9th April 1829
Reference Numbert18290409-39

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Second Middlesex Jury - Before Mr. Baron Garrow.

750. WILLIAM POWELL was indicted for feloniously breaking and entering the dwelling-house of John Blake , on the 27th of March , at Fulham, and stealing therein 30 lbs. of bacon, value 40s., his property .

MR. PHILLIPS conducted the prosecution.

JOHN BLAKE . I am a market-gardener , and live at Stock-green, Hammersmith, in the parish of Fulham . On Saturday morning, the 28th of March left my house about half-past four o'clock; I fastened the door out of which I came myself, and went to market - I returned about eleven in the morning, and in consequence of information, I went for a search-warrant to the Magistrate, who lives near me, and then went to the prisoner's house; the constable searched his house in my presence - I found part of a side of bacon in the closet; he was in the house, and was taken in charge; I knew the bacon to be mine by a mark on it; we took the prisoner away, then returned to his house, and found a dark-lantern, matches, tinder, part of a file and flint, and a crowbar; I saw the constable apply the crow-bar to the marks on my door, and it corresponded - I found three marks on my door where the crow-bar had forced it open, and apparently they were made by that crow-bar; the prisoner's son had been in my employ nine days previous; the prisoner was not in the habit of coming there; (looking at the bacon) this is my bacon I am quite certain, it was home made - I had prepared it myself - there was a crack in the flitch, and the ribs are broken instead of being sawed; it hung up in the kitchen the night before.

ELIZABETH PICTON . I am servant to Mr. Blake. I went to bed about ten o'clock on the night of the robbery, and got up about half-past five - I found the street door standing open, and the bolt and staple laid on the floor;

I had seen the bacon hanging up in the kitchen when I went to bed, and at five o'clock in the morning it was gone-when master came home I informed him.

JOSEPH PALMER . I am a constable. On the 28th of March I went to the prisoner's house with a search-warrant, and found him there; I knew him before, and knew it was his house; he was just finishing dinner, and had dined off part of a flitch of bacon; I showed him the warrant - he directly requested his wife and me to go up stairs and search the house; he said, "Pull the beds all to pieces, and do whatever you like;" I said, "We had better search the lower part of the house first;" I opened a cupboard door, and found this bacon in a sack; Blake immediately identified it, and I took the prisoner into custody; I returned afterwards to the house, made further search, and found a crow-bar - I found this lantern in a very obscure place in the house; I found in the prisoner's pockets some tinder, a flint, steel, two pieces of matches, and a knife; I afterwards took the crow-bar to the prosecutor's house, and compared it with the marks outside the door - there were three or four marks, and the instrument fitted them; the bolts had been forced off the door.

Prisoner. This chisel is what I do my work with, and what I do jobs with.

THOMAS WEAVING . I was on the road near the prosecutor's house on Saturday morning, the 27th of March, and saw the prisoner with a box and wheelbarrow with a sack in it, he was going in a direction to the prosecutor's house; I was at a distance form him, and could not tell whether the sack was full or empty.

BENJAMIN GREEN . I know the prosecutor's house. On Saturday morning, the 28th of March, I was a goodish bit from the house, about ten minutes or a quarter before six o'clock, and saw the prisoner coming from the house towards his own, with a wheelbarrow, and something tied up in a sack - the sack appeared bulky.

Prisoner's Defence. I was going to my employ at Acton, and as I crossed the cross-road to Acton, I saw a sack laying down in a bye lane between a dunghill and a ditch - I went to it and found the bacon in the sack; I looked round, but could see nobody - Immediately took my barrow, put the sack into it, wheeled it home, and put it into the cupboard; the constable came - I said if that was his they were welcome to it; I left my house at half-past five o'clock in the morning; the tools are mine - I am a bricklayer; I have been a watchman some years ago, and that lantern my father-in-law gave me; the matches a young man brought to me at the cage to light my pipe with; I have had the chisel twenty years: I believe I have a witness who brought the tinder and steel to me: there has been a little revenge between the constable and me about a cart and horse; he said if he could catch me he would serve me out for it.

Three witnesses gave the prisoner a good character.

GUILTY - DEATH . Aged 40.

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