John Wise, Mortack Downey, Killing > murder, Theft > theft from a specified place, 8th October 1684.

Reference Number: t16841008-19
Offences: Killing > murder; Theft > theft from a specified place
Verdicts: Guilty; Not Guilty
Punishments: Death

*** John Wise and Mortack Downey , Indicted, for that they, together with Rich. Jones and Charles Tooley , not yet taken, on the 20th. of April last, between Nine and Ten at Night, did Kill and murder Elizabeth Fairbank , Widdow , who lived in a Cellar at Pickadilly : likewise they were a second time Indicted for stealing the Money, Plate, Rings, and other Goods, of the said Eliz. Fairbank, and a Suit of Cloaths from John Vaughan , which he had left in the Custody of the said Fairbank. The Matter upon the Tryal appeared thus: Elizabeth Fairbank being a Woman known to be well to pass, selling Ale, Brandy, and other things, as a Chandles, (tho in a Cellar) was about Ten a-clock on Sunday the 20th. of April, at night, by a Lodger who lay in the House over-head found dead, with her Legs tyed, hanging down on the side of the Bed, the other part of her Body on the Bed, her Neck was broke, and she was bruised in several Places a bloody Handkerchief found near her supposed to have been thrust into her Mouth, and so forcibly that two of her Teeth were struck in with it, which is thought might occasion the Blood:

also her Chest, open all her Money, Plate, and other things before mentioned taken away, &c. It was further proved, that the said John Wise , Charles Tooley , and Richard Jones , the same Night after the Murder committed, coming to an Alehouse kept by the Mother of Tooley's Wife at Westminster, about 10 of the Clock, and knocking at the Door Tooley's Wife let them in, they ordered her to go up-stairs; but she hearkning at the Stair-head, heard them telling Money, and returned into the Room to them, where she see them share to each other about 10 l. as she supposed, and to throw Dice for a Parcel of Plate; that Wise had then a Suit of Cloaths with gold Buttons over his own, being the same Suit taken out of the Cellar; that the next day Tooley gave to his said Wife 40 s. to buy her new Cloaths; and she being indebted 1 s. to a Neighbour, sent for her to a Tavern to pay her, and that she might receive Beveridge of her Cloaths; the Neighbour brought another with her, who coming to the Tavern found Wise there, and observed him to have on a Hair-Ring, which was produced in Court, and sworn to have belonged to the Widdow Fairbank; that afterwards Tooley, seeing to be discover'd, had taken new Lodgings whither he intended that Night; but meeting with Mortack Downey, they whispered, and being in some greater Fear, with his Wife took a Coach and went for Billingsgate, lay at the Tide-house till the Boat went to Gravesend, from whence they went to Ostend; that three Weeks after they returned for London, took Lodgings in Southwark; but being still disquieted within themselves, they went for France, and to Paris, where the said Charles Tooley dying, upon his Death-bed, in the hearing of his Wife, confess'd to his Priest, that he, together with Jones and Wise, did commit the Murder and Robbery aforesaid; the Wife of Tooley swearing the same in Court, and also that she heard Wise say, that he went to light the Candle whilst the others were in the Cellar. Upon this full Evidence John Wise was able to make no Defence; and having been burnt in the Hand, he was found Guilty of the Murder and Robbery; but no Proof being positive against Downey, he was acquitted .

[Death. See summary.]


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