John Cannon, Sexual Offences > rape, 12th September 1733.

Reference Number: t17330912-55
Offence: Sexual Offences > rape
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

72. John Cannon , was indicted for assaulting and carnally knowing Mary Faucet , Spinster, an Infant of 9 Years of Age , July 12 .

Susan Faucet . The Prisoner is a Journeyman Weaver . I took him in to work for me. On the 12th of July I perceiv'd a Disorder in my Child's Linen. I went up Stairs to Mrs. Bishop, and told her my Daughter was very Forward. She ask'd me how I meant forward? I told her, and shew'd her the Linen. She said, that could be no natural Thing, and bad me examine the Child, and so I did. I ask'd her what was the Matter? and promis'd not to beat her, if she would tell me the Truth. Upon that, says she, As I was suting a Quilting upon the Bed, John Cannon came in and threw me upon the Bed, and pull'd up my Coats and lay upon me, and hurt me very much, and put something in me. -

Court. What Age is your Daughter?

S. Faucet. She was 9 Years old the 4th of June last.

Mary Mason , Midwife. In July last (the Day the Prisoner was sent to Newgate ) I was sent for, to search the Child; she was in a very bad Condition, and had been grosly abused by a Man. Court. Had her Body been enter'd?

Mason. Yes, she was torn as much as a Child could be. Court. How far do you think she had been penetrated? Mason. I can't say exactly, but as far as could be in Reason.

Court. In what Condition was her Linen? Was it bloody? Mason. Yes, and I ask'd her how long it was since it was done? and she said, the last time was about a Week before, and that he had done it 3 times. The outer Parts were ulcerous. I said, I believ'd the Child had got an ill Distemper, and advis'd them to go to a Surgeon, because I had no Judgement in those Things. They went, but when the Surgeons heard how it happen'd, they would not be concern'd in it for fear they should have the Trouble of attending at the Trial, and so the Child was forc'd to be sent to an Hospital, from whence we brought her now. The Doctors there, said she must be laid down, but they would not do it till the Trial was over, because if they took her in Hand first, she could not be brought hi her.

Court. Can you make any Judgment by what you saw on the Linen, whether there was an Emission of Seed? Though it might not be decent on any other Occasion, yet as a Man's Life is at Stake, there's a Necessity for the Question. Mason. All I can say to it is, that her Shift was in a sad stiff Condition.

Mary Bishop . The Prosecutor told me her Daughter was very forward; How so? says I. Why, come and see her Linen, says she. It can never be That, says I, at 9 Years of Age; it must be something else, and therefore I would have you ask others that know more than I do.

Court. In what Condition was her Linen?

Bishop. It was bloody, and very nasty.

Court. In what Manner? Bishop. It was greenish and whitish. Court. Can you form any Judgment from what you observ'd, that there was any Emission of a Man's Seed

Bishop. I believe it was in part.

Mary Sutherland . I am Nurse at the Hospital; Mr. Fern examin'd the Child; she has a soul Glect, and is ulcerated in the privy Parts. - There's an Ulcer in the Inside of the Lips of her Body. Nothing has been done to her yet, becau'e 'tis the Doctor's Opinion she can't be cur'd without a Salivation, and if she - had been put into one, she could not have attended at the Trily. Mary Faucet sworn.

Court. Now you must be sure, Child, to swear nothing but the Truth; for it would be a sad Thing if you should take away a Man's Life wrongfully. Mary Faucet . Indeed, Sir, I will say nothing but the Truth. - I was working on the Bed, when John Cannon and the other Journeymen were gone to Dinner, and John Cannon came in and threw me on the Bed, took up my Coats and unbutton'd his Breeches, and put something into me, - I don't know what it was. Court. Where did he put it. M. Faucet. He put it in hero.

Court. Did it enter your Body?

M. Faucet. Yes, and it hurt me very much, and I told him how he hurt me, and he said he did not care. Court. How long did he lye on you? M. Faucet. A good while, and I cry'd out, and he stopp'd my Mouth with his Hand. Court. Did you perceive any Thing else? M. Faucet. I felt something, but I don't know what it was.

Court. Did you perceive any Thing wet?

M. Faucet. Yes, it was wet; and when he had wetted me he got off, and he said, if I told my Mother he'd say it was Lies, and make me be whipp'd for bad Quills and Worsted; and then the other Journey men knock'd, and he let 'em in, and they went directly to their Looms.

- And he serv'd me so 3 Days when they went to Breakfast and Dinner.

Prisoner. 'Tis they that have put these Things in her Head. - 'Tis their Sin.

Court. Was the Prisoner search'd to see if he had any soul Diltemper upon him? Prof. The Surgeon did not care to do it, for fear he should be oblig'd to attend at the Trial.

Prisoner. Did not you wash my Linen? and did you discern any Thing? Prosecutor. His Linen was wash'd at my House, and I once suspected something, and ask'd him about it; and he said, he had got the Piles, and brought another Man to assure me it was so. But this was 2 Months before what happen'd to my Child, and I have seen no Spots on his Linen since; but I observ'd one Thing, that ever after, when his Linen came to be wash'd, the Fore-part of it always look'd as if it had been dipp'd in Water and wash'd out before it came to me. Court. Did you ever tell him of this?

Prosecutor. No. Court. That's strange!

Juryman. When the Prisoner was sent to Newgate, was any of the Linen left in your House? Prosecutor. Yes. Court. What Condition was it in? Prosecutor. Green and yellow. Prisoner. I beg that Linen may be brought. Court. Why did not you bring it?

Prosecutor. I thought it was great Confusion, and I was asham'd - But I can send for it.

Court. Do so. It is not, indeed, a very decent Sight, but in this Case its necessary. - Let the Prisoner stand aside a while.

The Messenger who was sent for the Linen, being return'd, the Prisoner was again set to the Bar. Prosecutor. This is my Child's Shift. Court. I thought it was the Prisoner's Shirt that was sent for! Prosecutor. Then I mistook; for I have not got his Shirt.

Court. However, since the Shift is come, let the Jury look on it. - Is this the Shift the Child had on when she was abused?

Prosecutor. I can't say whether it's that, or one she wore since, but it is very soul.

The Jury found him Guilty . Death .


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