Benjamin Robert Turbot.
18th September 1765
Reference Numbert17650918-24

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441. (M.) Benjamin Robert Turbot was indicted for stealing a silver cup value 3 l. and seven shillings in money, numbered, the property of George White , in the dwelling-house of the said George, August 20 . +

George White . I keep the Rising-sun, in Vine-street, Covent-Garden . I had been out on the 20th of August, the day the cup was stole; I found my wife crying when I came home, she told me the cup was stole; the cup was kept in a cupboard by the bat: I advertised it the next day; (The cup produced and deposed to): here is my name upon it.

Elizabeth Staples . There was a particular acquaintance of my master's came in, and called for six penny worth of rum and water, which was made him in this cup; I don't know the day of the month, but it was on a Tuesday in August; the cup was kept in a little cupboard in the bar, which is in the tap-room. The prisoner came in, and called for a pint of beer; when the gentleman had drank the liquor, he gave my mistress the cup; I saw her put it into the cupboard, and turn the key, but left it in the lock. I observed the prisoner looked at her the prisoner went away; I asked my mistress if he had paid for his beer? she said, he had. I went into the kitchen to do my work, and in less than five minutes, four men came in, and called for some rum and water: my mistress went to the cupboard for the cup, and it was gone, there had been nobody else in the house beside, from the time the prisoner went.

Q. Is the kitchen in sight of this cupboard?

Staples. No; but I was going backwards and forwards all the time; and if there had been any body else, I am certain I must have seen them: I went immediately to two pawnbrokers, to desire that if it should be brought to them, they would stop it.

George Martin . I am a pawnbroker, and live in Hounsditch, near Aldgate; the prisoner brought this cup to my shop, bent as it is now, and offered it for sale.

Note, The cup was bent in very much on the sides.

Q. to Staples. Was the cup so, when the rum and water was made in it?

Staples. It was not.

Martin. He said he wanted to dispose of the cup. I asked him why he brought it in such a manner, and whether it was his own property? (I meant by its being bruised, and his taking it out of his pocket; as I thought by his appearance he was not master of such a cup) he said it was his own: I asked him his name, and where he lived; he told me his name was Robert Turbot , and that he lodged at Mr. Thomas's, in Drury-lane: I asked him why he came so far to dispose of it, he made no particular answer to that. I asked him what he valued the cup at? he said 5 l. I weighed it, and it came to but 3 l. 10 s. then I had a stronger suspicion that it was not his own, as he did not know the value of it. I told him I would stop the cup: he affirmed it was his property; that his wife and he had sell out, and therefore he was going to sell the cup; and that if I would send my servant to Mr. Thomas's, he would vouch it to be his property. I told him my man was not at home, but that he might send a porter, and if Mr. Thomas, or any reputable man, would vouch it to be his property, I would either return him the cup, or purchase it of him. He went out to fetch somebody for that purpose, but did not return again: the next morning I read it in the Daily Advertiser, only in the paper it is said to be marked with letters on the handle, but the letters are on the belly of the cup. In the afternoon I carried the cup: the prisoner was taken up, and carried before Sir John Fielding , who committed him.

Prisoner's Defence.

I submit to your Lordship, and the Gentlemen of the Jury's mercy: I am innocent of what they accuse me of; and I hope your Lordship will consider my youth. I have a wife and three children.

For the Prisoner.

- Medley. I keep Medley's coffee-house, in Round-court: I have known him five years or

better; he lived with me about two years, I believe in the years 1760, 1761, and 2: he behaved very well, was very sober and honest; I have sent him into the city for money, 20 or 30 l. at a time, and several gentlemen that use my house have often sent him for money, and he always behaved very honestly.

Thomas Wright . I keep the Salopian coffee-house, at Charing-cross. I had him from Mr. Medley's; his character is in general very good.

Q. This carries it into the year 1763: do you know any thing of him since?

Wright. I have heard of his being in different places, but know nothing particular of him; I look upon him to be very sober and just.

John Pearcy . I keep a public house in Wapping; I have often been to see him in his different places, and always heard a very good character of him. He lived in Long-acre, at the Royal Bagnio, which I believe is three years ago: he bore the character of a diligent sober servant, wherever I went to see him.

Guilty . Death .

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