Offence: Miscellaneous > returning from transportation
142. (M.) Richard Parsons , otherwise William Parsons, otherwise Richard Wilson , was indicted for that he at the assizes held at Rochester, on Monday the 6th of March, in the 22d year of his present Majesty's reign, before Sir Thomas Abney , Knt. Sir Thomas Dennison , Knt. and others, &c. was by a certain jury tried upon an indictment, for that he upon the 10th of June, in the 21st year of his present Majesty's reign, did falsely make, forge and counterfeit a certain promissory note, for the sum of 23 l. 15 s. with intent to defrand one Mary Collins widow; and also for publishing the same with the same intent; and was thereupon convicted to be hanged by the neck till he was dead; and he being recommended to our said lord the King, as a fit object of mercy, he was pardoned, upon condition of transportation for the term of his natural life; and that afterwards at the goal-delivery at Maidston, on Monday the 24th of July, in the 23d year, &c. our said lord the King did signify his pleasure, that he should be transported for the term of his natural life, to some one of his majesty's plantations, &c. pursuant to the statute, &c. and that he did pray the benefit of the King, &c. and it was allowed him; and the indictment now sets forth, that upon September the 2d, in the 24th year of his majesty's reign, he was seen at large within this realm, to wit, in the parish of Hounslow , &c. ||
[Mr. Ford's clerk produced the copy of his conviction, which was read in court.]
Q. Did you know him before that time?
Knight. I remembered then I had seen him before, but I had no great knowledge of him.
Richard Fuller . On the beginning of last September I was in company with Mr. Best going a journey. On the road (it was on this side Turnham Green ) we overtook the prisoner; as soon as I saw his face I knew him to be the person convicted at Rochester, and who was transported for that offence. He hovered round the chaise, sometimes before and sometimes behind it in a very extraordinary manner; he attended the chaise to Hounslow, and about the middle of the town we got out of the chaise, and demanded the prisoner to surrender himself, which he did with out making any resistance at all, and declared he had no intention at that time to do any person an injury: he was taken before a justice of the peace and committed to the county goal, for returning from transportation.
Q. Where did the prisoner and you meet together ?
Fuller. It was about five or six miles from Hounslow, I think it was a little on this side Turnham Green.
Q. Did he offer to molest you in any shape whatsoever?
Fuller. No, Sir, he did not, he made no attack nor any thing like it.
Q. Did he make any resistance, when you demanded him to surrender?
Fuller. No, none at all, but in a supplicating manner, desired we would not take any notice to any person we saw him in England.
Q. Did he declare what was his intention in being there?
Fuller. He said his intention in coming over was to get assistance from his friends, after which he'd return and abide there for ever, pursuant to the sentence passed upon him.
Prisoner. The offence I am charged with is a capital one, and I humbly implore your lordship would in regard to the family to which I belong, who never had a blot in their escutcheon, that your lordship would report me favourable. The remainder of my days shall be spent in making myself deserving of such mercy, and shall for ever pray for my generous benefactors. [Being told his majesty was a merciful prince, but to persons guilty of such an offence as his, mercy was very seldom extended.] He said, I should be glad to receive his majesty's mercy; and was sorry he had given occasion for his displeasure a second time.