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John T. Keating, arrested for stealing sash weights | by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
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John T. Keating, arrested for stealing sash weights

Name: John T. Keating

Arrested for: Larceny

Arrested at: North Shields Police Station

Arrested on: 10th September 1904

Tyne and Wear Archives ref: DX1388-1-57-John T Keating


For an image of his accomplice Charles Johnson see


The Shields Daily News for 10 September 1904 reports:




At North Shields Police Court today, two youths named respectively John T. Keating and Charles Johnson were each committed to prison for stealing four sash weights value 5s, the property of Messrs S.G. Ward and Son, from a house in Stewart's Bank on the 6th."


This wasn't to be Keating's last offence. The Shields Daily News 19 September 1905 reports:




At North Shields Police Court today, John Legg, Thomas Codling and John T. Keating, young men, were charged with stealing from the warehouse of Messrs Gray and Son, wharfingers, Liddell Street, 10 gallons of beer, valued at 14s, on the 11th inst.


Joseph Gunn, manager for the prosecutors, said that in consequence of something that had previously happened he concealed himself in the warehouse on the 11th inst. At 8.50pm Legg and Keating entered the yard and made their way to the beer shed. He came out of hiding and caught the two men named and sent for the police.


PC Graham said he arrested the accused and searched them. In the possession of Legg he found three spiles, which he said he used to stop the beer after he tapped the barrel. Witness afterwards charged all three. Legg replied “I did not steal all that.” Codling said: “I never stole that much” and Keating answered “The same for me”. On being formally charged the accused pleaded guilty and they were each committed to prison for one month”.


For an image of his accomplice, John Legg, see


The Shields Daily News for 18 November 1907 reports:


"At North Shields Police Court today before Coun. Sanderson and Mr Jas. Walton, George Edward Whiting (20), Robert Richardson (18), John Thomas Keating (22) and Jos. Walker (19) were charged with breaking and entering, between 6pm on Nov. 15th and 9am on Nov. 16th, marine store at Black Cock Quay, Clive Street, and stewaling therefrom a cash box containing 4s 6d in money, a pair of opera glasses, value 10s, and a number of foreign coins, valued 1s, the property of Messrs Morris and Coy.


Solomon Morris, who trades under the style of Morris and Co., said he left the premises secure at six pm last Friday and next morning he found that they had been broken into and the money and goods mentioned in the charge were missing. Witness found that an entrance had been effected by forcing away a board which had been nailed across a window.


Inspector Proud said he apprehended Whiting at a house in Union Stairs. He then went to South Shields and received Richardson into custody from the police. He had been arrested while offering the opera glasses in pledge. Witness arrested Keating and Walker in an attic in Liddell Street. He jointly charged the four men with breaking and entering the premises and stealing a cash box containing 4s 6d, a pair of opera glasses and a number of foreign coins. Whiting replied: "I have nothing to say". Richardson said: "I can say there was only 2s 6d in the cash box and we shared it out, receiving 8d each". Keating's answer was "I have nothing to say; it's true" and Walker replied "I have nothing to say; that's right." Witness recovered the opera glasses and coins from the South Shields police and found the cash box in Linskill Bank leading from Clive Street to the Ropery Banks.


The accused who had nothing further to say, were committed for trial at the next Quarter Sessions."


The Shields Daily News for 3 January 1908 reports from Northumberland Quarter Sessions:




Joseph Walker, 19, labourer; John Thomas Keating, 22, labourer; Robert Richardson, 18, miner and George Edward Whiting, 20, cartman, all pleaded guilty to a charge of breaking and entering the shop of Messrs Morris and C. and stealing a cash box, a pair of opera glasses, a number of foreign coins and the sum of 4s 6d in money ...


Inspector Proud, in answer to the Bench, said all the lads had been previously convicted. The Chairman said they wished to give two of the prisoners a chance to reform. Therefore they sentenced Walker to twelve months' imprisonment with hard labour, under the Borstal system, and Richardson was discharged on entering into his own recognisances of £5 to be of good behaviour for twelve months. Keating, whose record was commented on by the Bench as being a very bad one, and who was described by the Chairman as the leader of the gang, was sentenced to six months' imprisonment with hard labour and Whiting to three months' with hard labour."


For an image of Keating's accomplice Robert Richardson see


These images are a selection from an album of photographs of prisoners brought before the North Shields Police Court between 1902 and 1916 in the collection of Tyne & Wear Archives (TWA ref DX1388/1).


This set contains mugshots of boys and girls under the age of 21. This reflects the fact that until 1970 that was the legal age of majority in the UK.


(Copyright) We're happy for you to share this digital image within the spirit of The Commons. Please cite 'Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums' when reusing. Certain restrictions on high quality reproductions and commercial use of the original physical version apply though; if you're unsure please email


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Taken on September 10, 1904