Edward Smith, Theft > theft from a specified place, Theft > theft from a specified place, 13th January 1716.

Reference Number: t17160113-3
Offences: Theft > theft from a specified place; Theft > theft from a specified place
Verdicts: Guilty > theft under 40s; Guilty
Punishments: Death

Edward Smith , alias Allcock , of the Parish of St. Vedast , alias Foster, was indicted for feloniously stealing 3 Silver Spoons, Value 42 s. out of the House of Edward Rogers , on the 13th of Decembe r last. It appear'd the Prisoner came into Mr. Roger's House (the Naggs-Head Tavern in Cheapside ) and went immediately into the Kitchin, and call'd for a Gill of Wine; just before which the Cook-Maid had wash'd the Spoons and other Things, and put them into a convenient Place by the Sink to dry. The Prisoner was extraordinary gay and genteel, and complemented away his Wine to the Cook, and went very often to the Sink under Pretence of making Water; while the Cook was busied in dressing a Duck for some Company in another Room, which being near ready, before she had Occasion for Spoons to the Sauce, the Prisoner went away: When he was gone, the Spoons were miss'd immediately; and the abovemention'd Circumstances gave Mr. Rogers Reason to suspect the Prisoner, and forthwith sent away his Servants with a Description of him to all the Taverns about, who heard of him twice that Night. At last the Prosecutor became inform'd of a Coffee House he us'd, to which he went, and got him in Track and in Essex Street apprehended him, and charg'd him with the Fact; at which Time he humbly begged the Prosecutor to go with him into a House, to prevent being insulted by the Populace, and he would make him Satisfaction; which was complied with, when the Prisoner confess'd the Fact, and sent one of the Witnesses with a Note to a Woman whom he call'd his Friend. to recover the Goods which he had sold to a Goldsmith; which she did, and the Spoons were brought to them. The Goldsmith deposed, the Prisoner (but he could not be positive to the Man) brought the Spoons to him to sell, by Candle-light, very well dress'd, and told him he was his Neighbour and a Gentleman, but short of Money, and being willing to conceal his Misfortunes, brought the Spoons to him in the Dusk of the Evening. Upon this the Goldsmith bought them, and gave him 5 s. and 4 d. an Ounce. The Prisoner in his Defence said, A young Man of his Acquaintance came to him at the aforesaid Coffee-House, and told him his Mother was dead, and had left him some Plate, and desir'd him (being better acquainted with the World) to sell those Spoons for him; which he refus'd, but directed him to the said Goldsmith, to

whom he went and sold them: That after this, being taken up for some Spoons that were stole, he call'd to Mind the Marks of those he directed his Friend to sell, and believing they might be the same, discover'd where they were. There was no Appearance to the Prisoner's Reputation, nor to the Confirmation of his Story, and the Evidence against him was very full; upon which the Jury found him Guilty to the Value of 38 s.

He was a second time indicted for feloniously stealing 10 Silver Spoons, Value 5 l. out of the House of James Dunton (at the Greyhound Tavern in Fleetstreet ) in the Parish of St. Brides, on the 14th of December last. It appear'd, the Prisoner (as was his usual Method) came into the Prosecutor's Kitchin, and call'd for a Gill of Wine, so gay, that he was taken particular Notice of but not in the least suspected for a Thief. After he was gone, the Spoons were lost out of the Table Drawer; and Mr. Dunton being inform'd some Days after, that the Prisoner was in a Neighbour's House apprehended for such a Fact, went to him with the Drawer that serv'd him the Gill of Wine, who knew him again very well; and charging the Prisoner with the Theft, he confess'd it at last, and told where they were stopp'd. One Mrs. Riley depos'd, a little Man like the Prisoner (but she was not certain of him) brought her the Spoons to sell; but she questioning him how he came by them, he ran away and left the Spoons behind him. Her Daughter depos'd the same, but was positive to the Man. The Prisoner denied the Fact, and endeavour'd to make his Defence by taking Advantage in Point of Time; and brought two Witnesses, who swore Mr. Dunton's Boy gave out, that he saw the Spoons in the Drawer at 7 a Clock that Night, while they were in the Room (which was after the Prisoner was gone) upon which Mr. Dunton would have prosecuted them, had not the Prisoner been discover'd; but this being of no use towards clearing him of the Fact, and discovering his Innocence, the Jury found him Guilty of this Indictment also.

[Death. See summary.]


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