A one-eyed man was executed for bestiality in 1642 in Connecticut after a local sow gave birth to a one-eyed piglet
When a sow gave birth to a malformed, one-eyed piglet it was considered a manifestation of God’s proof of Spencer’s sins. Spencer was arrested, and the Puritan authorities deemed the birth a work of God. They believed that this was irrefutable evidence that an act of bestiality had taken place. He was charged with “”prophane, atheistical carriage, in unfaithfulness and stubbornness to his master, a course of notorious lying, filthiness, scoffing at the ordinances, ways and people of God””.
Spencer was told that “”he that confesseth and forsaketh his sins shall finde mercie””, but it was never made clear to him whether this mercy related to the proceedings of the court or those of God. Having witnessed a repentant child molester being whipped for his crime Spencer believed that his best option was to confess. On the realisation that this might lead to a death sentence he retracted his statement. He repeated this confession and retraction again, trying to find the best solution to his situation.
When the trial began the magistrates knew the necessity of having two witnesses to the crime. They used Spencer’s retracted confessions as one witness and the stillborn piglet as the other, ruling that this was sufficient to determine his guilt. On April 8, 1642, the sow was put to death by the sword and Spencer was hanged.
Spencer’s death was early in the history of New England and is reported to be only the second execution to take place in Connecticut and the first of a non-Native American”