23rd February 1846
Reference Numbert18460223-779
VerdictGuilty > unknown

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779. HENRY BRETT was indicted for burglariously breaking and entering the dwelling-house of George Brown about two o'clock in the night of the 12th of Feb., at Lambeth, with intent to steal, and stealing therein 51bs. weight of bacon, value 2s. 6d.; 21bs. weight of sugar. 1s.; 3 china ornaments, 15s.; 3 shillings, 60 pence, and 96 halfpence; his property.

GEORGE BROWN . I keep a beer-shop, at No. 9, Burdet-street, Westminster-road, in the parish of Lambeth—on the 12th of Feb. I went to bed about half-past twelve—the window was fastened by a catch—I fastened it myself—that would prevent its being pulled up or down from without—there are two shutters outside the window which fasten by a bolt, and also another bolt to the window-sill—they were fastened—about half-past two I was alarmed by somebody calling me by name from the street—I went down stairs, and found the centre square of glass broken, to undo the button of the sash—there was sufficient glass removed to enable an instrument to be introduced, but not a hand—the top sash was pulled down level with the bottom—the shutter appeared to have been prised open by some flat instrument—there was the mark of an instrument between the shutters—I have since compared a hatchet with the marks on the shutter—I found my till, which is kept in the bar, standing on the top of the counter—I had left it locked overnight, and about 9s. of copper money in it—I missed some bacon from a cupboard in the bar, and china ornaments from the bar parlour mantel-piece—I saw the china ornament and the bacon

at the station—two packages of sugar were produced—they resemble 21bs. I had in my house the night previous—when I first saw the prisoner at the station-house, I thought I had seen him before, but I am not positive of it.

Prisoner. Q. Were the shutters so strained that they could not be closed to? A. They were put to after I discovered it.

HENRY PROWSE (police-constable A 102.) I was on duty in Burdet-street, Westminster-road, a little after one in the morning, and saw the prisoner at the corner of Francis-street, Westminster-road, in company with another person—on seeing me cross, the prisoner said to me, "It is a cold night"—I said, "You had better go home out of the cold"—the other walked off—I did not see his face at all—the prisoner walked away in the same direction—I went round my beat again—I afterwards saw the prisoner in company with a woman, eight yards from the prosecutor's house—on seeing me, he walked quite away—the shutters were quite safe then, for I turned my lantern on them, but on coming round again, I found the shutters open, and marks of dirty footmarks on the window-ledge—I called Mr. Brown—the shutters were put to—I compared the marks on the shutter with a hatchet which was produced afterwards, and it corresponded exactly—I did not make a fresh mark with it.

Prisoner. Q. Were the shutters closed the last time you came round? A. I am quite certain they were—they were closed to when I discovered it, and I opened them, and found the glass out.

HENRY TABOURDEN (police-constable L 57.) On the morning in question I was in the Lower-marsh, and saw two men on the opposite side of the road—I went over to them—one of them walked away—I stopped the prisoner, who had a bundle—I asked what he had there—he replied, "A piece of bacon"—I asked where he got it—he said he bought it—I asked where—he said, "At Westminster"—I asked where—he said, "At a shop"—seeing the bacon, and that it had not been bought at a shop from the appearance of it, I pointed to these China images which he had, and asked where he got them—he said he bought them altogether—I was taking him to the station-house, but he dropped the bundle and escaped—this hatchet fell from his coat—I took it from him—I followed him, sprang my rattle, and found him in custody—the bundle contained three China ornaments, the bacon, and 2lbs. of sugar.

Prisoner. Q. Did not I give my right address? A. Yes—I had not got hold of you in taking you to the station—I was going to take you on suspicion.

Prisoner. I did not run away till he told me he should take me to prison.

VALENTINE TITE (police-constable L 45.) I heard the rattle spring, and saw the prisoner coming from Johanna-street, running—he saw me, and turned up Herriot-street—I ran round, and met him in Lower-marsh—I stopped him—he said, "Don't stop me, I am running after a man who has just got away from a policeman"—I stopped him—I heard something fall from him, and told the other officer to pick it up.

Prisoner. Q. Was I running when I came up to you? A. Yes, very fast indeed.

HENRY APHOM (police-constable L 159.) I heard the rattle spring, and came up when the prisoner was in Tite's custody—I looked on the ground in consequence of what he said, and found this image, and afterwards saw the prisoner take this piece of an image out of his pocket and throw it down.

GEORGE BROWN re-examined. I can swear to all these being my property—they were safe overnight and missed in the morning.

Prisoner's Defence. Mr. Brown stated in his deposition that the shutters were that, and could not be closed to, and the policeman says when he came round they were closed, and I do not see who could have opened them but the policeman; it was a frosty morning, and there could not have been mud on the window-sill; on Saturday night I met a friend, who kept me out; I was taken by him to Westminster-bridge; I left a beer-shop there at two o'clock; we came from there; I wished him good night, and came on my way home by Lower-marsh, and I picked up the piece of bacon, the hatchet, and the 2lbs. of sugar, wrapped in paper; the three images were in brown paper; I had not had them in my hand two minutes before the policeman came up, and took me; he said I should go to prison; I then ran away for about half a mile.

(The prisoner received a good character.)

GUILTY . Aged 20.— Confined One Year.

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