Lettice Lynn, Theft > burglary, 24th April 1745.

Reference Number: t17450424-38
Offence: Theft > burglary
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

235. + Lettice Lynn , of St. Mary, White-chapel , was indicted (together with James Devereaur , not taken) for breaking and entering the dwelling-house of Matthew Wood , about the hour

of one in the night, and stealing four gold rings, value 4 l. one pair of silver knee-buckles, value 10 s. a pair of sleeve buttons, value 1 s. a pair of studs, value 18 d. a moidore, value 27 s. one piece of Portugal gold coin, value 36 s. nine guineas, value 9 l. 9 s. half a guinea, value 10 s. 6 d. and eleven shillings in silver, the property of Matth.ew Wood .

Matthew Wood . I live in George-yard, White-chapel : I am a lighterman . On the 2d of August I had my house broke open, and robbed of the money and things mentioned in the indictment. I went out to work the 2d of August, and when I came home the next day, I found my window-shutters down, and the windows open.

Mary Wood . I lost the things above mentioned; and in particular there were two rings that I put a great value upon; one my mother was married in, and one I was married to this gentleman in [the Prosecutor.] I asked the prisoner concerning those rings, and she said, D - n my eyes, I will not confess any thing of the matter.

Martha Smith . My master was going out to work in Salisbury-court, as a lighterman, between twelve and one at night, and my mistress went to see him a little way, because he was in liquor, and I went along with them. My mistress sent me back again, and told me she would return presently, but did not. When I came back, I saw the Prisoner, Lettice, at the door, and a man along with her, who I did not know.

Q. Did you know the Prisoner before?

Smith. I don't know where she lives. I have seen her go two or three times down the yard, but I never had any thing to say to her. They had unpinned the window-shutters, and had taken them down. I asked her, what she was doing of? She said, my master and mistress had sent them to take care of the house that night, for my master was in liquor, and had got into a little trouble.

Q. What sort of shutters were they?

Smith. They were outside shutters, sliding shutters, and pinned on the inside.

Q. Did the prisoner go into the house?

Smith. I saw her and the man go into the house. She lifted up the sash , and went in at the window. They would not let me come in, and I thought my mistress had sent them.

Q. Did you stand on the outside all the time?

Smith. Yes, till after they went in. The next morning my mistress sent me the key.

Q. Where did you go that night?

Smith. I went to the next door neighbour's house, and staid there all night.

Q. You say you set out with your master and mistress, how came you to come back without them?

Smith. Because my mistress sent me back, and said she would be at home as soon as I. The next day my mistress sent her cousin for some money, and when my mistress's cousin and I went into the house, the Prisoner was in one of the rooms lying upon the bed; and she and the man told us, that no body should have any money, or any thing else, out of the house, without a note from under the hand of Matthew Wood . My mistress's cousin opened the closet, and told the money over; but they would not let her take any, so she went away without it. The Prisoner and the man went up stairs directly. When I came to the stairs head, I saw them at the closet door, with a piece of an iron bar. I run directly into the room, and said, For God's sake, don't rob my mistress. With that the Prisoner struck me, and the man knocked me down. She had a knife in her hand, and swore, if I came near her, she would rip me up with this knife [the knife was produced, a common table-knife] and when they had got the money and things out of the closet, they run away. Before my mistress's cousin went out of the house I saw the man put up four gold rings, nine guineas, eleven shillings, and a pair of silver buckles, &c. into the closet.

Q. When did you see the money?

Smith. When my master sent his cousin for the money; I saw it about a quarter of an hour before I saw them at the closet, with an iron rod, attempting to break the door open.

Prisoner. The last witness is a common woman of the town, and wants to swear my life away.

Sarah Waters . My cousin Wood sent me to her house for some money; when I went into the house, the prisoner was upon the bed; and a man in the room: I went to the closet to get the money, and told it over twice, there were 9 guineas and an half, a moidore, a 36 s. piece, eleven shillings in silver, four gold rings, a pair of silver buckles, and a pair of silver studs; she got off the bed and she and the man would not let me touch the money without a note under my cousin's hand; so I locked the money up again in the closet, and went back to my cousin.

Q. Was Martha Smith by when you told the money?

Waters. She was with me, I put the money into the closet again, and locked it up. She went to acquaint my cousin, that the lock was broke open, and I met her as I was coming back.

Prisoner. I have been ever since the 1st of August in the new goal in Southwark upon this account: I was committed by Justice Clark; the prosecutor told me it signified nothing my being in the new goal, he said, That is not half satisfaction enough for I will hang you, for the sake of the reward, by the best neck you have. Matthew Wood stopped a man, and it cost his mother 10 l. to make it up, and his wife was indicted for receiving stolen goods.

Thomas Price . Mary Wood * was charged not long ago with buying some soap that was stolen. I took twenty four pound of soap from Wood's, and found the sirkin the soap was in, and took as many books there, as were worth 25 l. - Martha Smith has but a very indifferent character.

* Mary Wood was committed to New Prison the 20th of December last, for receiving a sirkin with six pound of soap, knowing it to be stolen, and was discharged in January Sessions, at the goal delivery, for want of prosecution.

Q. What do you say to Sarah Waters ?

Price. I can say nothing to her.

Pris. I was a lodger in Matthew Wood 's house, at this time, and had been there three nights.

Mary Wood . She never lay in my house but one night, and she gave me two pence for a bed.

Q. to Martha Smith . Was the prisoner a lodger in Wood's house at that time?

Smith . No, indeed she was not then.

Q. to Waters. Do you know any thing of her being a lodger there?

Waters . I do not; I never was in the house before.

Q. to Smith . It is surprising you should see these people break open the house, and not apprehend them.

Smith. They said they came with an order from my master and mistress to take care of the house.

Q. You say you went to a neighbour's house that night, did you tell them of these people being in Wood's house ?

Smith. They were in bed.

Prisoner. Mecum was the first man who went into the house. Smith lives with my lawful husband. The 28th of July we stopped one John Bird , and this Mary Wood took his watch. Guilty Death .

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