1866: White guy’s defense: Indian guy he beat up talks bad Chinook

early victoria police

Early Victoria police (image credit: History of Victoria Police)

Some sleazy tactics never get old…

…Between the lines, today’s frontier-era BC news story tells of a bad person insulting the testimony of their victim.

The cop evidently understood Jargon better…

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AN “OLD HAND.” — Ben Martin again appeared in the police court this morning, charged with fighting with an Indian. Ben repudiated this charge, and said the Siwash could not speak Chinook grammatically, or so as to be understood, and that the Indian was tempting him to buy whisky for him — a temptation he resisted by thrashing the tempter. Inspector Welsh gave Ben a very bad name, and the magistrate ordered him to find bonds of $50 to keep the peace or go to jail 14 days; also $10 fine or two months’ imprisonment for assaulting the officer.

— from the Victoria (BC) Evening Telegraph of September 17, 1866, page 3, column 2

What do you think?