THOMAS LIMPUS.
10th September 1783
Reference Numbert17830910-41
VerdictGuilty
SentenceDeath

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636. THOMAS LIMPUS was indicted for that he at the General quarter sessions, holden at Westminster, on Tuesday the 8th day of October, 1782, before William Mainwaring , Esq; and others, was tried for stealing, on the 4th of September then last, a cambrick handkerchief, value 10 d. and was sentenced to be transported as soon as conveniently might be, to some of his Majesty's colonies and plantations in Africa, for the term of seven years, and for that he, the said Thomas Limpus afterwards was at large within this kingdom, to wit, on the 11th of September last, without any lawful cause, and before the expiration of the said term of seven years, for which term he had been ordered to be so transported , against the statute and against the King's peace.

JOHN TOWNSEND sworn.

This is a copy of the conviction of the prisoner, signed by Mr. Thomas Vaughan , I saw him sign it in the new sessions house.

Court. Is he the clerk of the peace? - Yes.

(Read.)

HENRY WRIGHT sworn.

I have been sixteen years turnkey of Tothill-fields bridewell, in last October sessions, the prisoner was tried and convicted for picking of pockets, I was present.

What was the indictment for? - For stealing of a cambrick handkerchief, he was found guilty, and received sentence to be transported for seven years to Africa; I brought him myself from the Court and delivered him to Mr. Akerman's servants, with the order of Court at Newgate, I never

saw him from that day till this, I know nothing of the apprehension of him.

JOHN TOWNSEND sworn.

I am servant to Mr. Akerman.

Do you remember this prisoner being brought to Newgate? - Very well, he was brought in October.

What time in October? - I cannot rightly tell the day of the month.

Was you present when he was brought? - No, my Lord.

Then you only saw him in Newgate? - I saw him in Newgate.

Can you recollect the day when you first saw him there? - I believe, my Lord, I saw him the very next day that he was brought the over night, but I cannot tell the day; on the 1st of November, my master Mr. Akerman, and I, and another of my fellow servants took the prisoner from Newgate, in company with Patrick Madan and a good many more in a cart to Blackwall, we took them down to the boats chained two and two together, and we put them into a couple of boats, and from there we took them on board the Benkiesa to the Captain.

Do you remember the Captain's name? - No, I do not, as soon as ever the boats came alongside, they got up into the ship, and we delivered them safe, and they ironed them, and put them in the hold.

Did you tell them the purpose for which you brought them? - We told them, they were the convicts ordered to go to Africa, and there we left them.

WILLIAM COLLINS sworn.

I took the prisoner, on Thursday the 11th of this month, between nine and ten o'clock in the evening, in King-street, Seven-dials.

Was any one with you? - Nobody, he was walking along, he passed me in the street.

Did you know him before? - Yes, I had seen him at our office, at Mr. Walker's several times, I think there were two more with him, he began to cut me as hard as ever he could with these knives.

(Two knives produced.)

He swore he would cut my bloody life out.

Had the prisoner both of these knives? - This was naked which he kept cutting at me with, and this other I think I saw him put into his pocket, I kept falling back from the knife.

Did he wound you? - No, I avoided it, and halloo'd out Stop thief! and with the assistance of a butcher, the knife was taken out of his hand.

Was the knife open? - It was open, my Lord, naked; the other I cannot be certain in the flurry, whether it was open or not.

SAMUEL DEBATT sworn.

I am a butcher; on Thursday night, the 11th of this month, about half after nine o'clock, in King-street, Seven-dials, I heard Mr. Collins halloo out Stop thief! and I was in the shop, and I went to the corner and I saw the prisoner, he swore, damn his eyes, he would cut his bloody melt out, or his bloody life, I cannot say which, to the best of my knowledge it was his bloody melt, and just then Collins said, butcher, I have got the knife, seize hold of him.

You yourself did not see the knife in his hand? - No, I did not, I should not have taken hold of him, only Mr. Lee the grocer, the corner of King-street, said, he had like to have cut me.

Did he wound any body? - No, Sir.

Prisoner. Whether both my hands were not in my jacket pockets at that time, and as I went along they took the knives out of my pocket? - I never saw any knife taken out of his pocket, his left hand was down; I said to the prisoner, says I, you ought to be ashamed to carry a knife open as you did, and he said, damn me, I would have cut you.

PRISONER's DEFENCE.

My Lord, on the 3d of last December, I was landed on the island of Goree, with nineteen more, the soldiers were drawn up in a circle on the parade, the Lieutenant of the island ordered us all into the middle of it, and told us we were all free men, and that we were to do the best we could, for

he had no victuals, there was a ship lay in the bay, I went on shore several times and did work for the governor, I remained there till the time I came home, which was last Saturday was three weeks, I did not chuse to go into the hands of the enemy, I got on board of this English vessel, I had engaged to go out in her again, I sent to our captain yesterday by my mother, and he is clearing out his ship, and when that was done, he sent word he would come, we laid four days in the bay before the governor would receive us, he said his troops were starving already on the island, and it was very hard that he should have a parcel of men on the island; when we came away, the island was given up to the French.

What is the reason that you behaved in this outrageous manner? - I did not behave so, these people speak as false as God is true.

GUILTY Death .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice GOULD.


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