Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 08 December 2023), February 1733, trial of Joseph Fretwell (t17330221-26).

Joseph Fretwell, Violent Theft > highway robbery, Violent Theft > highway robbery, 21st February 1733.

32. Joseph Fretwell * , was indicted for assaulting Henry Madding , on the Highway, putting him in Fear, and taking from him 3 d. Half-penny , Jan. 31.

* He was tried last Sessions, for stealing a Hat and Wig from Joseph Chapman , of Westminster. See Sess, Paper, No II. p. 48

He was a second Time indicted for assaulting Mary Child , on the Highway, putting her in Fear, and taking from her 6 d. Jan. 31 .

First Indictment.

Henry Madding . As I was driving 8 Sheep along the King's-Road , in my way to Chelsea-College Slaughter-House, and had pass'd the Bridge, two Men came after me, and one of them took hold of my Arm, and ask'd me, how much Money I had to spend, 6 d. or a 1 s. and whether I would not spend a Penny? I told them, I had none to spend, for I had given my last Money to the Turnpike. Then they got before me, and one of them held a drawn Knife to my Left-Breast, and bid me give them what Money I had, or he'd kill me. So the shortest of them put his Hand in my Pocket, and took out 3 d. it was dark, and I don't know who they were.

Philip Hornsby . I and the Prisoner robbed this Boy of 3 Pence Half-penny, in a Lane just by the King's-Road, as he was driving Sheep to the College. When we stopt him, the Prisoner took the Money out of his Pocket.

Prisoner. What Day of the Week was it?

Hornsby. I don't know, but it was the 31st of January about Nine at Night.

Madding. It was not quite so late.

Court. How long have you been acquainted with the Prisoner?

H. These 10 Years, we were Schoolfellows.

Second Indictment.

Mary Child . On Wednesday Night the 31st of January between 9 and 10 at Night, as I was going from Rochester-Row in Tothill-Fields to Strutton's-Grounds , I met two Men. and pass'd them; they turn'd back and followed me. One of them got before me and the other laid his Hand on my Shoulder, and holding a naked Knife to my Throat, said, he must have my Money; I said I had none; then they both began to use me roughly, and I was very much frighted, and told them that I had got 6 d. indeed, and that was all, for I was a poor Woman just come from the Washing-tub, and was going to buy a Loaf; but they said, they wou'd have my Money, be it what it wou'd, or I should die, so he took the Six-pence from me and bid me go back.

Court. He? Who?

Child. The Prisoner; the Man that held the Knife to me.

Court. Are you sure the Prisoner was one of them?

Child. Yes, and this Man, Hornsby, was the other.

Court. What Light had you to see them by?

Child. I had a Candle and Lanthorn, and I am positive that they were the 2 Men that robbed me.

Philip Hornsby . I and the Prisoner robbed this Woman; we follow'd her over the Coach Way into a little Foot Path, and there he stopt her, and held up his Knife and threatened to cut her Throat, and then took Six-pence from her.

Court. What Business do you follow?

Hornsby. I am a Gardiner, and live at the Neat-house.

Court. And what is the Prisoner?

Hornsby. A Pipe-maker .

The Jury found him Guilty of both Indictments. Death .