24th November 1856
Reference Numbert18561124-3
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation; Guilty > with recommendation

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3. EMMA FOREMAN and SELINA ELIZABETH ARNETT , stealing 26l. in money, of John Biggs Holdsworth.

MR. SLEIGH conducted the Prosecution.

JOHN BIGGS HOLDSWORTH . I reside at No. 5, Clement's-inn, Strand. I am connected with the newspaper press—Mrs. Arnett, the mother of the prisoner Arnett, was the person who ordinarily did the domestic duties of my chambers—she is the wife of the principal porter of the inn—I usually took my tea at chambers, about 7 o'clock—on 28th March, I was in chambers during the whole or greater part of the day—I dined at chambers that day—I saw Arnett during that afternoon—I told her I should not want the tea things laid, as I was going out—I went out at 9 o'clock tliat evening—I left in a pocket book a 20l. note, any a 10l. note, and a purse containing six or eight sovereigns, in a small drawer of a chest of drawers in

my bedroom; that drawer was locked—I had the key in my pocket, on a bunch—on my going out of the inn that evening, I saw Arnett standing at the door of her father's lodge—this (produced) is my 20l. note—I know the number of it—I returned to chambers between 12 and 1 o'clock, nearly 1 o'clock, I believe; as I came into the inn, an intimation was made to me as to a robbery at my chambers—I found both the outer and inner doors shut—on going into the sitting room, I found every thing as I had left it; the dinner things were still on the table, nothing appeared to have been disturbed—I then went into the bedroom, and found the drawer which I had left locked, standing open—there was no light in the room—I afterwards found a small mark on the lock, I believe it had been forced open—the 10l. note was still left in the pocket book, the 20l. note was gone—Mrs. Arnett, the prisoner's mother, had been absent from the inn for some time previously to the robbery, and she was still absent at that time—during her absence the domestic offices at my chambers were usually performed by a charwoman in her employment, and in the evening the prisoner Arnett usually came in—there were duplicate keys of my doors—I had one key for each door, and the others were kept at the lodge—I have seen Foreman at the inn; I do not think she had been there for about three months before this—when she was there, she was there in the capacity of a domestic servant to Arnett, the head porter.

Cross-examined by MR. M'OUBREY (for Foreman). Q. Is it not the custom to lock the outer door of the inn about 9 o'clock? A. At 10 o'clock, after that hour they unlock the gate to let you in; at 9 o'clock the gate is entirely open—there is a porter's lodge at the gate—the gate is in the custody of the principal porter—the porter and his family live in that lodge; there is always somebody there—when I went out of my chambers, I shut the doors, and they locked themselves with a spring lock—they could not be opened without a key, or force—there was no appearance of force, they appeared to have been opened with a key—I had not seen Foreman about the inn, or about the lodge, for several months—she used to come to my chambers in the evening, when she assisted Mrs. Arnett—I never lost anything during the time of her service.

Cross-examined by MR. SERJEANT PARRY (with MR. GIFFARD, for Arnett). Q. How long had Foreman been in the habit of coming to your chambers? A. I should think for eight or nine months, possibly more, morning and evening—she used to let herself in with the key from the porter's lodge—a person named Price was the charwoman that worked for me in the morning at this time—I do not know whether she is here—she has not been examined as a witness—I am certain that I have a perfectly accurate memory of the evening of 28th March—Foreman has been to my chambers since the discovery of the robbery; she was brought there—there was a lady residing at my chambers at this time—Foreman was brought to the chambers by a policeman; only once I believe—I do not know of her having come since—I have not seen her at any other time—she only came once—I have seen her in the street since she has been out on bail, nowhere else—I have not spoken to her—I have not seen her at the inn—Mrs. Arnett was not going to leave at this time—she did leave three weeks or a month after; we did not part on ill terms.

MR. SLEIGH. Q. You say a lady was residing at your chambers; where was she on the night of the robbery? A. She was out with me—she went out with me, and returned with me.

RICHARD ADYE BAILEY . I am one of the clerks in the note office in the

Bank of England. This note, No. 00094, Aug. 7th, 1855, was paid in on 23rd July last.

ISABELLA BAINES . I live at No. 18, Chandos-Street, Covent-garden; my mother keeps a baker's shop there. I know Foreman very well—on a Saturday, in the beginning of July, she came and paid a little bill, after which she asked me for change for a 20l. note—I had changed notes for her before, and said, "Put your father's name on it"—she said, "Yes," and I did so—I can see part of the word "Foreman" on this note, but it is punctured—I gave her the change—it was between 6 and 8 o'clock in the evening.

Cross-examined by MR. M'OUBREY. Q. Did she hesitate in giving her father's name? A. Not at all—I have known her for a considerable time—we always thought her a very trustworthy young woman.

MR. SLEIGH. Q. Had you ever seen Arnett in company with Foreman? A. Yes, once, or it may be twice; but I did not know her name.

WILLIAM THOMAS (police sergeant, E 17). In consequence of information, about the end of March last, I took measures to stop the payment of this 20l. note at the bank of England, and afterwards saw Foreman on her arrival from the country, having made a previous intimation to her family—I took her to Miss Baines, who said, in her hearing, "That is the person who changed the 20l. note"—Foreman said, "Miss Baines, I did not do it; I never saw a 20l. note"—I then took her to Mr. Holdsworth's chambers, told her that I was a policeman, and that she must consider herself in custody for stealing a 20l. note—she said that about April last, a young person named Betsy Arnett brought her a parcel, sealed up in five different places with black wax, containing a brooch given to her by a young French-man in the Temple-gardens, and asked her to mind it for her, as her mother would not let her wear it; and that about three weeks afterwards, as she was dressing for church one Sunday morning, she missed the parcel, and immediately communicated the loss to Miss Arnett, and when she came she appeared very much grieved at the loss, saying that it contained a 20l. note; that they afterwards went to a charwoman in Brydges-street, Covent-garden, where they mentioned the loss of the parcel—in consequence of that statement, I went to Arnett's parents, but did not see her—in a few days she returned to town, and I saw her, and asked her if she knew Foreman—she said that she did—I asked her if she ever gave her a parcel—she said that she had not—I asked her if she had ever been to a charwoman in Brydges-street—she said that she had—I asked her for what—she said to have her fortune told—I asked her if she had mentioned to the person in Brydges-street about the loss of the parcel—sue said that she had not—I asked her if she did not tell her what the parcel contained—she said that she did not—after taking Foreman into custody, I took her to the porter's lodge in Clement's-inn, and confronted her with Arnett—I stated to Arnett substantially that which Foreman had told me, and she said, "Oh! Emma, how can you say so?"—Foreman said, "You know, Betsy, you brought me a parcel"—I do not remember what Arnett said, but she denied it—Foreman said, "You know you went with me to Mrs. Dent's, and mentioned about the loss of the note"—Arnett said, "Oh! Emma, how can you say such a thing?"—she denied the statement altogether—I afterwards put myself in communication with Mrs. Dent—I was present at the police court when this charge was being inquired into before the Magistrate, and heard Mrs. Dent examined; Foreman was then present at the bar—I saw Alice Dent sign this deposition (produced)—I remember it, because she signed

once in the wrong place—when the prisoners were committed for trial, they were represented each by a professional gentleman, Mr. Humphreys was for one, and Mr. Atkinson for the other—on one of the earlier examinations, Arnett was not in custody; she was afterwards ordered into custody by the Magistrates—I believe Alice Dent was examined before Amett was ordered into custody—I heard the depositions read out in Court to the witnesses before they were signed; at that time both the prisoners were in custody on this charge, and had an opportunity of cross-examining Dent, and the other witnesses—Arnett gave her evidence before she was given in custody, and she was cross-examined afterwards—at that time her solicitor was present—(MR. SLEIGH proposed to put in the deposition of Alice Dent. MR. SERJEANT PARRY (with MR. GIFFARD) objected, on the ground that she was examined before Arnett was given in custody, and that Arnett, therefore, had not the opportunity of cross-examining her; and that, as it was not evidence against Arnett at the time it was given, she not then being in custody, it could not become evidence afterwards.)

COURT. Q. Was Arnett present at the time the first examination took place? A. She was present, but not in custody—it was her attorney who cross-examined, and afterwards, in the presence of both the prisoners, the deposition was read over, and she was asked whether it was true, and signed it—Arnett was in the witness box on the first occasion—the witness was sworn twice; once before she gave her evidence, and again when her deposition was read over to her, and she signed it—(The COURT considered that the deposition was evidence).

CATHERINE TROY . I live at No. 7, Brydges-street, Covent-garden. Alice Dent lodged with me during the present year, and until her death, which was to-morrow four weeks—she got her living as a charwoman—I saw her dead body—(The deposition was here read, as follows: "Alice Dent, on her oath, saith: I live at No. 7, Brydges-street, Covent-garden—I lived there in April last, and one day in that month the prisoner Foreman and the young girl Betsy Arnett came to my house; the prisoner Arnett is the same—she (Arnett) said that she had given Emma (meaning the other prisoner) a parcel to take care of; that the parcel contained a 20l. note, and a sovereign—she said that that parcel had been lost out of Emma's box—I asked her if she knew the number of the note, as she could then stop it at the bank—she said she did not, but that she dared say that the lady in France, to whom the note belonged, did; and she said that the lady in France had entrusted the note with her to take care of—I said that it was very strange that the lady had gone away without the note, and I said, 'Why do not you tell your father?'—she (Arnett) replied, Oh! dear, no, I would not let him know for the world; if he knew, I would leave my home, and never go there again'—I then told Emma to tell her father, and she said that she would—they then left, and I never saw them again till this day in this Court

Cross-examined. I never knew that any one called me a fortune teller—I have told fortunes to my friends by cups and cards—they asked me if I could tell them where the note was; they seemed to have a notion that I could tell them. Alice Dent.")

Cross-examined by MR. SERJEANT PARRY. Q. Where did she live? A. The last room she occupied was the two pair back, one room, and a small one like a cupboard—she paid 3s. a week—she lodged with me three years and six weeks—I know nothing about fortune telling—I never saw Foreman.

WILLIAM THOMAS Cross-examined by MR. M'OUBREY. Q. Was it at her

father's house that you first mentioned the matter to Foreman? A. Yes—I then told her to consider herself in custody, but did not take her into custody till about a week after—I then found her there.

Cross-examined by MR. SERJEANT PARRY. Q. When you first went to Mrs. Arnett's, did you make a great many inquiries, not only about her daughter, but about Foreman? A. I never inquired about her daughter—I made inquiries about Foreman—I ascertained that she had been in service some mouths, and the lady gave her a very good character—this was several days before she was in custody; I was making inquiries—I afterwards went to Mrs. Arnett's, and found that her daughter was in the country; she wrote to her to come up immediately, and she came—I had a conversation with Mr. and Mrs. Arnett before I brought Foreman there, and the girl answered all my questions by way of denial throughout—she knew that I was a policeman—I thought it in course of my duty to bring Foreman, and confront her with Arnett, and she, in the most natural manner, and without hesitation, denied everything, with the exception of going to the charwoman, which she said was to have her fortune told—she did not say that it was a long time ago—when she said, "Emma, how can you say so?" she said it reproachfully, and with vehemence—I did not take her to the police court; I told her father that she had better be there in the morning—she was examined at the police court, in Foreman's presence—she was regularly sworn—I do not believe her statement was taken down—I did not hear it read over to her—she was sworn in the witness box before she made the statement before Mr. Henry; Foreman made a statement first, and from that statement Arnett was called into the witness box and sworn—I do not think Mr. Burnaby, the clerk, and the Magistrate, then asked her questions—since she was out on bail I have seen her more than once; I saw her at the Sessions, and one morning, about a fortnight ago, she called at my house, and rang the bell—that was since the last Sessions—I believe she had not been at my house before; I am not aware of it—a great many people call, but I can safely say that she has only been once—I have not been in her company besides—I have never been with her to Mrs. Dent's, nor seen her there—I did not say to Arnett, "Did not you go to the fortune teller in Brydges-street?"—I said, "Did not you go to the charwoman in Brydges-street?"—on my oath, I have not called that unfortunate woman a fortune teller up to to-day—after examining the girl, I never had a private interview with Mr. and Mrs. Arnett—I only went once with Foreman to Mr. Holdsworth's chambers.

MR. M'OUBREY. Q. You were asked whether Arnett did not vehemently deny that she had ever given a parcel to Foreman; was that after Foreman had said, "Betsy, you left a parcel with me"? A. Yes—she did not hesitate in telling me that she had left a parcel—they were both equally firm and decided. (The prisoners received good characters.)



Strongly recommended to mercy by the Jury.— Confined Three Months.

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