William Watts.
17th September 1762
Reference Numbert17620917-8
VerdictGuilty
SentenceTransportation

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243. (M) William Watts , was indicted for stealing one promissory note, commonly called a bank-note, value 20 l. the property of Charles Symmonds , June 16 .~

Charles Symmonds . The prisoner and I were fellow. servants to Colonel Morrison, and lay together. On the 16th of June in the morning, he had before seen me take this note out of my pocket-book; I missed it the next day; it was a 20 l. bank note; my clothes and his laid upon one chair in the room. When I missed the note, I told him of it: He desired me not to make myself uneasy, and said, I should find it again. As I had not been out into any company to lose it, I acquainted my master with it. He went to Justice Fielding and told him of it. I was sent for there, and had a search warrant granted. I served it on the prisoner. Then he owned he had taken it, and begged my master's and my pardon; he acknowledged he had carried it to Mr. Cook, and changed it for cash, and carried the cash to Mr. Wilson, a stock-broker, in order to buy in at three per cent. and that Mr. Wilson said, he had no small stock by him at that time, so he gave him a note of hand for the money [He produced the note]. The constable took the note and went to Mr. Wilson, and there lest it, and brought a bank note for the money.

Michael Spregue . I am an headborough. On the 17th of June, I had a warrant to search the prisoner's box at Col. Morrison's house; when I came to open the second box, the prisoner acknowledged taking the note, and said, he had changed it in the Broad-way, Westminster. I went there and found it the same as described; then he said, he had left the money with Mr. Wilson, a stock-broker; I went with him there: When we came in, Mr. Wilson said, Young man, I have not laid out your money yet. I said, I am very glad to hear that. I telling him the affair, he gave me a twenty pound note instead of the cash, and I delivered him his note.

Thomas Cook . I changed a twenty pound bank note for a man of the prisoner's size [The note produced]; this is it, here is my mark upon it.

Prosecutor. This is the note that I lost.

Prisoner's Defence.

I got up before my fellow servant, and saw a piece of paper lying in the room where I lay. I took it up; it happened to be this note; I did not know who it belonged to; I had it a day before any enquiry was made. I changed it into cash, and put it into the stocks, as I had no occasion for the money. But as I have no friends, and have lived in credit, you will not condemn me, without you find me guilty. I do not belong to this part of the country.

Guilty . T .


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