15th September 1784
Reference Numbert17840915-73

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850. THOMAS GRIFFITHS was indicted for stealing, on the 16th of August , one hundred and forty yards of black gauze, value 4 l. the property of Edward Simpson and John Preston .


I was called on Wednesday morning at three o'clock, to know whether I had lost any thing, and the warehouse door was unhasped, or at least the staple drawn, and the

door open, which had been shut the night before; when we came to go up stairs, we found another door open, and the lock drawn, we missed some things, but we could not tell the exact quantity.

What sort of goods did you miss? - Black gauze: I saw the gauze before five in the morning, in the constable's possession, the constable is not here; I have no doubt of their being mine, the shop marks are on them, they have been in my possession ever since; here is one hundred yards which has never been out of my possession, the rest went to be redressed.


I am a watchman in Bishopsgate-street; about one in the morning this man and another was coming along, and I asked him what he had got there tied up, he had a bundle, he muttered something, I could not tell what; says I, I insist on knowing, and will know, and he run away, I cried stop thief! he was stopped before he got out of my sight; I delivered the bundle to the constable.

What was his name? - Mr. Grimes; we asked the prisoner how he came by it, he said he found it at the corner of a place where he had just been, and saw nobody; I observed there was a paper marked upon it, but what it was I cannot say, as I cannot write, the other man made his escape; this is about two hundred yards from Mr. Preston's warehouse.


My brother watchman called out stop thief! and I pursued and saw the prisoner run down the passage, and I took him at the end of the passage, which is no thoroughfare, but he was totally out of breath.

- SHILLEY sworn.

He went to breakfast with me on Sunday, and then to dinner, and then I went up into my master's warehouse to do a little job, he was up in the warehouse with me, he locked the warehouse, and gave my master both the keys to carry home.


I had been down with a young man, I saw this bundle lay, and picked it up; that young man called to me, and I insisted on seeing it, he never offered to take hold of me, but called stop thief! I saw the watchman run, he ran immediately, which was near a quarter of a mile from the place where he first asked to look at the property.

Prosecutor. The handkerchief in which the gauzes were belonged to us.

Prisoner to Prosecutor. What particular mark have you to the handkerchief, that you can swear to it? - I am sure it is the same handkerchief.


Transported for seven years .

Tried by the London Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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