MARY COLLINS.
15th April 1830
Reference Numbert18300415-19
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation
SentenceDeath; Death

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Third Middlesex Jury - Before Mr. Justice Gaselee.

687. MARY COLLINS and ANN ROWLAND were indicted for feloniously assaulting Edward Joseph Burchell , on the 26th of March , at St. Luke, putting him in fear, and taking from his person, and against his will, 1 half-crown , his property.

EDWARD JOSEPH BURCHELL . I am an appraiser , and live at No. 14, Lower Fountain-place, City-road. On the 26th of March I was passing through New-court, Goswell-street , on my way home; it had turned half-past eleven o'clock at night, and just as I got abreast of the Prince Regent public-house I saw four women, and I verily believe there were five, and a man - the door of the Prince Regent is at the corner of the house; when you get to the corner there are two ways - I was laid hold of, and pinioned on each side by two women; the other two, and I believe three women and a man were in front of me - the prisoner Collins was on my left side, and her left hand in my trousers pocket; she was one of those who pinioned me - her right hand held my left arm, and her left hand was in my trousers pocket; I knew I had half a crown there, and that it was all the money I had about me - I seized her hand while in my pocket with my left hand, and pulled her hand out of my pocket, and as well as I could reach with my right hand forced open her little finger and the next, and there I saw my half crown in her hand; she gave her arm a sort of spring, and the half-crown fell on the ground where the rest of the party were standing - I then left her with intent to pick up the half-crown, when Rowland met me, and dodged we as I endeavoured to go forward, saying, "This is the halfpenny you have dropped, Sir," presenting a halfpenny to me; in the mean time I saw the other party who were in her company stoop - whether they picked up the half-crown I cannot say; by this time Collins had ran away - I ran after her; she had not got out of my sight - there is a little angle in the court; she had the length of the court to run - I ran and called "Stop her Police, stop her;" she had turned out of New-court into Goswell-street, and ran till she came close to the Horse Shoe, in Goswell-street, which is about twenty or thirty yards - I came up with her there and secured her; Afterwell, the officer, came up, and took her into custody - he took her back to the Prince Regent, and searched her; I told him he need not search for my half-crown, for I was quite positive she had not got it - she heard all this; Rowland was present, and insisted that it was only a halfpenny I had dropped - I did not then give her in charge, but on the road to the Police establishment in Bunhill-row, having told Atterwell she was the girl who presented the halfpenny to me, he considered it his duty to lock her up also; it was a very fine night, and where it happened was as light as it is here now, for the Prince Regent had a particularly glaring light over the door, and light came through the windows also - I do not know who was the other person who pinioned me, but can speak positively to both the prisoners; I afterwards looked into my pocket, and the half-crown was gone - I had been drinking that night, but was as collected as I am now; I had received the half-crown from Mr. Nyman, of Fetter-lane about seven o'clock; it was all I had about me.

JOHN ATTERWELL . I am headborough of St. Luke's. I was in Goswell-street about a quarter to twelve o'clock, returning home, and saw Collins running very fast, and the prosecutor after her; just as he got to the end of the court, I heard him cry, "Stop her, stop her, Police, police" - I immediately pursued her, and the prosecutor secured her; he said he wanted a Policeman - I said I was an officer; he said, "I give this woman in charge, she has robbed me of a half-crown" - I took her and him to the Prince Regent, searched Collins there, and found 8 1/2d. about her, but no half-crown; as I was taking her to the station, Rowland came along with us, and she said,"No, Sir, it was not a half-crown he dropped, it was only a halfpenny - I saw the halfpenny in her hand;" the prosecutor said he had lost a half-crown, and shewed me the spot where they were standing - I did not look for the half-crown; Rowland said two or three times as we went along that it was only a halfpenny, and I took her into custody - it was a very fine night, and very light up that court by the Prince Regent; there is a large gas light, and the house was not shut up - the prosecutor appeared to me to have been drinking, but knew perfectly well what he was doing.

BENJAMIN NYMAN . I live at No. 42, Fetter-lane. Burchell was in my house on this Friday evening from two o'clock till seven; I owed him some money, and saw my wife, by my desire, give him a half-crown - when he left my house he was very sober; mine is a private house.

EDWARD JOSEPH BURCHELL re-examined. I went from Nyman's to Wych-street, where I had a man in possession; I did not change the half crown - when I asked Mrs. Nyman for money I had about 10d. in my pocket; I treated the man I had in possession in Wych-street and the man on whom I had distrained - we had a quartern and a half of gin between myself, my man, and the man and his wife; I stopped there till that time, hoping he would be able to settle the amount I had seized for - that was all I drank.

Collins' Defence. I met him in Goswell-road; he asked me to take a walk with him - I said I could not; he caught hold of my arm, and was very much intoxicated; he asked where I lived - I said in New-court; he asked me to take him home, and in New-court he said he did not know whether he had any money, but he would feel - he put his hand into his pocket, and let a halfpenny fall; I took it up and gave it to him - it went out of his hand; he called a Policeman, and I ran away.

COLLINS - GUILTY - DEATH . Aged 20.

ROWLAND - GUILTY - DEATH . Aged 20.

Recommended to mercy by the Prosecutor, on account of their youth .[Tuesday, April 20.]


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