From the Richmond Sentinel, 11/1/1864, p. 1, c. 3

INQUEST. - We mentioned, yesterday, that a soldier, while being taken to Castle Thunder on Sunday evening, attempted to escape, and was shot and killed by one of his guard. The Coroner of the city, Dr. John P. Little, being notified of the circumstance, empanelled a jury, and proceeded to hold an inquest upon the body.

It appeared from the evidence, that the deceased, J. E. Cosby, being ordnance sergeant of Alexander’s battalion, having absented himself from his post for several days, without leave, was arrested and sent into the city under guard. He was carried to the Chief of Police’s office, and thence ordered to Castle Thunder. About dark, while on his way to the Castle, as he was passing along Main street, below 18th, he made a start and attempted to escape by running. The guard called to him to halt, but, instead of doing so, he ran into a group of ladies who were going down the street, thinking the guard would not fire, for fear of striking them. The guard (private E. L. Robinson) still calling to him to halt, sprang out into the street, beyond the curb-stone, and Cosby continued to run, fired at him. At the crack of the musket Cosby fell, and died before any one could get to him. A post mortem examination disclosed the fact that the musket ball had entered his back, between the shoulder blades, and came out through his breast, piercing, it is believed, the right side of the heart.

The jury rendered, as their verdict, that J. E. Cosby had come to his death by a gun-shot inflicted by E. L. Robinson, while the latter was in the discharge of his duty.


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