JOSEPH SAMPSON, EDWARD MIDDLEMAS, Killing > murder, 12th September 1798.

Reference Number: t17980912-14
Offence: Killing > murder
Verdict: Guilty > manslaughter
Punishment: Miscellaneous > fine
Navigation: < Previous text (trial account) | Next text (trial account) >

480. JOSEPH SAMPSON and EDWARD MIDDLEMAS were indicted for the wilful murder of Joseph Leahey , on the 25th of August .

They also stood charged with the like murder on the Corner's Inquisition.(The indictment was stated by Mr. Agar, and the case by Mr. Const).

MICHAEL CANTY sworn. - Examined by Mr. Agar. I am a coal-heaver: I was at a place called the Boarded-entry, on the 25th of August, between eleven and twelve o'clock at night.

Q. State to my Lord, and the Jury, distinctly, what you saw there? - A. I was coming up from New Gravel-lane , and coming into the Boarded-entry.

Court. Q. Describe what this Boarded-entry is? - A. It is a passage into New Gravel-lane; I was coming through it, and just as I was coming up, I heard the voice of some men just before me, and I came up to them; when I got before them, I saw one man lay hold of the man's breast that was murdered, Joseph Leahey , and the other man took out a knife and stabbed him.

Q. Who seized hold of him? - A. The shortest of those two, Middlemas.

Q. Who was the man that stabbed him? - A. There he is, the tallest, Sampson.

Q. Was there any person present but those three men? - A. Not one; I came up at the time, and seeing him stab the man, I cried out that he had murdered the man; the man that held him then let him go, and ran down the Boarded-entry into New Gravel-lane; the tall man then said he would serve me the same if I did not go away; then I came up a little further, and the man that was killed got up, and went, I dare say, fifteen yards, and then he fell down against a door, and I cried out for the watch, I cried out murder; the watchman was the first person that came in, says he, who is this; says I,

it is Joe; says he, is it Joe, at No. 17, that I used to call up every morning; and I said, yes; I told him to take care of him while I went and got assistance at his lodgings; I went to his lodgings, and the landlady and another lodger came out first, and then a great many of the neighbours came out afterwards.

Q. What became of the tallest man after he had said, he would serve you the same? - A. He went down a lane to Green Dragon-alley, and I saw no more of him.

Q. What had become of the other? - A. He had run away directly, through the Boarded-entry.

Q. Where were you coming from? - A. I was coming from my uncle's house to my own lodgings, after eating my supper there.

Q. How long did he live after that? - A. He died before they got him into his own lodgings; I can take my oath that it was not above seven or eight minutes from the time he was stabbed till he died; he died in the watchman's arms, at the door where he fell down.; I do not know the person's name.

Court. Q. What was the deceased? - A. A coal heaver.

Cross-examined by Mr. Fielding. Q. What is the name of the watchman you speak of? - A. I do not know, he is here.

Q. How long did you remain with the watchman, when you were telling him what had happened? - A. Not a minute.

Q. How far was this from the lodgings of the deceased? - A. A little way.

Q. Did the watchman stay with the deceased while you went to inform the people at his lodgings, what had happened? - A. Yes.

Q. How many came out from that house? - A. I do not know.

Q. Did you lodge in the same house with the deceased, yourself? - A. Yes.

Q. How many men came out of the house at that time? - A. I cannot say.

Q. How many coal-heavers lodge in the house? - A. Six of them.

Q. Did they come out of the house immediately, upon your arrival at the door of the house? - A. I cannot say that they all did, for I did not stay at the door; I only said, Joe was murdered.

Q. How many women might come out? - A. That I cannot say; there was ne'er a woman in the house, I believe, except the landlady; the first man that came out was Cain Mahony , he was dressed; and Mrs. Donovan, the landlady, came out.

Q. Was she up and drest? - A. Yes.

Q. Now tell me who the rest were? - A. I cannot say who the rest were.

Q. Had the watchman, by that time, brought this poor man towards the door of his lodgings? - A. No.

Q. Had you come from that house in the fore part of the evening? - A. No.

Q. When you left the house, did you go back to the watchman? - A. yes; I was helping to bring him home, when Mahony and Mrs. Donovan came out.

Q. What did you do with youself when the people came out? - A.Mahony looked down, and said, the man is dead; then the rattle was sprung, and a great number of people came.

Q. To whom, of all these people, did you happen to say any thing about the transaction? - A. I told Michael Connolly of it.

Q. Did he come up in consequence of the rattle being sprung? - A. Yes.

Q. Not out of the lodgings? - A. No.

Q. Did you know him? - A. Yes.

Q. A good many coal-heavers lodge about there? - A. Yes.

Q. When these men had been spoken to, and a great number of people had assembled, did you stay there? - A. No; Mich, Conolly and I went down to the stairs, and a great many followed: we went down to the watchman.

Q. What led you down to the stairs, did you see either of the two men go that way? - A. Yes; I saw one of them going towards New Gravel-lane, and the other to Green-dragon-alley.

Q. At the time when you went down to the water-side, did you then see any body that you supposed to be the persons that attacked this man? - A. Yes.

Q. Did you yourself happen to lay hold of, or accuse, any body else? - A. No.

Q. Where had you been spending you evening? - A. I had been down to my uncle's, in Spring-street, James Leahey .

Q. Was the deceased a relation of your's? - A. Yes.

Q. What time did you come from there? - A. I left there about eleven o'clock.

Q. Did your uncle come back with you? - A. No; I came by myself.

Q. Where did you fall in with the deceased, before you had arrived at this boarded entry? - A. I never saw him till it happened.

Q. Had you been drinking there? - A. Yes; my uncle and I had had two pots of beer.

Q. Which way was Leahey, the deceased, going, when you first saw him? - A. I cannot tell, he was standing up.

Q. What sort of a place is this boarded entry, is it not covered over? - A.Part of it is.

Q. It is very dark then? - A. No, it is not; this was just by a baker's door.

Q. Tell me the first thing that took your notice as you came up to the spot? - A. I had just come up to the entry.

Q. Almost immediately upon your arrival at the place, you saw what you have described? - A. Yes.

Q. You do not know what brought Leahey there? - A. No.

Q. When you came to the water-side, did you hear of any man that had been down there? - A. No, I did not.

Q. Did you ever learn that this man had communicated to the waterman, what had passed? - A. No.

Q. How soon after this was it you saw either of the prisoner? - A. The next morning, at the watch-house; they were taken about an hour after it happened.

Q. You did not continue the pursuit, or join the party that took them into custody? - A. No; Mr. Riley came into the house, and said, they were taken. I had told the watermen, if they saw such people come that way, that they should stop them.

Q. Do you know a person of the name of Digby? - A. No.

Q. He is a baker? - A. No, I do not.

Q. Did you see any man that you accused of being he murderer? - A. No.

Q. Did you say of any man, he is the man? - A. No, to be sure; there was another man taken up next door to the Green Dragon; there was some blood upon him, and they said, he must be the man, but as soon as ever I saw him, I said, that was not the man.

Q. Did you never say to any man, that he was the man, and that you would hang him without Judge or Jury? - A. No, I did not; I said, that is not the man.

Q. How is it you receive you pay, as coalheavers - do you receive it on the Saturday night? - A. I was idle that day, I did not work that day.

Q. Had Leahey been at work on the Saturday? - A. Yes, he had.

Q. Where had he been at work on the Saturday? - A. He used to work in a constant birth.

Court. Q. How are you paid? - A. When the ship is out; she is out sometimes in three days, and sometimes in a week.

Q. When had you been at work before that? - A. I had not been at coal work that week, I was out lumping on Thursday; when we cannot get coal work, we go lumping.

Q. How long have you lived in the same place with Leahey? - A. About a month.

Q. Tell me a little more particularly of the number of persons that lodged in the house? - A. There were six, I believe.

Q. Had you not seen any thing of Leahey, or any of the parties that lodge in your house for that evening before, from eight to eleven? - A. No, I had not.

Q. In point of distance, how far was that spot exactly from the lodging where you resided with Leahey? - A. About fifty yards; I am sure it is not more.

Q. How many doors then are there between the entrance of this alley and that house? - A. That I cannot tell.

Q. So that what passed between these men and the deceased, you do not know? - A. Nothing at all.

Q. How far, let me ask you again, is it from your uncle's? - A. I do not know.

Q. You knew Leahey's voice, did not you? - A. Yes, when I came up to him.

Q. Did you approach the spot immediately? - A. Yes, I had just come up.

Q. Had you not an opportunity of following the men? - A. No; he said he would serve me the same.

Q. The first man did not say so? - A. No.

Q. When the watchman came up immediately, did you know he was stabbed? - A. I saw the man stabbed with a knife.

Q. Did not you therefore rush immediately upon him at that moment? - A. I saw the man take the knife out of his pocket, and stab him.

Q. And you did not rush upon him? - A. No

Q. And you did not attempt to seize either one or other of them? - A. No; I supposed I should be served the same myself if I did.

Q. Therefore, notwithstanding you knew the voice of your friend in this situation, and notwithstanding you saw the act of the man taking out the knife, you did not attempt to prevent the mischief? - A. I did not.

Q. Nor called out? - A. I called out murder, and called but watch at the same time.

Q. And then when the watchman came, you told him what you have told us? - A. Yes.

Q. So you stood still, and did not make the least attempt to assist him? - A. No.

Q. And you saw nothing of what happened before that? - A. No.

Court. Q. What space of time was occupied in stabbing the man - was it a minute? - A. It was done very quick.

Mr. Fielding. Q. Had you seen any thing of any stone that had been thrown? - A. No.

Q. Was not Sampson on the ground? - A. No; he was standing up.

Q. And was the deceased standing up? - A. Yes.

Mr. Agar. Q. Was there light enough for you clearly to distinguish the parties? - A.There was.

Q. Have you any doubt of their person? - A. I have not, indeed.

Court. Q. Was it in the passage itself, or was it clear of the passage? - A. It was clear of the passage, against the baker's door.

Q. Was it a moon-light night? - A. Yes, it was.

ROBERT BURTON sworn. - Examined by Mr. Const. I am a waterman; I ply at Shadwell-dock-stairs.

Q. Do you know either of the prisoner at the bar? - A. Only by seeing them that night; I carried the tallest one off that night; he came to me between eleven and twelve o'clock at night; I was smoking my pipe in the watch-box, and he came in and sat down by me, and said, he had had a rumption; he said, he had been fired at; I understood he had been fired at with shot at first, but he explained afterwards that it was with stones; he said, stones had been thrown at him; upon that, he said he bobbed twice, and they knocked the hat off his head; but, says he, I turned round and did one of them, for I whipped my knife into his kidnies; he said, it was sharp, for the had sharpened it the day before; he half opened the knife and shewed it to me; he said, there was the blood up on his hand, and he held out his hand for me to look at, and I saw the blood; he said, he stood in in his own defence, and neither law nor justice could hurt him for it; my fellow watchman was by at the time.

Court. Q. Are you a watchman? - A. A waterman; and we take it by turns to watch two and two at the stairs.

Q. Did he tell you what be came down there for? - A. He came down to go aboard a ship; he hailed the ship the Restoration.

Q. That was the ship he belonged to? - A. Yes.

Q. Do you know what he is aboard the ship? - A. They say he is carpenter ; I took him on board.

Cross-examined by Mr. Knapp. Q. The knife you say he produced to you, accompanied with the words you have stated? - A. Yes.

Q. This he did openly to you in the watch box? - A. Yes.

Q. He made no secret of what had taken place? - A. No.

Q. Had he a hat on? - A. No hat at all.

Q. Therefore to you it appeared as if there had been a scuffle, and he had lost his hat in that scuffle? - A. Yes.

Q. And he said that what he had so done, was merely in defence of himself? - A. He said, that what he had done, neither law nor justice could hurt him for.

JOHN MORELAND sworn. - Examined by Mr. Agar. I am a waterman, I ply with the last witness: On the night of the 25th of August, between eleven and twelve at night, the prisoner, Sampson, came down; I asked him if he wanted a boat; he said, no; and he began to relate that he had been very ill used by a parcel of Irishmen, and that they had thrown stones at him; that he had dropped twice from them, or else they would have felled him, and he had whipped his knife into one of their kidness; he said, he had stood in his own defence, and nobody could hurt him.

Q. Did you see the knife? - A. Yes; he pulled out his knife, and half opened it, and said, that was the knife he had done it with, and he said, there was some of the blood on his hand.

Q. Did you see the other prisoner that night? - A. Yes; after Sampson had gone home with my partner, in about four or five minutes Middlemas came up; I asked him if he wanted a boat; he said, yes; he then asked me if a young man had been down; I told him there had; I asked him what ship he belonged to; he said, the Restoration; I told him, that the young man was gone off, and that he had told me that he had had a fray with some men that had used him ill; he said, that he had been very ill used himself, and had got a blow on the side of the head himself, and was obliged to run off; I then took him on board.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q. Then I understand the account given by Middlemas, exactly corresponded with what the first man had said? - A. I had no conversation with him upon it.

Q. But though they did not come together, their account was the same? - A. Yes.

Mr. Agar. Q. Were there any marks on his head? - A. He appeared to have had a blow on the left side of his head.

Court. Q. Did it appear to be a mark of violence? - A. Yes, it appeared to be lately done.

Q. Did you observe whether the first man had any hat or not? - A.He had not.

JOHN RILEY sworn. - Examined by Mr. Const. I am an officer: On sunday Morning, the 26th of August, about two o'clock, I was called up by the watchman, and I apprehended the two prisoner between two and three o'clock; I found Sampson near Shadwell-dock-stairs, standing on shore; I apprehended the other on board the ship; I took him out of his hammock; Sampson, the carpenter, was standing with his hand in his jacket pocket; I came up to him, caught hold of his arm, took his hand out of his jacket pocket, and pot my hand in and took out a knife, which I have in my possession; then I took him to the watch-house, and a little boy with him, that belonged to the same ship; I applied to the beadle and headborough to know if there was a murder committed; they went with me to the place, and I found the man was

dead, and I then thought it proper to go and apprehend the mate, Middlemas.

Cross-examined by Mr. Fielding. Q. When you apprehended Sampson, he was standing by the ship's boat? - A. No; he was standing near the stairs.

Q. Did he tell you he had come on shore to look after his hat? - A.No, I did not ask him any question. (Produces the knife.)

JEREMIAH DONOVAN sworn. - Examined by Mr. Agar. The deceased lodged in my house; he left my house on the 25th of August, between the hours of eleven and twelve; he went out in order to get a quartern of butter for his supper; and from the time he went out till the alarm came to the house that he was a dead man. was not a quarter of an hour.

Cross-examined by Mr. Knapp. Q. You keep a lodging-house? - A. Yes, at No. 17, Ship-street, Wapping.

Q. Of course there are a great number of sailors in that neighbourhood, and a great number of coal-heavers? - A. Yes.

Q. Has it not happened pretty frequently that quarrels have happened between coal heaver s and sailors? - A. I do not know any thing about that.

Q. Do you mean to swear that you don't know that it has happened before and since this accident, that there have been quarrels between coal-heavers and press-gangs? - A. Not to my knowledge, there might for any thing I know; but I know nothing about it.

Court. Q. Were you at home the whole of that evening? - A. Yes, from five o'clock till the time it happened.

Q. How near is the Boarded-entry from your house? - A. I suppose 100 yards.

Q. Do you know of any scuffle that happened thereabouts that night? - A. No; I never was out from the time I left work at five o'clock, till the report came that he was dead, not to go 100 yards from my apartment.

Mr. YEOMANS sworn. - Examined by Mr. Const. I am a surgeon, No. 60, New Gravel-lane; I saw the body of the deceased on the 27th of August; the first wound that I examined was under the left breast; it had penetrated about two inches into the abdomen muscles, which would have occasioned his death; the next wound was in the upper part of the left thigh, near the groin, which had penetrated into the intestines; the large artery of the thigh was cut in two, and the vessels entirely empty; either of them alone must have been the cause of his death.

DAVID DUBBER sworn. - Examined by Mr. Const. I am a watchman; I was on duty near this place; I was called to the spot by Canty; I was on duty from ten o'clock at night till four in the morning.

Q. Did any thing particular happen that night? - A. When I went round at eleven o'clock every thing was quiet and still, and about half past eleven, or twenty minutes before twelve, I was coming back to my box again; my box is at Mr. Phillips's brewhouse, about 400 yards from where the corpse laid, as nigh as I can judge; when I came up to where the deceased laid, his nephew was supporting him against his knees, and when I came up to him, he was feeling about the temples and round his head to feel for any wound or blows that he had received, but he could find none.

Q. Do you mean Canty? - A. Yes; and he desired me to support him till he went to his lodgings to get more assistance; he was gone about a minute and a half, or two minutes, and there came eight or ten people, men and women, to our assistance, and while the nephew was gone, a man dragged him up to a higher part of the ground, and he exclaimed three times, he is stabbed, he is stabbed, he is stabbed; then I sprung my rattle; I went a little further and sprung it again; and then I went to Spring-street and sprung it again.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q. So soon as you had discovered that the man was stabbed, you very properly sprung your rattle? - A. Yes.

Q. If you had discovered that before, you would have sprung your rattle before? - A. Yes.

Q. The nephew was feeling over the temples for the wounds? - A. Yes.

Q. I take it if you had seen the man stabbed, you would have known where to look for the wounds? - A. Yes, but I did not.

Q. Your box was about 400 yards from the place? - A. Yes.

Q. The moment the nephew returned, there came several people, eight or ten? - A. Yes,

Court. Q. When these people came, and you supported the corpse, did these people come out before him, or did he come first? - A.They followed him to where the deceased was.

Court. Q. The people clustered round the corpse, I take it for granted? - A. Yes.

Q. Was he with them when they were dragging him to a higher part of the ground? - A. He was present then, and assisted in getting him up.

Q. Was he stripped then? - A. No further than to see the wound in his left breast.

Q. Did you hear of any riot or fighting in the course of that night? - A. No, every thing was quiet when I went round at eleven.

Q. What sort of a night was it? - A. A moonlight, clear night, and a fine evening.

Middlemas's defence. As I and my shipmate were coming from Charles M'Carry's, at near

eleven o'clock, where we had been with the shipwright to have a pot of beer, coming out I laid hold of his arm; we had not gone far, before we men a woman; the passage being narrow, he says to me, give her the wall; we had not passed far before a man came up; he asked what was the matter? Sampson said, nothing was the matter; we had not gone two minutes further, before a voice called us back to have some beer, in an Irish tone; and in about two minutes after that there came a stone, and took me on the side of the head; I called out to Sampson, by the help of God clear yourself if you can, and I saw no more of Sampson till I came on board; before I went on board, I went to a woman and told her of it; then I went back to the Boarded entry, and called my shipmate, but could not get an answer, and then I went to the waterman, and told my story, and he told me some expressions that Sampson had told him, and I said, I hoped it was not so; I am innocent of it.

Sampson's defence. I was coming with Middlemas from Mr. M'Carty's, about eleven o'clock; we laid hold of each other's arm, and proceeded to go on board; we met a woman in the passage; I said to my mess-mate, let us give her the wall; accordingly he said, certainly; she had not passed us but a little distance, when we met a man; he asked us what was the matter? I answered, nothing; my shipmate asked if there was any offence? to which he replied, none; we bid him good night, and walked on; a voice then called after us to have some beer, in broad Irish language; I said, we had had quite sufficient; then we went on but a very little distance, when we were assaulted with stones; one of the stones hit me on the side of my head; he immediately flew from my arm, and cried out, by the held of God, carpenter, clear yourself if you can: I turned round, and the stones were flying very hot; thinking my life in great danger, and thinking every moment that my brains would be knocked out, I pulled out my knife; a man immediately seized hold of me, and we both fell down, and I suppose in the fall the wound might happen; I ran away with the loss of my hat, expecting a second attack; I then went to a woman and told her of it, and she said, it was most prudent to make the best of my way aboard, and she conducted me to Wapping-wall, and then I knew where I was; I went to Shadwell, and told the waterman we had been attacked in a furious manner, and had lost my hat, and he put me off on board, and when I found the mate was not there, I was very much afraid; but I had not been many minutes on board, before he came on board; there was a boy on board that knew the place better than me, and we went on shore to look for the hat, and when we got to the stairs, the runners laid hold of us.

ANN SMITH sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. I live in King-street, Wapping.

Q. Do you remember the night this unhappy accident happened? - A. Yes.

Q. Look at the prisoner, and tell me whether you saw either of them at your house that night? - A. Yes; the carpenter, Sampson, about eleven o'clock, went past my door, he was running, and seemed very much flurried; he asked me if I could tell where Mr. M'Carty lived; I asked whether he meant Charles or Daniel M'Carty; and he said, Charles; I asked him if he had been pursued by the gangs.

Q. Do you mean the press-gangs? - A. Yes.

Q. Are the press-gangs frequently about there? - A. Yes; we have three or four gangs about us; he said, no, I am not pursued by the gangs, but I have been fired at by the Irishmen.

Q. What did you understand by the term siring? - A. Stones, he said; he had no had on, but was in a very great fluster and flurry; he said, he wished to go to M'Carty's to see for the mate, for the was afraid he was murdered; I shut my door to, and went and shewed him to Mr. M'Carty's; he knocked at the door three or four times, but did not get in; then he asked me to direct him to the waterside; and I pointed him down King Edward-street, and he went that way, and I saw no more of him; after that, I heard the rattles.

Q. How long a time might the conversation with Sampson take up? - A. About five minutes.

Q. How long a time might it take up to go to M'Carty's? - A. It is in sight of my own house; it might take up about ten minutes altogether.

Q. From that opportunity of seeing him, have you any doubt that the prisoner Sampson is the man? - A. None.

Mr. Agar. Q. Was the street quiet before you saw Sampson? - A.More quiet that evening than it had been for a long while before.

Mr. knapp. Q. From the press-gangs, you mean? - A. Both ways.

Mr. Agar. Q. Was there any thing like a riot? - A. No.

Court. Q. How far is this Boarded entry from your house? - A.About forty or fifty yards; he told me he had come through the Boarded-entry.

SARAH CARMAN sworn. - Examined by Mr. Fielding. I am a married woman, I live in the Boarded-entry, New Gravel-lane.

Q. Do you recollect the Saturday night, between eleven and twelve o'clock, when this unhappy accident happened? - A. Yes.

Q. What part of the house, or the yard of the house, were you in at that time? - A. I was backwards chopping some wood; I heard stones and bricks fly about, and I said to my little girl, there

is somebody pulling the old house down; and then I heard something like a cane strike against the paling of the next yard to mine; directly after, in the course of five minutes, I heard a rattle; I ran out, and said, there is a fire some where, and I saw a great number of people collected at a little distance and they said it was somebody killed; a woman made a great noise, and said it was the baker, Mr. Digby, and his two women.

Court. This is merely the conjectures of the people.

Cross-examined by Mr. Const. Q. The stones that you speak of, that made you think somebody was pulling the house down, made a very violent noise? - A. Yes.

Court. Q. Was this in a place called Spruce's-island? - A. Yes.

Mr. Const. Q. The night was very still before you heard this noise? - A. Yes.

Q. And that noise was very violent? - A. Yes.

Q. Such as to be heard at a great distance? - A. It might be heard by the neighbours about.

ISABELLA DOUGLAS sworn. - Examined by Mr. Alley. I live in New Gravel lane; I know the place where this unhappy accident took place, I was standing at the door when Middlemas came to my door in great haste, it might be about half past eleven o'clock, he told me he had run for his life, and was almost murdered; he lifted his hat, and ordered me to feel his head; his head was in a great flutter, and his pulse beat very high; I was afraid I should put my hand upon some wound, and I did not put my hand any further; he said it was down that alley, that he had been almost murdered; and he said, he had a partner, that he had lost his partner, and did not know whether he was murdered or not; he went from the door to the Boarded-entry to look for his mate, and he called upon his name three times, Joe, and there was no answer made, and I saw no more of him.

ANN BROWN sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. I live in Spruce's-island, No. 5.

Q. Do you remember the night when this unfortunate accident happened? - A. Yes, the 25th of August; I went home when it wanted about a quarter of twelve, or not so much; I was alarmed by the throwing of one stone only, as I thought then, but the next morning there was no appearance of stones, but there was as many pieces of bricks as would half sink a pail; after I went into my house I heard a scuffling, and a number of more bricks thrown.

ANN SIMPSON sworn. - Examined by Mr. Fielding. Q. Do you remember the night of this unhappy accident? - A.Perfectly well.

Q. Between eleven and twelve o'clock did you happen to be looking out at you window? - A. Yes.

Q. How far was this from the Boarded-entry? - A. A very short way from where the accident happened; I heard a quarrel.

Q. Did it appear to you that there were any stones or bricks thrown? - A. A vast quantity indeed.

Court. Q. At what time of night? - A. I think it might be near the hour of twelve I heard the quarrel; at the first of it between eleven and twelve; most of the language was Irish, which gave me little concern, because it is a usual, thing that I am accustomed to in that same track; I threw my window up, I heard a man that ran call out, with a loud voice, clear yourself, carpenter, if you can; instead of the carpenter getting clear, he went into a strong bustle, which continued about the space of two minutes, as if they had hold of each other, while the brick-bats were going very fast; then I heard them go to the ground, but in what manner I do not know; then one with a loud, and a hard voice, called out, oh Lord! Lord! Lord!

Q. At this time were there any other brick-bats thrown? - A. I then heard different feet run; I saw the carpenter run past my door; I heard the deceased and the carpenter both upon the ground.

Court. Q. You could not know that? - A. I heard them fall.

Cross-examined by Mr. Const. Q. This took a considerable time then? - A. Yes; from the time the carpenter run it might be the course of five minutes.

Q. How long do you think the whole transaction might take? - A.From the time I paid attention it might be between six and seven minutes.

Q. And, from the noise of the brick-bats, there was quite a riot? - A.A perfect riot.

Q. The night was still till this commenced? - A Yes; I heard a voice say, it is you, you bl-y b-r, that has done it, and I will have you hanged without Judge or Jury.

Q. You do not know who it was said so? - A. No.

Q. A great many other people were by at this time? - A. Yes.

Q. When did you first state what you have now stated? - A. I told it to several of the Jury.

Court. Q. Did you hear the rattles go? - A. Yes; but that was after this had happened.

JOSEPH DIGBY sworn. - Examined by Mr. Alley.

Q. Do you remember the day when this unhappy accident took place? - A. The 25th of August; I live in the Boarded entry, New Gravel-lane.

Q. Repeat to us what you observed of the transaction? - A. When this accident happened I was backwards in my kitchen at supper, I came into my bake-house and heard a great noise.

Court. Q. What time of night might that be?

- A. A quarter before twelve; I opened the door and went out, and I saw several people assembled together; there were two women caught hold of me by the arm, and begged me to look at the deceased.

Q. Did you hear any body else accused of having committed this murder? - A. No; I went and looked out at the window, and then came back again; after I was in bed, there came a great number of persons making a noise with sticks, beating against my window.

Cross-examined by Mr. Const. Q. That was after the person was dead? - A. Yes.

Q. Did you hear the rattling of sticks before that? - A. No.

Mr. Alley. Q. I understood you to say, that before you heard the riot you were in the bake-house? - A. Yes; I went out immediately.

Court. (To Simpson.) Q. The watchmen's rattles went after this affray that you speak of? - A. Yes.

Q. Did the people continue there after the watchmen's rattles went? - A. Yes.

Q. Did you see the watchman himself come up? - A. No.

EDWARD DAVIS sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. I live in Ship-street.

Q. Do you remember the night this took place? - A. Yes.

Q. Were you apprehended and taken into custody for this murder yourself? - A. Yes, by the mob; I was looking out at my window at the time.

Court. Q. At what time of night did they commit that mistake? - A. About half past eleven.

Court. (To Sarah Carman.) Q. You described bricks to be flying about, and the noise of a stick, was that after or before the watchmen's rattles? - A.Before.

Q. How long before? - A. It was over in the course of five minutes.

Q. (To Ann Brown.) Did you hear the watchmen's rattles? - A. No, I was afraid to look up.

THOMAS MASTERLY ROCKWOOD sworn. -The prisoner, Sampson, sailed with me eight months, four years ago; he is of a perfectly humane, kind disposition; there is nothing ferocious or savage about him.

Court. Q. (To Carty.) If I understood you right, you said, you were coming from Gravel-lane to this entry, and heard the voice of men; you saw one man have hold by the breast of another man, and a third man took out a knife, and stabbed him? - A. Yes.

Q. And that Middlemas was the man that held him, and Sampson the man that stabbed him; and, that no other person was present? - A. No other person.

Q. Was it like the voice of men quarrelling? - A. They seemed to be quarrelling.

Q. Did you see any scuffling between them at all? - A. No, I did not.

Q. The one was not struggling with the other, or shaking him, or any thing of that sort? - A. No.

Q. Where was Sampson standing, at the time that this man had hold of the other? - A.He was standing by the pales, about half a yard distance.

Q. Nor you did not hear any quarrel afterwards? - A.No.

DURHAM WALKER sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. I am master of a ship: I know the prisoner, Sampson; I have known him from ten years of age, he always bore the best of characters; he is a very humane man, and a sober man.

Q. Was he of a savage disposition? - A. No; he is a married man, and has a family.

LOCKWOOD BRODERICK sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. The prisoner, Sampson, served me three years, as a shipwright; he is of a very good, humane disposition.

ROBERT STORMONT sworn. - Examined by Mr. Knapp. I have known Middlemas seven or eight years; he is of a very mild disposition.

Sampson, GUILTY of manslaughter .

Middlemas, GUILTY of manslaughter.

Fined 1s. and discharged.

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury, before The LORD CHIEF BARON.

View as XML