Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 23 April 2021), September 1798, trial of CHARLES WILSON (t17980912-48).

CHARLES WILSON, Theft > grand larceny, 12th September 1798.

514. CHARLES WILSON was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 14th of August , a trunk, value 10s. six cotton gowns, value 3l. a silk petticoat, value 21s. two muslin petticoats, value 21s. six dimity petticoats, value 21s. three flannel petticoats, value 10s. fourteen muslin handkerchiefs, value 21s. ten pair of cotton stockings, value 21s. six linen aprons, value 10s. eight linen shirts, value 21s. a silk cloak trimmed with lace, value 21s. a gauze cloak trimmed with lace, value 10s. a muslin cloak, value 10s. three pair of leather shoes, value 12s. six muslin caps, value 6s. a profile painting in a wooden frame, value 20s. and six printed books, value 6s. the property of Edward Wisdom .

Mrs. WISDOM sworn. - I am the wife of Edward Wisdom : On the 14th of August, I lost the things mentioned in the indictment; I was going with the Bromley stage from Charing-cross to Beckenham; they were in a trunk fastened on the stage.

Q. What time was it? - A. Between four and five o'clock; I do not know how they were taken, nor by whom.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q. Did you go over Blackfriars-bridge, or Westminster? - A.Blackfriars-bridge, I believe.

CHARLES LUNN sworn. - I am a porter, in Bell-yard: I had occasion to go through Temple-bar, on the 14th of August last, about half past four o'clock, for some tobacco; I saw a stage-coach, I did not observe what stage it was; when the stage got under Temple-bar , I saw the prisoner place both his hands upon the box fastened behind the coach, and remove it from the coach; I saw some ropes dragging upon the ground as he took the box away; and the coach still kept going on; after he had taken the box off, he went up Great shire-lane, I followed him to the steps that go down to New Boswell-court; I then left him, and went to Fleet-street, to hear, if I could, any thing about it; I went back, and found the man and the box where I had left them.

Q. It was pretty heavy, I suppose? - A. I cannot say.

Q. Are you sure that is the same man that you saw take the box? - A. I am positive of it.

Q. Are you positive that the box you saw afterwards was the box you saw him take from the stage? - A. I am positive; I secured him and the box too.

Cross-examined by Mr. Alley. Q. It was on the other side of Temple-bar that you first saw him? - A. Yes.

Q. That is in the County of Middlesex? - A. Yes, where I first saw him.

Q. You did not see his face? - A. Yes, I did.

Q. You do not mean to say, that you saw him take the box off, but that you saw it in his hand? - A. I saw him lift it from the coach.

Q. Why did you not stop him at that time? - A. I had no suspicion that he had stolen it till after I saw the strings dragging on the ground.

Q. He had a very good opportunity of getting away while you were gone to Fleet-street again? - A. Yes, he certainly had.

JOHN CASTLEMAN sworn. - I drove the Bromley coach; I tied the box behind the coach, opposite the Mews-gate, at four o'clock, on the 14th of August; I went on to the Boar's-head, in Fleet-street, next the Bolt-in-tun, and there I missed the trunk, when I got down; I found the cords had been cut; I went back as far as Catherine-street in the Strand, to learn, if I could, any thing aboutit; I returned again, and found the trunk at the Boar's-head; I am sure it was the same trunk.

Q. Whose trunk was it? - A. A lady's, in Court; I had received it from her.

JOHN-YOUNG HUSBAND sworn. - I am a constable:(Produces the box and the cords); they appear to have been cut with a very sharp instrument.

Mrs. Wisdom. This is my trunk; all the things in the indictment were contained in this trunk.

Prisoner's defence. I was going along, and this man took me, and said, I had taken the trunk; I know nothing at all about it.

GUILTY (Aged 24.)

Transported for seven years .

Tried by the London Jury, before Mr. COMMON SERJEANT.