Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 30 November 2020), October 1816, trial of JAMES LUKE (t18161030-23).

JAMES LUKE, Theft > burglary, 30th October 1816.

1120. JAMES LUKE was indicted for burglariously breaking and entering the dwelling-house of Jonathan Tatnell , about the hour of nine in the night of the 31st of August , and for burglariously stealing therein fourteen pairs of breeches, value 5l. two round frocks, value 15s. and one pair of trowsers, value 4s. his property .

ELIZABETH TATNETL . On the 31st of Augustlast my husband went out at eight o'clock in the evening. I shut the house and shop at half past eight. I had then lighted candles: it was dark. I fastened the shop by locking it once. After that I went into the kitchen at the back of the house. I had not been there above three or four minutes, before my attention was called to the shop again. A noise I heard in the passage drew my attention. When I went into the shop I perceived the door to be open. I am sure I had effectually locked it. I missed the articles in the indictment. Upon that I raised an alarm, and caused a pursuit to be made.

STEPHEN LEE . I am a horse patrole belonging to Bow-street. Upon an alarm given at Colnbrook , I went in pursuit of some supposed offenders. I was informed of the robbery, and overtook the prisoner about two miles and a half from Colnbrook, in the road from Colnbrook to Hounslow towards London. He had the property in question embraced in his arms, uncovered. I asked him how he came by it, and told him I suspected he was the person who committed the depredation. He made no kind of reply. I brought him back to Longford; that is fifteen miles from London. Mr. Tatnell was present, and identified his property. The prisoner did not give any account how he came by the property then. Before the magistrate, he said he found it about a mile and a half from Colnbrook. There was a Mr. Edwards with the prisoner when I took him.

ROBERT EDWARDS . I am a lieutenant in the navy. On the evening of the 31st of August I overtook the prisoner on the other side of Colnbrook turnpike. I since know that it was about two hundred yards from Tatnell's house. It was between eight and nine o'clock: it was quite dark; the lamps were lighted on the coaches. He had a bundle with him. I asked him where he was going, and he said to London. He said he had been to Egham races, hawking clothes about. I could not particularly see what it was he had; and I did not know, till he himself told me, that it was clothes. While he was with me, he did not find nor pick up any property.

Prisoner's Defence. I found the property just by a gate where that gentleman met me.

GUILTY - DEATH , aged 33.

First Middlesex Jury, before Mr. Baron Graham.