10th September 1783
Reference Numbert17830910-52
VerdictGuilty > theft under 1s

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646. WILLIAM BRIANT was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 31st day of January last, one deal box, value 12 d. one silk gown, value 45 s. one green striped silk night gown, value 25 s. one pair of French stays, value 42 s. four pair of cotton stockings, value 10 s. five linen caps, value 24 s. seven lawn handkerchiefs, value 30 s. one petticoat, value 16 s. one other petticoat, value 16 s. six aprons, value 50 s. and five guineas in monies numbered , the property of Joseph Nourse .


I am book-keeper to the coaches and waggons of the Ram, in Smithfield : on the 31st of January last, about six in the morning, I took the things mentioned in the indictment, under my care, to go with a lady in the Northampton coach, her name is Gretreaux; I saw the prisoner at a little publick house in Turnmill-street, the 31st of January, I have never seen the articles since.


I am the coachman of the Northampton coach, I had the box in my possession, it was put in what we call the rumble tumble of the coach, which is the leather machine behind; the things were the property of Mrs. Gretreaux; Mr. Nourse paid the lady for them and they, are now his property: Mr. Nourse is abroad, he is the proprietor of the stage .


I am fifteen years of age.

Court. Do you know the nature of an oath? - I never took one before.

Do you know the engagement you are under to speak the truth? - Yes.

I live in St. John-street, I am apprentice to Mr. Way a tinman, on Friday morning, about half past six o'clock, there were three boys came out of a publick house, and one of them went on the pavement, I was behind them and the prisoner and another went on the other side of the way, the other jumped up behind the coach and took a large deal box, and this man run away with

it; I do not know what the box contained; I saw a cord round it.

Knight. There was no other box in the coach, I am pretty sure, nor nothing else in the machine.

West. I have seen the man before, I am sure it is him.

Court to Knight. Do you remember this boy's mentioning to you, that something was taken out of your machine? - Yes, he caught me at Islington. I know nothing of the contents of the box, any further than as the lady took the oath before the Lord Mayor.

Prisoner. I am innocent, I have been at sea, and my friends all died while I was gone.

GUILTY Of stealing the box, valued 12 d.

Transported for seven years .

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

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