John Rice, Theft > animal theft, 12th September 1759.

Reference Number: t17590912-16
Offence: Theft > animal theft
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

262. (M.) John Rice was indicted for stealing one Gelding, value 7 l. the property of John Martin , July 26 . ++

John Martin . I live at the parish of Funtington, in Sussex , am a farmer ; I missed a black horse with two white legs behind, burnt with an N on the near buttock, and a star in his forehead. On the fifteenth of June, in the morning, I and my son took each a horse, and rode, and enquired for him, and stuck up bills at publick places, but could not hear of him. On the 23d of August I was informed he was at Isleworth; there I went and found him in the possession of Mr Farnell; I have him now.

John Farnell . I live at Isleworth; the prisoner at the bar brought this horse to me to sell, about the 11th or 12th of July last. I gave him 7 l. for him. I had him a week upon trial.

Court. Describe the horse.

Farnell. He had an N on his near hip, two white heels, and a star in his face. Afterwards

Mr. Martin came and described the horse, and swore to him as his property, and I delivered him to him.

Thomas Taylor . This black gelding has two white feet, an N on his hip, and a star in his forehead. The prisoner came on him to my house in Wandsworth on the 17th or 18th of July; he said, he bought this horse at Chichester; he said, he cost 6 l. You have got some grass; and said, if I would let him be with me, and could sell him for 7 l. what I made above that I should have for myself. I kept him about three weeks. Mr. Rice told me, that Mr. Brookes, at the Red-Lion at Hounslow, wanted to buy a horse, and desired to take him there; I did; there was the prisoner; and Mr Brookes and we could not agree; so I delivered him to the prisoner there in his gate-way.

Q. Have you seen him since?

Taylor. I saw him since at justice Birkhead's.

Q. In whose possession was he in?

Taylor. In the possession of Mr. Farnell.

Q. What became of him afterwards?

Taylor. That I do not know.

Prisoner's Defence.

I bought this horse of one William Ling at Westbourn. This is done out of spite against me, to draw me in, for what I did in the year 1747-8. in regard to the smuggling affair.

Guilty . Death .

Other indictments were against him for stealing 12 other horses.

This is the same person that gave evidence by the name of Raise, against Kingsmill, Fairall, Perrin, Lillywhite, and Glover, for breaking the King's Custom-house at Pool, and stealing from thence 30 hundred weight of tea; see their trial in April Sessions-Paper, 1749, in the Mayoralty of Sir William Calvert , Knt. and likewise was admitted an evidence against divers persons at Chichester for the barbarous murder of Galley a Custom-house officer; and Chater, a shoemaker of Fording-bridge in the year 1748-9.


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