JOHN JONES, JOHN SUNDERLAND, Theft > burglary, 9th September 1772.

Reference Number: t17720909-17
Offence: Theft > burglary
Verdict: Guilty
Punishment: Death

620, 621. (M.) JOHN JONES and JOHN SUNDERLAND , otherwise SANDILAND , were indicted for breaking and entering the dwelling house of Aaron Franks , Esq ; on the 2d of September , about the hour of two in the night, and stealing one silver saucepan, value 10 s. one pair of silver knee buckles, value 4 s. and one pair of silver-garter buckles, value 2 s. the property of the said Aaron Franks , Esq; one gold watch-chain, value 20 s. two seals set in gold, value 10 s. six linen stocks, value 3 s. eight pair of silk stockings, value 30 s. two silk pocket handkerchiefs, value 4 s. five other pocket handkerchiefs, value 5 s. five linen-shirts, value 40 s. one pair of pocket pistols, value 40 s. one flannel waistcoat, value 5 s. and one pair of laced ruffles, value 40 s. the property of Jacob Franks , Esq; one cloth coat, value 20 s. one cloth waistcoat, value 5 s. two other linen shirts, value 4 s. one cornelian seal set in silver, value 2 s. one pair of silk stockings, value 1 s. and one pair of thread stockings, value 6 d. the property of Joseph Grover ; four other shirts, value 16 s. two pair of worsted stockings, value 3 s. the property of Phineas Ghent , and one thickset frock, value 15 s. the property of Richard Varley , in the dwelling house of the said Aaron Franks , Esq ;

2 d Count charged it as a stealing in the dwelling house. +

Mr. Aaron Franks . This day, sevennight in the morning, about eight o'clock, when I went down to my house at Isleworth , my servants told me my house had been broke open. I saw the mark of a chissel upon the lock of the iron gate, that is before the house; the lock was forced, and then I saw the window shutters of the room, where the servants hang their clothes broke open. The blind was broke; I lost two pair of buckles, one pair of knee buckles and a pair of garter buckles.

Durant. These knee buckles and garter buckles (producing them) I found in the kitchen of Mr. Sunderland's house, in the hands of Jones.

Q. How came you not to take them out of his hand?

Durant. I had enough to do to take him, and as I secured him he threw them out of his hand.

Jones. This Durant was taken up for the murder of the two men that were killed on Bethnal Green, and he is a man that would make a property of any man.

Mr. Aaron Franks . These are my property; I left them in my parlour.

Mr. Jacob Franks . The night the house was robbed I had given orders to my servant to call me at half after five; I was surprised he did not call me till six, then he knocked at my door, and said, I wish you would get up; I got up; I met him on the stairs, he said, Sir, we have been robbed, and your desk and draws are broke open; I went down stairs, and I perceived that the way they came in, was at the window of a room the servants call their dressing room; the shutter appeared to have been bored with an angur; a piece was broke out about two feet long and three inches broad; the holes were about the size of my little singer, and a joint of the window shutter was taken out. My servants trunk or chest was forced open, and there was another chest in the same room forced open, and the contents were taken out. I then went up into my dressing room, and there I saw my bureau was broke open; there were about five guineas, and three or four pounds in silver, in a little leather bag in one of the drawers, which was taken away; I put the money into the drawer on Monday night; out of that same drawer was taken a gold watch chain and two seals; there was a little door in the bureau which was locked, that was forced open, but there was nothing there for them to take; there was taken from another a set of pinch beck gift coat and waistcoat buttons; they have not been found again.

Durant. This gold chain, buckles and seals, (producing them) were in the silver saucepan, which was in the hands of Jones.

Jones. He said before he picked it off the floor.

Q. The stones I see are out of the seal.

Mr. Jacob Franks . Yes; they were not so before; I can swear to the chain; I believe the others to be mine; one was fixed to the chain when I left it, and is so now; there were a pair of pistols taken; they left one of the green bags in which they were, and in one they left a key.

Q. Where are the pistols?

Durant. The gunsmith has them.

Jones. I beg your lordship will have the gunsmith here; the gunsmith said they were not sold by either of us.

Court. Send for the gun-smith.

Samuel Thomas . I had these from the prisoners (producing a quantity of shirts, &c.)

Mr. Jacob Franks (looks at them) Four of these shirts are mine, they are marked.

Samuel Thomas . Jones came to my house last Thursday about noon, and asked me to buy some clothes; he said they were in the country, and he would bring them at night if I would sit up for him; he did not come till Friday-morning; then he took me to Sunderland's house to shew them to me. I know nothing of Jones.

Q. How came he to take them to you?

Thomas. I was taken up on suspicion of buying stolen goods; this man undoubtedly thought it was true and so came to me.

Jones. That is his original character.

Q. from Sunderland. Did not I come to you when Jones and you were disputing about the price?

Thomas. No; they were both together.

Q. from Sunderland. Did not I say if you don't agree they shall not be in my house?

Thomas. No, he never said any such word; I was to give him I think five guineas; they said they had more goods in the country; I said I would not pay for them till I had them all.

Durant. These laced ruffles (producing them) I found under the earth, in a shed adjoining to Sunderland's house; they were close by the wall as you go out of the yard door.

Thomas. I had these six stocks and two silk handkerchiefs (producing them) among the other things from Sunderland's house.

Mr. Franks. These six stocks are mine; I have my mark upon them; the two silk handkerchiefs are mine, but they are not mark.

Q. from Sunderland. Whether any person saw me near the house these five years.

Mr. Franks. None of us have as we know of.

Joseph Grover . I am servant to Mr. Jacob Franks ; I got up about half after five upon the 3d of September; I found myself locked in the room, and there was another servant with me; I was obliged to get out at the back window into the garden, and so to go round to the front door to call a servant to let me in. I was the first servant up in the house; I found the blind tore and the sash up in a small room under the stair case, that we put our clothes in. I suspected the house had been robbed; I called my master and he went with me; we found several locks broke and things lost.

Q. Do you know any thing of the things being lost; Mr. Franks has spoke of some shirts, handkerchiefs and ruffles?

Grover. I had most of those in my own care; I lost a coat and waistcoat of stone colour with gold wire buttons; the breeches were dropt; I lost several shirts and stockings, and a cornelian seal with my own cypher.

Thomas. I had this coat and waistcoat (producing them) from Sunderland's room, up two pair of stairs; they were open in the room; they lay upon the ground.

Grover. They are my property.

Durant. This seal (producing it) was in this glove, in which were several pawnbroker's duplicates; the fellow of this glove is in the pocket of this coat.

Q. from Sunderland. What were they for?

Durant. A pair of tea-tongs, four spoons and a pair of buckles.

Sunderland. They were my wife's things; I had pawned all I had, having been ill.

Grover. I lost several shirts.

Durant. I found seven more in Sunderland's house afterwards.

Thomas. I found all these things in the one pair of stairs room that I have here now; the stockings laid a-cross the horse, and these two shirts were rough (producing the goods.)

Grover. These two pair of stockings are mine, a pair of silk and a pair of old white thread.

(Thomas produces two shirts.)

Grover. They are mine, they were in my chest which was locked and was broke open.

Phineas Ghent . I am a servant to Aaron Franks , Esq; I got up between five and six o'clock, upon Grover's alarming the house; I lay with him; our room door was not fastened over night; we found it locked in the morning. I lost several shirts, silk stockings, worsted stockings, muslin neckcloths and some thread stockings; I cannot rightly say how marty of each.

Durant. I found this: shirt in Sunderland's house (producing it.)

Thomas. These two shirts (producing them) I had from Sunderland.

Durant. I found these stockings in Sunderland's chamber (producing two pair of worsted stockings.)

Ghent. These are all my property.

Q. What time did you go to bed?

Ghent. I believe about twelve o'clock; I thought about half an hour after I was a-bed, I heard some confused noise like a breaking or cracking; I listened about five minutes; I did not hear any more of it.

Q. How near was the place broken open to your bed chamber?

Ghent. About six yards on the same floor.

Q. Did you take any particular notice of what state the windows were in or the blinds or things?

Ghent. I found a part of the blinds were cut out; they got through that to the house.

Q. The window shutter is the outside of the canvas.

Ghent. Yes, it was forced open.

Q. Did you find any thing left in the place?

Ghent. Some matches were left; there was a piece of candle opposite my mistress's dressing room.

Richard Varley . I live with Mr. Aaron Franks .

Q. Who makes fast the windows of a night of the room where the clothes hung up?

Varley. I made them fast that night before the house was broke open; it was fastened with two cross iron bars from top to bottom, and a little bar which goes in the middle of the shutter; there was a blind I made fast.

Q. Who looks after the windows in general?

Varley. One of the maids; I fastened that window that night; I fastened the street door which was found open in the morning; I fastened the iron gate too; there is a lock to it and the door, and a bolt and bar; I fastened the door fronting the iron gate.

Grover. That door was open in the morning and just pulled to; I suppose they let themselves out at that after they had got into the inside.

Ghent. The lock of the iron gate was forced open.

Varley. I lost a thickset frock, a waistcoat, a pair of breeches, five shirts, three stocks, a pair of stockings and three neckcloths. (The thickset frock produced by Thomas and deposed to by Varley.)

Q. to Grover. Was it light when you got up?

Grover. Yes, quite light.

Ghent. I am butler; I know this silver saucepan to be my master's property.

Court to Thomas. Now give a full account of what passed between you and Jones in Sunderland's presence; don't say a word of what Jones said of Sunderland when he was not there; nor of what Sunderland said when Jones was not present.

Thomas. Jones came to me at my house in Wells Street, on Friday morning last, and fetched me to Sunderland's; when I came there he said come up stairs; Jones said the shirts were as good as new. Sunderland came up directly upon that; he said take them out of the house for God sake, for he would not have them there; Jones said if I would not buy them he would fetch somebody else, and immediately tied them up in a handkerchief. My intention was not to buy the goods, but to apprehend them. I asked if that was all, and they both said they had some plate in the country.

Q. Did you know of Mr. Franks's robbery then?

Thomas. No; I did it in order to bring them to justice, and clear my own character. They said they would fetch the plate and be at home at night. Jones asked me if I had any money, and would lend him a little; I lent Jones a 27 s. piece; I asked him what time they would be in town at night; they said about ten or eleven; I went to Durant, and got him, Mr. Blain and Mr. Haines to wait at the house for their return.

Q. What are they?

Thomas. One is a salesman, the other a carpenter. We sat up that night waiting for them till between twelve and one o'clock; this was Thursday night; we waited on Friday night at my house; I expected they would come there or let me know they were come; as they did not come, we went to Sunderland's house, to see if he was come to town; Sunderland's wife looked out at the window, and said he was a-bed drunk, and desired we would make it the first thing in the morning, and we might have it. I told them we had better let it alone till morning. I got up a little after six and called Durant; we fixed the Bell in the Back Lane to meet at; we met there by seven; we went to Sunderland's house; he was not at home; we went to a public house just by, and they were to send Sunderland to us. After some time he came there, and said he had robbed Mr.

Frank's house two years ago; he said they had been a chisseling of him; that they had brought him bad cloth. He shewed us a news paper with an advertisement of this robbery of Mr. Franks. He said they had been robbing one another, meaning they had kept half the things to themselves, and not let him have his share. He shewed me and Durant the news paper, and said he had got two pair of pistols, and that they had chisselled him, and he shewed the muzzle of a pistol, and said, that he should have the contents his belly; he mentioned Jones's name, and that he had seven yards and a half of cloth. He shewed me the news paper, with an advertisement of Mr. Franks, and said the cloth they had sent him was not so good as that advertised; he did not show us the cloth; he said they gave him that. I recommended Mr. Durant to buy the gold and the silver saucepan; it was then at Sunderland's house; Sunderland wanted me and Durant to have it without Jones.

Q. Was any thing said where this gold and the silver saucepan came from?

Thomas. Not at that time; I was unwilling to do that because I wanted to have Jones there; he said he had a banker's draught in his pocket. Sunderland wanted to go home; he did, and said he would send for us when Jones came home. He sent in about ten minutes; we were afraid to go by ourselves; as he talked about the pistols, I thought it rather hazardous to go; there were four of us waiting; then we got William Gussett and James Man , then there were six of us; we went to Sunderland's; when we came there Jones had a saucepan in his hand and a gold chain; he asked if we had any weights and scales to weigh it. Then Gusset came in, and the other people followed him; only Jones was below at that time; Sunderland, run up stairs into the lost; there we brought him down. We secured them and then searched the house; we found the pistols and the rest of the things that have been produced; one pair of these pistols were loaded. Jones had the silver saucepan in his hand; he threw it down by him when I seized him; the gold chain, two pair of buckles and the seal were in the saucepan.

Jones. He said first, it was Friday morning I first came to him; then he said he sat up for us on Thursday night.

Thomas. No; I said he came first to me on Thursday about noon; that when he came first to me, he said he was going out of town. It was Saturday morning we took them; then the rest of the goods were found.

Jones. I hope you will enquire into the character of that man.

Court. He tells you he is a person suspected of receiving stolen goods himself; you may call any person to give him a bad character if you will.

Sunderland. Were they not to give me a shilling a piece for the use of the room?

Thomas. This is the first I ever heard of it.

Jones. Durant was taken up for the murder of the cutters; he bears a bad character.

Durant. What they say is fact; but the gentleman I worked for years, and neighbours, creditable people in the street, proved I was at my business at home at the time. I was head-borough. Thomas applied to me to see after these people.

James Man . I am a peruke-maker. Durant applied to me at the desire of Thomas to assist him. I went with them; Jones was the first man we saw below stairs; we secured him and bound him; I saw them pick the things up, they had just been thrown down. I thought I heard a noise up stairs; I looked into the chamber; I saw nothing there; Gusset went up with me; we took a loaded pistol with us of Durant's. In the Garret we saw the cieling broke between the joists, and there was a great smother. I said somebody was got up stairs; I observed a little trap door in one corner of the room; said I, let's get up here; we got up and saw Sunderland endeavouring to hide himself by the side of the chimney; endeavouring to get there pretty fast, I suppose he had broke through the rafters; he was as high as he could go except getting over the tiling, what they call the cock loft. I told him to come down or it would be the worse for him; he said, what is the matter? what have I done now? he said he had done nothing as he knew of; I said, how came you to run into such an odd place as this? with threats we got him down into the lower part of the house; we pinioned him the same as Jones, and then tied them both together. In the closet, in the one pair of stairs room, I found three pistols, two unloaded and one loaded, and in the corner another pistol loaded, bound round with an old handkerchief (producing them.) We had a search warrant, and took them before the magistrate. I was present when the ruffles were dug up from under ground and the other things.

Q. Was any thing else in the box with the lace?

Man. Some bits of paper; I saw some of the linen in the chamber. I was with them all the

time, from first going to Sir John's I was with them.

Q. And the things taken before Sir John were what was taken out of the house?

Man. Yes.

Prisoner. They took what they pleased there.

Man. 'Squire Chiswick, of Spitalfields, was present at the searching and saw the things.

Q. from Sunderland. When they searched me, whether they found any thing upon me?

Man. Only some money.

Q. from Sunderland. Did not I give you liberty to search, when you said you could not without a search warrant?

Man. When he was brought down and was tied he said so.

Jones. Durant is not a proper officer.

Durant. I am head-borough for Shadwell.

Q. to Man. Is he headborough?

Man. Yes, he is.

Phillip Gusset . I went with Man, Durant and Thomas to Sunderland's house; Durant and Thomas were in before I went in; the first thing I saw when I went in, was Durant, Thomas and Jones talking together; as I went in another man, a salesman, came in on my back; he seized Jones by the arms, and said that is one of the men; he charged him, and seized him; he began struggling; I seized him and said don't struggle, if you are innocent no harm will happen.

Q. Did you see any thing taken up off the floor?

Gusset. No; I went up into a chamber, when I saw Jones partly secured; I saw no body in the chamber: I went up into a room above and saw some dust falling down, and two holes in the cieling, where I imagined somebody had stipped through; I went into the lost through the trap door; I saw Sunderland standing behind a stack of chimnies.

Q. Did Mr. Man go into the lost?

Gusset. No.

Man. I looked through the loft and saw him.

Gusset. I saw Durant searching about, and saw them find a-box with some lace, in a sort of a little wash-house; it was buried under some rubbish. We secured them, and then Mr. Durant went and got a search warrant.

Jones's Defence.

My Lord and Gentlemen of the Jury, I leave myself to your mercy. Upon Thursday last I was in town; I went towards Spitalfields; coming back I went to Aldersgate-street to call on a brother-in-law of mine, a bricklayer; I had a pint of beer, that was about one o'clock; coming towards this end of the town, near Golden-lane, I met two brothers-in-law of mine, my wife's brothers. I sent a letter to Sir John Fielding , upon Tuesday, to inform him of the people, where they were, desiring him to apprehend them. They asked me where I was going; they told me they had some things out of the country, and they desired me to go to this Thomas; they said they had dealt with him before. I had the direction to his house out of their pockets, in Wells-street, Spitalfields; they left the bundles at Mr. Sunderland's house. I went to Thomas on Thursday afternoon, not Friday morning; I told him I would be there in the evening, if I was not somebody would; I did not go that evening; the next morning Thomas told me if I had ever so many things he would buy them, let them come from where they would, and be what they would; they told me they were obligated to go into the country again. They both work in the country, one at Mitchem, the other at Martin in Surry; they desired I would bring them the money on Saturday if I sold the goods. On Friday Thomas came, and he agreed for the things, and gave me a 27 s. piece in part. On Monday night they came to town again, and I gave them part of this money; they gave these things tied up in a handkerchief; I did not know what they were; I believe the seal and saucepan; I left them there; I saw nobody, and I went home. I live at this end of the town. On Saturday morning I came; when I came I was secured, and taken before Sir John Fielding . I sent a letter to Sir John of these two people, with their name and place of abode.

Sunderland's Defence.

These men I never saw one of them before, but once in my life; it was Thomas Wright and John Wright .

Jones. Their real name is not Wright, they go by that name.

Sunderland. They came and asked if I would let them leave these things till to-morrow; they said they would satisfy me; a person he said was by; he said, William I will satisfy you for your trouble, and said, go and fetch a pot of beer; I went. I said when I was going out, take them up stairs, there is an empty

room; instead of taking them up stairs into the room where Thomas took them from, he put them into my own room; when we had drank we had some more, and some gin; I asked him some questions about the country; they are two country people, one would think they hardly knew London; he said you will see my brother-in-law to-morrow morning; he asked me where the necessary was that was backwards; whether he left any thing in the yard I cannot be positive; then he went away, but as he was going I went up stairs, and said these things must not be left here, take them up into the other room, which he did; there he put them; he opened them, I believe; I did not go up that night, being late; I saw the things in the morning, and was very uneasy when I came home; the morning after I had been out; I was frightened; my wife said Mr. Jones and another man were up stairs; I went up, there was a dispute; he was to give four guineas, they had reckoned up the different articles, and there is the chalks of the different articles upon the door now; he was going to fetch somebody else; I said no they shall not be here; they agreed for four guineas; I said they should not be here; they took the bundles down; he gave the man the money; I saw him going out; when they came back I said, where are you going? he said he should be back again by and by. I said to my wife are the things all gone, she said yes; I said I was glad of it. As I had been lame a good while with a bad leg I said I would lie down on the bed and rest myself; I did. This man came and said if I would take a walk a little way he would meet me. They paid for, I believe, a pot of beer a-piece, and I went home. The next morning these other things were brought, but when I went to bed that night, I went into the closet, and there I saw them four pistols lay. I did not say a word to my wife; I was frightened; I knew she would not lie in the house if she knew it. I got up in the morning, and said Lord have mercy upon me, here is so and so in the house; she flew in a passion; I said they should not be there long; I went out of the house, and met these two people who were drinking at the Rose. I asked them if they had got the things, they said they were in our house; I was fearful; I went home again, and said I must go and lie down again; I went and laid down upon the bed; I had not been there long before I heard a prodigious noise below stairs; it struck in my head it was something more than ordinary, and I tryed to get out of the way. I had nothing with me, nor about me; they took me down; I desired them to search me; they said they could not search without a warrant; I said you may break every thing open. They took me away; when they came before the justice, Thomas was asked the first time, if ever he bought any thing of me; he said, No; and I have bought nothing of him now. He says I shewed him the advertisement - there was an advertisement of 50 l. reward - He said that he thought he could better make a property of it, and wants now to swear this for the sake of the reward; because I am certain, by all account, they are people of the worst of characters; as to the things, when they were dealing, this man said there were some old things, a shirt and an handkerchief, he bid me put them by me; and some old stockings, he said give them to your wife; there was an old ragged shirt, two sleeves, and an indifferent body to it.

Durant. What Sunderland says of going home to lie down is a truth. I asked them how they could get into a gentleman's house with servants, and when he had given an account by what means he got in, he said he would go home.

Q. to Durant. Had you any conversation with Sunderland or Jones about how they got into the house?

Durant. A great deal with Sunderland, at the sign of the Rose in Rose lane; the way we came to talk about it was; he was sent by his wife to the house as she promised; the wife produced the sausepan and seal and things, and wanted us to take them out of the house, and agree when her husband came home; he came to the house in a little while; he then got the news-paper, with respect to the quantity of things lost, he particularly mentioned some cloth; he read the article of the advertisement, particularly pointing to some cloth he said he only received seven yards, not worth above 14 d. of the good cloth; I said how could you get into the house, where there are so many servants; he said he was the first man that entered the room; I said there were only you and Jones; he said yes, there were three; that some of the servants he thought were stirring, and he locked either the porter, or somebody into the room.

Q. Had you made him any promise, or any thing in the world before he told you this?

Durant. No.

Q. Nor threatened him?

Durant. No; he looked upon me that I came to purchase the gold and silver.

Q. to Thomas. Was you by at that time?

Thomas. The same he told to Mr. Durant he told to me, that he was the first man in, and the first man out, and had locked some of the servants in.

Jones. The agreement was four guineas, not five.

For Jones.

Cornelius Goodness . I was coming home to dinner last Thursday was sevennight; Mr. Jones was coming up Aldersgate-street; I overtook him; from there we went into Golden Lane; there we met these two young men, with each of them a bundle under their arms; I knew them both; they went about their business; I went home to my dinner.

Q. Who were the young men?

Goodness. His wife's two brothers, Thomas Brent and John Brent .

Q. Had you been acquainted with them any time?

Goodness. Yes; a long time.

Q. How long have you known Jones?

Goodness. Seven years.

Q. What are you?

Goodness. I am a bricklayer.

Q. Are you brother-in-law to Jones?

Goodness. Yes.

John Turney . I am a journeyman gun-maker; I have known Jones about a year and an half; he lives in the same house.

Q. What is Jones's business?

Turner. A silk-dyer ; he is an honest just man, and always took care of his wife and family.

Q. Did you go out to work all that day?

Turner. Yes.

Abel Daw . I am a journeyman shoemaker by trade; I have known Jones better then a twelve month; I live in the same house with him; he was always a very quiet man, and took good care of his family.

John Jones . I am a journey brasier; I have known Jones about a twelve-month; he is a dyer, I believe, by trade.

Richard Green. I have known Sunderland above half a year; he rents a house next door to me; he seems to be a quiet man; I never heard any thing amiss of him before.

Elizabeth Dunn . I keep a chandler's shop; be dealt with me; his wife and daughter used to come for trifling things; I never heard any bad character of him till now.

James Brown . I am a journeyman shoemaker; I have known Jones ever since last March; he is a sober honest man and endeavoured to take care of his family.

For the Prosecutor.

Joseph Smith . I am a gun-smith; I live next door to the Fleet-prison; I bought a pair of pistols; I saw an advertisement the pistols seemed to answer; I carried them up to Sir John Fielding 's; he ordered me to give them to the gentleman that was robbed; I gave them another pair of pistols in exchange for them.

Q. I suppose you will know the pistols you gave in exchange for them?

Smith. I could not swear to them.

Q. Cannot you tell what goods passes through your hands?

Smith. Not at all times.

Q. Look at those ( shewing him the pistols found at Sunderland's) are those the pistols you gave in exchange?

Smith. These are not the pistols I am certain.

Jones. Guilty . Death .

Sunderland. Guilty. Death.

See Jones an evidence against William Brent , alias Brett, (his brother-in-law) who was capitally convicted for stealing money and bank notes, to a very great amount, the property of Lady Mayo, No. 684, in Mr. Alderman Trecothick's Mayoralty: See him also an evidence against John Sunderland , John Murphy , and William Thwaites , upon three indictments, No. 638, &c. in Mr. Alderman Crosby's Mayoralty.

See Sunderland tried, No. 638, &c. in the last mayoralty, when Jones was an evidence against him.


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