28th June 1780
Reference Numbert17800628-22

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311. JOHN GAMBLE was indicted for that he with an hundred others and more did unlawfully, riotously, and tumultuously, assemble, to the disturbance of the public peace, and did begin to demolish and pull down the dwelling-house of David Wilmot , Esq . against the form of the statute , June 7th .


I am a cabinet-maker. I have known the prisoner some years.

Do you remember the time when Mr. Wilmot's house was attacked? - Yes; it was on Wednesday the 7th of June.

Where is Mr. Wilmot's house? - At the corner of Wilmot-street, or Wilmot-row, Bethnal-green . It was about six or seven o'clock in the afternoon, when they broke into it; I saw the first man who entered the house.

What number of persons were assembled? - There might be a thousand. I staid there about an hour or an hour and an half. When I left the place they were pulling down the house. They had thrown down part of the lead, and were throwing down the rest.

Did you see any thing of the prisoner? - Yes. I was there sometime before I saw the prisoner; he came with some boards and other wood on his shoulder which he threw on the fire. I saw him go away and bring out more.

From the house? - I did not see him come out of the house.

Did you observe where he went when he went for more? - There was a ring in the middle of the people, between the fire and the house. He went towards the house.

Did you see whether he entered the house or not? - No.

How long was it after he returned with more? - Three or four minutes.

How often did he do that? - I am certain he went three or four times.

Are you certain to his person? - I worked shopmate with him. The day after Mr. Wilmot's house was pulled down he was bragging at a public-house of what he had done. I came in and said to him, John, or Jack, you are hard at work. He swore they had done Davy, as they called him. They said they had done the Doctor on the green.

He said so the next morning? - The next morning, or the Friday. I believe it was the next morning.

When was he apprehended? - On the Wednesday following. The patrole told me they had heard that I knew of him, and if I did not apprehend him I was in danger of being apprehended myself. I then went to Mr. Wilmot and told him that I saw the prisoner there. I likewise told one of my brother headboroughs that I saw Gamble at work at Mr. Wilmot's house; he told it to some others; they said I ought to secure him, and if I did not do it I was in danger myself. Mr. Wilmot said he was the first man whom he heard of when he came to town.

What day was it you went to Mr. Wilmot's? - Not till the day the prisoner was apprehended, that was on Wednesday.

Court. Had you heard at that time there was a reward? - I undoubtedly saw the proclamation stick up and heard of it, but that was not my motive.

You do not claim the reward? - No, upon my word I wish there was no reward.


I am a bedstead maker, in Kerser-street, Half-moon alley.

Do you know Mr. Wilmot's house at Bethnall-green? - Yes. I was there about seven in the evening and saw a great tumult

of people; they were pulling down Mr. Wilmot's house.

Did you see the prisoner there? - Yes. I knew him before.

What was he doing? - I only saw him go into the house. I did not see him doing any thing there.

What were the mob doing? - Knocking down the house and pulling the top down.

From the Prisoner to Haburn. What time did you see me there? - I had been there sometime before, I saw him there; I saw him at about seven or something after seven o'clock.

Prisoner. What coat had I on?

Haburn. He had on a blue jacket.

To Corderoy. Do you know what clothes he had on that night? - Yes, he had a blue jacket on.

When you made your information was it taken in writing? - No, I believe not, I signed nothing.


I am a cooper. I was at Mr. Wilmot's house on the 7th of June. I saw the prisoner on the top of the house chucking the tiles off.

What time did you go there? - About six o'clock I staid about an hour and an half. I saw him chuck tiles off two or three times.

Were other persons on the top of the house besides? - Yes. I do not know who they were; some were doing one thing some another.

Had you ever seen the prisoner? - I have known him three or four years. I am positive as to his person.

How was he dressed? - I cannot be positive to his dress.

Prisoner. He said before the justice that I was dressed in a white coat.

Pales. I did not describe his dress at all.

Prisoner. It was partly dark when he says he saw me there; the house was on fire, by what I heard, by four o'clock. I took a walk and saw a conquest of people; I had got a little liquor in my head.

To Pales. When did you see him there? - About seven o'clock.

What time was the house on fire? - I saw things burning in the street when he was on the top of the house.

You did not see any fire in the house? - No.

Nor had there been any? - Not that I know of.

Mr. Wilmot's house was entirely pulled down? - Yes, it was.

To Corderoy. What time did you see the prisoner? - As near as I can guess it was seven o'clock.

Was the house on fire? - No.


It was eight o'clock by the time it was destroyed; they do not say they saw me have any weapon in my hand to destroy it.

For the Prisoner.


I am a cabinet-maker; the prisoner has worked with me as a journeyman upwards of seven years. I have trusted him with property, I always found him honest; he has received money for me. As to liquor he is extremely weak, which renders him an object of pity; that induced me to come in his favour. The evidence Pales, I believe, was offered money if he would come to swear against any of the rioters. I was told by an officer, if I could tell any thing of any rioters I should have ten guineas; that was nothing concerning this man; it was after he was taken up.

Do you claim any reward? - No.

Prisoner. I was desired by the first evidence to get out of the way several days before he took me; he came one day and borrowed a plane of me, and he went and informed against me.

From the Jury to Knight. Was he at work at your shop the day this charge is alledged against him? - He does jobs at home sometimes.

GUILTY ( Death .)

Tried by the First Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice NARES.

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