12th January 1785
Reference Numbert17850112-24

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228. JACOB BELLETT was indicted for feloniously stealing on the 25th of December last fifty one ells of half-ell manufactured lining, value 3 l. 8 s. two pounds of unwound black silk, value 20 s. thirty-two ounces of double black silk wound, value 3 l. 12 s. the property of John Gearing , John Vaux , and Thomas John Taylor .

JOHN VAUX sworn.

I only prove the property, my partners names are John Gearing , and Thomas John Taylor .


On the 25th of December, which was Christmas-day, between three and four in the afternoon, we had fifty-one ells of work cut out of the loom, two pounds of unwound silk, and thirty two ounces of double silk, it was silk lining, I worked for Messrs. Gearing, Vaux, and Taylor; about four I was informed my shop window was open, I went up to see and took the key of the stair foot door, that goes up to my work shop, and found all my work was taken away, the stair foot door was locked as I left it; I said, the prisoner was the person that robbed me, I went to the prisoner's house and asked for him, nobody was at home but the sister and a girl; I found the prisoner in Balls-alley, with a girl that he kept company with, I heard a scuffle withinside the house, I heard them shove up the window, and they kept me at the door for a minute or a minute and half, then the door was opened; he threatened to punish me, he followed me home, but upon my mentioning to search the loft the prisoner ran away directly; in searching the lofts we run over four houses, I found no property there, but I found one trap door open that went into the prisoner's house, and I dropped down upon the prisoner's bed, which was under that trap door; I there made a strict search, and his brother in law came down, and I looked behind an old pair of drawers, there was a net and this bag, and a shoot, and the unwrought silk, I pulls up the end a little more, says I, thank God here is my piece; the Justice ordered me to subpoenea this brother-in-law, but he is got out of the way, I carried

the subpoenea, I went to search for the prisoner and found him at one Helder's, which was about two hours after he run away, I found him concealed in a closet, I asked him how he came to do such a wicked thing; he said, for God's sake have mercy upon me, you have your property let me go; says I, I cannot, it is my master's property, I brought him to the Crown alehouse, and sent for an officer and gave charge of him, and in my hearing he confessed he did it himself and nobody else; I made him no promise, he was going to tell us of one Jones, the father and son who were waiting for him, at the corner of Cox's-square, in Petticoat-lane, a man that buys stolen silk, little or much; I have never enquired after him, Mr. Wilmot said we could do nothing to him, without he had bought any thing, he uses a publick house the corner of that square.

JOHN GRAY sworn.

On the 25th of December, I was sent for by this young man and the prisoner, I said to the prisoner, was there any body along with you? - And he said, no, there was not, he was sadly distressed, and did it through necessity.

Where does Jones live? - I cannot tell, only he said he used a public house, the corner of Cox's-square.

Do not you know where that Jones lives? - No, upon my oath I do not, I never heard of any such name before.

Where do you live? - In Shoreditch.

(The wound silk deposed to.)

Cole. I can swear they are them that were taken out of my looms, I can shew you, I have in my pocket a pattern of the quill that we head them with.


The man came and charged me, and swore he would hang me, I told him I would punish him, I went to see his work, and his wife collared me? says I, what do you collar me for, I have money of my own; I went to Mr. Helder's and this man came up, there was no string to latch the door, and the woman bid me get a plate out of the closet, and he came and swore I was shut up there; I am innocent.

The Prisoner called five more witnesses who all gave him a good character.


Transported for seven years .

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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