14th December 1885
Reference Numbert18851214-120
VerdictGuilty > unknown
SentenceImprisonment > penal servitude

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120. WILLIAM WREN (38) , Burglariously breaking and entering the dwelling house of William Morris, with intent to steal therein.

MR. GREENFIELD Prosecuted.

HENRY MORRIS . I am a tailor at 16, Chick sand Street, close to Smithfield—on the 20th November my premises were safely secured and I went to bed at 10.30—I was awoke about 4 a.m.—my wife heard a noise, got up, opened the bedroom door and listened, and asked who was downstairs—my brother, who sleeps down in the front kitchen, called out "There is a man down in the kitchen"—my wife called me up, I ran down as quick as I could and woke up the people that live in the shop parlour—then I ran to the street door, unbolted it, and ran out for a policeman—I found one in less than five minutes and went with him into the back kitchen, where we found the prisoner detained by my brother and some other people—I had never seen him before—I missed no property in the kitchen—the whole house is mine, but I let the shop and parlour to a milliner.

Cross-examined by the Prisoner. There was a light in my back kitchen window at 4 o'clock—I did not secure the back door and don't know if it was fastened or not—I did not hear you shout in the passage that you wanted to see the governor; you said so to my brother—I did not see you before the police brought you up—nothing was moved, displaced, or broken—you had no time to get away or to take anything—I sleep upstairs.

MOSES MORRIS . I am the son of the last witness—on 20th November about a quarter to twelve I saw the place securely fastened, except the bolt of the yard door into the back Kitchen, which I forgot; it was simply on the latch and could be opened from inside or outside—I went to bed—I afterwards heard a noise downstairs, and went down with Solomon Grand, who sleeps with me—I saw the prisoner in the passage downstairs; he kept on saying he had come to see the governor—my uncle Simon had spoken to him first and asked him what he wanted—he said "I have come to see the governor"—in this kitchen were clothes, crockery, and boxes—nothing was taken or disturbed.

SIMON MORRIS . I am the uncle of the last witness and the brother of Henry Morris—I lodge in the house, and my bedroom is the back kitchen—on the night of 20th November I heard somebody come

from the yard door which opens into the kitchen—I got out of bed and opened my door and asked who was there, he said "Me"—I asked what he wanted, he said "The girls sent me in, and I want to see the governor"—I made a noise and the missies came down and the prisoner was detained till a constable came, and given in custody—when I first saw him he was in the passage, he went past my door and into the front kitchen, where my brother's children sleep—my door opens into the passage.

GEORGE TOOTH (Policeman H 151). I was on duty at this place, which it at the back of Eely Place, Smithfield—on a wall about 6 feet high I made a private mark for police purposes when I first went on duty that night—about a quarter to 4 I found it had gone, and a brick was off the top of the wall—I got on the wall and looked over into the garden which was at the back of the baker's shop, No. 15, next door to the prosecutor—I saw this rope hanging by a hook over the wall, from which there was a 15 feet drop on the other side into the yard—while I was waiting the prosecutor called me into his place—I said to the prisoner "What are you doing here?"—he said, "Some girls brought me here"—I took him to the station and he was charged—the last witness's daughter and young girls work in the place, they were all in the house; there were no other girls at the place—when charged at the station he said, "I did not burglarously break and enter, I only lifted the latch and walked in"—I went back and examined the premises—I found at an oil and colour merchant's next door a window was broken and the latch forced back, and shutters smashed, and the door of the shop had been attempted to be prized open—nothing was missed there—there was no way of reaching the yard except by going over the wall, unless you got through one of the houses—if you got into one yard you could get into all.

The Prisoner's Statement before the Magistrate. "I had had a little drop to drink, and I was taken to the house by some girls."

The prisoner in his defence stated that he had been drinking with two women, who took him with them, and that he fell asleep and awoke in the yard; that seeing a light in the window he knocked at the door, and finding it unfastened went in and called for the master, and then asked for the women who had brought him there.

GUILTY . He then PLEADED GUILTY*to a conviction of felony in May, 1884, in the name of John Gregg.— Five Years' Penal Servitude.

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