Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 06 December 2023), May 1780, trial of THOMAS RICHARDSON WILLIAM DOWDEY (t17800510-49).

THOMAS RICHARDSON, WILLIAM DOWDEY, Theft > grand larceny, 10th May 1780.

278, 279. THOMAS RICHARDSON and WILLIAM DOWDEY were indicted for stealing 120 lb. wt. of dressed hemp, value 30 s. and 60 lb. wt. of dressed flax, value 30 s. the property of John Bond , May 6th .

JOHN BOND sworn.

Last Saturday morning I missed the hemp and flax, mentioned in the indictment, out of my warehouse. The prisoners were my journeymen . We weigh the rough goods to them, and they dress it in the shop. I examined the shop and found as much dressed hemp and flax as if they had dressed the whole that had been weighed out to them, though they had dressed but little of it.


I am apprentice to Mr. Bond. On Saturday morning I saw Richardson take a dozen of flax out of the warehouse and carry it into the dressing shop, where he worked, and Dowdey was in the warehouse, and shut himself in. I went down stairs and lighted the fire, and when the maid came down I told her of it. I thought it particular because they had no business in the warehouse.

Prosecutor. I locked the warehouse door over night, and had the key in my pocket.


We never wronged our master of a halfpenny-worth in our days.


I never was in the warehouse at all; I had no goods but what my master weighed out to me himself.

(The prisoners called several witnesses who gave them a good character.)


Tried by the Second Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.