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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk


The New York Times
April 18, 1914

Hint That Private Roads Got Some of State Highway Gravel.

RIVERHEAD, L. I., April 17.—Supreme Court Justice Kapper, who has been hastening the trial of graft indictments growing out of the construction of the Coram-Patchogue Road by holding night sessions of the court, announced to-night that he feared the case would not be finished before Tuesday.  He will hold sessions to-morrow.

Justice Kapper said he would submit only one question to the jury and that was, whether the road contained the amount of Peekskill gravel called for in the contract.

District Attorney Greene hinted yesterday when examining witnesses for the defense that he believed some of the 12,700 tons of gravel consigned to the contractors, as they asserted, went into private roads.

When Eugene K. Smith, an Islip civil engineer and witness for the defense, was on the stand, Mr. Greene made much of Smith's admissions that he had dug into the road to test it at points suggested by Engineer Robartes, one of the defendants.  He hinted that Robartes knew where there were some good spots in the road.

Prof. Charles E. Morrison of Columbia, another expert witness for the defense, acknowledged that he had never built a road himself.  Prof. Morrison said he inspected the road several months after its construction and found it a good road, remaining close to contract requirements even after months of wear.  Other engineering witnesses gave similar testimony.

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