2nd April 1800
Reference Numbert18000402-46
VerdictGuilty; Not Guilty

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289. WILLIAM HOWARD , alias MASON , JOHN TAYLOR and JOHN DALY were indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 11th of March , a trunk, value 10s. a pair of boots, value 10s. a pair of shoes, value 6d. a pair of slippers, value 6d. two great coats, value 1l. a pair of clasps, value 6d. a boot-jack, value 2d. a shaving-pot, value 1d. a shaving-stand, value 1d. a shaving-box, value 2d. two canisters, value 4d. thirty-nine books, value 4l. a map, value 6d. and a bed-gown, value 2s. the property of Edward Moberly .

JOHN MOBERLY sworn. - I can only prove the property.

WILLIAM BARWELL sworn. - I am a firkinman; I buy table-beer and ale to sell again: I went to New Basinghall-street with some trunks from Mr. Moberley's, No. 12, Percy-street, Rathbone-place; there were two trunks, an empty portmantua, and some writing-desks; I took them on a dray, on Tuesday the 11th of March, about seven in the evening; I was going past the Old Bell in Holborn, and a man told me he would give me sixpence to take two prickles of bottles down

Chick-lane for him; that was a man of the name of Anstey; I took the bottles; then two other men came up, one of them got up in the dray, and another followed; I think the man that followed was the prisoner Howard; they said they would give me a pot of beer extraordinary to take up a bed; Anstey went alongside the dray; I do not know whether the man in the dray was either of the other prisoners; and as we were going up Snow-hill I missed the trunk, and then I stopped; the man that rode was gone, and the man that walked behind; Anstey kept on; as soon as I missed the trunk, I went back as far as Fleet-market, but could see nothing of them; I then returned to the dray, and detained Anstey; I thought he was concerned; I met with two constables just in Smithfield, and they went after the three prisoners, and took them; they told me to go on to Basinghall-street, which I did; they lodged the prisoners in the watch-house, with the trunk; the trunk contained the articles mentioned in the indictment; Mr. Moberly delivered the trunk to me; Mr. Moberly saw the trunk again at Guildhall; I lost the trunk about the middle of Snow-hill; I saw it twice after I left Fleet-market; I saw it again the next day at Guildhall; I am certain it was the same trunk; it was a smooth black trunk.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q.What is a firkinman? - A. I buy table-beer to sell again.

Q. You sell stale beer for good beer? - A. No, I do not.

Q. Who is Mr. Moberly, the prosecutor of this indictment? - A. A gentleman that is in Scotland, I believe.

Q. He has got all his property with him in Scotland, has he not? - A. No; the trunk is here.

Q. Could you have undertaken to say who that trunk belonged to, if you had not been told so at Guildhall? - A. Yes, I have seen the trunk several times before; I had lived servant with the family.

Q. A smooth black trunk is no uncommon description, there are many such about town? - A. To be sure there are.

Q. Had you seen Mr. Moberly pack up the trunk? - A. No.

Q. Then how came you to suppose they were his property? - A. I know the trunk was his.

Q.Supposing you had seen the trunk at any other part of the town, would you have said it was Mr. Moberley's? - A. I cannot say.

Q. Had you ever seen the contents of the trunk till you got to Guildhall? - A. No.

Q. You would have been answerable, would you not, for the trunk and its contents, if you had not found it, and brought this prosecution? - A. Yes.

GEORGE ANSTEY sworn. - I am a broker: On Tuesday the 11th of March last, about half past seven in the evening, I was standing at the Old Bell in Holborn, with some goods which I had bought at a sale; they consisted of two prickles of empty bottles, and a bed; I wanted the bottles taken to a bottle-merchant in Chick-lane; had been there but a few minutes when I saw a dray come past with a trunk and a box or two, and a boy riding upon one of the boxes; I called to the boy once or twice before he answered; at last he answered, and called his master; his master came up, and I told him I had some things to take to Chick-lane; the prisoner Howard was present, to the best of my knowledge; I told the man I would give him sixpence to take the bottles; the carman hesitated, and there were two men standing at my right hand; one of them said, you will take them, won't you, Tom; who he addressed I do not know; he then said to me, I will lend you a hand up with them, master; we then went to the bottles, which were standing upon the pavement, under the Belltap window, put them upon his back, and he put them on to the dray; that was Howard; but it being a dray, we had some difficulty to make them stand upright; he said, master, you had better jump up; I did not like to do that, for I had a bed lying there, and it being dark I thought I might lose it; he then said to his companion, which was Taylor, to the best of my knowledge, Jack, do you jump up; Taylor then jumped up into the cart, and held the prickle of bottles, while Howard and I fetched the other prickle; the last prickle was not like the other, it leaned forward and I expected the bottles would fall out, and I put the bed up to prevent it; Jack, as he called him, which was Taylor, got up in the cart, and Howard followed behind, and I kept along by the cart; as we were going down Holborn, the prisoner Howard asked me what part of Chick-lane the bottles were going to; I told him to Mr. Riber's bottle-warehouse; he said he knew it very well, and described it; as we were going up Snow-hill one of the empty bottles sell out of the prickle upon the stones; the prisoner Howard came forward to me, and said, master, you will lose all your bottles; with that I put my hand to the bed, and pressed it; immediately after that the drayman said, I have lost the trunk; I looked round, and the two men were both gone; I was then detained till I gave a satisfactory account where I bought my goods, and where I was going to take them; I know nothing of the prisoner Daly; I verily believe that Howard and Taylor are the two men, to the best of my knowledge.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q.You and Howard have been old acquaintances? - A. No, I never

saw him before; I thought he belonged to the drayman, and the drayman thought he belonged to me.

Q. How was Howard dressed? - A. He had a jacket on.

Q. Do not you know that the man now called Hayward was taken within half an hour? - A. I believe he was.

Q. That man was dressed in a jacket? - A. Yes.

Q. Do not you know that the man you called Howard, when he was taken, was dressed in a great coat? - A. He was.

Q. You say you had never seen him before? - A. Never to my knowledge.

Q. What way of life are you in? - A. A broker; I had been buying goods at a sale of Mr. Winstanley's.

Q. What part of the town did you live in? - A. Pentonville; I bought these things at a sale in Wimpole-street.

Q. There was a charge against you for this business? - A. Yes; the man had a right to charge me, seeing them so familiar with me.

Q. And you did not attempt to charge Howard till after you were charged yourself? - A. No.

Q. At the time you saw him at the Magistrate's, did you venture to swear he was the man? - A. I said, as I say now, that I verily believe he was the man, but he was then in a different dress to what he was when he assisted me.

JOHN POPE sworn. - I am a constable under the Marshal's direction: On the 11th of March, between seven and eight in the evening, I was coming from my own house, in Robinhood-court, Shoe-lane, through Eagle and Child-alley, and I was obliged to come back, by a person coming through the narrow part of the passage, into Shoe-lane, and then I observed four or five men coming with a box; they crossed the way, and turned to the right-hand, towards Holborn; I then went on towards Smithfield, and in Smithfield I met with a parcel of people round a dray; I was told that a box was lost; I asked what sort of a one, I was told it was a large black trunk; we went back into Shoe-lane, and got intelligence of it; we found it in Plumbtree-court, Shoe-lane, No. 20, up two pair of stairs; Mr. Thrale opened the door, and saw the box, and the three prisoners in the room; Mr. Thrale said, gentlemen, we are come for this box; they desired us to come in, they behaved very quietly, and made no resistance; we sent the box away by a porter to Mr. Thrale's house, and we took the prisoners to the Compter.

Q. Is the porter here? - A. No.

Q. Did you mark the box before you sent it to Thrale's? - A. No, no further than putting a cord round it; I can almost swear it was the same box.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q.They came very willingly with you? - A. Yes.

Q. You do not mean to swear to this black box by the tying of it? - A. I think it is the same box.

Q. Had not Howard a great-coat on when he was taken? - A. Yes, exactly as he is dressed now.

Q. And that was within twenty minutes after the offence was committed? - A. Yes.

WILLIAM THRALE sworn. - I am constable and beadle of the parish of St. Sepulchre's; on Tuesday the 11th of March, I was upon evening duty with the patrole; going down Snow-hill, there was a dray stopped, with a number of people about it, I enquired what was the matter; I then went in pursuit of the trunk, with Dennis; we went a little way down Snow-hill, and detained the man that was with the bottles; we then got intelligence, and went to Plumb-tree-court, Shoe-lane, No. 20; we went up two pair of stairs, there were the three prisoners in the room; Dennis had a cutlass drawn, we went in, and the men made no resistance at all; there was the trunk in the room; I sent the trunk to Mr. Ashmore's, the Ward-beadle, by Mr. Ashmore's porter; I did not see him take it there; I went with the prisoners to the Compter, then I went back to Mr. Ashmore's, and took the trunk into my custody, and have had it ever since.

Q. Did you know the trunk again? - A. Yes; I did not put any mark upon it, but when I found the trunk at the house, I opened it, and saw some of the contents, so that I am pretty sure it was the same; it was a black trunk with small nails, the top of the hasp was burst from the lid; I have had it ever since, except Dennis bringing it here backwards and forwards.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q.How do you know that the contents of the trunk were the same? - A. I can swear to it, because there was a particular mark; there was a square book in the trunk, with two green strings to it, and that book was in it when I saw it at Mr. Ashmore's; I could not swear to the trunk; I suppose those that made it, could not swear to it.

JOHN DENNIS sworn. - I was present with the last witness, at Plumb-tree-court, Shoe-lane; the three prisoners were in the room, with the trunk; we sent the trunk to Mr. Ashmore's, by the porter; and I went with it, and helped the porter down with it.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q.The house you took them in was a common lodging-house? - A. Yes, it was.

Q. They behaved very well, did they not? - A. Yes, they did. (The trunk produced, and part of the articles deposed to by Mr. Moberley, brother to the prosecutor.)

Howard's defence. They were pressed several

times before the Magistrate to swear to me, and they would not, because, they said, I had changed my cloaths; I met with Daly, and he promised to give me a bit of paint to paint my box, and I went up into the room with him, and the trunk was in the room when we went up, and these gentlemen came in and took us away; I knew nothing of it.

Taylor's defence. Howard and I went into the market to buy something for supper, and met with this young man, and Howard asked him to give him a bit of paint to paint his box, and he said he would, if he would go home with him, and I went with them; I should not know the house again, if I was to see it.

Daly's defence. I met with these two young men in Fleet-market, and Howard asked me for a bit of paint; I went into the room, and saw the trunk there; I was going out of the room to enquire how it came there, when these gentlemen came in and seized us.

The prisoner Howard called one, Taylor one, and Daly three witnesses, who gave them a good character. Howard, GUILTY . (Aged 30.)

Taylor, GUILTY. (Aged 23.)

Transported for seven years .


Tried by the London Jury, before Mr. RECORDER.

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