From the Richmond Dispatch, 1/19/1864
Trial of Forde. – In Judge Lyons’s Court yesterday the preliminary steps to the examination of Robert S. Forde, for the murder of Mr. Dixon, Clerk of the House of Representatives, in April last, occupied the whole day. The counsel for the prisoner moved to quash the indictment upon the ground that the prisoner had not been properly examined in the first place. Mr. Sanxay, who acted as Coroner at the inquest, having been one of the Justices of the Examining Court which sent Forde on for trial, said examination was therefore invalid, inasmuch as he (Sanxay) had no right to act as a committing magistrate and as a Coroner also.--The Commonwealth’s Attorney contended that Sanxay merely acted as Coroner, and not as a Justice of the Peace, and that, therefore, he did not make the commitment, but that said commitment was made by the Mayor.--When acting as Coroner, Sanxay had no more right to commit than any other Coroner.--At the conclusion of the argument on both sides, the Judge desired to take time to consider the matter, and the Court thereupon adjourned till this morning.