4th April 1779
Reference Numbert17790404-33
VerdictNot Guilty

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227. FRANCES HAMILTON was indicted for stealing a guinea, a half-crown, and 12 d. in monies, numbered, the property of William Ashton , privately from his person , February 21st .


On Sunday the 21st of February, happening to spend the evening late with some friends, it was my misfortune to be locked out of my lodging. Being a stranger in London, I know not where to spend the rest of the night. Seeing a light in a public-house by Temple-bar , I went in; the prisoner came up to me, and gave me an invitation to go home with her, which I agreed to. There was a coach, we got in, and she ordered the man to drive to Covent Garden ; but when we came there, she ordered him to drive back to Temple-bar; upon which I thought there was something wrong, and felt, and missed my money. I charged her with having it; she denied it. When we got out, I charged the watchman with her; he took her to the watch-house, and the constable searched her, and found exactly the money upon her that I had lost; she confessed it was my money, and asked my pardon.

What time of the night was this transaction? - About one or two in the morning.


I am a constable. On the 21st of February, in the morning, the prisoner was brought to the watch-house by the prosecutor and two watchmen. The prosecutor said, she had robbed him. I desired her to return the man his money. She said, she had none of his money. I threatened to search her, and said, I knew I should find it. She then pulled out half a crown, and some halfpence. I asked where the guinea was; she said, she had none; I said, you know you have it in your shoe. I made her pull her shoe off, but found no guinea. I stroked my hand along her foot, and found it between her foot and her stocking. She begged his pardon, and hoped he would not prosecute her. She did not say any thing about the money she rather denied it all along.


I know nothing of the matter; I have no witnesses to call.

Prosecutor. I went into the publick-house; it was she that picked me up, not I that picked her up.

Jury. How long have you been in London? - Near a twelvemonth?

You was rather in liquor? - Yes.


Tried by the Second Middlesex Jury before Mr. DEPUTY RECORDER.

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