Sheffield Independent – Wednesday 03 October 1928
Man Who Could Not Remember.
Blank Mind after Accident.
Mystery of Cyclist’s Death.
“I have tried to remember, but my mind is a perfect blank,” declared a witness at a Barnsley inquest, yesterday, when questioned about the circumstances of a fatal accident which occurred at Great Houghton.
The adjourned inquest was on Stanley Moore (52), of 2, Church street, Thurnscoe, who died at the Barnsley Beckett Hospital, following injuries received in a cycling mishap on 11 August.
Moore, who was riding to work on bicycle, was found lying unconscious in the road beside motor-cyclist, Alan Brewis (24), blacksmith, of 10, Coronation Street, Darfield who was also unconscious.
Moore died the hospital the following day and the inquest had been adjourned for the attendance of Brewis, who was asked by the Coroner if he would like to give evidence.
A man who sat him in court interposed that he did not consider was in fit state to give evidence.
No Sign of Skid.
Albert Rodgers, a joiner, of the New Colliery Villas, Great Houghton, said he knew Brewis had a motor-cycle and rode to work on it. On the day of the accident he heard a motor-cycle coming from the direction of Middlecliffe.
He next heard shout, and looking round saw Brewis being trailed by his own motor-cycle. When he got to the scene of the accident, found Brewis and Moore lying about nine feet apart. The back wheel of the cycle was buckled. He thought the motor-cycle was going at a speed of about eight miles an hour.
Answering Mr. A. S. Furniss, witness said that he saw nothing on the road to account for the accident. There was no reason why the motorist should not have seen the cyclist.
P.-c. Thompson said the road was in good condition and there were no signs of a skid, although in view of the fact that road had been covered with sand, after it was sprayed, and that number of people had walked over the spot, skidmarks might have been obliterated.
The foreman of the jury said that it was difficult to account for accident on clear road like the one described, and the answer seemed to be that the motor-cyclist did not look where he was going. Brewis mentioned to Superintendent Blacker that Moore was in the habit dismounting from his cycle, not by the ordinary method of the pedal, but stretching out a leg and allowing himself fall off.
Superintendent Blacker; Did do that on tins morning?
Brewis: I cannot say; I have tried to remember but my mind is a perfect blank.
At the Coroner’s suggestion Mr. Furniss and Detective Officer Williams telephoned to Dr. Erdhiem the house surgeon of the Barnsley Beckett Hospital, to ask his opinion of Brewis’s fitness to give evidence. On returning Mr. Furniss said that Dr. Erdhiem knew reason why Brewis should not give evidence.
The Coroner: I wish he was legally represented and then he would probably be told that in his own interests he should give evidence, but I cannot advise him.
Mr. Furniss: I don t want to take advantage of him and I think the best advice you could give him would be not to give evidence.
Brewis was not again called upon to give evidence.
The jury returned a verdict that Moore died from a fractured skull, caused by being knocked of his machine being ridden into from behind by a motorcyclist. They added that they did not consider there was sufficient evidence to prove culpable negligence.
The Coroner; Then that is verdict “Death from misadventure?”
The foreman: Yes.