Offence: Theft > burglary
Verdict: Guilty; Not Guilty
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150, 151, 152. (M.) Peter Robins , Charles Galliher , and Jane Godfrey , otherwise Simonds , spinster , were indicted, for that they, on the 16th of January , about the hour of one in the night, the dwelling house of Christian Watts , spinster, did break and enter, and steal one large silver salver, value 5 l. one silver apple scoop, value 2 s. two silver tea-spoons, value 2 s. one silver table spoon, value 6 s. two silver dessert forks, value 3 s. one pair of cotton stockings, value 2 s. one pair of worsted stockings, value 2 s. one canvas-bag, value 1 d. and 20 s. in money, numbered, the property of the said Christian, in her dwelling-house . +
Christain Watts. I live at Staines , in Middlesex. On the 16th of January last, my house was broke open in the night; I cannot tell the time, because I am very deaf. I apprehended I heard a noise, and imagined it to be a high wind had thrown down the bricks of my chimney: every thing was sufficiently fastened when I went tobed. I lie up one pair of stairs, and found in the morning the glass was broke of a window up one
Prosecutrix. This is my property, and it was taken out of my house that night
Sheffield. On the 22d of last month, about 9 in the morning, I was sent for by my neighbour Mr. Hebbleswate, a watchmaker, in New-street: he stept out at the door, and told me, he had got a person in his shop that had brought a piece of plate, which he believed was not honestly come by; he gave me charge of him: it was the prisoner Peter Robins . I told him, I must search him; he said, he would strip, if I required it: he came very honestly by the plate, and that it was a family piece of plate of his mother's. I took him before Sir John Fielding ; he told Sir John that the plate was thrown at him, by a person that was riding by, full gallop, on the Tuesday night, as he stood by the house where he lodged, (some where at or near Stains) upon which he said, he took and buried the plate in the ground, and it lay there till the Saturday night; then one of his neighbours told him, he had read in the papers, that such a person's house had been broke open, and the plate was advertised, upon which he hired a horse, and came to town with the plate that night, or rather on the Sunday morning, saying, it was 12 o'clock when he came to town. I know nothing against the other two prisoners, but by Robin's confession.
Richard Peirce . The prosecutrix sent for me on the 17th of January, to mend her window; I am a glazier. I found a pane of glass broke on the stair-case, and one in the kitchen, and I put new glass in.
Thomas Hebbleswate . On Sunday morning, the 22d of January, the prisoner Robins, came to my house, and knocked me up: my wife went to the door: he said, he had a piece of plate to sell. I imagined he wanted to inform against me, in case I bought any thing on the Sunday: I sent the maid privately for a constable; she went, and brought one. The prisoner told me, he lived in Gray's-Inn-lane; I asked him if any body recommended him to me? he said no; but that he had bought a watch of me a while ago, and that I had used him very ill, it would not go, and he was forced to sell it to a Jew. I knew at the same time, I never sold him any: he told me, the salver was a family-piece of plate, the property of his mother. I gave the constable charge of him.
Mr. Bolt. I know all the prisoners. I was sent for by the prosecutrix, on Tuesday the 17th of January, about 2 o'clock, in order to see in what condition every thing was. When I came there, the glazier was just putting in a quarey; (that is the reason he is produced here as an evidence, I not seeing the window in the condition he found them) we found her chest of drawers broke open, in the passage leading to the room, the door of her chamber broke all to pieces, and a large kitchen poker broke in two pieces, lying near it. In her room, several of the drawers were open, and the things had been rumaged. Several boxes were broke in another room, and the locks lying by them; there was never a bed on a bedstead; the bed was thrown out at a window; we found several cupboards broke open. I came to town, and having a great deal of business, did not go to Sir John Fielding till the Thursday morning. I got the things advertised, and put out some hand-bills; and on Monday night, I had a letter by Sir John's order, to let me know a man was taken up on suspicion of stealing plate, and that he owned he had buried a silver salver behind a hay-rick, in Mr. Bannister's ground; he keeps an inn at Stains, near where Robins lives. The Justice advised us to go and search the ricks, and the house where Robins lived, for the rest of the plate. I went there, and found a hole that had been fresh dug, we could find nothing; we searched the rick, then we searched the prisoner's lodgings. The next morning, Madam Watts came to town, and swore to her salver; then Robins declared before Sir John, that he and the other two prisoners were concerned in the robbery; he said, the first made an attempt on the cellar-door, and broke it open, but the water was so deep
I was in company with Jane Godfrey , at Fanny Davis 's. On the 16th of January, Charles Galliher came to the door; she said, How are you, Charles? he said, poor and pert. I said, then you are like me: we are all alike, said she. Let's go and rob somebody, said I: Who, said she? that old D - l, Madam Watts. So we went.
Q. to Prosecutrix. Had you any body in your house that night besides yourself?
Prosecutrix. No, I had nobody in the house but myself.
Robins, Guilty . Death .
Galliher and Godfrey Acquitted .