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1913/130 Rex vs. Ing Soo – attempted murder

As part of the Chinese Historical Wrongs Legacy Initiative, the BC Archives has digitized a selection of documents related to criminal prosecutions against the Chinese community from 1866 to 1914, found in GR-0419. These are mainly records created as part of the preliminary hearing held before a judge in order to determine whether there was sufficient evidence to proceed to trial. There are often lengthy witness statements, and cross examinations by both prosecution and defense lawyers. The eventual verdict is sometimes recorded on the outside of the docket. They offer a fascinating glimpse into 19th and early 20th century criminal activity around the province, and ways in which the Chinese community was stereotyped. The records offered for transcription here are a small selection; for additional digitized material from GR-0419 click here. 

*Please note that archival source materials are original historical documents that have not been censored, reviewed or otherwise altered by the Royal BC Museum. Some materials may contain content that is racist, sexist or otherwise offensive. In addition, GR-0419 records deal with subjects such as assault, murder and abuse, which may upset some readers. The Royal BC Museum is only the custodian of archival materials; the content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Royal BC Museum.
*All transcriptions are provided by volunteers, and the accuracy of the transcriptions is not guaranteed. Please be sure to verify the information by viewing the image record, or visiting the BC Archives in person. 

BC Archives G-0419

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On Thursday 14th I was informed by phone by Mr Best in consequence of what he said I was informed that there was a Chinaman shooting at a white man. When I arrived at the back of the Imperial Hotel there was quite a number of people standing on the top of the bank. I asked where the Chinaman was, I was told he was down the railroad track. There were quite a number at the north-east corner of the bridge. Spencer was standing there he was bleeding, blood running down his face..his clothes were all durty at the time. I walked down the track and saw Murphy and White walking up the track towards the bridge with Ing Soo in the centre. I saw Ing Soo fire two shots. I heard the report and saw the kick up of his arm. The revolver as I saw it pointed was toward the bridge on the west port end. I saw him put the revolver in his pants, revolver produced. I took it out of his pant legs at the bottom, and when I got possession there were three loaded and three unloaded shells. I arrested him and brought him up to goal. In searching him I found six cartridges in his vest pocket. The gun is in the same condition as when I got it, I warned him and he said Spencer had come in there and refused to pay him for a meal and then they had a fight, he said Spencer had called him a son of a bitch of a Chinaman and also had struck him so he got his gun and went to kill him, he also said Spencer had thrown a rock thro [sic] his window. There is a pane of glass in the window and a screen on the outside of the window broken.

CROSS-EXAMINATION. Any shots I saw were random shots.

The above evidence is taken in the presence and hearing of the accused.

(Sgd) Arthur B. Fenwick, J.P.

(Sgd) R.L.T. Galbraith

(Sgd) Joseph Walsh

BC Archives GR-0419 Box 175 File 1913/130 / BRITISH COLUMBIA. ATTORNEY GENERAL. / Attorney General documents.

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