Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 10 December 2022), January 1882, trial of WILLIAM COLLINS (24) (t18820109-197).

WILLIAM COLLINS, Theft > burglary, 9th January 1882.

197. WILLIAM COLLINS (24) , Burglary in the dwelling-house of Edward George Bates, and stealing three firkins of butter, and three firkins, his goods. Second Count, receiving the same.

MR. DE MICHELE Prosecuted.

ANN SIMMONS . I am in the service of Mr. Edward Bates, provision dealer, and I live at 35, Nottingham Street, Bethnal Green—on Sunday morning, 10th December, about 12.30, I locked up the shop at No. 232, Hackney Road—the premises are locked and harred from the rest of the house—the prisoner had come; into the shop on the Saturday about 11.30 p.m., and asked if I sold pork pies—when I went to the shop on Monday morning I found three firkins of butterine gone—that was between 7.33 and 8.0 a.m.

Cross-examined. I had no clock, but the public-house next door shut up at 12—there is a clock there, but it is sometimes a quarter of an hour fast.

EDWARD BATES . I live at 35, Nottingham Street, Bethnal Green—I am a provision dealer—I was called to my shop, 232, Hackney Road, on Sunday morning, 11th December, between 9 and 10—I found the place in possession of the police—I missed four firkins of butterine which had

been consigned from Holland—the initials "E.J.B." were on them—my proper initials are "E.G.B."—I found the door had been forced open—the access to the rest of the house was screwed and bolted up, no one could get into the shop from the house—those screws and bolts had not been interfered with—I afterwards identified the butterine in the hands of the police with the initials "E.J.B." on them.

WILLIAM AITCHISON (Policeman H 100). About 12.15 on Sunday morning, 11th December, I was on duty in Ravenscroft Street, Hackney Road—I saw the prisoner and two men, each having a firkin on his shoulder—I stood back in a doorway and let them partly pass—the prisoner being last I caught hold of the collar of his coat—he threw down the firkin and shouted "Look out"—I was in uniform—the others ran away—the prisoner put his foot before me and tried to trip me up—I said, "If you do so again I shall use my truncheon"—I said, "How have you come in possession of this butter?"—he made no reply—I took him to the station—this happened about 200 yards from the shop—I knew nothing about the burglary then.

JOHN HARRISON (Policeman H 54). I took possession of these premises at 6 o'clock on Sunday morning—I found the front door open with another constable, and so remained there the remainder of the night—I examined the bolts and screws which fastened up the other part of the house, and found them all correct—the house must have been broken into by a tremendous push at the street door—it forced the screws off the lock—the house is about three doors from the corner.

The Prisoner's Statement before the Magistrate. "About 12.15 I was going home and met two bricklayers, and they asked me to carry one of these tubs for them. I carried it, and the policeman laid hold of me. I wanted to tell him if the policeman had let me, but he threatened me with his staff if I did not hold my jaw."

The Prisoner's Defence. If I was given into custody at a quarter past twelve o'clock how could I be guilty of burglary when the lady says the shop was shut up at half-past twelve o'clock?

GUILTY** of receiving. He also PLEADED GUILTY to a conviction in April, 1880.— Two Years' Hard Labour.