26 MARCH 1864, Page 2

The charge against Samuel Porter, of flushing, for ill-treating his

lunatic brother, was tried at Bodmin on 17th inst. All the charges alleged were proved, it being shown that the lunatic was for eleven years kept by his brother in an outhouse naked, without fire or bedding, embedded in excrement, and without ever seeing a human face. His "legs were doubled up, his knees against his chest and his heels against his thighs, the feet being crossed one over the other ; he apparently had no power to extend his limbs at all." He was quite harmless and tranquil, with an innocent expression of face." The filth in the room filled eight barrows. No credited testimony was offered except as to the usual gentle- ness of Porter's character, but the jury found him guilty with a recommendation to mercy. The judge did not pass sentence, being anxious to consult his brethren on a curious point raised by defen- dant's counsel, viz., that the Act did not provide for persons in the custody of their relatives. The prisoner was, therefore, released on bail. The strangest fact in the case is that it appears certain the keeper was a humane man, and that he and the jury together think imprisonment of this kind the only course for a lunatic. If he escapes, the effect all over the country will, we fear, be most disastrous.