Ann Dam, Violent Theft > highway robbery, 5th April 1749.

Reference Number: t17490405-61
Offence: Violent Theft > highway robbery
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

315. Ann Dam , late of London , spinster, was indicted for being concerned with two men, not yet taken, in robbing Martha Perry , on the King's high-way, of one scarlet-cloak, value 4 s. one silver thimble, value 6 d. and eleven shillings in money .

March 14 .

Martha Perry . I live in Clare-market; I was coming down Long-lane towards Smithfield, the prisoner at the bar, and two men, were standing at the corner, I asked them the way to the New-market. They bid me cross over to the Rounds. When I had got through the rails, the prisoner was come behind me, and got hold of my cloak, and pulled it, and almost throttled me; then the two men came to me, one of them cut my pocket off; there was in it eleven shillings, and some half-pence, and a silver thimble; I cried out as well as I could. Then John Sergant, the other witness, came up to my assistance. He got hold of the prisoner, she dropped the cloak, and he brought it to me again; he had hold of her; the two men came to him, and told him, if he did not let her go, they would murder him; this was between 8 and 9 o'clock at night.

Q. How came you to take her afterwards?

M. Perry. I was coming down Chick-lane, and I saw her, I knew her again. I went to the Castle at the bottom of the Lane, so I sent for the man, to see if he knew her again; I was sure it was the same. The Constable, that took her up, is here.

John Sergant . I was coming from White-chappel; coming down Long-lane, at this time, to go to Holborn, I heard a woman, when I was at the end of the Lane, cry out in Smithfield, I ran and got over the rails, I saw a woman, she said, she had just been robb'd by two men and a woman, and there they were right before me. I followed them, and overtook the woman just by the bar, she dropp'd the cloak, I took it up, and had hold of her; says I to the prosecutor , is this the woman, says she, it is. I had her in hold about three minutes and an half, or thereabouts, the two men came to me, one with a stick, the other with a stick, and a knife in the other hand; they swore, D - n your eyes and limbs, they would cut my throat, if I did not let the woman go. I let her go; the prosecutor shewed me her pocket where it was cut off at that time, it was as it is now. The prosecutor told me, she was going towards the New-market. We went into an ale-house, and I gave her directions, if ever she found the woman, where to send for me. Last Monday a porter came for me: I went to her; she told me, she had seen the woman, that robb'd her, standing at the end of an Alley in Chick-lane! Said I, stand a while, and we will see if she appears again; we could not see her then, we went away , and came

again, and we saw her at the Portobello ale-house. We got a Constable, he was afraid to go into the house, it bore so bad a name . We staid till she came out, then we took her. I can swear this is the woman I laid hold on going through the rails in Smithfield that night.

William Cornelius . I am the Constable, I took this woman, the prisoner, up upon Saffron-hill between 11 and 12 last Monday. I was afraid to go into the Portobello, it being a house of bad repute. I at last sent a person in to drink a pint of beer, to see what men were in the house; he came out, and said, there were no men in there; we resolved then to go in, as I had two or three men with me. As we were going, we met the prisoner coming out, with two men with her. I secured her, and had her before Justice Fielding, who committed her.

Prisoner's Defence. When this man took me, and had me to an ale-house, he said, if I would tell of about ten or twelve more, he would hang them, or else he would hang me.

Guilty , Death .


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