5th April 1780
Reference Numbert17800405-18
VerdictNot Guilty

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175. ROBERT WILSON was indicted for stealing a live pig, value 5 s. the property of John Henderson , Esq . March 23d .


I live at Hendon. Mr. Henderson of Hendon bought two pigs of me in the month of February, the day before Good Friday. The gardener afterwards came to me and told me they had lost one of them.

What is the prisoner? - A kind of a coachman ; he drove hay backwards and forwards for Mr. Jacques. I went to Mr. Jacques' town-house in Doctor's Commons, and in consequence of a direction from Mr. Jacques I went to Lambeth and found the pig in a stye of William Sleath 's.

Was that pig one of the pigs you sold to Mr. Henderson? - I am positive of it.


I am a coachman.

Do you keep pigs? - No; I had not any at that time, only that one.

Who are you coachman to? - Dr. Elvert. Robert Wilson brought this pig to me on Good Friday morning.

Do you know Robert Wilson ? - Yes. I have known him near six months; he is a coachman. I live at Lambeth; he brought the pig to me and desired I would take care of it till I saw him again, that he was going to drive a job for a gentleman at Peckham.

Did he tell you how he came by the pig? - He said he bought it of a person on the

road, and gave five shillings for it; the gentleman came to my house, I happened to be at home; he saw the pig the prisoner brought to me.

Cross Examination.

You have known the prisoner six months? - Yes.

He always bore a good character? - Yes.

He told you he bought it on the road, and gave five shillings for it; do you know any thing, after the pig was discovered, of his going down to clear himself voluntarily? - Yes; when the constable came, I would have gone with him to the gentleman's house; he would not go. He said we could not oblige him to go to that gentleman's; they laid a scheme for him to go down for hay for Mr. Jacques, and another man to go with him.

Court. Who refused to go with you to the prisoner's house? - The constable said I could not oblige him to go there.

What constable? - Mr. Presgrove.

To Presgrove. On what account did you refuse to go to the prisoner's? - Mr. Jacques said he was doing a job at Peckham for a coachman that was ill, that if I took him away in a disagreeable manner he might lose a job, and disoblige the gentleman; and begged I would not go to him; that he would contrive to send him down for some hay with another man on the Monday, and then we might stop him.

Did you know yourself of the pig being missing? - Yes; I saw it the day before.


I met a man with two pigs. I asked him what he would have for one of them? He said five shillings; I bought it of him. I took it to a publick-house and shewed it to several people, and asked if I was taken in; they said no; but it was as much as it was worth. I took it to Lambeth; when they told me the pig was taken away I went voluntarily to Mr. Henderson.

Sleath. He asked me to go with him on the Sunday to Mr. Henderson's.

To Presgrove. I believe you found the pig in a publick-house? - No.

You enquired at the publick-house, and heard the pig had been left there? - No. The gardener enquired at the publick-house.

For the prisoner.


The prisoner has lived servant with me near upon three years; he was a very good servant, a very honest fellow; he came a great many miles out of the country to live with me. I was amazed to hear of this thing of him; he came of good friends, who always let him have money when he had a mind; he might have robbed me of a great deal, keeping a manufactory.

Court. How long has he left you? - I believe, pretty near three months.


The prisoner came from Mr. Godwin's service to my father's service; he was there about two months; he came on account of the illness of another servant; he behaved so remarkably well that we would have kept him, if the other servant had not recovered; he behaved so well that we got a place for him, in which he behaved very well.

JOHN HILL sworn.

Did you see any thing of the prisoner's bringing a pig to Mr. Jacques' yard? - I did not see the pig, but I heard it squeaking in the bag, when Sleath took it home.

How long have you known the prisoner? I lived with Mr. Jacques ten years. I knew him directly after he came to Mr. Godwin's; Mr. Henderby's coachman being ill I recommended him to drive for him.

Where did you hear the pig squeak? - At a publick-house on Addle-hill; I was up stairs, I did not see it.

To Sleath. You told me the prisoner brought the pig to your house? - To my stable.

Where is the stable? - Upon Addle-hill, the Bell-yard; I took it from the stable to Lambeth, which is about two miles. I took it on the Friday night at eleven o'clock; Presgrove found it on the Saturday.

Where was it all day on Friday? - In my stable; I turned it out of the sack; they said it had continued in the sack some time.

When was it brought to the stable-yard? I do not know; the prisoner told me of it on

Friday morning, I believe, between eight and nine o'clock.

Did you take the pig then? - No, he brought it to me.

Where from? - I believe from Jacques's yard, but do not know.

How long did he say he had had it, and what account did he give you of it? - He did not give me any account how long he had it; he desired me to take care of the pig which he had bought, while he went into the country.

When did he say he bought it, and of whom? - He said he met two men on the road with a couple of pigs, or one man, I cannot say which, who were driving the pigs along, and he asked if they would sell one of them; they said yes. He asked the price; they said five shillings. He said he would have his choice.

Did he say that before there was any enquiry made about it? - No.

What did he say when he brought it? - He said he had got a pig, and desired me to take care of it till he returned out of the country; that he had bought it and given five shillings for it.

Did he tell you what he intended to do with it afterwards? - No.

Is he a housekeeper or got a family? - No.

Did he say what he intended to do with it? - When he lodged at my house about two months before, I desired him to buy a pig for me if he could meet with it.

Was there any thing said that you was to have this pig? - No.

Did you say nothing to him about it that you should like to have it? - No, nor did he say I should have it or should not.

Was there any thing said about your having it? - No, nothing at all.

How came he to get a pig for you, had not you as good an opportunity to get a pig yourself? - No, I was a gentleman's servant, and he was out of place. I asked him if it lay in his way to get me a pig.

What price did you tell him to give for it? - I did not tell him any price.

Did you tell him what sort of a pig you wanted? - Yes, a small pig.

This was about the size you wanted? - It was.

How came you then not to say any thing about having it when he brought it? - I did not care whether I had it or not, therefore I did not say any thing to him about it.

How old was it, was it two or three months? - Yes.


Tried by the Second Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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