But these deductions apply only to those minor offences against chastity coming most frequently before our courts. When some monstrous case of sadistic cruelty, like that of the Indian half-breed, Bruce,* becomes the subject of legal inquisition, the psychopathic facts are laid bare, and the public is shocked at the revelation of a truth well laid down in one of the letters of Frederick the Great to Voltaire: "Tout hominc a une bête féroce en soi; peu savent l'enchaîner, la plupart lui lâche le frein lorsque la terreur des lois ne les retient pas." •
1 Following are some of the acta of cruelty of which Bruce was convicted at Easton, Pa., Feb. 16, 1906; and for which he was sentenced to fourteen years in the Easton Penitentiary: "Burning his wife with a smoothing-iron; throwing her upon the floor; kicking and striking her; pounding her head against the wall; burning her feet and legs with a hot poker; throwing her down and sitting upon her; tearing off her shoes, and beating her with the heel of a shoe, filled with protruding nails; cutting her breasts with a pocket knife; cutting her scalp; dragging her skirts from her; tearing off her night-robe and burning her flesh, while he laughed with fiendish glee." The sexual element involved in these vicious and devilish acts is sufficiently intimated in the statement of the police report, that the prisoner's confession of the principal counts in the indictment obviated the necessity of making public the still more hideous details of his acts.
It is only with the most obtrusive pathological features possible to prosecutions for sexual crime that present space permits me to deal. The subject of legal psychopathology, in its sexual aspects, is far too vast for treatment in detail by anything short of a volume; but there are cases constantly coming before our courts strangely unprovided for in the text-books of medical jurisprudence; on which, it seems to me, the legal profession ought to be better informed, and with which the concluding pages of this treatise may be very profitably employed.