Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 26 November 2022), January 1873, trial of CHARLES COLEMAN (20) (t18730113-146).

CHARLES COLEMAN, Theft > simple larceny, 13th January 1873.

146. CHARLES COLEMAN (20) , Stealing one watch, the property of Harry Holmes.

MR. HOLLINGS conducted the Prosecution.

HARRY HOLMES . I am a bombardier of Royal Artillery, quartered at Woolwich—the prisoner was the driver of my battery—he slept in my room—on the morning of the 30th he was absent—a Government clock was missed, and I missed my silver watch from my box at dinner time—I cannot Bay whether any one had Been in that room when I was away on duty, but there was a man in charge—the box was not locked.

Prisoner. Q. How many men slept in the room? A. Twenty-three.

JOHN BATT . I am a corporal in the same regiment, and had charge of the room where the prisoner slept—on 30th December I missed a clock, which was Government property, at 10. 30 a. m.—I had seen it at 9 o'clock.

THOMAS LYNCH . On 31st December I was a prisoner in the guard-room, the prisoner was also there under arrest—he told me he was charged with stealing a coat, a cap, and a watch, and that he sold the watch for 30s—he did not say what he had done with the coat.

Prisoner. Q. Were not we chaffing one another when I said that? Did not one say, "Did you get 10s?" and another, "Did yeu get 20s?" and another, "Did you get 30s?" and did not I say, "That is it?" A. No.

COURT. Q. Do you mean that he told you solemnly that he sold it for 30s?. A. Yes—I was under arrest for neglect of duty, but I was released.

JOHN WALING . I am a driver in the Royal Artillery—on 31st December I was under arrest for not showing my leave to a non-commissioned officer—the prisoner was brought in in the morning, and I heard the other prisoners ask him what he was in for—he said for stealing a watch and a clock, and that he made away with the watch for 30s.

COURT. Q. Were they chaffing him, and asking him what he got for the watch? A. I don't believe they were—I mean to say that he deliberately confessed that he had sold the watch for 30s.?—no one said, "Well, Coleman, did you get 30s. for it?

JOSEPH Moss (Policeman R 151,). On 31st December I was on duty when the prisoner was brought to the station—I heard him charged—he made no answer.

Prisoner's Defence. We were chaffing together, and one of them happened to hit upon 30s. for the watch, and I said, "Yes; that's it"

NOT GUILTY .