28th October 1820
Reference Numbert18201028-5
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation

Related Material

ActionsCite this text | Print-friendly version | Report an error
Navigation< Previous text (trial account) | Next text (trial account) >

1230. CHARLES KING was indicted for that he, on the 3d of October , at St. Margaret, Westminster , feloniously, wilfully, maliciously, and knowingly did send to the Rev . William Johnson Rodber , Clerk, a certain letter, without any name subscribed thereto, demanding money , which is as follows: -

"DEAR SIR, I take liberty of writeing to you, hoping I shall not offend you by so doing. I am going to relate to you a circumstance which you little think. I no any think off about Mrs. Rodbur going down to Wieghbridge with her father, to conseeal from her friends the ladies and gentlemen, and likwise the Ministers of this said Parish, which I do know what he whent down to Wieghbridge for has well has you or Mr. Dunn. I shall immediately write to the ladies and gentemen and Ministers, and state to them all the particulars has I know. has you have used me very ill, has you are going to relate to them faulsehoods, I shall tell them what I know, and every instance of it, has I know what she has been taken while there with her father. has you do expect her home this week I now have one favour to ask of you, has you have used me very ill, which is to afford me some relief. My clothes and every thing I have his in pledge for 4. 15, and if you will help me I shall be thankful, and burry the secret in my bosom for ever, and never utter a single silliable about the business. I know as much of the case has you do. If you will afford me anything, be pleased to direct B. B. B., Caledonian Coffee-house, Great Chappel, Broadway-street, Westminster, October 2, 1820." against the statute.

REV. WILLIAM JOHNSON RODBER . On the 3d of October I received a letter at my house in James-street, Westminster, by the two-penny post, it is signed B. B. B., and dated the 2d of October - (producing it.) I have not the least knowledge of the hand-writing, and know nobody answering to the name B. B. B. I never saw the prisoner to my knowledge, except at the police office. On receipt of the letter I sent for Pace, an officer of Queen-square, and in consequence of his advice I wrote a letter and took a copy of it; I sealed it myself, and gave it to the officer; and on the evening of the 12th or 13th I received another letter with the same initials.

Q. Are you married - A. I am, my Lord.

Q. Did you ever see any of the prisoner's relations to your knowledge - A. Not till I saw his father at the office; but at the office I found that his aunt washed my family's clothes, but I do not believe I ever saw her. She only fetches the linen, she does not wash in the house. I never saw the prisoner about my house.

Cross-examined by MR. ANDREWS. Q. Do you think you never saw the prisoner about your house with his aunt - A. Not to my knowledge. I am seldom at home when the linen is fetched. I did not know the letter came from him till he was apprehended.

Q. The letter gave you no alarm - A. I certainly thought if there was a report of that kind it must come from my

servants, and wished to find it out - it gave me considerable uneasiness. Mrs. Rodber was at Weybridge at the time I received it.

COURT. Q. What was her maiden name - A. Dunn. I have been married fourteen months, and am clergyman of St. Margaret's, Westminster.

THOMAS PACE . I am an officer of Queen-square. The prosecutor sent for me and gave me a letter. In consequence of my advice he wrote a letter, read it over to me, and gave it to me; I got a lad, named Johnson, to take it; I and Cooper went with him to the Caledonian coffee-shop, Broadway, Westminster, and saw him take it into the shop; we went in and saw the same letter laying on the bar window, it was directed

" B. B. B. Caledonian coffee-house." I did not see the prisoner that day. I went there again on the 13th, after receiving a second letter from Mr. Rodber, and saw the prisoner sitting in a box with a young man, they did not appear acquantances. In consequence of information I asked the prisoner if he was the person who received a letter left there a few days ago directed

"B. B. B." he said he was; I called the landlady from the bar, and asked her before him if he was the person she delivered the letter to directed

"B. B. B." She said Yes, he was - her name is Eliza Thompson . I asked his name, he refused to tell me, and said he was a gentleman. I took him to the Hoop and Grapes, public-house, opposite the office, searched him, and found two letters, one sealed and not directed; the other was directed to

"Mr. William Stewart , No. 110, Upper Thames-street, London." I found a common brass wafer seal upon him.

Cross-examined. Q. From whom did you receive a description of the prisoner - A. From Cooper. Mr. Rodber never gave me a description of him.

JOSEPH COOPER . I went to the coffee-shop with Pace on the 3d of October, and on the 13th, after he was conveyed from the office to the watch-house, I had some conversation with him. Neither of us held him out threat or inducement. I asked him how he came to write Mr. Rodber such a letter as he had? he said he had been attending the House of Lords, and there he met a young man who asked him to write a letter for him, and he being out of a situation at the time was very willing to do so. I then asked him whether he wrote the letter signed

"B. B. B." addressed to Mr. Rodber, James-street; he said he had written it. I asked if he had received any answer at the Caledonian coffee-house to the letter directed

"B. B. B." he said he had. I told him I thought it a very unlikely story that he should enquire for an answer to the letter he wrote for another person? he made no reply.

The letter was here put in and read, which was a fac similie of the indictment.

The prisoner made no defence.

GUILTY. - DEATH . Aged 18.

Recommended to Mercy .

First Middlesex Jury, before Mr. Justice Park.

View as XML