the shed.  On Thursday evening he went as usual to the shed, and on reaching it called the deceased by name, (the lamp was burning as usual), but got n o answer; and on entering the shed noticed the deceased was not sleeping on his usual resting place, which was on two benches opposite the door, but on looking round noticed him lying on the plank floor a little to the left of the entrance, where he sometimes sat of an evening chewing secree.  He called to him, but getting no answer shook him by the leg; finding he did not move he became alarmed and ran to the Chapel (the present church) to call the church peon; the peon refused to come, but sent one of the convicts who were at the chapel, named Samtoo, with him.  On their return to the shed they took the lamp and examined Naik, who they found to be dead, with two wounds in the face which was covered with blood.  They immediately ran to the convict jail and gave information , and the jemedar and several others accompanied them back to the shed, when the jemedar picked up on the planks, about 5 or 6 feet from the body, the deceased's gold ring; in the shed were two boxes belonging to the deceased which had not been touched.  There was no weapon of any kind discovered.

   Dr. Cowpar stated, on examination, he found an incised wound under the chin, which only penetrated through the integuments, and had been inflicted, most probably, by a blunt knife or pointed piece of wood.  A wound on the lip which passed down to the jaw-bone, and two teeth were hanging loose in it; the jaw-bone from the centre along the left side was broken into a number of pieces, and several teeth were driven out.  The skull on the left side was found to be fractured and depressed to a considerable extent.  The two last mentioned in juries were most probably inflicted by a heavy blunt instrument, such as a block of wood or heavy stone.  The injury to the head was the immediate cause of death.

   The deceased bore a good character, as a quiet and inoffensive man, and is not known to have been on bad terms with any one.

   Previous to the two days preceding the murder two other Convicts, who are employed at the Burial ground during the day, used also to sleep in the shed, but they had been removed to the Chapel.

   The Inquest was held on Friday, and seven witnesses examined, and then adjourned till Monday the 18th instant, to enable the Police to make inquiries.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 20 February 1855 (4)

The following are the particulars of a shocking outrage and murder which took place at the Police Office on Thursday evening last:---

   The two Malays were in custody, on a charge of Piracy said to have been committed about three months ago off St. John's Island, by a attacking a Kling bum-boat and stealing the contents.  The injured party met them in town two or three days before the occurrence at the Police Office, and had them arrested.

   On Thursday evening between 5 and 6 o'clock in the evening all the prisoners were in the yard taking their dinner, the deceased peon Saumogam being in the yard with them; a hatchet was in the yard for cutting up the fire wood and when all had nearly done one of the Malays, Lacet, seized the axe and struck the peon with it and knocked him down, and then struck him again two or three times; the other prisoners seeing this tried to escape in the cells.  Lacet chased them, and succeeded in inflicting a slight injury on one of the Chinamen.  He did not follow them in to the cells but fell upon a little kling boy, who remained in the yard, knocked him down in to the gutter, and beat him with the head of the axe.  There was no other peon in the yard but Saumogam; but a duffadar and another peon were inside, and the first intimation they had of the disturbance was the Chinese prisoner a-rushing in from the yard to the cells, at the same time Inspector [H]ale's attention was also attracted by hearing the cries of the boy; he went at once to his window which looks into the yard, and saw the Malay Lacet beating the boy---who was laying in the gutter,---about the head with the axe, and the other Malay with a large stick there for fire wood; he immediately ran down stairs and entered the cells, and saw Lacet trying to get through the gate into the cells, but the duffadar and peon were at the gate and doing their best to keep him out; the little kling boy was then lying on the steps.  Inspector Hale watched his opportunity, opened the gate a little and dragged him in.  Lacet still made desperate attempts to get in, and struck at the police through the bars of the gate with the axe, so that they could not secure it.  A musket was brought, and the other Malay Awang rushed into the necessary at the other end of the yard, but the other one remained.  Hale fired at him, but missed him; he then returned to the peon and began to beat him again with the axe.  Hale got another loaded musket, and he and Constable Pennefather went out into the yard, the latter with a spear.  The Malay then left the peon and came up to them.  Hale presented the musket and snapped the trigger---but unfortunately - as is the case with flint locks - it did not go off; the Malay lifted the axe and dealt a severe blow at Hale, but the latter moved aside and the axe went deep into the ground.  Hale then threw down the musket, put down his head and run at him - with the intention of grappling with him; but before he could do this the other had raised the axe again, and was in the act of striking a second blow at him, when Constable Pennefather seeing what was about to happen, run him through with the spear, and he fell immediately, and then he was secured and disarmed.  Pennefather then went to the necessary to seize the other man; he resisted, and attempted to strike him, but Pennefather struck him first and knocked him down.

   The Malay and the Peon died shortly afterwards.  A Coroner's Inquest is now enquiring into the case.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 8 May 1855 (4)

On the evening of the 5th inst. the body of a male European was found drowned, and a Coroner's inquest has been held, but up to the present time then body has not been recognized.  The following marks were on the body:---

     J.M. on the right side of the chest,

     J.K. on the left ditto,

     E.K. on the left arm,

     B.H. on the right leg; also a tree on the left leg.

The body is supposed to be that of a Seaman who jumped off the fore-yard of the Rattler while the ship's Company were bathing, and who was not seen afterwards.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 22 May 1855 (4)


An Inquest was held on the 19th instant, on the body of a Female Malay; who had been some months in the service of Inspector Hale's family as Ayah, she was found by Mr. Hale lying in a state of insensibility on the floor of her room about 9 A.M., he called for assistance and had her placed on her bed, but she expired in a few minutes, before the arrival of aid.  On post mortem examination, Dr. Cowper ascertained the cause of death to have been Cerebral apoplexy: Verdict "Died by the Visitation of God."

   On the morning of the 20th Instant, an Inquest was held at Mr. Armstrong's Plantation, Siglap, on the remains of a Male Chinese, which were found at 9 o'clock the previous night on the beach, apparently washed up by the sea.  The body and limbs were reduced to little more than the bones, all of which appeared perfect with the exception of both feet which were wanting: The Jury returned a verdict of "Found dead but the body is too much decomposed for the Jury to ascertain the cause of death."

   Two Chinese coolies were killed by Tigers, on Sunday, whilst cutting gambier leaves, in the district of Buko kang.  One was seized about 7 A.M.; the other just after noon---the plantations on which these casualties occurred are at no great distance from each other.  In both cases the Tigers were seen carrying off their victims and the bodies were recovered; they were brought to Town yesterday morning, 21st May, and Inquests held, at both of which similar verdicts of "killed by a Tiger" were returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 5 June 1855 (4)


An Inquest was held at the Convict Jail on Wednesday last, the 30th ult., on the body of a female Bengal Convict, who had been murdered by a male Convict.  It appeared from the evidence that the females were employed mixing mortar within the jail compound, and at eleven o'clock were permitted, according to daily custom, to go to the well, also within the jail yard, to drink and refresh themselves; scarcely were they seated round the well, when the prisoner Cunniah was seen to emerge from a shed a few yards off, and walk deliberately up to deceased and stab her in several places.  The assassin whilst approaching his victim and during the perpetration of the deed, was silent, not even uttering an exclamation.  The Orderly who had charge of the females immediately seized the murdered, who threw the knife with which he had done his work of death, into the well.  The mortal wound was on the lower part of the right side of the neck, passing downwards and dividing the large vessels on the upper part of the chest.  Death must have been almost instantaneous, as the body was left on the very spot where the unfortunate woman had been sitting.  Jealousy or unrequited attachment appears to have been the instigating cause of the deliberate crime.

   Verdict "Wilful Murder against Cunniah," who has been committed to take his trial at the August Sessions.

   On the morning of the 1st Instant the body of a male Chinese, who had hanged himself, was brought to Town from Chan Kwee Kang, and an Inquest was held upon it the same day.  Deceased was a hawker of cakes and sweetmeats, but had not been able to follow his calling for several months, on account of lameness.  So far back as three months since he had expressed his intention to commit suicide, and the evening before he put his threat into execution, he told the man in whose house he passed the night that, as he could not work, had no money and his friends would not lend him more, he was tired of life and had better die.  He hung himself on the branch of a tree in the jungle.  Verdict "Felo de Se."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 12 June 1855 (4)


An Inquest was held yesterday morning on the body of a Chinese Sawyer, who was killed by a Tiger in the Pyoh Leber district, on Saturday afternoon.  As he and a companion were returning from work, about half-past four, deceased was seized and carried off in the presence of his friend, who immediately gave the alarm, but the body was not found until the middle of the day on Sunday.  Verdict---"Killed by a Tiger."  This took place within two miles of the Bukit Timah Road and about six miles from Town.

   A Male Chinese died on Balestier's Road shortly before day-light on Sunday morning, evidently from the effects of disease and want of proper nourishment.  Verdict---"Died from natural causes."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 19 June 1855 (4)


An Inquest was held on the 13th instant on the body of a Chinaman who had been killed by a tiger at Tek Ko Soi the previous day: verdict "killed by a tiger."

   At daylight on Friday last, the body of a Chinaman was found dead in the middle of the road near Campong Malacca, about two hundred yards from the Peninsular and Oriental Company's coal sheds on the Singapore River.  There was a small wound in the middle of the chest, which appears to have been the only external injury but from which the blood flowed copiously, as there was an extensive crimson stain on the road.  The body was stout and apparently that of a person in robust health---the clothes were ragged and led to the supposition that deceased was a Mendicant.  A Jury having viewed the body, the inquest was adjourned until 2 P.M., this day (19th June) to give the Police time to procure information.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 26 June 1855 (4)


The Inquest on the body of the Chinaman found dead on the mooning of the 15th Instant, on River Valley Road, was resumed on the 19th.  Although the evidence adduced, showed that the man had died by the hand of an assassin, there was no clue to fix the guilt on any one, and the jury returned a verdict of "wilful murder against some person or persons unknown."

   On Saturday last the body of a Chinaman was brought in a sampan by some of his friends to the beach at Teluk Ayer, and the Police were at once informed of the circumstance.  It appears that nineteen Macao people residing in Singapore went on a wood-cutting expedition, two months since, to one of then Malay States on the east side of the Peninsula, to a place they call Susee and which one of the witnesses thinks belongs to Tringanu.  One of the party was accidentally killed by the upsetting of their boat on Thursday, and four of his friends brought his body to Singapore for the satisfaction of all parties, and in order to give it a proper burial.  Verdict "Accidental Death."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 3 July 1855 (7)


On the 26th Ultimo the bodies of two Chinese wood-cutters were brought to Singapore from the neighbourhood of the Horsburgh Light House, where it was said they had been murdered by some Malays; but as a deposition was made before the Coroner to the effect that decomposition had so far advanced as to en danger the health of the Jury viewing them, no inquest could be held.

   On Saturday last an inquest was held on the body of a labourer who had been carried off by a Tiger in the district of Bukokang, about a mile and a half from the Police station.

   Also another yesterday on the body of a gambier planter who had been killed by a Tiger half a mile from the Bukokang station.  On both cases similar verdicts of "killed by a Tiger" were returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 10 July 1855 (7)


On the 8th inst., an Inquest was held on the body of a Chindese labourer who was killed by a tiger the previous day, whilst at work with four companions on a Gambier plantation in the district of Low Chu Kang, and a verdict of "killed by a tiger" was returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 18 July 1855 (7)


Stroke of the Sun.---An Inquest was held by adjournment on Wednesday last on the body of a Bengalee convict who died suddenly on the 14th instant whilst out with a party of forty labourers, employed on the road near Chau-chu-kang.  The cause of death being congestion of the brain apparently brought on by exposure of the head to the sun, the Jury returned a verdict of "Died by the visitation of God."

Chinese Brutality.---On the 22nd Inst.---An inquisition was taken on the body of a Chinaman who had died the previous night.  As a man named Patchery was walking along Hong kong street about half past nine on Saturday evening he saw three Chinese come out of house No. 15 with a man wrapped up in a mat; they laid him on a heap of chips and shavings which cover a vacant space nearby, and left him there without any covering.  The Police were informed of the circumstance, and on a Jemadar's going to the place, found the man still alive but insensible and in a dying state---he was put in a carriage with as little delay as possible but expired before reaching the hospital.  On a post mortem examination it appeared that he had died from diarrhoea consequent on a diseased state of the liver and bowels, and must have been long ill as he was very much emaciated.  Verdict "Died from natural causes."

Tigers Again.---On the same day an Inquest was held on a Gambier Planter who had been killed and carried off by a tiger whilst at work that morning on a Plantation in the Choa-chu-kang district, and within a mile of the Buko Kang Police station.---Verdict accordingly.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 28 August 1855 (4)


An Inquest was held on the 22nd Instant on the body of Seon Tee, who had committed suicide in the house No. 13 Kling street, by stabbing himself in the abdomen with a chisel.  The wounds were inflicted on the morning of the 13th Inst. and death ensued a week after.  Prior to his death, he made a declaration to Mr. Dunman avowing that the injuries were caused by his own hand and Dr. Little clearly proved that deceased was of unsound mind on the day when he committed the fatal deed.  Verdict "Seon Tee, whilst of unsound mind, inflicted wounds upon himself of which he has died."

   On the same day an Inquest was held on the body of a male Chinese who was found dead at the Christian Village near Bukit Timah.  He had hanged or strangled himself by a piece of tape, one end of which was tied round his neck and the other attached to a padlock on the door of an empty house.  When found the body was stretched out full length on the ground, the breast and face touching the earth; but the neck suspended by the tape.  The body was not claimed.  Verdict "Deceased committed suicide by hanging himself, whilst of unsound mind."

   On the 23rd a Kling man, name unknown, died in the verandah of house No. 61 South Bridge Road.  He appeared faint and ill when he seated himself in the verandah and soon after died.  The cause of death was diarrhoea and want.  Verdict "died from natural causes."

   On the 24th Inst. an Inquest was held at the Convict jail on one of the Transmarine convicts who had committed suicide the previous night by hanging himself to one of the bars of a window in an unoccupied room.  Verdict to the effect that he committed suicide whilst of unsound mind.

   On the 25th a Jury was assembled to enquire into the cause of death of a Chinese woman who died that morning under suspicious circumstances.  She with other members of the same household were seized with violent sickness and other symptoms of poisoning, after having eaten their mid-day meal on Friday; the others are in a convalescent state.  The inquest has been adjourned until this day to give time for investigation.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 11 September 1855 (4)


A daring act of piracy was committed in the old Old Strait on Friday morning last; the subjoined particulars of which have been collected from the evidence of eye witnesses who were re-examined on the Inquest held on Saturday on the body of Ah Kho, who was killed by the parties.  Early on Friday morning twelve Chinese, including the boatman, embarked in a sampan on a river in Johore, which they call Ly Am Tan, and crossed the Strait towards the island of Singapore.  As they were about to enter the Serangong river two long Malay sampans, covered with kajans, were seen lying off the end of a small island close to the embouchure of the river; their appearance did not excite alarm and the Chinese were about rowing past them, but when about forty fathoms off, the Malays all at once took to their oars and bore down on the Chinese boat, calling out "Tangkap."  The Chinese all jumped overboard and made for the mangroves, which were near, the long sampans following them, the crew hurling a shower of spears at them; one man was dangerously wounded and is now in hospital, but hopes are entertained of his recovery.  Ah Kho was however killed; he had just seized the roots of a mangrove tree when a Malay speared him in three different parts of the body, and it is supposed killed him at once as the body was afterwards found on the same place.  The pirates, whose numbers were estimated at twenty, carried off the passengers' baskets and bundles, together with then cloth sails of the Chinaman's boat;---before leaving they stove in then bottom of the boat which filled with water but was easily rendered serviceable by the fugitives when they ventured from their hiding places.  None of the witnesses recognized the Malays, and all declared that if they saw them again they could not swear to any of them; the boatman stated that he is in the habit of crossing the Strait very frequently and never was molested before, but he has heard of others having been attacked.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 18 September 1855 (4)


Late on the afternoon of Tuesday last information was brought to Town, that the bodies of four Chinese had been found on the beach near Buddu, and that they all bore several marks of wounds on different parts of the body.  The Coroner accompanied by the Assistant Residency Surgeon and a Jury started immediately in boats for the place, but owing to the darkness of the night were not able to keep together and consequently returned.  The bodies were viewed early next day, but were all in a very advanced state of decomposition; one however, having been recognised, an inquest was commenced, the evidence taken only proves the man's identity and that he left Campong Glam for Pulo Tikong on the 9th Inst., and never arrived there.---It is believed that the men were all murdered by Pirates off Tannah Merah [Besar?].  The Inquest stands adjourned to tomorrow.

   ON Friday last: Inquests were held on two Chinese labourers who were killed by Tigers in the Buko kang district.---Verdicts of "killed by a Tiger" were returned in both cases.

   A Burglary and Murder were committed in the village of Bukit Timah during Sunday night last.  The Assassin was seized with the knife in his hand and an Inquest is sitting on the body as we go to press.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 19 November 1855 (7)


On Wednesday last information was given at the Police Office, that a Burglary and Murder had been committed the night before in an Opium shop, near the head of the Sungie Tinggie.  At an early hour on Thursday morning the Coroner with a Jury, attended by the Deputy Superintendent of Police, and a European Constable proceeded to hold an Inquest on the body of the murdered man.  As there is no road to within many miles of Sungie Tinggie, the party proceeded by Sea to the mouth of the River, which is in the Old Strait, and about 20 miles from Singapore; they then ascended the river to the Kangka or landing place, near its head, the ascent with the flood tide took two hours and its descent with the ebb above hour and a half; the scene of the outrage was an atap hut about half a mile from the Kangka.

   Tio Kee Jiang, the principal witness on the Inquest, deposed to the effect, that he was an Opium vendor and lived in the house where the Inquisition was being held; that two nights ago the deceased came to his shop to smoke Opium, that they two, being the only parties in the house, went to sleep in the inner room; about 10 P.M. two strangers came and awoke witness as the wished to purchase Chandoo, with which they were supplied; witness seeing a third stranger in the outer room, awoke deceased whose name was Tio Ene Sun who went out and was immediately seized by the three men.  Four others at the same time rushed into the back room, broke open witness's box and took out of it Eleven dollars in silver, above seven dollars in copper, twelve dollars' worth of Chandoo, three Opium pipes, one pair of trousers and one jacket.  They then tied witness by his touchang or tail to one of the posts and lefty the house; witness resisted and was severely wounded in three places.  Soon after they had gone witness untied his hair, went to the outer room and there found Tio Ene Sun's lifeless body.  He then procured lights and assistance from a Banksal which is about 150 paces from his shop.  The house was dark when the Burglars came there, but they had lighted torches with them, and witness recognized three of them whose names and descriptions he gave as Tow Ah So, about 40 years of age, tall and thin; Tan Ah Kong, above 30 years of age, tall, stout and pockmarked; Tan Sy Seng, above 30 years of age, short and thin - these three men had lived in the neighbourhood two or three years ago and were well known to witness, but he does not know where they live now and has not seen them since they left the Sungie Tinggie c- the other four were not known to witness.

   The Jury found a verdict of "Willful Murder against Tow Ah So, Tan Ah Kong, Tan Ly Seng and others not known."

   A warrant was immediately issued for the apprehension of the three men above named, but as much time had unavoidably elapsed between the Murder and Inquest, and as the district is the most inaccessible in the Island little hopes can be entertained of bringing the criminals to justice.

   Since the above was set up in types, we hear that one man is in custody, who has been identified by the Keeper of the Opium shop as one of the party present when the foul murder was committed.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 18 December 1855 (4)

Return of Inquests for the previous 3 months, with Editorial comment on verdicts and on the Police and Government of India.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 15 January 1856 (5)


An adjourned inquest was held yesterday on the body of a Bombay Convict, which was found on Saturday evening last in a shallow stream which crosses the land formerly cultivated with sugar cane by Mr. Balestier; there was an extensive wound on the back of the head, which had probably caused death.  The body was recognised as that of a man who deserted from the jail on the 1st inst. and who has not been heard of since; verdict, "Wilful murder against some person or persons not known."

   An inquest was held yesterday morning at Campong Seranie, on the body of a Christian Chinese who had been killed by a Tiger on Thursday last in the Bukokang district.  The body was not found until Sunday morning.  Verdict "killed by a Tiger."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 19 February 1856 (4)


An Inquest was held on Tuesday last on the body of a female infant, which was found the previous evening floating on the sea near the fish market in Singapore Town.  Dr. Cowpar having ascertained that the Child had been prematurely born and that death had ensued in consequence, the Jury found a verdict that it had died from natural causes.  The body was not claimed.

   The same day an Inquest was held on a Kling Cart-man who was accidentally killed the day before by a falling of earth into a sand pit near Serangoon, in which deceased was working; about two cart loads of sand fell on the unfortunate man burying his body and lower extremities and causing internal injuries of which he died in a few hours.

   On Thursday morning last the corpse of a Chinaman was found in the Ellenborough Market.  Death had arisen from extensive disease of the heart and liver from which he must have suffered for some time; his friends admitted that they had turned him out of their house at the time of the new year, as they were afraid of his dying during the festivities and thereby bringing ill luck on them.

   The same morning before day-light as Constable Fisk was going his rounds, his attention was attracted to an old shed behind the Theatre where he found a Chinaman in a dying state and unable to speak - he expired before sunrise.  The cause of death was attributed to excessive discharge from putrid ulcers which nearly covered both legs and from a malignant skin disease by which his body was covered - similar verdicts of "died from natural causes" were returned in both the above cases.

   On Saturday morning last the Police were informed that a Chinaman was wounded and in a dying state on Mr. Carnie's plantation in the district of Claymore.  He was brought to Hospital in sensible and unable to speak, he died within two hours of admission.  The circumstances attending his death are under investigation and the Coroner's Inquest stands adjourned until eleven o'clock this morning.

   A Malayman [Semman] was murdered on Saturday night at Pulo Tikong Besar and his body brought to town by his Father yesterday, who has returned to Tikong this morning with a European constable to investigate the case; the stomach is ripped open and the intestines protruding.  Inquest adjourned until Saturday.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 26 February 1856 (4)


[This column slightly torn, parts missing.]

On Tuesday last the Inquest was resumed on the [body] of the male Chinese - name not known - who had been brought from Claymore [and died] in Hospital, as noticed in our last number.  It was given in evidence that deceased had been seized about half past seven on the evening of Friday the 15th instant, working amongst the nutmeg trees on Cairn Hill Plantation of which Mr. L. Nevin has charge.  The syce and one of the labourers seized the Chinaman and took him to the manager's house where he was detained until Mr. Nevin came home about ten o'clock - whilst there he attempted to escape two or three times, but was recaptured and the watchman, according to his own admission, gave him two blows on then arms and one on the back of the neck with his walking stick.  No blood was observed on his clothing when first he was brought to the house, but when Mr. Nevin first saw him the sleeve of his jacket was bloody and it was discovered that he had been wounded in the arm - he did not complain of any other injury or pain.  Mr. Nevin ordered the watchman to take the prisoner and give him in charge of the Police at Tanglin Station. --- The watchman and Chinese left the premises together and alone.  About eleven o'clock the jemedar at Tanglin hearing cries for assistance proceeded along the road as far as Mr. Mactaggart's gate and there found the Chinaman lying on the road insensible and speechless - the watchman still holding him by the tail.  The only  explanation the latter gives is that as they were going to the station the Chinaman threw himself on  the road and would not go further, so he (the watchman) called for the assistance of the Police.  The Chinaman was sent to Hospital and died two hours after being admitted, nit having been sensible after he was found on the road.   After death its was ascertained that he had been beaten on the breast and abdomen, from which blows he had received considerable intern al injury; the large vein in the right arm had been wounded; he had died from the combined effects of a multiplicity of injuries.  The jury found a verdict of "Wilful Murder against some person or persons not known."

   On Saturday the adjourned Inquest was resumed on the remains of a young Malay man named Semman who was murdered at Pulo Tikong Besar on Saturday night the 16th inst. deceased left his uncle's house at eight P.M. but his relations did not know where he purposed going; his lifeless body was found next morning lying in a plantation garden about a quarter of a mile from the Campong and some distance from any foot path.  He had died from the effects of a large wound, nearly two inches and a half in width entering the upper part of the belly in front, and passing through the body and out at the back; death must have been almost instantaneous; the weapon with which the injury was inflicted must have been two edged and nearly the same width throughout, it is possible that it may have been done by a spear and very probably that deceased was lying on his back at the time. No clue has been obtained to discover the perpetrator of the deed and suspicion does not rest on any one.  Verdict "Wilful Murder against some person or persons not known."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 18 March 1856 (4)


An Inquest was held on Saturday last on the body of a Chinaman who died the previous night of apoplexy: Verdict "Died by the visitation of God."

   On Friday night last about ten o'clock a Chinese boat was attacked off Tannah Merah Besar by Malay pirates, who boarded before the Chinese were aware of their approach.  One unfortunate man named Wong Ah Hin was killed by the assailants and the other three thrown overboard---one of them managed to swim ashore and the other two clung to a rope, which happened to be attached to the rudder of their boat.  The Malays removed every thing worth taking from the Tonkang into their Sampan and they proceeded in the direction of Rhio.  The plunder consisted of five bags of rice, two loaded muskets, a large cloth sail, a Hawser, Cooking Utensils and clothing.  None of the men can be identified and the stolen property was not marked.  At an adjourned inquest, concluded yesterday afternoon, an open verdict of Wilful Murder against some person or persons not known was returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 1 April 1856 (5)


Drowned.---On Wednesday last an inquest was held on view of the body of a Chinaman who had been drowned near the Old market, the previous day.  Whilst endeavouring to recover one of his oars, which had slipped from his hand, he overbalanced himself and fell into the sea.  Verdict "Accidentally drowned."

Murder and Robbery Afloat.---On Thursday a Jury was empannelled to inquire into the cause of death of one Kee Ah Hio, who had died in hospital the night before.  From the evidence it appeared that deceased was on his way from Pulo Dammar to Campong Glam in his own boat, but having four passengers and about two piculs of black pepper in the boat.  About 2 o'clock in the morning of the 26th ult., the party were crossing the Bay which lies between the Eastern entrance to New Harbour and the Rocky Point of Tanjong Paggar, and about five hundred paces from shore---when a long sampan, manned by six Malay Rowers and a steersman, came along side of the Chinese boat.  The robbers first threw a shower of stones and then handled their spears.  Ah Hio, who was rowing at the time, received a spear wound in the abdomen; the other Chinese jumped into the sea and swam a few fathoms until they found they were in shallow water, where they remained until the robbers left the boat.  One witness stated "when I was in the water one of the Malays pulled me up by the touchong (tail), felt about my body and robbed me of ten dollars which were in my waist belt."  The pepper was also stolen.  The Malays came from shore and went away in the direction of New Harbour: when they left the four Chinamen got into their boat again and found deceased lying wounded---They came on to the Old market, and Ah Hio was taken to hospital, where he died of his wounds in 24 hours.  Verdict "Wilful  Murder against some person or persons not known."

Death by a Tiger.---The same day an Inquest was held on the body of a Chinese wood-cutter who was killed the night before at Pulo Ubin.  It appeared that the party, to which deceased belonged, lived in a Bangsal, which was not quite finished; it was thatched and the sticks to form the walls were tied together, but not covered with attaps, and there was not a door.  The chief apartment was a loft raised about ten feet from the ground: sixteen men were sleeping in the loft when the tiger entered either by the step ladder or by a bound from an adjoining bank.  He seized the third man from the door and was leaving the Bangsal with him in his fangs, when, frightened by the other wood-cutters, he dropped his prey, but the poor man was lifeless.  The animal returned again in a couple of hours, but was scared away by a discharge of fire-works.  Probably deceased was sitting up on his bed at the time as the head was separated from the spine as if by a smart blow on the back of the head.  There were several lacerated wounds on the neck which had evidently been inflicted by a large animal.  Verdict "Killed by a tiger."

Another death by a Tiger.---On Sunday morning an Inquest was held at the Campong Krabow Station on the remains of a Hylam cooly who had been killed by a Tiger at Seng Pang Kang on Friday morning: Verdict "killed by a Tiger."

Death by Apoplexy.---An adjourned Inquest was concluded yesterday on a Transmarine Convict who died suddenly on Saturday morning.  He had been long suffering from disease of the heart and liver, but the proximate cause of death was apoplexy: verdict "Died by the visitation of God."

Death by Poisoning.---An Inquest was commenced yesterday and adjourned until Wednesday, on the body of Malay woman who is supposed to have taken poison; it is said that her husband deserted her three days ago, taking with him between $300 and $400 worth of jewelry and other property.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 9 April 1856 (4)


An Inquest was held on Wednesday last on the body of a Chinese labourer, who had been killed by a tiger two days previous in the District of Tuoh Pyoh, and about two miles from the Wyang Satu Police Station on the Bukit Timah Road.  Verdict.---Killed by a Tiger.



THE STRAITS TIMES, 6 May 1856 (4)


An Inquest was held on Wednesday morning last on the body of a Chinese wood-cutter, who had been killed at Pulo Passar, near Rhio by the falling of a tree; his friends brought the corpse to Singapore for interment.  Verdict "Accidental Death."

   An agricultural labourer was killed by a  tiger, in the district of Buko Kang on Sunday morning last.  


THE STRAITS TIMES, 20 May 1856 (5)


On Monday the 12th Inst. an Inquest was held on the body of a Javanese sailor named Seeden, whose body was brought to Singapore the previous day, in the schooner Sultan, on board which vessel he was one of the steersmen.  On the Thursday morning previous a dispute arose between the Captain and deceased as to the manner in which he was cleaning the compass, his Commander ordered him to go forward which he demurred to; a scuffle followed, the two fell on the deck together and it was stated by the only man who witnessed the scene, that the Captain beat his opponent whilst down.  Seeden died in a few minutes---the crew brought his body to Singapore and placed the Captain in restraint in order that the matter might be investigated.  The Coroner's Jury returned a verdict of "Justifiable homicide." But the Captain has since been committed by the Sitting magistrate on a charge of Manslaughter.

   As Police Peon Kursamy was on duty near the Chinese grave yard at the junction of South Bridge and Tanjong Paggar Roads at eleven o'clock on the night of the 13th inst. he saw a Chinaman go into the burial ground with a large bundle of something tied up in a kajang.  The Peon immediately followed when the Chinaman flung his load on the ground and the officer heard the voices of a human being in the kajang.  He seized the bearer of the load and on searching the bundle found that it contained a male Chinese with his legs bent up and tied on his chest---Assistance being procured both parties were taken to the Central Station.  The sufferer, who gave his name as Neo Cheah, was in a very exhausted state and not able to give much account of himself beyond saying that he had been very ill---that the prisoner Neo Yeah had tied him up in the mat under the pretence of taking him to the hospital.  The prisoner said he had brought the sick man \there because they had no room for him in their house---Neo Cheah was taken to Hospital and put on proper diet and treatment but he expired on the evening of the 10th.  An Inquest was held on his body next day by an European jury who believing that his death had been hastened by the treatment he that night received, returned a verdict of "Manslaughter against Neo Yeah" who was committed to jail on the charge.

   On Saturday an Inquest was held on the body of a Chinese sawyer who was killed by a tiger about three miles from Bukit Timah, on Thursday last.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 27 May 1856 (5)


Tuesday last the Coroner held an Inquest on the body of the late Mr. William Stirling, who died suddenly the night before at his apartments in the London Hotel.  Death having been caused by effusion of blood into the base of the brain, the Jury returned a verdict of "Died by the Visitation of God."

   On Tuesday last the body of a male Infant was found in the Singapore River near North Boat Quay, but as the child had been born dead no inquest was held.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 17 June 1856 (5)


On Friday last an Inquest was held on the body of a Chinaman who had died from disease of the bowels, and whose corpse was found on what was formerly Mr. Balestier's sugar plantation on the Serangoon Road.

   The same day an Inquest was held on the remains of an aged female Malay, who was known to have lived for some time on the charity of the people frequently the Rochore market; she had died from disease and starvation, her body was found on the beach at Campong Glam.  In both the cases verdicts of "Died from natural causes" were returned and neither body was recognized.

   On the afternoon of the 30th of last month, as a party of sepoys were going to the Races a Private of the 38th Regiment was knocked down and ran over by a hack carriage which was being driven at a violent pace along the Selegie Road; he was taken to the Regimental Hospital where he died on Sunday morning last.  An Inquest was held yesterday and the Jury found a verdict of "Manslaughter against Mustan," the syce, who was driving the carriage which caused the sepoy's death, - and he was committed to Jail to stand his trial at the next Session.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 1 July 1856 (5)


An Inquest was held on Wednesday last, on the body of a respectably dressed Male Chinese, which was found drowned and lying in the mud, close to the Government Coal sheds.  Seven dollars were found in a piece of cloth tied round the waist.  The body was not recognised.  Verdict "found drowned."

   The body of a Chinaman was found on Thursday morning last by the Peon on duty at the Bukit Passoo end of New Bridge Road; he had died from old standing ulcers and want of proper nourishment.  An Inquest was held on the body and a verdict of "Died from natural causes" was returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 26 August 1856 (5)


On Wednesday, the 20th instant an Inquest was held on the body of a Chinese Agricultural Labourer, who had been killed by a Tiger the day before, whilst gathering Gambier leaves on a plantation about four miles from the village of Bukit Timah.

   The same afternoon an inquiry was instituted by the Coroner into the cause of death of a Macao man, whose body was found in the Rochore swamp.  Proof was given that he had died from the effects of disease; that the man in whose house he lodged had given the body to two men, who undertook to bury it for $1.20, which sum was paid, but the body was thrown by them into the swamp.  This is a misdemeanour which is becoming very frequent.

   The same day an Inquest was commenced and brought to a close by adjournment on Saturday, with a view to ascertain the cause of death of a Javanese female, who had died under sudden and peculiar circumstances.  On the 18th inst. she left the house of the man with whom she cohabited, and who, as was proved on the inquest, had treated her with harshness for some time; she proceeded to her sister's house at Tanjong Pagar where she arrived in a state of insensibility and died in nine or ten hours.  The cause of death was a diseased state of the brain; which might have been brought on by habitual intemperance.  The Jury found that "Deceased died from Natural Causes."

   YESTERDAY morning at five o'clock a Chinaman was detected in the act of stealing sweet potatoes in a vegetable garden at Tuoh Pyoh; he ran off into the adjoining swamp and on being followed by four men he turned round and stabbed one of them in the chest - the wounded man died in a few minutes and the assassin was secured.  An Inquest was held on the body yesterday afternoon, but we were unable to ascertain the verdict before going to press.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 2 September 1856 (4)


In our last issue we noticed the death of a Chinaman who had been killed on the morning of the 25th ultimo, whilst trying to seize a man suspected of having just stolen some sweet potatoes in Low Jun Tek's plantation at Tuoh Pyoh.  The Inquest was concluded on Tuesday afternoon, and the Jury found a verdict of "Manslaughter against Ho Pay," who was at once committed to Jail, and will be tried for the offence at the next Criminal Sessions.

   ON Saturday an inquiry was instituted before the Coroner and an European Jury, into the cause of death of a Chinese planter who was robbed and severely wounded in his bankshall at Gu Ty Wan on the 28th ultimo.  Two Chinese witnesses were examined but there were considerable discrepancies between their respective statements made at the Inquest, and the story related by bone of them to the Police Jemadar, was not in accordance with his information given before the Coroner.  Jemadar Amier deposed that he was called upon on the afternoon of the 28th ultimo by one of the witnesses to go to the bankshall of Chiam Ah Yah, whom he found dangerously wounded with two gushes of about nine inches in length across his belly, that a portion of the stomach and bowels protruded through the wounds---the Jemadar bound up the wound and had the man conveyed to the hospital in Singapore, where he died on the afternoon of the 29th from inflammation of the bowels in consequence of those wounds.  The deceased told the Jemadar that he had twenty dollars buried in a jar in the floor under his bed---that on the morning of the 28th, two of his partners came into his room and demanded his money, that he told them where it was and one of them scratched away the earth and took the $20 whilst the other cut him, saying, that "dead men tell no tales."  The deceased made a similar deposition in hospital to Mr. Dunman in the middle of Thursday night---but these statements were not made under circumstances which would warrant their being received as evidence in criminating the parties named.  The four partners and five of the coolies who lived at the bankshall have absconded, deserting a property said to be worth more than a thousand dollars.  Verdict "Wilful Murder against some person or persons not known."

   YESTERDAY morning a human body, in a very advanced state of decomposition, was washed upon the Beach at Campong Glam.  The hands were tied together and the cord was passed twice round the neck and knotted; the legs were tied together with a piece of cloth.  From these appearances there is reason to believe that deceased came to his death by unfair means, but the body was too far gone and the features so much obliterated as to render an Inquest unnecessary.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 30 September 1856 (4)


On Friday last an Inquest was held on the body of a Chinese shop-keeper, who lived at Tanjong Katong, and who met his death the day before under the following sudden and melancholy circumstances:---

   About 10 in the morning an African Arab went into the shop where deceased Yap Chee was serving; the Arab took hold of an areca nut, which he apparently wanted to take away without paying for, the Chinese dealer tried to repossess himself of the areca nut, a scuffle and fight ensued; each party struck the other with fists and eventually the Chinaman fell.  This affray was witnessed by one individual, who was passing and who immediately ran to assist the fallen man, who expired in a short space of time.  The Arab did not attempt to run away, but remained quietly in the neighbourhood until arrested by the Police, to whom he confessed that he had pushed the Chinaman until he fell, but declared that he had not struck him.  There was a mark as of a blow from a fist and also an abrasion of the skin over the seventh and eighth ribs on the left side of deceased - directly under these marks the spleen was found to be ruptured in two places, and those ruptures had been the immediate cause of death.  A verdict of Manslaughter was found against the Arab, who had been committed to Jail to stand his trial for the offence at the next Criminal Sessions.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 21 October 1856 (5)


An Inquest was held on Thursday morning last at Campong Seranie, near Bukit Timah, on the body of a Chinese Pauper, who had committed suicide the day before, by hanging himself in the Hospital attached to the Rochore Catholic Mission.

   An adjourned Inquest was concluded on Thursday, the 16th inst., on a Chinaman who was drowned in the Kallang river, on Saturday morning, the 11th Inst.  The occurrence took place close to the Powder Magazine at Pankalang-padang and was witnessed by one of the Sepoy guard and others who saw the deceased flying from two Revenue officers, who pursued him into the river, but were not able to capture him; for as quickly as the officers came within reach of the fugitive, he dived to avoid them, and it is supposed got into too strong a current and was drowned.  No blame attached to the officers, and the jury returned a special verdict that "Deceased was drowned whilst endeavouring to escape from the Revenue officers who were endeavouring to arrest him in a lawful and proper manner."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 10 February 1857 (2)

On Wednesday last at 9 P.M. when Police Inspector Pennefather, Sergeant Hallnan and three police peons were going their rounds, they found at Teluk Ayer, near the Mosque, the road completely occupied by flags, plantain trees, and other materials belonging to the Mahomedan boatmen and orhers, who had received permission to celebrate a festival at the Teluk Ayer Mosque.  [assault on Police; shots fired both sides, 1 killed 5 wounded of whom 3 died later.] Inquest to be held.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 27 March 1858 (2)

BOON WAN, a Chinese prisoner on board the Hooghly from Pinang, late a clerk in the employ of Messrs. Campbell & Co., of Singapore, charged with Embezzlement, on the passage down jumped overboard on the morning of the 21st instant at 6 A.M.; he managed to slip the handcuffs, which secured him to the ring-bolt of the stern although they fitted him tight.  The steamer was stopped for half an hour, the boat was lowered and a search made but without effect - the prisoner was drowned.


About 5 A.M. on Sunday, the 21st instant, an alarm was given by some one, that a Mongoose was taking fowls from under a house in Campong Bugis; the inmates went out to see what was the matter, but finding all right they returned into their house, when they were followed and attacked by a Bugis man, who killed two men on the spot, Sunna Leah, and [?]uka, and wounded another so dangerously that he died about 2 P.M. the same day at the Hospital; he also thrust a spear through the hand of a woman who endeavoured to save her husband; after which, the Amokee ran out and entered another house, about 100 yards off, and there stabbed a woman named Aleemah quite through the right thigh in two places, and in the right breast; this poor woman, who was enceinte, died before she could be conveyed to the Hospital; the wretch was however secured by a Bugis man named Mungjahoh, the son of the above female, and was detained until the Police arrived.  The prisoner, who said his name was Babatong, but is not known to any one in the neighbourhood, was cut severely on the arm and chest. - It is said that Mungjahoh was found sucking the blood from the flowing wounds of the prisoner, as he said, to cool his anger and begged that the prisoner might be given up to them that they might kill him and eat his heart to satisfy their revenge; a great many of the Bugis in the Campong turned out with arms and had the Inspector not arrived when he did, it is probable they would have rescued the prisoner from the native police and killed him.  The prisoner was sent to the Hospital.  The weapons, 3 spears and a creese [kris], with which he committed these four shocking murders, were covered with blood, and the blades bent nearly double, having been apparently thrust with great force against some hard substance.  The prisoner, who is a powerful young man, said the persons whom he wounded wanted to rob him.

   This is the worst case of this kind that has happened for several years.


   AN Inquest was held at 9 A.M. on Monday by J. D. Vaughan, Esq., Deputy Coroner, upon the bodies of the 3 men and 1 woman killed by the Amokee Babatong on Sunday morning, and a verdict of Wilful Murder returned against Babatong.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 24 July 1858 (3)


Very faint, to be completed.  Murder of Reddee Sanee.

At 10 a.m. the 16th instant, the dead body of a Chinaman was found floating in the Rochore Canal; there were no marks of violence.  The Coroner directed the body to be buried.

   At 4 a.m. same day, a Macao Chinese named Lee Ah Lim, alias Lee Ah Leong, was found hanging by the neck from the beam of one of the Sawyer's sheds bordering on the Rochore Canal; an inquest was held at 4 p.m. the 17th instant, and a verdict of temporary insanity returned.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 7 August 1858 (4)


An Inquest was held at the Coroner's Office on Thursday last, the 5th August, on view of the body of a Chinaman, who was killed at Boo-ko-Kang, (Johore,) by the fall of a tree upon him.  The body was brought into town on the 5th instant and was ordered to be buried by the Coroner.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 2 October 1858 (2)

A Coroner's Inquest was held on Monday last, the 27th Sept. at 3 P.M., on view of the body of a Chinese named Tan Beng Swee, who died while in the Police Hospital on Sunday morning last, from injuries received by being knocked down by a carriage on the 22nd September in South Bridge Road; the jury men returned a Verdict of "Accidental Death."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 23 October 1858 (2)

A Coroner's Inquest was held on Saturday last, the 16th instant, on view of the body of a Chinaman, who was discovered early that morning, hanging by his neck, from one of the lower branches of a tree, nearly opposite the Post Office, between the Dalhousie Monument and the Landing Place.  It appears that the body was first discovered about half past six o'clock A.M. by Mr. Anthoine Berthier, Police Inspector, who immediately informed Mr. C. B. Plunkett, the Deputy Commissioner of Police; the body was taken down later in the morning and sent to the dead house.  It is supposed that the deceased committed suicide; there were no marks of violence upon the person of the Chinaman, nor was his dress at all disarranged; no marks of footsteps were found near or around the spot.  A Coroner's Jury was called at 3 P.M. and they returned a Verdict of "FOUND DEAD."

[First full reports of cases at the Police Office, full detail.]


THE STRAITS TIMES, 31 December 1858 (2)

An Inquest was held by the Coroner, at his office on Thursday week, at 3 P.M., on view of the body of the Bugis Wah Tarinday; and the jury, after deliberating, recorded a Verdict of "Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 26 February 1859 (3)



On Tuesday afternoon a Coroner's Inquest was held on view of the body of a Kling man, who, while attending the Supreme Court as a witness was suddenly attacked by sickness, and almost immediately expired.  It appears from the examination made by the Coroner's Surgeon, that the deceased was suffering from disease of the brain, and the Jury gave a verdict accordingly.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 12 March 1859 (3)


An Inquest was held by the Coroner during last week, on view of the body of a Chinaman, named Tan Ah Pow, who was stabbed during the night of the 28th February, in a house in South Bridge Road.  It appears that at 10 P.M., on the night in question, a Chinaman, went to the Police Office, and stated that another Chinaman had been wounded, in a house at the end of South Bridge Road, near the wells.  The Police accordingly procedeed to the spot and on reaching the house, they observed the deceased lying on his back, and on furthner scrutiny, discovered a wound about half an inch in length in the region of the epigastrio, with a slight discharge of blood; his face was pale, his eyes closed, and his body partially cold.

   About 11 o'clock at night he was taken to the Police Office and from thence conveyed to the Hospital, where he died an hour afterwards.

   When at the Hospital, he stated that he had been stabbed by one Tan Keet, and a diligent search is being made for the said Chinaman.  The Jury after due consideration, recorded a Verdict of "Wilful murder against the said Tan Keet."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 23 April 1859 (3)


On Friday last, the 14th Instant, at noon, an Inquest was held by the Coroner on view of the body of a Chinaman, who had been discovered on the previous evening, floating near the shore, opposite the Singapore Institution, and marks of violence were observed on the body; a rope was also tied round the man's neck.  The Inquest was adjourned until 12 o'clock next day for the evidence of Dr. Cowpar, and the Jury after consideration, recorded a Verdict of "Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown;" but it was the opinion of the Jurymen that the act had not been committed within the jurisdiction of this port.


The Coroner held an Inquest, on Friday last, the 15th Instant, on view of the body of a Lascar, named Kassim, who had been taken to the Police Office at 5 o'clock, on the previous evening.  It appears that deceased was employed on board of the British brig Julie, lying at anchor at this port, and whilst at work aloft in the rigging, he accidentally fell and was killed.  The Jury recorded a Verdict of "Accidental Dearth."


On Sunday last, the 16th Instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner, on view of the body of a Chinaman who had been found hanged in a Bangsal, in the Rochore District, for the purpose of instituting an enquiry as to the manner in which he had met his death, and the following Verdict was recorded by the Jury, viz., "Committed suicide."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 14 May 1859 (4)


With respect to the Inquest, held by the Coroner on Friday last, (See Straits Tines 7th Inst.) on view of the body of Dhumker, the convict, who was murdered the previous day at Sirangoon, the Jury recorded a verdict of "Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown."


On Saturday last, the 7th Instant, an Inquest, was held by the Coroner on view of the body of a Chinaman, who had been killed by a tiger, in the country, and the Jury recorded a verdict of "killed by a Tiger."


On Wednesday last, the 11th Instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner at 2 P.M., on view of the body of a Burmese Convict, named Anadrum, who had committed suicide on the previous evening, in the premises of the Police Hospital; the Inquest was adjourned until noon on the following day.

   On Thursday last, the 12th Instant, the adjourned Inquest, on view of the body of the Burmese Convict, named Anadrum, was resumed, and the following Verdict was returned by the Jury, "Found Hanged."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 21 May 1859 (3)


On Monday last, the 16th Instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner, at his Office at 2 P.M., on view of the body of an aged Chinaman, (name unknown) who died from over exertion.  It appears that Inspector Fish observed two Chinese, engaged in cock-fighting in New Bridge Road, and on being perceived the aged Chinaman fled; on running along the side of a hill in that neighbourhood, he suddenly fell down, and died during his removal to the Police Office; one of his lungs was quite gone, and the other partly so.  The Jury, after due consideration, recorded the following Verdict, viz:---"Died by the Visitation of God."


On Thursday last, the 19th Instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner, at his Office, at 3 P.M., on view of the body of a young China boy, name unknown, who unfortunately was drowned whilst bathing in the sea, near the steps, jutting out between Dr. Little's and Messrs. Cussetjee & Co.'s godown; the Jury, after due deliberation, recorded a Verdict of "Accidentally Drowned."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 11 June 1859 (4)


On Saturday last, the 4th Instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner, on view of the body of a Police Jemadar, named Dondong, who was killed at 5 o'clock on the morning of that day, whilst attacking two piratical prahus.  From the report of Inspector Berthier, of Rochore Station, we have obtained the following particulars, regarding the affair, viz., that at 5 A.M. whilst Jemadar Dondong, of Buddoo Police Station, was on duty afloat, as usual, cruizing about that neighbourhood, accompanied by six peons, he heard the cries of a Chinaman, in a sampan, when near Tanjong Merah Besar, and on approaching close to the boat, the Chinese stated that he had been boarded by a number of Malays, in two sampans, and plundered of all his goods, even the boat's sails and oars.  Jemadar Dondong, observing the two sampans in question pulling away towards the Rhio Straits, gave chase, and at 8 o'clock, he being near them, called out to the pirates to stop; they took no notice of this demand, and the Jemadar fired at them four times, but hit no one; the pirates now faced the Police boat, and the Jemadar ordered his men to pull stoutly towards the pirates; on nearing, they simultaneously commenced the attack.  In one of the piratical sampans there were seven and in the other nine men; after a desperate struggle the Jemadar and three peons were killed, the rest of the peons jumped overboard ands swam ashore.  The pirate plundered the Police boat of all its contents and swamped it; they then pulled away in the direction of the islands opposite to Singapore.  The body of the Jemadar was recovered, and buried with due honors.  Jemadar Dondong had been sixteen years in the Police Force, and has left a wife and child; he was noted for his bravery on all occasions, and was always commended for his good conduct and behaviour.

   The Inquest was adjourned until Monday for further evidence, when the Jury recorded a Verdict of "Wilful murder against some person or persons unknown."


   The dead body of a Chinaman, (name unknown) was discovered on Friday last, near the South Battery on Government Hill, but no inquest was held, and the body was ordered to be buried.


THE STRAITS TIMES, 24 September1859 (4)



At 12 o'clock on the night of Wednesday last, the 21st instant, the dead body of a Chinaman, named Goh aha Who, was sent in to the Campong Krabow Police Station, from a place in the country, called Chew Chin Kong, having, it was reported, been killed by a tiger; the body was examined by Sergeant Graham, who found that the deceased's right leg had been eaten off, and his neck was broken, there being seven scratches on the back part of it.  It was stated that the deceased was cutting grass together with two fellow countrymen, close to the bangsal of a Chinaman, named Koh ah Song, when the tiger sprang upon the body of the deceased, and carried it away into the jungle; the body was discovered at 4 o'clock in the evening.

   The Coroner held an Inquest upon the body of the deceased at 2 o'clock on Thursday afternoon, and the Jury, after duly investigating the case, recorded a Verdict of "killed by a Tiger."



THE STRAITS TIMES, 15 October  1859 (3)



On Friday week the 7th instant, at 5 A.M., two Chinese Tongkongs, containing 7 Chinamen, left this for the purpose of proceeding to Sekoodie with lime, &c., but when off Soongey Pandan, on the other side of Pulo Dammar, at about 6 P.M., they were chased by two Malay Sampans with seven men in each, who boarded one of the Tongkongs and stabbed a Chinaman, named Tan Cheong, with a Nebong spear, and he fell into the sea; the pirates then speared another Chinaman, named Ang Hoon, through the body, and he expired immediately after in the Tongkong; another Chinese, named Le Pooh, was stabbed most dangerously on the left side, and so much so, that but faint hopes are entertained for his recovery.  The fourth Chinaman, named Tan Hee, who concealed himself behind the rudder, received only a slight wound on the shoulder.  The above four men were in one Tongkang, and in the other there were three men, who were not injured. 

   The pirates carried away with them the following property, belonging to the complainant's Tongkang, viz., 30 catties Rice, 120 cents, 1 Iron boiler, 3 Sarongs, 4 Bajoos, 4 trowsers, and a Knife; what property was taken out of the other Tongkang is not known as yet, because the Tongkang has not reached Singapore.

   After the pirates left, Tan Hee gave information to H. H. the Tomongong, who sent the intelligence to the Police authorities; it is generally believed that the pirates commit their depredations near the islands close to Tullok Blangah.  The dead body of Ang Hoo was sent to the dead house, and an Inquest was held, on view of the body, by the Coroner at 2 P.M. on Saturday last; the Inquest was adjourned.


The inquest on view of the body of Ang Hoon, which was adjourned on Saturday last until the 10th instant, was renewed on Monday.  It appears that on Friday evening, several parties were dispatched in search of the pirates who had attacked the deceased and plundered his goods.  Mr. C. B. Plunkett, the Deputy Commissioner of Police, started from this on the afternoon of Friday in a boat, and proceeded to search the following places, viz., Tanjong Pengiroh, Pulo Sunaja, Pulo Bokong, and Pulo Simna, but found no scent of the marauders nor the least clue to the property.  He then steered towards Pulo Piloa Ayam (near Pulo Sambo) and on his approach he observed two suspicions looking craft, covered over with kadjang, at anchor near the island, but on seeing the police boat nearing them, they rowed away with all speed; the Police gave chase and overtook them in a quarter of an hour.  The prates pulled into a little bay, under protection of a considerable number of Malay boats, but they offered no resistance; the Police took the piratical boats, and the individuals therein consisting of 3 man, 1 boy, and several women and children.  The Chinaman, named Tan Hee, (who went to the Police Office, and on Friday last and reported the affair) was taken in the Police boat, together with Mr. Plunkett, so as to enable the latter gentleman to seize the pirates, who could be recognized by the complainant.

   The Police boat then returned on her way to Singapore with the pirates and their two prahus in tow, and arrived here on Saturday evening.  Tan Hee most positively stated that he recognized four of the pirates amongst the prisoners, one, named Pahang, he identified as the man who attacked him, when off Pulo Dammar, and that being wounded, he (the complainant) pretended to have been killed; he also deposed that a Malay man, named Gado, and another, named Gantee or Segantee, both came on board his Tongkang off Pulo Dammar, and the first one speared Tan Cheng (who fell into the sea and expired) and the other one murdered Ang Hoon.  The complainant also recognized the boy, as having jumped overboard the Tongkang, armed with a spear, but he did not observe whether the lad did attack any one, he (Pan Hee) having then hid himself behind the rudder.  The evidence given by the complainant was clear and decisive, and the Jury, after giving the case the due consideration which it deserved, recorded a Verdict of "Wilful Murder against Pahang, Gado, Gantee, and the boy."


Tan Lye Pooh was conveyed to the Police Hospital at 4 P.M. on the 7th last.

   WE have been informed that the Chinaman named Lee Pooh, who was most dangerously stabbed on the left side by Malay pirates on Thursday last, expired on Sunday, at the Police Hospital.


On Monday last, the 10th instant, an Inquest was held by the Coroner on view of the body of a Chinaman, named Lee Pooh Hoo, who was stabbed on Friday last when off Sungie Pandan, by pirates, who wounded him so severely in the left side that he subsequently died in the Hospital from the effects of the stabs.  The Inquest was adjourned until the following day.  The Jury, after due consideration, recorded the following Verdict viz., "Wilful murder against Pahang, Gado, Segantie, and Sallee."


On Monday last, an Inquest was held on view of the body of a Kling, who was run over on Sunday last, by a palanquin, and died shortly after.  The Inquest was adjourned by the Coroner until another day, owing to the absence of witnesses, and the palanquin not being recognised.

[On Sunday last, the 10th instant, a Kling man was run over by a carriage, and he expired shortly after.  The body was removed to the dead house, and an inquest will be held by the Coroner this day.]


A most shocking and startling murder was committed on Monday night, on the person of a Bengallee, who was a farrier by trade, and who had been a convict before.  Suspicion rests upon a certain woman, who resided with him, and also upon the persons of some convicts.  Jealousy or revenge appear to have been the motive for this dark and dreadful deed,


An Inquest was held on Wednesday last, on view of the body of a Bengallee, named Rahim Bakus, who was most brutally murdered on the night of Monday last, in his house in Bencoolen Street.  The Coroner adjourned the Inquest for one week, owing to the absence of witnesses, and for further evidence.


On Saturday last at 3 A.M. a Chinese female, residing in Upper Hokien Street, destroyed herself by swallowing a quantity of Chandoo.  The cause of this rash act is attributed to a quarrel which occurred between her and her paramour, named Tan Swee Nio.  An Inquest was held by the Coroner at 4 P.M. on same day, on the view of the body of the above female, and the jury, after due consideration, recorded, a verdict of "Felo-de-se."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 22 October 1859 (3)


MONDAY'S Police Sheet ... A Bengallee, named Pattan, charged with wilful murder, was remanded until Thursday.

   We have been given to understand that the alleged murdered of the convict Rahim Bakus was apprehended by the Police on Sunday last, owing to the woman concerned in the affair turning Queen's evidence.  The accused is a Bengallee, and a time expired convict.  The Coroner will have him under examination, and he will then probably be committed for trial.


On Saturday, the 15th Instant, an Inquest was held b y the Coroner, at noon, on view of the body of a Chinese, named Go Kok Soon, a Gambier planter, and an aged man; he died at 2 o'clock on the morning of the previous day.  Suspicion rested upon the surviving partner of the deceased, but there being no foundation for these surmises, the Jury recorded the following Verdict, viz., "Died from Natural Causes."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 19 November 1859 (3)


AN Inquest was held by the Coroner on Saturday last, on view of the body of a convict, named Dammar, who was supposed to have been poisoned in the Convict Lines.  It appears the man was in the habit of receiving his victuals from a woman living outside of the Lines, and on the 12th instant the food was brought as usual by the female; he, together with two others, partook of the food, and shortly afterwards the above convict died.  His two companions were very ill.  The Doctor examined the body of the deceased, and we hear that he reported having discovered arsenic.  The Inquest was adjourned until Monday, when it was again postponed, until the services of a Hindustanee Interpreter could be obtained.  On the next day the Inquest was convened and the Jury recorded the following Verdict:---"Died by the use of Arsenic, but by whom administered unknown."


THE STRAITS TIMES, 10 December 1859 (3)



On Monday last, the 5th instant at 8 p.m. a Kling man, named Sattayah, residing in Cross Street, was sent to the Hospital, having several severe cuts in his throat, inflicted by himself with a pen-knife; he was unable to speak when he was taken to the Police Station, through loss of blood, &c., his wife also observed him wound himself.  We have been informed, the wounds are so severe, that fears are entertained for his recovery.


On Saturday last the Coroner held an Inquest on the body of a Chinaman, named Yo Chin Sye, who was reported to have committed suicide by cutting his throat about nine o'clock on the previous evening, at No. 6, Hongkong Street.  On inquiry it appeared that the poor man, who was a musician, employed by the Opium Farm to play the Guitar at the great Wyong, opposite to the Old Police Office, had been out of his senses, though not suffering from any bodily ailment, for some days previous to his committing the rash act, but as he was not apparently at all mischievous, it was not thought necessary to put him under restraint.  In the early part of the evening of Friday he became uneasy, and exhibited some suicidal intentions---taking the girdle from his waist and attempting to strangle himself with it.  The other persons in the house remonstrated with him, and had apparently appeased him, but whilst their attention was turned in another direction, the deceased managed to get possession of a razor, and on the others endeavouring to remove it from him he became very violent, and after making a few passes with it at those near him he suddenly ran down stairs, and placing himself behind a door leading to an out-house, there cut his throat in a most fearful manner; the wound dividing the windpipe completely, as also the larger vessels in that locality.  The deceased died almost immediately after inflicting the wound upon himself.  After having viewed the body as also the spot where the deed was said to have been committed, and hearing the evidence, the jury returned a verdict of "Temporary insanity, the deceased having cut his throat whilst in an unsound state of mind."


Dec. 5th (Monday last,) The Coroner held an Inquest upon the body of a Chinese gambier cooly, named Loi Yek Hoon, who was seized by a Tiger on the previous morning, whilst working in a plantation on the Sirangoon Road.  It was stated in evidence, that the deceased, with two other Coolies, was engaged about 7 o'clock in the morning, clearing the gambier plants of grass and other weeds with a hoe or Chunkul, and whilst employed the others who were separated a short distance from the deceased and from each other, heard the former utter a loud cry, and looking in the direction from whence the cry came, they saw the gambier plants violently disturbed, and a Tiger was then seen rushing into the jungle with the deceased in its mouth.  The two men - the deceased's comrades - were, as might have been expected, much frightened at what they had witnessed, and immediately returned to the bangsal and gave information to their Toukay, who, with ten men, then went in search of his lost cooly, and after the lapse of an hour, the body of the deceased was discovered in the jungle about a hundred fathoms from the plantation; life was then extinct.  The jury having heard the evidence, and having also viewed the body, which bore unequivocal marks of having been destroyed by some wild beast, returned a verdict of "Killed by a Tiger."

[Editorial follows on deaths from tigers and means of prevention.]

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School