Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 22 April 2021), February 1793, trial of WILLIAM PITT (t17930220-51).

WILLIAM PITT, Theft > grand larceny, 20th February 1793.

245. WILLIAM PITT was indicted for feloniously stealing on the 28th of January , two pair of mens leather shoes, value 10 s. two pair ditto, value 4 s. one pair ditto, value 3 s. the goods of Ann Fogg , widow .

ANN FOGG sworn.

I lodge at No. 5, King's Head-court, Shoe-lane, I am a widow; I clean shoes ; the prisoner stole five pair of shoes from me on Monday morning; I catched him selling them; I never saw him before this time. On Monday morning last was three weeks I left him in the court, and he ran away with the shoes, at the time the shoes were in a basket, they were in Hind-court, facing Water-lane ; I clean shoes there; they were blacked all ready for shining off, this was about ten o'clock as near as I can guess; I went away from Hind-court and I was not gone above ten minutes, I left the shoes under the care of the prisoner, he wanted his own shoes cleaned, he came up to ask to have his shoes cleaned, he had them on his feet and he pulled them off to be cleaned; I cleaned them for him; I saw them on his feet; he sent me of an errand; he pretended to know a servant maid there, and he sent me for a quartern and half of gin; there was a servant maid went out with a plate in her hand and he said, he knew her, and then he asked me to go for the quartern and half of gin; I went to the Kings and Keys in Fleet-street, for the nearest place; he gave me six-pence to get the gin; I was absent only a few minutes, when I returned with the gin, he was not there nor the shoes, he had drawn one basket out of the other; I desired him to take care of my shoes and basket and he took all away; I ran as fast as I could into Field-lane.

Q. How came you to go into Field-lane? - God Almighty directed me I was in so much distress, I did not know where to go, I ran directly into Field-lane and catched him in the shop.

Q. Was that the first shop you went into in Field lane? - I asked in the first shop and I did not see the prisoner there, but I went into the next shop, the house of Jane Stuart , and there I saw the prisoner, in her shop; I went in and I asked if any body had been to sell any shoes? the prisoner answered me and said, no mistress, there has been nobody selling shoes here; a little boy came out and said, that man has brought five pair of shoes, and the prisoner said, it was no such thing; so that little boy went in to his mother, he appeared to be about thirteen or fourteen years old, I laid hold of the prisoner and the man of the shop produced the shoes, and a gentleman came in and said, I should prosecute him and he was taken to a place in Hatton-garden, before the magistrate; the shoes were delivered to the constable.

Q. Now all these things you must have answered for them if they had been lost? - I must indeed.

Prisoner. I never spake to her at all, not one single question, at her coming into the shop she did not know me. - I knew him to be the person that took them.

Court. When you came into the shop, and he answered as the master of the shop, no, no, there were no shoes brought in here, did you know him to be the same man that had his shoes cleaned, and sent you for the gin? - I knew him to be the same man, I took hold of his collar, and I said you are the man, and have got my shoes, that was after he had answered, no, no, there has been no shoes selling here, and before the boy came up.


I am a porter; I went into Field-lane about ten o'clock in the morning; I believeit was a Monday; I went into Mrs. Stewart's shop, and I saw this man standing there, I wanted to sell a pair of boots, about two minutes after I had been in there, I saw this old woman come in crying, and she asked, if any shoes had been sold there? that man at the bar answered no; the man that did belong to the shop, and the prisoner were there; the prisoner was there before me; the little boy that was in the shop ran back to his mother, and acquainted her of it, that there was a woman had lost some shoes, and directly the shoes were brought forward into the place, the mother is here, but the boy is not; then they were shewn to the old woman, and the old gentlewoman owned them, and said, there was every thing there, only the strings had been taken out of one pair of them.

Q. Did the little boy say in the hearing of the prisoner who it was that brought the shoes there? - He said, the man there, the man waited for the money, they had agreed for 12 s. he asked 14 s. the boy was telling his mother not to let him have the money, because he thought they were stole, because the woman had come to own them, the shoes were produced, and the woman owned them; as soon as the woman owned them, he was going to run out of the shop, and I catched hold of him by the collar, and when I catched hold of him by the collar, there was some gentleman there bid me take him before the justice, he walked there, I took the shoes up with him, and they were delivered to the constable, he has them now.

Prisoner. In the first place, he said, I asked 14 s. for the shoes, and then he said 12 s. and then he said the woman would not give me the money, because she thought I stole them, she never said any thing about it.


I keep a shop in Field-lane, a man came into my shop, with five pair of shoes, and he asked 14. for them, and I did not know so much about the business, I took them to one of the men to shew them what they thought they were worth, in the mean time, the woman came in, and my boy came up, and said, mother, the man has stole the shoes, there is a woman come after them.

Q.Is that the man? - I don't know, I was so frightened when I came down stairs.

Q. Did you see who the man laid hold of? - Yes.

Q. Did not you see the man carried out of your shop? - I did not take much notice of him.

Q. Had you never seen the man that offered you these shoes before? - Never to my knowledge, it is very like the man.

Q. Was you before the justice at Guildhall? - I was.

Q. What account did you then give of the matter? - I said I could not possibly swear.

Q. And you now swear that you never had seen that man before to your knowledge; have you had no dealings with that man before? - Not to my knowledge.

- HORNE sworn.

I have got the shoes; I received them at Guildhall; the prisoner was brought in by Bunn, and another person, and the woman; the shoes have been in my custody. In taking the prisoner to the Compter, the prisoner informed me that he found them Produced and deposed by Thomas Dutton , as being his own, his father's, and his brother's, and also deposed to by the prosecutrix.)

Prisoner. Last Monday was three weeks, about ten o'clock, coming from King's Head-court, these shoes lay in a narrow passage, I saw them lay there, I stopped there a minute or two, I took them up, and went home with them, Ithought there was no owner to them, and I went into Field-lane to dispose of them; in the mean time, while I was in the shop, waiting to dispose of them, that old woman came in, that elderly woman came in, and I asked her if they were her shoes, she said, I believe they are mine; good woman, says I, if you believe they are your's take them, you are welcome; I was going to the door to speak to the lad, who saw me pick them up, and the boy, the woman's son laid hold of me, says the woman I want nothing of him, I have got my shoes, I am very glad, and the porter took hold of my collar, and I was taken before the magistrate; as to my part, I never saw the woman before, till I saw her in the shop. I had people to my character these two days past, but I did not expect my trial to come on to-day.

GUILTY . (Aged 48.)

Imprisoned six months in Newgate , and publickly whipped .

Tried by the London Jury before Mr. Justice GROSE.