28th November 1833
Reference Numbert18331128-17
VerdictsGuilty; Not Guilty
SentencesNo Punishment > sentence respited

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Before Mr. Justice Littledale.

17. ANN DIXON was indicted for stealing, on the 15th of August , 8 garnet stones, value 10l., the goods of Robert Bunting the elder, her master ; and JOSEPH GODDARD , for feloniously receiving the same, well knowing them to have been feloniously stolen .

MR. DOANE conducted the prosecution.

ROBERT BUNTING. I am a lapidary , and live at No. 65, Red-lion-street, Clerkenwell . The female prisoner was in my employ for about two months; I discharged her at the latter end of August - I had before that missed stones to a considerable amount; some rubies, emeralds, and sixteen garnets, but no suspicion attached to her at that time - on Friday the 25th of last month, I saw one of them.

WILLIAM BROWN EDWARDS . I am an officer of Hatton-garden. I produce a small stone given to me by the prosecutor.

ROBERT BUNTING. This is one of the stones I lost; I know it by the fineness of the quality, and the scarcity of this size, and the colour is very peculiar, it being an East Indian garnet; and the cut of it - it was not cut in England; it is Indian cut; all the garnets I lost were Indian cut - I lost one very large one, and some of this size; the generality of them were smaller than that; none of them were like this, not that peculiar cut - I have not the least doubt that this is one of them - Groves has worked for me seventeen years, and Mrs. Groves was in the habit of selling for me to a great amount, and has been in the habit of seeing my stones - she has seen my garnets repeatedly in my place, she has seen this one.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. How long have you known Mrs. Groves? A. About fourteen or fifteen years - I have known her all that time, coming backwards and forewards to my house; the husband works for me; she had access to my house - there is no private mark of mine on the garnet.

Q. You swear it was East Indian cut? A. Yes, and from that and the colour I swear to it; there is not one of a thousand of that quality - I have not seen twenty of

that quality; I do not know that I have seen any; but I may have seen fifteen or twenty, or more; very likely I have seen fifty; I will not swear I have not seen one hundred, nor one thousand; but I swear to the quality and cut - I have not seen five of this cut - there is not a lapidary in this country can cut as this is done - the tools are not such as they cut with - they cut them in the East Indies on wood and emery; I believe they are all cut in the same manner from the East Indies; exactly like this - this is the only one I saw cut in this way, I think; I might not have noticed - I do not believe I have seen any of this cut at all; I swore to this positively at the police-office - I believe I gave the cut as a reason, and the fineness of the quality, I think; I will swear I mentioned the cut to the magistrate.

MR. DOANE. Q. Do you know the male prisoner? A. He is servant to a greengrocer in the neighbourhood, and came backwards and forwards.

JOSEPH GIBBONS . I am apprenticed to Mr. Hasler, a jeweller. I saw the male prisoner last month at Hatton-garden; and I remember seeing him about the 24th of last May - he asked me if I would mount him a stone into a brooch; I said, I would - I went to his place - I do not know the name of the street; I saw the female prisoner there, who is his sister - they both showed me the stones in a piece of paper; they were garnet stones - the male prisoner asked if I would mount him a stone, and he selected one, and he asked his sister if he might have it; she said he might, and he gave me the stone.

Q. What was it he said to her? A."Will you give me this stone to make into a brooch?" or something like that - those are the words, as near as I can recollect; and she said he might have it - the stones were at that time in his hands, in a paper - when I first went into the room he asked his sister to get them; he asked a female, and I think it was her, but I did not take particular notice who it was - this was not in the room; it was in the passage - I am certain she was there; it was in the evening, and it was dark, and I think from her voice it was her - I did not go into the room; we went out of the passage into a cart-shed adjoining - I saw both the prisoners in the passage when I went in, and some others, but I do not know who they were - the male prisoner got the stones and opened the paper, and then we went into the other place - I saw the stones in the passage; they brought a candle; I do not know who brought it - I saw the female prisoner there; after that the two prisoners went into a cart-shed with me; somebody else came in after - we went out of the passage into the cart-shed without going into the street - I believe a door goes out of the passage into the cart-shed - the female prisoner had the candle: the male prisoner picked out the stone, and asked his sister, if he might have it; she said, "Yes" - he had them in his own hand in a paper at the time; he gave the stone to me to make into a brooch; this is very much like the stone - I took it to Mr. Groves, to be re-cut, and left it there.

Cross-examined. Q. What directions did the man give you about the garnet? A. To make it into a brooch; it was not in a fit state to be set; it could be set without being re-cut, but it would not look well; if it was re-cut it would make it look different from what it was.

Q. As you were not directed to have it re-cut, why desire Groves to do it? A. It would look so had if it was not re-cut; I thought it would not do so well for a brooch - it would cost about 3d. or 6d. to re-cut it; I knew the woman by hearing her voice afterwards - I will not be certain it was her - I am certain she is the woman who was there, but am not certain she is the woman he asked to get the stones; there was a girl there, but I am almost sure it was the prisoner he asked; it might he the girl who brought the stones; there was no light in the passage when I heard the woman's voice, when he asked for the stones to be got; I had not known her before; Mr. Hasler could not recut the stone; he is a jeweller; I took it as a little job for myself; I should charge for making the brooch about 1s.; he asked me what it would be: I said, "About 1s.;" I was to set it in brass - I should have 3d. or 6d. to pay for re-cutting it; that would be out of my pocket; I have known Mrs. Groves, I believe, about a year and a-half; it might be more; she worked for my master; I never saw her with any garnets; I have been with my master two years and three months - living with him nearly all that time.

Q. From the time your master first hired you, up to this time, have you ever quitted him? A. Yes; about twelve months since; I had been hired by him then, a year and ten months - I did not tell my master I was going away, he had beat me before I left, because I lost a little coral drop; I went to a house to get a bill receipted, and in opening the paper, it fell out of the paper and fell down a hole in the room, and I could not get the board up; the value of it was 1s.; I ran away from him because he beat me for it; I went to Liverpool - my master was living in London; it is two hundred miles to Liverpool - I walked there; I found my way by seeing the coaches and things going along; I did not intend to go to Liverpool when I set out - I am sure I don't know why I went there; I had 1s. 6d. in my pocket, and eat acorns and blackberries to support myself on the way; I was eight days walking - I slept in the hedges; I had some clothes - I did not pawn any of them - I had none but what I had on; I did not pledge any clothes before I left - I once pledged a waistcoat, that was nearly twelve months before, I had no friends in Liverpool - I was only there one day; I went to the dock yard there to go to sea; I was never at sea.

Q. How were you discovered at Liverpool? A. I was standing in the dock yard; a policeman asked me where I belonged to; I told him, and I was sent to London to my master; I was sixteen years old then; I did not see hand-bills offering a reward for me - I saw hand-bills describing me when I returned; my master had scolded me for various things before - he did not accuse me of stealing coral; I am in his service at this time; he refused to become bail for my appearance.

MR. DOANE. Q. You were flogged and ran away from your apprenticeship? A. Yes; I said I was doubtful who the prisoner asked to fetch the garnets; I have not a

doubt who it was that seemed to own the stones - it was that girl; I am quite sure she is the girl who consented to let the male prisoner have that garnet.

COURT. Q. Do you know who he asked to let him have the stone? A. Yes - that girl at the bar.

RICHARD GROVES . I am a lapidary, and live at No. 6, Benjamin-street, St. Sepulchre's. On the 25th of October, Gibbons brought me a garnet to cut - I believe this to be the garnet; I never saw a stone cut in this state, in this country; they are generally sent to us to re-cut; Mrs. Groves took it off my bench; I gave it into her hands when she came to my bench; she recognized it immediately.

ELEANOR GROVES . I am the wife of Richard Groves ; I remember receiving a garnet from my husband, about the 25th of October; it was a particularly fine one; I had seen it in possession of Mr. Bunting before, with others, and recognised it; I have worked for him seventeen years - I have had goods on commission from Mr. Bunting, to the amount of 2 or 300l. at a time; I believe this to be the same garnet; I took it to Mr. Bunting's and left it with him.

Cross-examined. Q. Had you seen Gibbons many times? A. From his coming backwards and forwards for the last two years - I knew him when he went to Liverpool - I heard of his going, but not till he was gone; I heard it from his employer, after he was gone; I only knew him as a boy bringing work backwards and forwards; my maiden name was Harris; I was not married more than once - I have been married to Groves thirteen years; I never went by the name of Eaton - I never knew that name; I know Hatton-garden, and the Police-office - I was born in the neighbourhood of it; I have been in the Police-office - I was there last month; I cannot tell you how long it is since I was there the first time - I have been there several times as a witness, or any thing else - I was there, and if Mr. Wooler is here he can answer the question.

Q. What were you charged with the first time you made your appearance there? A. I was seen to be talking to a bad character; that is the only charge - I was never brought to the police-office again - I was never charged but once at Hatton-garden; Mr. Wooller was astonished that the key should be turned on me - I don't know who the policeman was that had me; it was one of the new police - I was never there in charge of any officer, not a policeman; I was there a month ago only as a witness in Mr. Bunting's case - I never was in the office, except as a witness for Mr. Bunting, and at the time I was charged with speaking to a bad character, that was last summer - I know Waddington, he is well known in the neighbourhood; he has never had me in custody, that I will swear; the policeman took me, and of course I was in the care of Mr. Waddington; it was only once; and that was, because I spoke to a bad character - my house has not been searched lately - I know Busain, the police-inspector - my house was never searched but once; that was last summer, when I was charged with speaking to a bad character; and, my brother, unfortunately, was in trouble at the time; he had a trial here, and you, Sir, was kind enough to plead his cause - my house was searched, for furs, I believe; it was searched, but no stolen furs were in my house - I was never charged at Hatton-garden, with four other women, that I swear; nor with any women, except what I have said; that was last summer - I was not charged with three or four other women, with housebreaking - I had but two examinations, that was on account of the furs; on account of my brother and me talking to bad women - when I come to recollect, it was the summer before last, but that was the transaction - I was not examined twice; I was not asked questions the next time - I went down, I believe, two days, and was then brought up and discharged - I went by my own name then - I was never in Waddington's custody, by the name of Eaton, nor any name, except Groves; and I was only once in his custody - I was never charged with a girl and two men - I have made no mistake.

WILLIAM EDWARDS . I am a police-officer. I took the female prisoner into custody; Goddard came up to the office, and was put to the bar and charged.

Cross-examined. Q. The female was taken up, and Goddard came to the office to give evidence? A. Exactly so; and was given in charge himself - Gibbons was bound over to give evidence, on pain of imprisonment - I believe his master objected to be answerable for him.

ROBERT BUNTING , Jun. I am the son of the prosecutor - I was bound over.

Cross-examined. Q. Do you know the female prisoner? A. Yes, by being in our service - I had known her about three mobths.

Dixon. I have nothing to say; but leave all to my counsel.

GEORGE WADDINGTON . I am a police-officer, of Hatton-garden - I have been there seven years and a half - I have seen Mrs. Groves to-day - I have been acquainted with her since I have been jailor to the office, which is only between two and three years - I have the name in the book before.

Q. On what occasion did you see her at the office first? A. Two burglaries were committed; her brother was charged with them, and she was taken also by Busain; it was on the 20th of January, 1832; four prisoners were committed, and she was discharged; two males, and two females - I think she went by the name of Groves; I will not positively say that I knew her by any other name - I have seen her several times at our office - I think the last occasion was about some furs, where Busain had searched about furs - I don't recollect what she was charged with; she was, on one occasion, charged with something - I am positive I saw her at our office under a charge once; the second time I cannot be certain of - she was in the office, which is only a small room; but whether she was charged or not I don't know; that is eight or nine months ago - it was about the furs and some shoes that she was there the first time - it was two burglaries together; her brother had been transported. and came back, and was taken up twice since; and on every occasion that he was there, she was there - the burglaries were about robbing a man in Leather-lane, of some furs; that was in January, 1832.

JAMES HASLER . Gibbons is my apprentice. I re

member his running away from me - he had pawned a waistcoat some time before - I was asked, by the magistrate, to be bound for his appearance, but I would not; I had not confidence in him - he is a boy I would believe; I have no fault to find with him as a liar; he was away about eight weeks altogether.

Elizabeth Mitchell, Gilbert's-buildings, Westminster; - Clifford, No. 6, Gilbert's-buildings; Samuel Austin Coombs, No. 9, John-street, St. Lukes; Jane Stevens, a married woman, No. 16, Europia-place; William Stanton, stay-maker, Bath-street, Clerkenwell; and James Morris, bricklayer, Crawford-passage, gave Ann Dixon, a good character.

DIXON - GUILTY. Aged 19. - Recommended to Mercy on account of previous good conduct.

Judgment Respited .


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