Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 30 November 2022), October 1810, trial of JOHN WHITE (t18101031-57).

JOHN WHITE, Theft > burglary, 31st October 1810.

829. JOHN WHITE was indicted for burglariously breaking and entering the dwelling house of Thomas Newberry , about the hour of seven at night, on the 29th of September , and burglariously stealing therein, seven handkerchiefs; value 3 l, the property of Thomas Newberry .

JOHN NEWBERRY . I am brother to Thomas Newberry, 54, Fleet-street , he is a linen draper .

Q. Were you in his house on the 29th of September, in the evening - A. I was.

Q. Was any part of his house broken that evening - A. Yes, the shop window. On my passing the window in the street, between six and seven o'clock, I perceived the window was cut, but not out; from the appearance of the putty; an instrument had been put into it, about the size of the top of a knife.

Q. At that time it was so open as to pull any thing through - A. No; it induced me to tell my brother of it. And afterwards I went to an officer, who, with me, patroled the street for half an hour to watch.

Q. Did you see any body come to the window after that - A. I saw three boys come to the window, they passed backward and forward three or four times.

Q. Look at the prisoner and say whether he was one of the boy s - A. It was so dark I could not tell whether he was one; at that time I could not distinguish his features by the day-light that was left; one of the boys was the same size as the prisoner, whether he was I cannot say. In passing backwards and forward, I saw one of them, in appearance, as if he had struck the glass, and then walked on a little way, I suppose they thought some one was near them. They walked on a little way and returned to the window; three or four times after they had done that. I know no more until I saw the prisoner in the hands of the officer; I saw the boys run from the prisoner.

Q. Were they running away from the window at the time that you saw the prisoner in the officer's custody - A. Yes.

Q. You came up to the officer that had hold of the prisoner - A. Yes. The piece of handkerchiefs that were tied in the window when I came up to it, had been drawn partly through the window, hanging only by the string; the window had been broken, and the piece of handkerchief had very nearly been got out of the window.

Q. What was the value of that piece of handkerchiefs - A. Three pound; the piece contained seven handkerchiefs, we gave sixty-five shillings for it; we had it three weeks or a month in the shop. The string was cut and afterwards the handkerchiefs, and the lad was taken in our shop.

Q. The prisoner is the lad that the officer took at the window - A. Yes.

WILLIAM MARCH . I am a beadle, I live in Fleet-street, and keep a fishing tackle shop.

Q. Were you applied to by the last witness to watch Thomas Newberry's house - A. Yes; I went to watch a quarter past six; I saw the prisoner near the shop, in company with two others.

Q. When you first saw the prisoner, had the daylight out of doors sufficiently gone for you not to be able to distinguish the features of a man - A. It was dark out of doors.

Q. Did you watch the prisoner and two others - A. Yes; I perceived them walk up to the window, backwards and forwards, two or three times, after that as I was coming down again, I observed two together, one of them had got hold of something. I laid hold ofhim, he had got this piece of handkerchief drawn out of the window, about as much as that. When I first came up and saw the window, I observed, that they had broken it, and the next time I came up they had broke it bigger.

Q. Could any other person have broke that window to get these goods through, but those three boys - A. There might be somebody else, but I did not see any body else, I was watching for the purpose.

Q. Who was it that you laid hold of, that had the handkerchief in his hand - A. The prisoner at the bar.

Q. It was partly through the window and partly in the shop - A. Yes. I searched the prisoner, he had no instrument about him, the other two ran away; I examined the window, the putty had been removed and the glass torn out; I took the prisoner into the house; Mr. Newberry brought the handkerchiefs in.

Mr. Newberry. This was one of the pieces of handkerchiefs that we had on sale at my brother's shop.

Prisoner's Defence. I was coming along, I saw two young men up at the window, they wanted to breed a riot with me, they took hold of me, and knocked me about.

Q. Is this house of Mr. Thomas Newbury 's in the parish of St. Dunstan's in the West - A. Yes.

THOMAS NEWBURY . Q. Are you the sole renter of this house - A. I am; I have no partner.

GUILTY - DEATH , aged 19.

London jury, before Mr. Common Serjeant.