JAMES EDWARDS.
11th September 1799
Reference Numbert17990911-96
VerdictGuilty
SentenceTransportation

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478. JAMES EDWARDS was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 26th of July , a pair of morocco slippers, value 2s. 6d. three instep leathers, value 3d. and a wooden last, value 3d. the property of John Brown .

JOHN BROWN sworn. - I am a shoe-maker , in Princes-street, Cavendish-square; I can only prove the property.

WILLIAM JACKSON sworn. - I am a constable belonging to Marlborough-street; on the 26th of July, between two and three o'clock, near the end of Bond-street, I observed the prisoner and another man standing on St. George's side of Oxford-street , the other man was standing still; the prisoner went up to the other man, and I suspected them from their manner; then they crossed the road, I paid attention to them, and walked gently after them; the prisoner went very slowly past seven or eight shops; I missed him, I went about three shops before him, I was looking at him, and all at once he turned out from the pavement into the middle of the road up to a shop-window where there were five or six children standing, one of the children had a pair of shoes in her hand and a last; the prisoner went up to her, and stooped down to her, and snatched them out of her hand, and walked towards me; I let him pass me, and I spoke to the child; I told her not to be frightened, for I would take care that she should have them again; the child was following of him, and he went as far as Holles-street, which was the next street, he turned into; a public-house, and went into the further end of the tap-room; there was nobody there but himself, he had laid the shoes down at his right-hand; I went up to him and asked him whose shoes he had got there; says he, that is nothing to you, they are my own property; says I they are ladies shoes, are you a master shoemaker; he said that was no business of mine; I then told him it was my business, for I saw him take them from the child; I took the shoes up with one hand and him by the collar with the other, he made all the resistance he could to get away; I took him down to Marlborough-street, and sent for Mr. Brown. (Produces the property.)

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q. You saw him go and speak to the girl? - A. I saw him take them from her.

Q.How long was he with the girl? - A. Not a quarter of a minute.

Q. Did he not say he had been desired to go for these shoes, and that he had made a mistake? - A. He said he had made a mistake.

LUCY WILKINSON . - Q. How old are you? - A. Going on eleven.

Q. Do you go to school? - A. No; I used to go.

Q. Have you learned your catechism? - A. Yes, but I have forgot some of it.

Q. Is it a good thing, or a bad thing, to tell a lie? - A. A bad thing.

Q. Have you heard that you will be punished here, as well as in the other world, if you say that which is false? - A. Yes.

(She is sworn.) - My father is a shoe-maker, No. 24, Gee's-court, Oxford-road, he works sometimes for Mr. Brown, in Princes-street; I was carrying some shoes to Mr. Brown's, on a Friday, and that man that stands there took them away from me; he asked me if I was not going to Mr. Brown's in Princes-street; I said, yes; then he asked me if I was not Mr. Wilkinson's little girl; I said, yes; and then he desired me to give him the shoes, and call in the morning for the money; Mr. Jackson brought the shoes back.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley, Q. Did not you say, before the Magistrate, that you gave them to him? - A. No; I said he took them from me.

GEORGE WILKINSON sworn. - I am a shoemaker, the father of the last witness: These shoes are my making, I know them by my own stuff.

Q. Do you know the instep leathers, or the last? - A. Yes, here is a name upon the last; I sent them by my little girl to Mr. Brown's.

Mr. Alley. Q. Mr. Brown gave you the leather to make up, and he never had the shoes in his possession at all? - A. No.

Mr. Alley contended that the shoes were the property of Wilkinson, and not of Brown, inasmuch as there never was a possession in Brown, either absolute, or legal; but the Court held that Brown had a legal possession of the property.

Prisoner's defence. There is a Miss Flint here, that ordered me to call for a pair of shoes.

For the prisoner.

FRANCES FLINT sworn. - I live at No. 26,

Oxford-road, I am a mantua-maker: The prisoner at the bar, Edwards, called upon me on the 26th of July; I desired him to be so good as to call it Princes-street, Cavendish-square, to inquire if my shoes were done, at No. 6, his name is Meymott.

Q. Did he bring your shoes? - A. No, they were sent to me that same evening.

Q. How long have you been acquainted with the prisoner? - A. I have known him these two years and a half.

Q.Perhaps he lives in the same house with you? - A. No, he does not.

Q. What is he? - A. I cannot tell.

Q. Not know what he is? - A. I have known him in different circumstances.

Q. What has he been during that two years and a half? - A. I cannot tell you exactly; he was a linen-draper about three quarters of a year ago.

Q. And kept a shop? - A. No, he lived servant.

Q.Where? - A. He never informed me where.

Q.Nor the persons's name? - A. Nor the person's name where he lived.

Q.What was he besides that? - A. I cannot say.

Q. You were not very intimate then? - A. No; he is not any particular acquaintance.

Q. How came you to send a person you had so little acquaintance with for your shoes? - A. I asked him if he would be so kind, as he was going that way.

Q. You did not tell him to take any chance pair of shoes he might meet with? - A. No.

Q. He did not take your measure as he went along? - A. No, they were ordered.

The prisoner called two other witnesses, who gave him a good character.

GUILTY .

Transported for seven years .

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury, before Mr. COMMON SERJEANT.


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