John Sutton, Thomas Godson.
22nd May 1735
Reference Numbert17350522-19
VerdictNot Guilty; Guilty

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20, 21, 22, 23. John Sutton * and Thomas Godson of Pancras , were indicted (with Charles Stockton alias Stogdon, and Peter Benyan , not yet taken) for assaulting William Power in an open Field near the Highway, putting him in fear, and taking from him a Silver Watch, a Chain, and Seal, value 3 l. 9 s . May 13 .

* John Sutton was tried in December last for robbing Abigail Bingo in St. Peter's Alley, Cornhill, and Acquitted. Sessions Paper, Number I. Part 2. Page 3. But being charged with several other Robberies in Surry, &c. he was carried down to Kingston to be tryed at the Assizes held there in March last; when no Bill being found against him, he was discharged.

William Power . On Tuesday the thirteenth of this Month, between five and six in the Evening, as I was walking in the Fields not far from Lamb's Conduit with a Neighbour's Lad ( William Howson ) a little behind me I was met by the Prisoners and other Fellows. One of them (in a Jockey's Black Cap) struck me on the Breast and collar'd me; and just as I was falling, the Prisoner Sutton came up and took out my Watch. I mist it immediately, and said, he has got my Watch. Thereupon Hoxson went to the end of Red-Lyon-Street and call'd for help. When I was down, Sutton beat me violently, and the Prisoner Godson step'd up, and said, Sir, you have dropt your Watch in the Scuffle, and so he gave it me again. Company coming up, a Brick-layer said, Ye Dogs, do you rob at this time o' Day? I'll run my Trowel in your Guts. One Man collar'd Sutton, and then I ran to call a Constable.

William Howson . My Master, ( James Brook , a Poulterer in Holborn) sent into Red Lyon Street to see for this Gentleman (the Prosecutor.) I found him there, and he said, if I'd go to the Three Tuns, he'd make me drink: I went with him, and coming to a Pond, we met four Fellows, who said to one another, He's drunk. Damn 'em, says the Prosecutor, What would they be at? Damn ye, says he in the Black Cap, Will ye fight? and so stripping back his Coat, he struck the Prosecutor on the Breast. Then Sutton took the Prosecutor's Watch, and put it into his own Pocket. I desired them not to hurt the Gentleman, because he was in drink, though he was not quite drunk, for he could walk very well.

Thomas Plunket . Going with Mr. Elkins towards Pancras, we heard a Gentleman had lost his Watch. We ran up to the place. The Prosecutor, said, Sutton had robbed him. Sutton damn'd the Prosecutor, and struck him for saying so. Godson stood by, and endeavoured to part them. I asked Sutton what he meant by abusing the Man? He answered he would serve me the same, and so he and I had two or three Struggles. I was sorry Sutton fell in my way, because I had some knowledge of his Family.

Sutton. The Prosecutor had insulted me, and I pulled off my Coat to fight him.

Plunket. I did not see that the Prosecutor made any resistance.

Mr. Elkins. Going into Lamb's Conduit-Fields, I stood up a little for a Shower of Rains when the Prosecutor went by me. I followed and saw four Men about him; a Man and a Woman came by and said, There's a Man has been robb'd, and will be murdered. I ran towards them with my Trowel in my Hand, and called to Plunket to come along with the Pistols. When we came up, two of them got away, but the two Prisoners staid, and Sutton collar'd the Prosecutor, and threw him on the Grass.

Thomas Holloway . Coming by the New Burying Ground, a little on this side the Bowling Green, I saw five People in contest. Two had hold of each others Collar. The Prosecutor said, For God's sake help me, for I am barbarously used, and robb'd - The Prosecutor went for a Constable - A Man came up

with a Trowel - Sutton ran away, but fell into a Ditch, where he was taken.

Alexander Christopher . I was at my Master's Stables next the Fields, and hearing a Noise of a Robbery, I ran out with other Servants, and saw five or six Men together, and one sneaking along by a Hedge, and when he came over the Ditch he looked pale and frighted, and we stopt him.

Another Witness deposed to the same purpose.

Then Sutton's Confession taken May 14. before John Poulson , Esq; was proved and read in Court to the following effect.

I and Godson, Stockton and Benyan, met about two in the Afternoon at Lloyd's, the Sun and Horshoe in Dyer's Street, and there agreed to go into the Fie'ds and rob. From Lloyd's we went to an opposite Brandy Shop, and thence to an infamous House the Two Fighting Cocks at the Brill, kept by Taylor alias Pritchard. Going thence we met with the Prosecutor: One of us (who was in a Black Cap) fell upon him: I took his Watch and put it into my Waistcoat Pocket; but People coming up, and the Watch String hanging out, I threw the Watch on the Ground. Godson took it up, and gave it to the Prosecutor, that the Prosecutor might not think he belonged to our Company.

Sutton. I was drunk when I made that Confession, and the Thief Takers persuaded me to say any thing.

Mr.Justice Polson. He was sober - I bid him not be deceived, for it was an Examination, and not an Information - He read it over himself before he sign'd it.

Godson. I am a Shoemaker and lived at Rochester, I came to London on the Sunday Night, and on the Tuesday following I went to see a Brother-Craft in Phoenix Street, but did not meet with him. As I was coming back I met Sutton, and he asked me to drink, for I had some knowledge of him, having formerly done Work for some of his Family. We went to the Sun and Horshoe, where I found two more of his Acquaintance: We drank together there, and when we came out I was going towards Hound's Ditch, but by their persuasions I went with them to a House a-cross the Fields, I don't know the House for I was never there before. But I was in haste to go home, and so we came away, and had not gone far before we met the Prosecutor, with whom one of Sutton's Acquaintance (in a Black Cap; had some Words, upon which, Sutton stept up and said, Damn ye, will you fight. Presently the Prosecutor said he had lost his Watch, at hearing which, I was frighted and trembled; but seeing a Watch upon the Ground, I took it up and give it to the Prosecutor.

Henry Beck . Godson work'd for me as a Journey-man at Rochester, he went from my House on Sunday, and was to be back again on Tuesday; I entrusted him to cut out Work, and take care of my Business, and always found him very honest and just.

The Jury acquitted Godson, and found Sutton, Guilty . Death .

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