11th May 1796
Reference Numbert17960511-14
SentenceImprisonment > house of correction; Miscellaneous > fine

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330. ANN NORTON was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 27th of April , twelve yards of silk ribbon, value 4s. the property of Robert Dyde and Achilles Scribe .(The case was opened by Mr. Knowlys).


I am in partnership with Robert Dyde , in Pall-Mall : On Wednesday the 27th of April, about four o'clock in the afternoon, the prisoner was in our shop; there was a drawer of ribbon upon the counter; I saw her put her hand into the drawer, and take out a piece of ribbon and put it into her pocket, I called to the clerk. Mr. Warr. and told him to take this woman up stairs, for I saw her take a piece of ribbon and put it in her pocket; I did not go up stairs with her, I went up stairs afterwards, she had then been searched; I saw two pieces of ribbon upon the counter up stairs, which I knew to be mine.

Q. At that time was there your shop mark upon them? - A. No, there was not; there were the little pieces of paper with the shop mark upon them upon the table near the ribbon.

Q. What is the value of it? - A. The piece with the mark upon it is worth about one shilling; she said it was the first time she had done a thing of that sort, and begged I would not prosecute her.


I am clerk to Messrs. Dyde and Scribe: On the 27th of April, about four in the afternoon, Mr. Scribe called to me to take the prisoner out of the shop, for he had seen her put the ribbons into her pocket; her hands were in her pocket; I took her by the arm, and desired her to go along with me; I made her go before me up stairs, and watched her very narrowly for fear she should throw any thing from her; her hands were in her pockets the whole time of going up stairs; I met Mr. Dyde at the top of the stairs; I went into the drawing-room, and Mr. Dyde ordered her to turn her pockets; she scrupled to do it, persisting that she had no ribbons about her; Mr. Dyde then said he would send for a constable; she said, there was no occasion to do that, and desired me to search her pocket, which I did, and took out two lengths of ribbon upon the blocks, upon which I made immediately three scratches with scissars, that I might ascertain them again; immediately upon my taking these ribbons from her, she fell upon her knees and begged for mercy; Mr. Dyde gave her some little encouragement if she would tell where she lived; we sent for Jackson, the constable, in Marlborough-street; when he came, he was ordered to search her again, which he did more particularly; I did not understand searching her as well as he did; he turned her pocket inside out, and I saw some bits of paper fall out of her pocket which I had been looking for about the ground; I picked up one bit which exactly suited one of the blocks and matched; a part was torn off, and on which Mr. Scribe says there is his handwriting; I cannot undertake to swear it is his hand-writing, because it is but a single letter.

Jury. Then you think she tore this paper off the block in her pocket as she went up stairs? - A. I have no manner of doubt of it.

Q. Can you swear to the ribbons at all? - A. I cannot; I do not know any thing at all about the goods; I don't serve in the shop.


I am one of the officers belonging to Marlborough-street: I was sent for to Mr. Scribe's on the 27th of April; I searched the prisoner's pockets, she had been searched before; I found no property upon her but some bits of paper, one of which was picked up by Mr. Warr (produces the ribbons and a piece of paper): I have had them ever since.

Mr. Knowlys. (To Mr. Scribe). Q. Whose hand-writing is that piece of paper? - A. It is my hand-writing, it is my private shop mark.

Prisoner's defence. I have nothing to say; I leave myself to the mercy of the Court.

GUILTY . (Aged 39.)

Confined twelve months in the House of Correction , and fined 1s.

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury, before Mr. RECORDER.

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