Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 25 May 2018), February 1781, trial of JANE VINCENT ELEANOR M'CABE MARY LILLY MARY WRIGHT (t17810222-44).

JANE VINCENT, ELEANOR M'CABE, MARY LILLY, Violent Theft > robbery, 22nd February 1781.

172, 173, 174, 175. JANE VINCENT , ELEANOR M'CABE , MARY LILLY , and MARY WRIGHT were indicted for that they in the dwelling house of William Flight , in and upon Ann Evers , widow , feloniously did make an assault, putting her in corporal fear and danger of her life, and stealing from her person a guinea, a pair of gold ear-rings, value 2 s. a pair of silver shoe buckles, value 4 s. and two gold rings, value 18 s. the property of the said Ann Evers , January 13th .

ANN EVERS sworn.

On the 13th of last month, between seven and eight at night, little Jenny ( Jane Vincent ) and two young women who were strangers to me came and asked me to go to a labour; I am a midwife . When we got to the top of Long-acre I asked little Jenny where they were going to carry me? She said only a little farther, and brought me into Lewkner's-lane; at the lower end of the lane on the right hand side they brought me into a lower room; all three came in with me; they said there is the woman on the bed that wants your help. I went to the woman and asked her how she was? she said she was full of pain all over; I said if she would turn on the other side I would examine her and tell her it she was in labour. She turned round, I examined her, and I then told the woman who fetched me that she was neither in labour nor with child. When I said so they all began to abuse me; then little Jenny said, she had a favour to ask me, that was to rub a spot on the face of the tall one ( Mary Wright ) with a bit of gold, as she thought my hand was lucky? Upon that I took a guinea out of my bosom and rubbed the spot in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Mary Wright wanted to snatch the guinea out of my hand. After I put the money in my bosom, Wright knocked me down upon my back, with a violent blow on my face. I fell on my back on the floor in a dark corner.

Do you know who the other girl was with Jane Vincent and Mary Wright ? - That girl (pointing to M'Cabe); the three beat me in such a manner that I could not see. After they had thrown me down two of them fell upon me and throttled me; I did once cry out murder! they stopped my mouth with their hands and throttled me. They pulled my shoes off and took my silver buckles out; then they all put their hands into my bosom and up my petticoats and shook me, and untied my top petticoat to see if I had any other pocket on; they got the guinea; they took my housewife and took out of it a pair of gold ear-rings, value 4 s. and an half crown; there was nothing else of value in it. I scrambled up off the floor as well as I could; as I got up one of them laid hold of me by one arm and little Jenny by the other; they pulled off my two gold rings, they were very hard to get off; Jenny swore a sad oath and said, if they could not get it off they would cut my finger off. She got one off and put on her finger; then they pulled the other off and made a scramble for that, but I do not know who got it; then they all three ran out.

What became of the woman who was in bed? - When I said she was not with child she got up and sat on the side of the bed. When the other three ran out a man and a boy came in and pushed me out.

The girl you call little Jenny you knew very well? - She lived next door but one to where I live now; She lived two years in the neighbourhood. I am sure she is one that came for me.

Did you ever see Mary Wright before? - No; I am sure she is one; I know her face. I don't know either of the other two.

Have you any doubt whether those two are two of the girls? - No.

What was the spot on Mary Wright 's face that they wanted you to rub? - I believe it was a little spot like a ring worm.

HENRIETTA EVERS sworn.

What relation are you to the last witness? - No RELATION AT ALL BUT SHE IS MY OWN MOTHER . I was at home with her when little Jenny and the other two women came for her, it was between seven and eight o'clock.

Which were the other two? - The two that stand on each side of her (pointing out Wright and M'Cabe); they all came into the room and staid about two minutes; we had a lamp burning, my mother went out with them. When she came home she was almost murdered.

WILLIAM HALLIBURTON sworn.

On Saturday the 13th, I think it was, of last month, I believe after nine o'clock, the prosecutrix came to Bow-street, she had been sadly beat, and her eyes were very black; then she told me the same story she has told now; I did not see her again till Monday morning, then her eyes were as black as they could be, she was almost blind. I went with her to Lewkener's-lane, she led me into a place where she said she believed the robbery was committed. Mary Wright and M'Cabe were there. She particularly examined the faces of each of them and said she could not think that either of them were the people; we then went after little Jenny and found her; as soon as she saw her she said she was sure that was the person who had fetched her from home, and had assisted in robbing her, and pulling the rings off her finger. She said the reason why she knew her so well was because she lived in the same court. We brought her to the office and she was committed. She owned she went to fetch her, but said she had no band in any thing else; that the others did it. There was a general alarm after Jenny was taken, and the other three were brought to the office by Macdonald and others, on the information of Catharine Hobday , who was taken up on suspicion, and was in the Round-house.

( Catharine Hobday was called, but not appearing, the court ordered her recognizance to be estreated).

To Ann Evers . When you saw the two young women when you went with the constable, on Monday morning, to Lewkener's-lane, how came you to say you did not believe either of them to be the persons? - Because my eyes were so bad I could not see out of them; I could not discern any thing.

You said Mary Wright was the tallest of the two that was with little Jenny, who had the spot upon her face? - I thought so.

Was it so? - Yes.

( Mary Lilly was not put upon her defence.)

VINCENT's DEFENCE.

I never saw the woman before I saw her before the Justice to my knowledge; nor ever saw these young woman. I throw myself upon the mercy of the court.

WRIGHT's DEFENCE.

I sell matts and sieves; I came home on Saturday night and was drinking with the evidence that is not here from six till ten o'clock. When this woman came she said I was not the girl; she took me to the justice's twice and there said I was not the girl; she never said a word against me.

M'CABE's DEFENCE.

We were both fitting in the room together; she said neither of us were the girls; she turned about and said God forgive her, she did not know whether she was right or wrong.

Court. Whose house was it in which she was robbed? - Holliburton. It was the house of William Flight .

VINCENT GUILTY ( Death .)

THE OTHER THREE ACQUITTED .

Tried by the First Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.