'Sold like a bullock in Smithfield’: The Hintlesham Murder 1834 – Poaching, Policing and the Criminal Law
Tuesday 14 November 2017 - Dr Harvey Osborne, Senior Lecturer in History, University of Suffolk
Dr Harvey Osborne is the Course Leader for History at the University of Suffolk. He is a social historian of modern Britain, with a particular interest in rural history. His talk focusses on a specific incident of violent crime to highlight processes of criminal investigation in the late-Georgian countryside before the creation of borough and county constabularies. It includes the role of a semi-professionalised parish constabulary in a large and complex murder investigation and reconstructs the process of prosecution and trial in an assize hearing. Through a reading of the trial evidence it will also examine questions relating to aspects of contemporary experience of the hours of darkness, the urban-rural divide and the operation of provincial poaching gangs. It will also show how a provincial felony case contributed to wider contemporary debates about the reform of the criminal justice system and criminal code in a critical period in the development of English criminal justice system.