'Smith's Village, the squalid little suburb to the northwest of the city, has become quite notorious for ceremonies and festivals of a barbarous and medieval nature. The gospel of the 'modern Messiah' was heard in the Police Court on Thursday, when the audience was given a peep into the doings of a fanatical crowd; yesterday, the ever vigilant Corporal Willacy, who has been doing splendid work in that village, gave the Court spectators the whole modus operandi of 'duppy catchers' and the system described was certainly 'foreign' to that employed by other workers of the black art, which have been exposed to the public from time to time.'
The four accused charged under vagrancy law with being persons pretending to deal in obeah.
Much of Corporal Willacy's evidence is illegible. Spanish Jars, glasses of water, chalk, and other implements of obeah are mentioned. They wanted to take a duppy of a sick woman.
Joseph Francis gives evidence: 'he resided in the yard in which the affair was carried on. A woman in the yard was sick and the defendants said someone had set a ghost on her and they had come to rid her of the evil thing. ... They started by singing and praying which was kept up until about 10 o'clock. At 10.30pm Marshall took three glasses of water and with a chalk he made a circle around them. He then lighted candles and placed between the glasses, speaking the unknown tongue in the meanwhile. This went on until midnight when Agnes Brown ran out of the crowd and went into the kitchen and began beating the fire hearth where she said the duppy was. All followed her, Robinson carrying the cross and sceptre, whilst Marshall sprinkled the contents of the phial around. Catman assisted in the digging and the party went on with the unknown tongue until the corporal entered'.
Magistrate says defendants deserve to be flogged.
'Agnes Brown said she was attracted to the yard by the singing when she got there the revival took her and she was 'labouring'.
His Honour:' I shall keep you at a place where you wont have any revival for some time.'
Robinson: 'I leave it to you and God'
His Honour: 'He is not going to interfere in this matter. It is all left to me and I can't do better for you than ordering two months' imprisonment each. If the women have a revival in the Penitentiary, the Superintendant will put them in straight [sic] jackets and get them out, ignorant set of fools that they are.'
No other cases are linked to this source.