Richard Sinderbury, Killing > murder, 19th October 1763.

Reference Number: t17631019-31
Offence: Killing > murder
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death > death and dissection; Death > executed

493. (M.) Richard Sinderbury was indicted for the wilful murder of Thomas New ; he stood charged with the like murder on the Coroner's inquest, Oct. 14 . *

Adam Robertson . I have known the prisoner at the bar a great many years, I never saw any harm by him, only that of getting in liquor, till this happened; that very day that this happened I had some business in Westminster, I live in Bishop's-gate-street, I went to his house, he was drinking at the Barley-mow; I went there, and called for a pint of beer, and asked for him, he happened to be drinking in a box with a soldier, I put my pint to their pot, we drank three pots and a pint, we shook hands, and all parted in peace; coming out at the door, he said, Adam, will you go to supper with me? he said, he had three rabbits, and he would smother them with onions. I went with him to his lodgings, and supped with him, his eldest daughter was there, and I think two more, he put some by for his wife and them; after some time his wife came home, and as soon as she came in he went and fetched part of the rabbits, and she eat; sometime after this his wife and he had words together, she struck him several times, and used him very ill; I parted them, and after that she got at him, and struck him again several times in the face; I went and sat down in a chair, she flew at him again, they were bustling and fighting together in the entry, the young fellow, the deceased, happened to come in, in the God speed; he struck the prisoner once or twice, I heard the blows, but did not see it, I was at the farther end of the house. After he

came into the house I sat down, and reasoned the case with him, and asked him if he knew the consequence of striking a man in his own house? he made answer, and said, if he does not like this or that I'll give him more to-morrow, or something to that purpose; after that I drank to him, I had never seen him in my life before. The prisoner's wife sat between the young man and I, she and he were talking together, the prisoner came in at the door at the time we were talking and drinking, he made a blow at the deceased, and directly he jumped out of his chair, and said he was stabb'd. I jumped up, and took him in my arms, and said, For God or Christ's sake don't go out of the room, and held him fast; he dragged me out of the room into the passage, and down a step or two into the street, and got loose from me, and ran down the street cryi ng he was stabb'd.

Q. Did you see any weapon in the prisoner's hand?

Robertson. No, I did not till after the murder was done, I saw it when before the Justice.

Q. Which way did he come to New?

Robertson. He came fronting him as he was sitting in a chair.

Q. What space of time might there be between the two blows given in the entry to the prisoner, and this happening?

Robertson. I believe it might be four or five minutes.

Q. Where did the prisoner go after them two blows?

Robertson. Whether he went out, or up stairs, I cannot tell.

Q. As you did not see New strike them two blows, how do you know who gave the blows?

Robertson. The deceased gave the blows; I know by the conversation between him and me afterwards; he said he would give him more on the morrow if he did not like that; that was when the prisoner's wife, New, and I were sitting talking together.

Prisoner. I never was out of the room for five hours.

Robertson. He was not in the house while New was there, for the blows that past were in the passage, and after that I never saw him till he came in and did the mischief;

Q. What induced the deceased to struggle and get away when you would have kept him in the room after he received the blow?

Robertson. I cannot tell. After the prisoner had stabbed him, he went directly out of the room; where he went, I don't know.

Q. Did you see any blood?

Robertson. I did, I had some on my shirt.

Thomas Freeman . Betwixt 8 and 9 o'clock on Friday night last, I had almost done supper, I heard a man by my door cry, I am stabbed, I am stabbed; I went out. They knowing I had been constable, came to me and cry'd, for God's sake go out, Mr. Sinderbury has killed a man; I went to his house and asked where he was, I was told he was run up stairs, they desired I would not go up, for he says, he will kill the first man that comes to him; I went into his lower room and asked for a stick, I found a churmstaff handle, I took it and desired some people to follow me up stairs. There were some women followed me, I begged they would go down and send up some men, they did. I said, Sinderbury, open the door; he said, he would not; I said, you are a villain, you have killed a man, and I am determined to take you; he begged I would not come into the room. He had a knife in his hand, which I saw, (producing a large long sharp pointed knife) this is it. He came walking round, I said, down with the knife, or the first blow I give you I'll kill you. I was not in the room, but I saw him through a place where some lath and plaister was down; he came there and looked at us, I struck at him, he walked back again, I said, will you open the door? and several times pushed my foot against it; as the door opened, he whipt the knife under his coat, and I thought went to lodge it in his apron-string behind him, the string gave way, and the knife fell down; he said, you say I had a knife in my hand, where is it? and held his hands up; I jump'd upon him and laid hold of both his wrists, and with assistance brought him down and took him before the sitting Gentlemen at Guildhall. Then I went back to the deceased and said, I understand you have been sadly used, who has done it? said he, Mr. Freeman, Sinderbury has stabbed me, and if I die, he has killed me; I asked him, how it came about? he said, he went in for a halfpenny worth of milk, Sinderbury and his wife had some words; he said, Sinderbury, you are always beating your wife, what is the matter? that the prisoner made no answer, but trod on my feet, and I was ready to saint, that I gave him a push, and pushed him from me, then Sinderbury went up stairs and came down again with a knife in his hand and stabbed me.

Q. Did you see the knife fall from the prisoner?

Freeman. I did not, but I found it in the room where he stood, with one side all over bloody.

I went to the deceased again and asked him the same over again, he told me the same story he had before, and said he hoped he would be hang'd: I said you should not think of that now you are dying, then he said, he hoped God would forgive him, and he did.

William Terry . I was coming out at my own door, and the deceased came crying along. He was stabb'd, he was stabb'd! He came running into my arms, saying, Dear Mr. Terry I am stabb'd. I said, By whom? He said, Mr. Sinderbury, Mr. Sinderbury has stabb'd me, what shall I do! He ran all on one side and bled, I never saw a man bleed so in my life: He ran thro' my passage; I went to Sinderbury's house, Mr. Freeman came, he catch'd up a churm-staff, and I a broom and pull'd the head of it off; he went up stairs first, some women followed betwixt me and him, he shov'd them down; he said, Mr. Sinderbury, open the door; he said he would not, d - n you, you are all a parcel of bailiffs and rogues. Mr. Freeman kept pressing against the door, at last it flew open, I will not say it was by Mr. Freeman's pressing, or by the prisoner; the prisoner stood with his knife in his left hand, I said, dear Mr. Freeman, there is the knife now; the prisoner clapt his hand behind him, then Mr. Freeman ran up to him and laid hold of him, and I took hold of one hand, and we took him to Guild-hall, Westminster. The next day I went to the deceased, and asked him how he did, he said, he went to Sinderbury's for a halfpenny worth of milk, and Mr. Sinderbury went up stairs he believed and stay'd about 4 or 5 minutes, while he was talking to Sinderbury's countryman about how he behaved in quarrelling with his wife, that he came in and gave him a stab without any words at all.

Q. Did he say any thing about what passed in the entry?

Terry. He said, Sinderbury violently stamped on his toes in the entry, and he believed he did give him a slap on the face with his open hand, he called out much on a pain in his breast; I went in again and said, Tom, you are not a man for this world; he said, I am afraid not. And he told me the same again.

Thomas Lane. I live in the same house with the deceased. I was sitting in my house and heard a great cry, I am stabbed, I am stabbed! the deceased was brought up stairs to his mother's door, his mother got him by one arm, he said, Sinderbury has stabbed me, Sinderbury has stabbed me. I saw all the blood on the ground where he lay, he had not time to get into his mother's room; I ran down stairs, and saw Mr. Freeman and Mr. Terry with the prisoner, I went with them to Guildhall, he was committed to the Gatehouse, while I was there, the deceased was taken away to the Infirmary bleeding.

Henry Watson . I am a surgeon, upon examining the body of the deceased we found a wound, which externally in the skin was about an inch in length, it passed between two ribs, went through part of the lungs, and to the heart; it was extraordinary the man had not died immediately, there was a little circumstance in the direction of the wound that the blood was not discharged from the heart at once, but gradually.

Q. from prisoner. How far was the wound in the body?

Watson. There must be great violence used, because two of the ribs were divided. I imagine the back of the knife went through the under rib, it was betwixt the 6th and 7th ribs; it went through the lungs, through the perricardium, and to the heart; it went in at the lower part of the heart, and out at the upper; he died on the 16th of October.

Prisoner's Defence.

I am not guilty of the crime; I never saw the man with my eyes, before he came into the house, and before he mentioned a word he gave me two if not three blows; I asked him the reason of it, and said, I don't know you. He followed my wife, and said, D - n your eyes or limbs, if you don't like that you shall have more, and if he did not do for me to night he would to morrow. I thought he had got some bad gang, having never set my eyes on him before, (he never asked for any milk) what should he do in my house? I ought to stand upon my own defence; why should I not strive to get him out as fast as I could? He sat himself down in a chair, I ordered him out of the house, he would not go, we struggled together about the room: I said, If you will not go I shall do you an injury. I believe in the struggle, in getting him out of the house, the knife might do him an injury; I did not know who he had got with him; it behoves every man to take care of himself in his own house.

Q. to Robertson. Who was in the passage when the deceased came into the house?

Robertson. Nobody but the prisoner and his wife, struggling and fighting together.

Q. Was any body in the room with you at that time?

Robertson. No, nobody; I was sitting down in a chair

Q. Why did you not part them?

Robertson. I parted them twice, and did not think proper to part them any more.

Guilty . Death .

This being Thursday, be received sentence immediately to be executed on the Saturday following, and his body to be dissected and anatomiz'd .


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