24th April 1790
Reference Numbert17900424-20
VerdictNot Guilty; Guilty

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349. BENJAMIN GOODALL , JAMES EVANS , and WILLIAM DENBY were indicted for stealing, on the 4th of March , four hundred and fifty-eight pounds weight of lead, value 3 l. belonging to Abraham Adams , affixed to three certain buildings of the said Abraham , against the statute.

(The witnesses examined separate.)


I am a builder . I lost some lead on the 4th of March; I was spending the evening with some friends, who told me they had taken a lad with some lead; I only speak to the property.


On the 4th of March there had been some lead gone from there before, and I had some property there of my own; the property is in Hyde-street ; I went there a little past seven in the evening; it is the carcase of a house, unfinished; four boy s came in at a square of glass that was broken in the window; I seated myself in a corner, in the back part of the house, where the stair case is intended to be put up; they stood in the door way; they did not see me; they had some conversation among themselves; then they went to the top of the house; I heard them taking off the tiles; I then went out of the house, locked the door, and went for some assistance; I placed one man in the front, and another in the back; we staid from that time till eleven in the evening; I did not

hear them any more after; I left the house; I was not near enough to hear them; the man then began to be uneasy; I told them if they would set there, I would go to the Rotation Office; I went up to the middle gutter; and at the next house I saw something of a lump laying; and there was a boy laying with his head near the trap-door; I could not tell what it was till I came to it, because the man had not a light there; the shade took it away; I heard somebody speak to him; catched at him: I found it was another; and he fell down on the garret cieling; and I believe there were more of them: I took this boy, and called down; by some means they escaped; I then brought this boy down, and took him to the watch-house; that is an accomplice.

Do you recollect the faces of the other three? - Yes; one of them, Denby, he had not so good a coat on as he has now; I cannot be sure, because by moon-light one cannot so well see the colour.

Had you more than a momentary view of his face? - Yes; I can undertake to swear to him: I had been on the top of the buildings about six in the evening; I saw the state of the buildings then; and when I went up again, I examined, and found a great deal of lead was gone, which, when weighed, weighed four hundred and fifty-eight pounds; that was during the time these boys were on the top of the house: I found all the lead moved inside the roof, upon the cieling; I matched it, and it corresponded: it was from the gutter.


On the 14th of last March, between ten and eleven, I was called to this house to assist; I went to Hyde-street, Manchester-square, where I saw the evidence in custody; I went from thence to the buildings, the unfinished houses; I could see no sign of any other person; upon the evidence telling who the parties were, I took up the prisoners the following morning.


I live in one of the houses; I was fetched; and this evidence was taken: on the morning I matched the lead in the gutter.

(The lead produced and deposed to.)


Court. Remember that you are to speak the truth, and nothing but the truth: therefore, though you are to tell all you know against these prisoners, you are not to say a word more than you do know; and beyond what the truth will bear? - No, my lord. On Thursday night, the 4th of March, me and the three prisoners, all four went up a-top of the house in Hyde-street, and ripped off a great quantity of lead, and moved it out of the gutter: the three prisoners were all with me; they were inside when I was taken; I had just settled the lead.


I was not near the house: I was in bed at two in the morning.


We know nothing about it.




Transported for seven years .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. Baron HOTHAM.

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