25th February 1784
Reference Numbert17840225-16
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation

Related Material

ActionsCite this text | Print-friendly version | Report an error
Navigation< Previous text (trial account) | Next text (trial account) >

280. JAMES BURNE was indicted for feloniously assaulting Elizabeth the wife of Richard Luke Farmer , on the King's highway, on the 27th of January last, and putting her in fear and danger of her life, and feloniously taking from her person and against her will, one black silk bonnet, value 4 s. and one silver hat pin, value 4 d. the property of the said Richard Luke Farmer .


I am wife of Richard Luke Farmer , I was robbed on the 27th of January last, it was exactly five minutes after six o'clock by my watch, when I went from my own house, which is opposite the London Infirmary

and I was robbed at the last lamp fore I came to the end of the workhouse wall.

Was you walking? - Yes, with my nephew, a little boy, I was stopped by the prisoner, nobody else was with him, I was walking on towards the wall, and my nephew by the side of me, and I felt a small blow on the back part of my head, I turned short and thought it was Mr. Farmer that had run after me, to speak to me; I went to say my dear, and I saw the prisoner look me full in the face, I had a large riding cloak on, as I had just come out of the chaise, he pulled the cloak so tight that it stopped my speaking, my arms were through the holes, he then attempted to pull my bonnet, he gave me another blow, but whether I fell down with the fright as he was pulling my bonnet, or whether he knocked me down I cannot say, but he took off my bonnet, and a silver pin; he passed me and run down Mr. Haydon's yard.

Did you cry out afterwards? - Not till I got up, I got as far as Mr. Lake's the tinman's, I then cried stop thief! Mr. Lake's man came out and asked me what was the matter, and I went into Mr. Lake's to compose myself a little, and as I was coming home Mr. Lake's clerk run after me, and said, Madam, we have got the man, I believe it might be about a quarter of an hour, I said to my nephew run home to your uncle, when I had got to the end of the street, the prisoner was behind me with Mr. Lake's clerk; and he said, here take your bonnet, why do not you let me alone as I go along the street; and I said, my friend, I never spoke to you, and I took the bonnet I believe from him; there was a tall man that had taken the prisoner, but whether it was him or the prisoner that I took the bonnet from I do not know, he was brought home to my house, and a constable sent for, and the prisoner was taken into custody.

Do you know the prisoner at the time of the robbery? - I saw his face as plain as I see yours now.

But if he had not afterwards come with the bonnet would you have known him? - Yes, he had a pair of trowsers, and a coat on; he was taken before Justice Staples that evening.


On Tuesday the 27 th of January, as I was going through Mr Haydon's yard between six and seven o 'clock, I heard the cry of stop thief, in the road two or three times; I set myself against the wall in the narrow part of the passage, and I heard a man come running up full speed towards me, when he came up to me, I caught hold of him, and there was this bonnet in is hand, and this pin on the left side, I secured him till I delivered him to the constable, when I took him into the road I saw Mrs. Farmer, and she owned the bonnet.

How came you to speak to her? - I did not speak to her till I brought the prisoner back, I followed after her by the people at the tin shop telling me she was gone on; the prisoner told me it was a bonnet he had made his whore a present of, but had taken it away from her, I said, then return it to your whore again.

What did he say when he came up to Mrs. Farmer? - I cannot recollect.

Did he say any thing to her about the bonnet? - I cannot recollect, I think the prisoner delivered the bonnet to Mrs. Farmer.


I know nothing respecting the robbery, I took the prisoner into custody, after he was taken, he said, it was the first offence he had committed, and he did it intirely through necessity and want, and he told me as I was taking him to Newgate in the coach.

Prisoner. I have nothing to say, I leave it to the mercy of the Court, I am quite a stranger, I have no witnesses.

GUILTY , Death .

He was was humbly recommended to mercy by the Prosecutrix.

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

View as XML