James Selbey, Killing > murder, 22nd April 1691.

Reference Number: t16910422-26
Offence: Killing > murder
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

James Selbey , of Whitechappel , was Tryed for the Murther of one Mary Bartlett alias Bartley , by Cutting her Throat with a Knife, value 1 d. on the 22d of March last, giving her one Mortal Wound of the Breadth of Eight Inches, and of the Depth of Four Inches . The Course of the Evidence run thus: The deceased Bartlett was a Woman that kept a very ill House, no less than a common Baudy House, in Goodman's Fields, which Mr. Selbey had oftentimes been seen to resort to; but the time when the Murther was committed was on Sunday in the Evening, the 22d of March last. The Evidence was first a Woman that served Bartlett as a Nurse, (she being not well a little before) who swore, That Mr. Selby came into the House in the Afternoon, and set by the Kitchen Fire, there being a Person with her Mistress up one Pair of Stairs, but after a little time she came down, and the Man went away: Then Mr. Selbey and the Old woman went up into the same Room, had a Fire, and there sate till about Ten or Eleven of the Clock at Night, drinking, among them, 3 Bottles of Cyder, 5 Bottles of Mum, and 7 Quarterns of Cherry Brandy, which occasioned them to be very Drunk: Then Mr. Selbey (as he did before) desired to go away, but the Old Woman perswaded him to stay; and to oblige him so to do, she told him, That he should lye in the middle of the Bed betwixt her and her Nurse; but he would not do that, only desired that the Woman (the Nurse) might fetch up one Quartern of Brandy more, which she went down for, and whilst she was gone, he cut the Womans Throat to the Wind Pipe; and leaving his Hat and Gloves, he came down and met the Nurse at the Stayrs Foot in the dark, and struck her over the Head with a Hammer, and gave her two or three slight Cuts in her Throat, and one of her Hands; but the Woman strugling with him, for a considerable time, prevented his Bloody Design; so after a little time he made his Escape out at a Back-Door, leaving the Woman bleeding, and crying out Murther; which the Watchmen hearing they came to the Door, and the Woman, with much difficulty, opened the Door and let them in, finding her much Wounded, they presently conveyed her to her Lodging hard by; and then they searcht the House, but found no body in it but the deceased Bartlett, who lay upon a Bed in the Room where they drank before, with her Throat Cut, in a most dreadful manner, and a Handkerchief stopt into the Wound, besides several Wounds to her Forehead, a Pillow lying upon her Face to cover it. They found also a Hat and a Pair of Gloves in the Room, lying upon the Bed, which the Prisoner owned to be his when taken: Then they pursued after the Prisoner, and found him climbing over some Pales near the House with his Hands all bloody, and his Cravat and Ruffles bespotted with Blood then they carried him to the Watch house, and there owned his Hat and Gloves, &c. The Prisoner in his Defence said, That there were two Men in the Room over where he was drinking, who swore great Oaths that they would do him a Mischief, so that he ran away, being in Drink, out of Fear; but those were Frivelous Excuses, And the Nurse swore positively, That no Person was in the House besides all that Evening: So after a long Tryal he was found Guilty of wilful Murther.

[Death. See summary.]


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