22nd February 1781
Reference Numbert17810222-29
SentenceMiscellaneous > fine

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155. HENRY ABEL was indicted for stealing a wooden chest, value 10 s. seven yards of cotton for a gown, value 19 s. eight yards of linen cloth, value 5 s. two stuff gowns, value 15 s. two cotton gowns, value 10 s. two linen gowns value 40 s. a silk gown, value 40 s. a crape gown, value 10 s. two pair of women's stays, value 20 s. a Marseilles petticoat, value 10 s. three dimitty petticoats, value 10 s. three stuff petticoats, value 14 s. six linen shifts, value 15 s. ten linen aporns, value 10 s. a muslin apron edged with lace, value 15 s. a muslin handkerchief edged with lace, value 3 s. a worked muslin handkerchief, value 5 s. six muslin handkerchiefs, value 18 s. two silk handkerchiefs, value 8 s. four linen handkerchiefs, value 5 s. two pair of linen mitts, value 5 s. a pair of leather gloves, value 2 s. two paper boxes, value 6 d. a silk cloak, value 20 s. three pair of silk stockings, value 6 s. and three pair of cotton stockings, value 4 s. the property of Elisabeth Croudy , spinster , January 24th .


I lodged while I was out of place with Mr. Rocket, in Black Swan-court, opposite St. Paul's church. On the 24th of January I took a coach to go to a place, Mr. Holt's in Chancery-lane, between seven and eight o'clock at night; the prisoner drove the coach. I got out of the coach to rap at the door, to deliver my band-box and hat box. I was not above two minutes before I returned to the coach; when I came to the coach door, the chest was gone. I asked him what he had done with it? He said, What chest? as if he knew nothing about it. Then he said he gave it to a man. My master detained him at the door, and questioned him

about it? but what he said to him I do not know. The maid is here who heard what he said.

Have you ever found the chest again? - No, nor nothing in it. When I went in the prisoner was off the coach-box.

Did he open the door of the coach for you? - No, he did not.

Did you see any other man there? - Not that I know of; none that belonged to me.

Did he stand near the coach door when you got out of the coach and went into the house? - I cannot say; he was off the coach-box. When I came out he was standing with his back to the coach-door, and the door was shut.

Did the coachman assist in lifting the chest into the coach? - Yes, it was so large one person could not lift it in, it was as much as two men could lift.

Was you in the house when you delivered the band-box and hat-box? - I set down the boxes in the passage; the servant was in the passage; the door was not shut; the servant never left the door.

Are you sure you was not above two minutes in the passage? - Yes, I am very sure.

Was any other man there? - When the coach got to Mr. Holt's a man came and opened the coach door and said, is this the house, my dear, you want to go to? I said, yes. Then I got out and rapped at the door myself. My master let him go home then, and he was taken at night. The prisoner said he had given my chest to the man who took my hat-box and band-box out of my hand as I came out of the coach. He was standing with his back to the coach-door. I opened the door, and saw the chest was not there.

Could one person carry the chest? - One person could not take it out of the coach, I believe, but if it was taken out one person might carry it.


I helped to carry the chest out of Black Swan-court to the coach; the coachman assisted to help it into the coach; I saw the door fastened outside, and she went round and got in the other side, with her band-boxes, and I stood there till the prisoner got on the box and drove away.

HANNAH - sworn.

I was at Mr. Holt's in the place of a servant, till they got one. Elisabeth Croudy came; I opened the door; I had a light in my hand; I turned round to show her to set down her boxes in the passage. She went out for her chest and the coachman stood with his back against the coach door. She demanded her chest; the door was shut.

How long had she been in the passage before she came out to demand the chest? - Not three minutes, the outside. The coachman seemed surprised and said what chest? She said, what have you done with it? He said he had given it to the man who opened the coach door to her. We kept him till a constable was sent for. He was examined. What passed I cannot say; I did not hear; I did not go from the door.

Did you see any person standing by the coach besides the prisoner? - No.

Did you hear any person talking to him? - No.

If he had been talking to any person was you near enough to hear? - Yes; he drove close to the pavement.


I took up the prosecutrix at St. Paul's; she directed me to carry her to Chancery-lane, the next door to the Hole in the Wall; she said I must enquire for it; I stopped and asked a woman, who said I must go a little farther and enquire; I drove there and got down and asked her if that was the place; she said she did not know, I must go into the Hole in the Wall and enquire if that was Mr. Holt's, I went in; a coachman said, I will go and shew you the door, and if my carriage is in the way I will move it; when I came there the woman was gone out of the coach, and had given her band box to a man who was by her. She went in and a man said you must assist me with this on my back; I did and put the cushions right and shut the door and went and demanded the money; when I demanded the money the man and the chest were gone; I thought the man belonged to the house; she asked me for the

chest; I told her I thought the man had got it she gave the box to. I did not observe which way the man went with it.

For the prisoner.

- WHITAKER sworn.

I am a coachman; I drove Mr. Justice Gould at the time this happened; I am out of place now. I was at the Hole in the Wall in Chancery-lane; the prisoner came in to ask where Mr. Holt lived; I told him I would show him the door, it was the next door; if my carriage was in the way I would move it. There was a woman with a box in her hand and a man on the off side of the coach, who he was I cannot say; I went in again immediately to the company; in less than three minutes they came in for a constable; I was there present, I had not drank my beer. Mr. Vates who keeps the Hole in Wall was the constable; Vates was gone out with some beer; I believe it might want a quarter of eight o'clock; I was ordered to be at Serjeants-Inn at eight o'clock. When they came in for a constable I went out to see what was the matter.

When you went out what account did the man give of the box? - He gave no account of it at all; he said he did not know what was become of it; that she got out of the coach before he got back, and there was a man standing by her.

Court. I thought you said something just now of the man being on the other side of the coach? - He stood close to the wall.

On the same side of the coach with her? - Yes; only at the back part of the coach.

Was the coach door open or shut at that time? - It was open when we went out.


I keep the Hole in the Wall; the prisoner came to my house to enquire for Mr. Holt's. I don't know any thing more of the matter.

(The prisoner called ten other witnesses who gave him an extraordinary good character.)

Court to Elizabeth Croudy . What place did you tell the prisoner to enquire for when he took you to Chancery-lane? - I told him Mr. Holt's, that it was the next door to the Hole in the Wall.

When you came to Chancery-lane did you tell him to enquire any where for the house? - No; I did not; he stopped in the middle of the street and asked a person going by which was the Hole in the Wall. He had no occasion to ask for the house for I told him it was next door to it; he drove right up to the door and stopped opposite Mr. Holt's door.

Had you ever seen the man before who asked you if that was the door you wanted? - No.

Did you see any person about the coach when you got in at St. Paul's? - I cannot say.

Do you know whether there was one or two persons on the box? - That I cannot pretend to say.

When he stopped at Mr. Holt's door did you say any thing to him or he to you before he went into the Hole in the Wall? - I called to him and told him this was the door; he made no answer.

Was the glass down or up? - It was down; I put my head out of the window.

Was he off the box when you called out? - Yes; I heard him get off the box.

Did you hear him get off the box after the window was down? - Yes; when the coach stopped I let down the window and called out to him this is the house.

Was there any noise in the street at that time? - No; there were no coaches passing at that time.


Tried by the Second Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice BULLER.

[Fine. See summary.]

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