Today's Southern Daily Echo carries the news that a man has been fined for pretending to be a ghost in a Portsmouth cemetery.
The story contains a superb quote from the court.
It's worth pointing out that he was also seen playing football, which isn't particularly ghostly behaviour.
But to be fair, it's not the most respectful thing to do in a graveyard either. The paper goes on to report that "Stallard was fined £35 for his behaviour, as well as being ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £20 and court costs of a further £20."
But it could have been so much worse for the perpetrator. We need to talk about the Hammersmith Ghost of 1804.
What happened in 1804 was this:
A ghost had apparently been terrorising people in West London for a few months. So a local named Francis Smith started to patrol the area. He took a gun with him, because as everyone who's played House of the Dead knows, the best way to kill a ghost is by pumping it full of lead.
The jury thought it was a case of manslaughter, because he was trying to kill a ghost. So they probably thought it was ghostslaughter if we're honest. Anyway, the judge felt otherwise.
According to Wikipedia, he "informed the jury that "the Court could not receive such a verdict", and that they must either find Smith guilty of murder, or acquit him: that Smith believed Millwood to be a ghost was irrelevant. The jury then returned with a verdict of guilty." Smith was initially sentenced to death, but this was downgraded to hard labour.