10th January 1787
Reference Numbert17870110-19
SentenceCorporal > whipping; Imprisonment

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178. THOMAS SPENCER was indicted for stealing, on the 17th of December last, one cotton gown, value 5 s. the property of Joseph Carter .


I keep the Fox public house, Pennington-street, Ratcliffe-highway ; on the 17th of December, the prisoner came to my house in the morning about eleven; he continued there till four; he was drinking and walking about, and went in and out; about four my wife went to dress herself, and between four and five I was informed that there was a man suspected; the prisoner was taken up in half an hour; the prisoner went down to the privy, and was taken coming up to the platform adjoining to the house between four and five; I laid hold of his collar; I took him; and he had the gown wrapped round his body under his waistcoat; I saw him down in the privy doing something, but what I could not tell; I sent for an officer, and he was taken into custody by Mr. Brown, the headborough; I saw the gown taken from his body; it was my wife's gown; I knew it perfectly well; I saw it hang by the fire just before.

Was this man drunk or sober? - He was neither: he had not been drinking all the time.


I am sister to Mr. Carter; I remember the prisoner coming to our house on the 17th of December; my sister sent me into the bar room for her gown that was hanging by the fire; I brought it into a room adjoining, and put it on a table; and it was afterwards found round his waist; I did not see it taken from him; this is the gown.


I am a headborough; I was drinking in the prosecutor's house; and Mrs. Carter informed me her husband wanted me; he had the prisoner by the collar, and gave charge of him to me; at that time he had the gown wrapped round his body; I saw him begin to take it off, and I went to the watch-house to fetch my staff.


I came into the house about eleven, and staid till dark, and went out with a common prostitute to her house; I was very much in liquor; I went backwards; I kicked the gown before me, and picked it up; I did not know what I did; I wrapped it round me; I was coming up to pay for a reckoning, and they stopped me.


Whipped , and imprisoned three months .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice WILSON.

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