6th April 1785
Reference Numbert17850406-59
VerdictGuilty > with recommendation
SentenceCorporal > whipping

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472. WILLIAM BROWN (aged fourteen) was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 26th of March last, one pair of stockings made of silk and worsted mixed, value 5 s. one pair of silk and cotton, value 10 s. 5 s. three pair of mixed cotton, value 10 s. and one st ocking, value 2 s. 6 d. the property of John Butler .


On Saturday the 26th of March, between seven and eight in the morning, the prisoner came into Mr. Butler's shop and asked for a half-pennyworth of worstead, and gave me a shilling to change; and then asked me what a pair of stockings would come to that would fit him; I told him a pair of wove hose would cost twenty-pence; I shewed him some; he said they were too narrow ribbed; then I shewed him a second parcel, and he said, they were too large stockings; I went to the bottom of the shop, and as I returned, I thought his apron looked rather bigger than it was; I asked him to let me look at his leg, and when he held out his leg, I looked over the compter, and saw the top of one of the blue and white random cotton stockings under his apron; I laid down the parcels, and was coming from behind to shut the door; he immediately seeing that ran out of the shop as fast as he could; I followed him, and cried stop him! stop him! he was stopped in my sight, he was not out of my sight hardly; he dropped the stockings in three different places; I saw him drop them all; he was the same boy, I have no doubt; I took the stockings home, and put them in this paper; and I have kept them in my own possession ever since.

(The stockings produced and deposed to.)


I was coming by Bishopsgate church, and I heard the cry of stop him! I let the boy go by; I turned round and saw him throw down some stockings; then I returned after him, and when I got to the corner of the church-yard, I saw him throw down some more; another man crossed to him, and stopped him; he was out of my sight, just turning off the stone the corner of the church-yard.

The prisoner called four witnesses who gave him a very good character.


To be twice whipped .

He was humbly recommended to mercy by the Prosecutor and Jury.

Tried by the first London Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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