Charles Brown, Theft > shoplifting, 19th October 1763.

Reference Number: t17631019-14
Offence: Theft > shoplifting
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

475. (M) Charles Brown , otherwise Woodward, otherwise Evans, otherwise Saunders, otherwise Tufnail, otherwise Dougan , was indicted for stealing 12 yards of minionet lace, value 7 l. the property of Christopher Dixon , in the shop of the said Christopher , Sept. 28 . ++

Ann Dixon . I am wife to Christopher Dixon , we live in Bread-street, Golden-square , I keep a millener's shop ; the prisoner came, on Tuesday the 27th of September in the evening, and ask'd me if I had any minionet ruffles; I took him for a gentleman, I said I had none ready done, because every gentleman are not of one measure; then he said, have you any minionet lace; I took down a box, it happen'd to be blond lace, then I took down the right, but I had not a great deal by me; he tost one piece and another about, saying this is not fine enough; he said he wanted for three or four pair of ruffles; he clapt his hand to his head, I said, Sir, are you not well? He said, not very well: He had been telling me of his buying ruffles in Jamaica, I said, perhaps, Sir, this country air does not agree with you, perhaps you will not go back again; he said he had a ship there; then he said he would come again on the morrow and bring a lady with him, then I sent to a merchant and got 12 pieces, he came, I shew'd him them, he talk'd of some lace for a cravat, I sent the maid out for some, in the mean time he went away: In looking over the lace, the only piece that struck my eye as a genteel thing was missing.

Q. Did you see him take any?

A. Dixon. No, I did not. I advertised it to be brought to a friend's house. Miss Day brought a piece of it, to ask my opinion of it, on the Sunday morning, I lost it the Wednesday before.

Q. Is she here?

A. Dixon. She is not.

Frank Rotchford . I am a pawnbroker, and live in Russel-court. Ann Davis brought one piece, and Maria Rogers another, of minionet lace, I took them in pledge, one on the 28th of September, and the other the 29th.

Maria Rogers . I live in Strand lane in the Strand. This day three weeks, about 3 or 4 o'clock, the prisoner gave me a piece of lace and desired me to pawn it, which I did to Mr. Rotchford.

Q. Did you know the prisoner before?

M. Rogers. No, I never saw him before.

Ann Davis . I live in Strand-lane; the prisoner came in there and said, do you live here, my dear? I said, yes; said he, can I dine here with you? I said, yes; this was about 1 o'clock this day three weeks; he wanted me to go and pawn this lace, after the other was gone, I went and pawned it for half a guinea.

Prisoner. I had been in company with both these ladies I confess.

James Hunt . Mrs. Dixon applied to where I live to have the lace advertised, to be brought to our house, after that Mr. Rotchford brought it, then he and I went to Sir John Fielding and got warrants, and took the two women that pawned the lace. When I was in Ann Davis 's room, she took two duplicates out of a chest of drawers, which is what the pawnbrokers deliver to persons that pledge goods, by which means we found another piece of lace pawned on Ludgate-hill.

James Brooks . I took in 2 yards and an half of lace of Ann Davis , I live in the Strand, on the 28th of Sept. about 2 o'clock.

Q. to A. Davis. How many pieces did you pawn for the prisoner?

A. Davis. I pawned three in the whole; I pawned that on Ludgate-hill.

Margaret Harper . I am servant to Mrs. Dixon. On Tuesday in the afternoon I was in the Parlour when the prisoner came to our shop, and I was there on Wednesday when he came again, he had not been gone above 10 minutes before we missed a piece of lace.

Q to A. Dixon. What time of the day did you miss the lace?

A. Dixon. I missed it on the Wednesday about 1 o'clock.

Q. How much was there of it?

A. Dixon. There was 12 yards of it. (The pieces of lace produced and measured, it wanted five inches in length.)

Prisoner's Defence.

I know nothing of what they lay to my charge, I gave the women no lace to pawn. I am a great way from home, the nearest friend I have is in Bristol, I have no body to speak for me; I have a brother, was he here there is no difference in us than the cloaths, we are so much alike.

Guilty . Death .

There were two other indictments against him.


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