Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 16 August 2018), December 1783, trial of WILLIAM MAYNARD WILLIAM RICHARDSON (t17831210-8).

WILLIAM MAYNARD, WILLIAM RICHARDSON, Violent Theft > highway robbery, 10th December 1783.

8. WILLIAM MAYNARD and WILLIAM RICHARDSON were indicted for feloniously assaulting George Noble , on the King's highway, on the 1st of November last, and putting him in fear and danger of his life feloniously taking from his person and against his will, one handkerchief, value 1 s. one guinea, value 21 s. one crown piece, value 5 s. a silver sixpence, and six copper halfpence, his property .

GEORGE NOBLE sworn.

I am servant to Mr. Jackson in James-street, near Buckingham-gate, I was coming home from Chelsea the first of November last, about half past nine o'clock, and the two prisoners were walking towards London before me, about the middle of the road, about half a mile from town.

Did you know them before? - No, it was in the Five-fields Road , they were about two hundred yards before me, I overtook them, and then Maynard turned round and took hold of me by my arm, and he told me to make no noise, and the prisoner Richardson pulled out a pistol and stood over me with it, he did not speak; Maynard desired me to be quick about it; he had hold of my arm at the time, and the prisoner Maynard searched my fob for a watch but, I had none, then he put his hand in right-hand breeches pocket and took a crown piece and a sixpence, then he put his hand in my left-hand breeches pocket and took a guinea, then he put his hand in my waistcoat pocket and took threepence halfpenny fourpence halfpenny, but I am not sure to the number of halfpence; then he put his hand in my jacket pocket and took my pocket handkerchief.

This was all you lost? - Yes.

Did Richardson stand with the pistol over you all the time Maynard was searching you? - Yes, Maynard turned me round and told me to go about my business, which I did.

Court. I should be very glad to know how you can swear to either of these prisoners? - It was quite moon-light.

JOHN SHARRARD sworn.

I am one of the officers of Bow-street, I apprehended the prisoners on the 7th of November in Hyde Park, a robbery having been committed that night, we took them on foot, we went in search of them, they made no resistance, I searched them both, I found round Maynard's knee this handkerchief, his breeches was torn.

Did you find any pistols on them? - No, there was one found just on the spot.

(The handkerchief shewn to Noble.)

Noble. I am positive to this handkerchief by the border, and a faint impression of the border, and two remarkable holes, one hole was bit by a person's teeth.

(The handkerchief shewn to the Jury.)

Court. Were the holes all bit? - I do not know, but I remember the holes.

JAMES MACMANUS sworn.

I was present when these prisoners were taken, there was no pistols about them, this handkerchief was round Maynard's knee, I thought I saw Maynard fling a pistol over the rails, and I afterwards found a pistol there, the pistol was charged.

Court to Prosecutor. What sort of a pistol was it Richardson held over you? - It was a large horse pistol.

(A large horse pistol produced, which was loaded with a marble.)

PRISONER MAYNARD's DEFENCE.

I never saw the man before in my life, I have not been in Chelsea for above half a year.

The PRISONER RICHARDSON'S DEFENCE.

I have nothing to say, only leave it to the mercy of the Court.

The Prisoner Richardson called one Witness who gave him a good character.

WM. MAYNARD, WM. RICHARDSON,

GUILTY Death .

They were both humbly recommended to mercy by the Jury.

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice WILLES.