8th June 1863
Reference Numbert18630608-820
VerdictNot Guilty > no evidence; Guilty > unknown; Guilty > lesser offence
SentenceImprisonment > penal servitude; Imprisonment

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820. WALTER BROCK (18), THOMAS HANCOCK (17), WILLIAM CLARK (19), and JAMES ARCHER (34) , Robbery on Alfred Armstrong Walton, and stealing from his person 1 watch and guard, 4 seals, and 1 handkerchief, his property. Second Count, Feloniously receiving the same. MR. COLLINS., for the Prosecution, offered no evidence against JAMES ARCHER.


ALFRED ARMSTRONG WALTON . I am an architect, and live at Brecon, South Wales—on Saturday, 8th May, I was staying at the Crown Hotel, Leicester-square, and about 12 o'clock that night I was near Mile End-gate—a man asked me for something for a bed—he really appeared to be deserving, and I gave him a shilling—some time afterwards I was walking along to get a cab, and received a very severe blow with some hard instrument on my head, which completely stunned me, at the same moment a man, what appeared to be in a recess or doorway, sprang out, and struck me, in far less time than I am describing it, a severe blow on the forehead—his fist was armed with some hard substance I am positive, and I fell—I recollect some man tearing at my ring to get it off—here are the marks of his fingernail—as I came to my senses, I heard people say, "They are robbing the man; look at the blood"—I also heard a cry of "Stop thief!" and a paceing down the street—five or ten minutes afterwards, I found several women round me, bathing my head with hot water, and I found I had lost my silk-handkerchief, a gold chain, three little seals, two keys, and a silver watch—I believe Brock to be the man who struck me, but I should be very sorry to take away the liberty of anybody—I believe he is the man, from his light-dress—just before the blow I saw Hancock pass me and come back—this if my handkerchief and watch—I swear to it from a little indent which I did when I was fishing—I will describe the seals without looking at them; they are two cornelian stones and two other stones, and a light pink one—the larger one has a dove upon it—I also lost a sovereign, and about 12s.—my watch was worth 50s., and my chain 50s.

GEORGE PULLEN (Policeman, K 10). On Monday, 11th May, I saw Brock in custody on another charge—I said, "Brock, I want you for being concerned in robbing a gentleman; do you know anything about a handkerchief you had in your possession on Sunday?"—he said, "No"—I said, "Well, I know a young man named Holmes, who you sold one to"—he

said, "I do not know a young man named Holmes; I did not have a silk handkerchief in my possession"—he was then taken to the station—he called me one side, and said, "I do know a chap named Holmes, and he had some fowls in his possession yesterday"—I took Archer on Monday night—I saw Hancock about 1 o'clock on Tuesday morning in the Mile End-road, and said, "Hancock, do you know anything of a gold guard and some seals, which were stolen from a gentleman in the Mile End-road late on Saturday night or early on Sunday morning?"—he said, "No, I do not; but I know a young man they call dagger"—that is Clark's nickname—I looked after Clark, but could not find him all that night—I saw him outside the Thames Police Court on Tuesday morning, and said to him, "Do you know anything about a gold guard and seals?"—he said, "Yes," put his right hand into his pocket, took them out, and said, "There they are"—he turned round to Hancock, and said that he bought them of Hancock for 10s.—Hancock said, "Yes; I did have them in my possession, and I bought them of a man they call Backer"—I had taken Clark on the Sunday evening—I told him I suspected he was concerned in the robbery, took him to the station, and from thence to the Mile End-road, to a coffee-house—I could not get anybody to identify him, and allowed him to depart—I described the handkerchief, watch, guard, and seals—he said that he knew nothing about them—it was a gold guard, but brass seals.

Clark. Q. You took me to the coffee-shop, and Mr. Ball told you I had not been there at all? A. Yes.

EDWARD HOLMES . I am a general dealer, of 4, Henry-street Stepney—I bought of Brock this silk handkerchief (produced)—he asked 8d. for it, and I gave him 6d.—it was just outside Mr. Harvey's shop—Hancock was with him—it was on a Sunday, about half-past 9—I gave it to Pullen. Brock. Will you take the evidence of a convicted thief, Sir?

COURT. Q. Have you been convicted? A. Yes; I had a month—Mr. Pullen can tell you when it was, I cannot—it was about six months ago—it was for buying some silk—I have never had a charge made against me of stealing fowls.

JAMBS ARCHER . (The prisoner). I am a greengrocer, of 8, Manning-street, Limehouse—on Sunday, 11th May, I bought a watch of Backer for 12s.—Brock was with him—I was afterwards taken in custody, and on the following Monday week was put in the same cell with Brock, Hancock, and Clark—I said what a shame it is that the innocent should suffer for this robbery, and Brock said, "Lord, did not he give to him; he came up with his doubled hand like that, right betwixt the two eyes"—I said, "If you know anything at all about it you had better tell"—I sent for Serjeant Pullen, but instead of telling him that, they told him something about another robbery—he said that he only received 1s. 6d. out of the money, but I could not tell whether he meant out of the watch or the other robbery—I also heard Hancock say that Brock hit the prosecutor on the head with a stick, and knocked him down.

JOSEPH SKEATS (Policeman, K 428). On 9th May I was on duty in the Mile End-road, and heard cries of "Police!" and "Stop thief!"—I ran towards the spot, and saw three or four persons following a man, who was ten or fifteen yards in front of them, and calling "Stop thief!"—I joined in the pursuit, springing my rattle, but—the person got away—I found the prosecutor lying on the pavement, bleeding from a wound on the right side of his head, and his nose appeared pretty well smashed—he was very bad,

and had lost a great quantity of blood—I took him to the hospital, and got him sensible—he complained of being robbed—I got a cab, and sent him home.

Hancock. Q. Did you see me on Sunday morning? A. No; I did not see you till you were in Pullen's custody.

Brock's Defence. I met Barker when I was coming from the Gap at Limehouse; he was going to a coffee-house in the West India-road, and asked me to go with him; we went, and met John Neville; he showed the watch to him, and he offered money for it, but he would not take it He did sell it for 18s. but Neville said it was not worth the money, so he had it back again. He paid me some money which he owed me, and gave me the handkerchief for keeping the money so long.

Hancock's Defence. On Sunday night I met Barker. He asked me if I wanted to buy a brass chain for 1d. as he wanted some tobacco. I gave him 1d. for it. I saw the police-officers three times on Sunday and twice on Monday, and they said nothing about it. On Monday night the police-officers came to me at a coffee-shop, and asked me to have a cup of coffee. I said that I did not want it; I had just had one; but with a little persuasion I had a cup of coffee and a slice of bread and butter. They then asked me questions about the robbery, and we took a walk, but could not find Clark. They told me to bring him to the station, which I did the next day, and Glark gave him the chain; with that they took us and gave as a pot of beer and some tobacco at the Prince of Wales, and about an hour afterwards they came and told us the inspector wanted to see us. He came over, and said he was in duty bound to send us before a Magistrate.


CLARK— GUILTY on the Second Count.

Hancock was further charged with having been before convicted at the Thames Police Court, in January, 1863; to which he

PLEADED GUILTY.** BROCK and HANCOCK.— Eight Years Penal Servitude.

CLARK.— Confined Twelve Month.

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