Offence: Theft > grand larceny
Punishment: No Punishment > sentence respited
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First London Jury - Before Mr. Recorder.
1390. HENRY SOLOMON was indicted for stealing, on the 25th of May , 27 watches, value 114l.; 7 pairs of ear-rings, value 2l. 10s.; 7 brooches, value 25l.; 14 watch-keys, value 4l.; 14 seals, value 16l.; 28 rings, value 25l.; 5 watch-chains, value 24l.; 8 shirt-pins, value 1l.; 2 eye-glasses, value 1l.; 2 pairs of bracelet-snaps, value 14s., and 1 locket, value 4s. 6d. , the goods of George Grant .
GEORGE GRANT. I am a watch-maker and jeweller - my shop is at No. 21, Chancery-lane , but I do not reside there; nobody sleeps there. On the 24th of May, about half-past nine o'clock in the evening, I left my shop quite secure - it was locked and bolted. I returned about five minutes after nine o'clock next morning, and found an entrance had been made at the back of the shop, from the pastry-cook's next door; they had broken out a pannel. I missed the articles stated in the indictment (enumerating them.) I saw them all again the day but one following, in the possession of Mr. Cope, the marshall, at the Mansion-house. I found the prisoner in custody on the 6th of July. I am quite certain the property is mine - it is worth 160l. or more.
Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. You locked your shop up carefully? A. Yes. I conceive considerable violence was necessary to break it open. I had not seen the prisoner about the premises. The robbery was in the night, between the 24th and 25th.
MR. WILLIAM WADHAM COPE . I am a marshal of the City. On the 25th of May, between four and five o'clock in the afternoon, I went to the prisoner's house, in Gravel-lane, Houndsditch - I know it to be his house; it is in the City. I do not think the prosecutor's shop is in the City. The prisoner was not at home; I found in his house a box, which I produce - it contained the articles stated in the indictment; it was on the ground floor - there was a bed in the room. I took it to the Mansion-house. I knew before that the prisoner lived there - I did not see him till the 6th of July; I did not call at his house myself, but gave directions to the officers to look after him. Vann apprehended him. What passed at the Mansion-house was taken down in writing. Grant saw the property on the 26th of May, and claimed it all.
Cross-examined. Q. That box is of considerable weight? A. Not very great - I should think a boy of eight or nine years old could carry it from Chancery-lane to Gravel-lane - the distance may be a mile and a quarter; or a mile and a
COURT. Q. How long had Ikey been in custody before he escaped? A. Some days, and I believe he was in custody till one or two o'clock on that day.
JOHN VANN. I am an officer of Bow-street. I do not know the prisoner's house - I apprehended him on the evening of the 5th of July, in Surrey, near the Obelisk; I told him I took him on suspicion of felony, for some things which I believed were found in his house; he said, Oh! there was no occasion to apprehend him, for he was an old man; I knew he lived in Gravel-lane, but was never at his house; I told him I must take him into custody; he said, Oh! he could not carry such things, that they were brought there by his son; and on our way to the Compter he asked me where my warrant was to apprehend him - I told him I had no warrant, and had no occasion for any; he then said he would not go with me - I said if he did not I should call for assistance, and put him into a coach; when he found I was determined to take him he said, "I should have surrendered myself in two or three days."
Cross-examined. Q. When was this? A. On the evening of the 5th of July, about a quarter-past seven o'clock - it was broad daylight. The Obelisk is a very public thoroughfare, about three quarters of a mile from London-bridge; when I got to the Borough-market he objected to go again - I met a brother officer, and asked him to assist me. I did not exactly know the identical house he lived in.
Q. When did you hear he was wanted? A. I was here last Session, and Mr. Cope gave directions to my conductor to apprehend him if he was to be found; he did not tell me to take him; I met him by mere accident. I did not ask him to treat me on the road; he appeared frightened, and trembled very much - he said, "I hope you will let me have something to drink" - I did so, and drank with him - he paid for it; I think it was a glass of porter we had.
MR. GRANT. This box contains my property - I lost 10l. or 12l. worth more.
MR. PHILLIPS to MR. COPE. Q. Is Vann the man you gave instructions to? A. No - I gave instructions to nearly all our men to look out for him; several of them knew where he lived; some of them went with me to his house.
DANIEL FORRESTER . I am an officer. I went with Mr. Cope to the prisoner's house; I went to the house two or three days afterwards, and found the door fastened - somebody called out that he was gone away; I went by the door several times, but did not go in - his wife was in the house afterwards. I did not see him from that time till he was apprehended.
Cross-examined. Q. You never went to the house except once? A. Not direct to the house; I do not know what day of the week it was, but am certain it was not on his Sabbath, for it was not the day after; which was the Sabbath, and it did not exceed four days from the time I found the property; I did not knock very loud at the door. I have seen his wife - she appears about seventy years old; the box is a light one.
COURT. Q. What do you mean by not going to the house direct? A. I frequently went near the house to look for him, but did not go to it.
MR. GRANT. The box is not mine.
MR. JOHN WONTNER , (keeper of Newgate.) Ikey Solomon was in Newgate on the 25th of May - he was in custody all the night of the 24th, and for nearly three weeks before - he could not be in Chancery-lane at the time in question.
Cross-examined. Q. Do you know whether the prisoner is in a state of infirmity? A. Only by his own statement - he was put into the infirmary by direction of the Lord Mayor.
Prisoner's Defence. I am upwards of seventy years old, and have worked hard to support my family. I never got a penny dishonestly in all my days - I have worked for every factory in London. I hate the very thoughts of a thief and of a receiver - it is very well known that I have brought several things forward concerning government. I can prove it by a solicitor, at Somerset House, and by several officers, who have known me upwards of forty years that I never robbed a man of a single farthing - I have been ill upwards of three years, and cannot get out of bed without my wife or daughter putting my stockings on - having had a hurt across my loins; and is it possible I could break open a house with violence? I do not know where the house is - I declare by my Maker, that I do not know that I was ever in the street - this Vann, when I saw him, said "Solomon, where are you going?" I said, to the Circus; he said, "Come, treat us, before you go in;" I gave him a glass of gin. I treated him twenty times in Whitechapel - he said, "Solomon, have you got any blunt in your pocket?" I was at large every day, and can point out twenty people who saw me daily about Bishopsgate-street and Whitechapel. I was in-doors till between ten and eleven o'clock in the morning, and when I came home I knew nothing about the box - it is hard I should be put here for things I am innocent of.
SARAH NATHAN . I am a widow; the prisoner is my father - he is seventy years old; he is a very ailing man, seldom or never well. I have lived in his house for the last five years, and take care of my father and mother - she is seventy-three years old.
Q. For the last five years, have you ever known him sleep out of his own house? A. Never in his life - he is never out after eleven o'clock; he slept at home the night before the 25th of May, the day my brother escaped. On that day, (the 25th,) between twelve and one o'clock, a lad brought this box to the house - it was locked; he said he left it for Isaac Solomon. I took it in - I then took it off the table, and put it on a table in the adjoining room. My father was not at home.
Q. Now; could your father have been out from nine o'clock the night before your brother escaped, till three or four next morning, without your knowledge? A. No; he was never out after eleven o'clock, on my oath - he got up about nine or half-past. I do not know Chancery-lane, nor Fleet-street.
Q. Do you know Temple-bar? A. I have passed there
JURY. Q. Was there a key left with the box? A. No.
COURT. Q. How long have you lived in London? A. I have never been out of London. I never heard of such a place as Chancery-lane; I will swear that; I have been through Temple-bar, but was never in Chancery-lane. I may have been through Temple-bar one hundred times or twenty times. I am seldom out; I go into no company - I had gone home with my work when the box was taken away. I do not know the boy who left it; I paid nothing for it - he said he was to leave it for Isaac Solomon; he mentioned his name; he said he was to leave it for Isaac Solomon. I do not think my father is able to walk at all, to tell you the truth - I cannot say that he walked to the Obelisk; I was at home when he went out in the morning, about ten o'clock; I do not know whether he had a coach - he did not return at all. I did not call a coach for him when he went out - he went out on foot.
Q. Suppose he had told you he should walk to the Obelisk, in St. George's Fields, should you not have said, "You are not able to do it?" A. He never asked me about it, if he had I should have told him to take a coach.
Q. Then, I suppose, you were surprized to hear he was found on foot at the Obelisk? A. I cannot say about that - I went to the Mansion-house, when my father was examined. I was down-stairs ready to be called, if I was wanted; I told Mr. Humphreys, the attorney, at the Mansion-house, that the box was left for my brother - I told nobody else so.
Q. How long before the box was left, had your brother been in Newgate? A. I do not know; for we were not friends with him. I knew he was there, but did not recollect when he was sent - he did not live at my father's, but in Bell-lane; that is not far from Gravel-lane, is not more than a quarter of a mile.
Q. As this box was left for your brother, whom you knew to be in Newgate, did you tell the boy to take it to Bell-lane? A. No; he left it there, and I thought I might take it in - he went out directly he put it down. I had no time to ask him a question.
Q. Did you ask him to stop? A. No; I took the box in, and said, "Very well." I put it into the adjoining room, on the table, that is my bed-room - my father never knew it was there; he was not at home.
Q. Did he know it was in your room before he was taken up? A. Of course he knew when he came home, that it had been taken away; I told him so when he came home, about seven o'clock - he had gone out about ten o'clock that morning, and did not return till seven - I do not know whether he went in a coach.
Q. Did you go for a coach? A. How could I? when I was sitting at home, at work - I saw him go away; he did not have a coach from the door; I cannot say whether he took one any where else; I do not know where he went - he did not dine at home; perhaps he had business to do - he went to sales at times; he did not have a coach to go to the sales; but they were not far; I do my work at home. I was at home on Friday, as it is the Sabbath - the sales he attended were sometimes near home; nobody ever came to the house to enquire for my father.
Q. How long after the 25th of May did you first hear your brother had made his escape from the officers? A. I never heard it.
Q. Had you never heard it from that time, till you attended at the Mansion-house? A. No; I never did hear it - I did not hear at what hour he escaped.
Q. You were not asked the hour - I ask, how long after the box had been left, did you hear your brother had escaped? A. I never heard it. I heard of his being taken up; the box was left between twelve and one o'clock.
Q. Well; how many days or weeks after that, did you first hear your brother had escaped from the officers? A. I did not hear anything of it; I did not hear at what time it was; he escaped the day the box was left - I heard about two o'clock that day, that he had made his escape.
Q. You were told of it about two o'clock, on the day the box was left? A. Yes; I did not understand you at first - a person came and told me of it; he was a stranger. My father was not at home then; my mother was out at work - a stranger came to the door, and said he had escaped; the door is generally open - I did not ask him a single question, it frightened me in such a manner; he said my brother had escaped, and away he went. I did not open the box, for there was no key; it was no business of mine. I went home with my work between two and three o'clock, and left my mother at home. I know Vann by sight; I never saw him at our house - I never told anybody that the box had been left there, except Mr. Humphreys; it was not very heavy, nor yet very light - if the box had not been here, I could have told you the celour of it; my father is a glass engraver.
Mr. PHILLIPS. Q. You have been asked about Vann; did any of the whole tribe of City officers come to your house, from the 25th of May till the 5th of July? A. Never; not one - my mother was out when the box was left; my brother's escape caused a great deal of talk. I dare say every body was acquainted with it - the box was locked; I put it on the table, locked as it was - my father generally works at home; there is a coach-stand in Whitechapel and in Bishopsgate-street - he never sent me for a coach. I told Mr. Humphreys what I have stated to-day; I was not examined at the Mansion-house - my brother Ikey was not on good terms with the family.
JURY. Q. Were you in the habit of taking in boxes and parcels for your brother? A. No; I never saw the box before. I do not know whose it is.
MR. PHILLIPS to MR. COPE. Q. Were you at the Mansion-house when the prisoner was examined? A. Yes; no witnesses were examined for the prisoner. I did not hear Mr. Humphreys tell the Lord Mayor that he had a good defence - he might have said so without my hearing it. I found the box on a table in an inner-room; three females were in the house, but I did not see Nathan - the prisoner's wife was there. I was there about four o'clock; Chancery-lane is a very public place, I believe, during most of the night.
COURT. Q. From the time you took the box till the prisoner was committed, did you ever hear from any body that it had been left for Ikey Solomon? A. Never.
COURT. Q. You have not been very often at the Mansion-house, have you? A. Some forty times.
JOHN VANN re-examined. The prisoner told me his son had brought the goods there.
Five Witnesses gave the prisoner a good character.
GUILTY . Aged 69.