23rd May 1792
Reference Numbert17920523-63
VerdictGuilty > theft under 40s

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282. WILLIAM PEARCE was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 14th day of April last, a woollen blanket value 4 s. a linen sheet value 6 s. a box great coat value 31 s. a cloth coat value 1 s. and other things, the goods of John Oldridge , in his dwelling-house .


I live in White's-Alley, Bream's-buildings, Chancery-lane ; on Saturday I went to Billingsgate for salmon; I returned about six o'clock; I was informed I was robbed; I went to bow-street about a quarter past six; I found the prisoner in the watch-house; the constable has the things.

Mr. Garrow, Prisoner's Counsel. Do you know this lad? - Only since this affair.

Do you know any body that would take him into their service? - No.


The things mentioned in the indictment were in the first floor, a bed room; I saw the things about ten o'clock in the morning; I was the last person in the room, and double-locked the door; the blanket was on the bed, so was the sheet; a person was in the shop buying snuff, and they told me they saw a person going out with a large bundle; I went up stairs and found the door open; I missed the things; they are in the possession, I believe, of the constable, Mr. Walker; Charles Bray brought the prisoner back, and the things; they were the things I first missed.


I am a waiter at Joe's Coffee-house; on the 14th of April I was standing at Oldridge's door; somebody said Oldridge was robbed; I pursued the prisoner into Lincoln's-inn-fields; I took the prisoner and bundle to Oldridge's; the things were shewn to Mrs. Oldridge, who owned them.

Mr. Garrow. Did you live at Joe's Coffee-house at this time? - No, Sir, I lived at the White Lion, White's-alley.


I am a taylor and headborough; I produce the articles mentioned in the indictment; I received them from Bray.

Mrs. Oldridge. Deposes to the goods.

Charles Bray . The prisoner and another man were walking together; I could not hear what they said; there were no picklock keys found upon him that I know of.

Court to Oldridge. These clothes have been worn? - Yes, Sir; but the box coat is a very good one.


I can give an account how I came by the things: I was going through Bream's-buildings, which is near the prosecutor's house; a man asked me to carry that bundle to Clare-market for 6 d. I said I would, and I took it up and threw it a-cross my shoulder, and got half a-cross Lincoln's-Inn-fields, and there were some people running after us; I did not know what they were running after us for; the man who gave me the bundle ran away, and they took me.

The prisoner called three witnesses, who gave him a very good character.

GUILTY. 38 s .

Transported for seven years .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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