Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 30 November 2022), January 1785, trial of DAVID BRATHWAITE (t17850112-66).

DAVID BRATHWAITE, Theft > grand larceny, 12th January 1785.

269. DAVID BRATHWAITE was indicted for stealing, on the 27th of December last, seventeen shillings, and eight-pence half penny, in monies numbered , the monies of Thomas Norton .

THOMAS NORTON sworn.

I am a carman ; I went into a public house, the prisoner was there, the 27th of December, I went after my Christmas-boxes, about eleven or twelve I set down and was rather sick and comical, rather in liquor; and I found my bag go out of my pocket, I cannot say but I had been drinking a good deal that day; I do not know justly what was in the bag, I can swear to more than five shillings, and I can swear to the bag; I found it go out of my left hand pocket.

The PUBLICAN sworn.

I keep a public house in St. Catherine's ; on the 27th of last month, the prosecutor came into my house about a quarter before eleven, I imagine led in by one of his companions, very much in liquor, so that he could scarce speak; he sat down in a box and one of the women that is about, said there is a man with a bag of money in his hand, I fancy he will lose it, it is untied; I was busy, but I told him to put his money in his pocket, he put it into his pocket, but which pocket I cannot say on my oath; I went into my bar, and in the space of three or four minutes I heard the money fall about the tap-room, I went out and desired him to pick up the money, and the sailor who stood by as I knew to be a very honest man, picked it up and put it into the bag; after which he insisted on having it again, he took the bag and held it in his left hand, I persuaded him to let me have it till he was sober; I saw the prisoner eye the man very much, I kept my eye on him, the prosecutor had his money in his left hand behind him in my opinion, I do not think he put it in his pocket; then the prosecutor began to cast and heave in a violent manner, then I believe he fell asleep; in about five or six minutes after I went into the tap-room, and I saw the prisoner crawling from underneath the table, I immediately asked him what he had got in his hand behind him, he set on the seat, and said what is that to me, or something to that purpose; I told him he had got the man's money, he said he would not give it me; I said, then soldier fetch an officer, I sent for an officer, and in the mean time the soldier was gone for the officer, he gave me the money, and said he picked it up.

Court. He might pick it up might not he? - Indeed to tell the truth, I believe he might, for the man was so much in liquor I do not believe he was capable.

Court to Jury. There is no pretence to charge the man with this, the prosecutor was so drunk.

Court to Prisoner. Be more careful for the future, let this be a caution to you.

NOT GUILTY .

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