Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 10 December 2022), April 1888, trial of ALFRED EDWARD KERSEY (31) (t18880423-473).

ALFRED EDWARD KERSEY, Deception > forgery, 23rd April 1888.

473. ALFRED EDWARD KERSEY (31) Forging and uttering an order for the payment of 5l. 7s. with intent to defraud.

MR. MUIR Prosecuted.

WILLIAM STEPHENS . I am 14 years of age—on 29th March, I was in New Bond Street, when the prisoner gave me a letter in this envelope (produced)—he asked me to take it to the address on the envelope, "Messrs. Atloff and Norman, 69, New Bond Street," and bring back a pair of boots and some change—I took it there—I got no change—I got the parcel and took it to the prisoner at the corner of a street, I do not know the name of it, in New Bond Street—I did not see him at first—he called me to him and I gave him the parcel—he took it and asked me for the change—I said they did not give me any, and did not say anything about the change—he was going to give me 2d. when Mr. Norman took hold of him.

Cross-examined by the Prisoner. You gave me the letter about opposite No. 7, New Bond Street—when I came back you were at the corner of some street I do not know—you promised to meet me lower down—you beckoned to me—you did not ask me who the man was who gave me the note—I was not crying and looking about when you stopped me—when you asked me what they had given me, I said "This parcel"—I ran away after Mr. Norman caught hold of you—I saw you put your hands on him and try to trip him up, or wrench yourself away—I had not seen you before.

Re-examined I did not see the prisoner put his leg between Norman's—I cannot say if he did so.

WILLIAM GEORGE NORMAN . I am manager for Messrs. Atloff and Norman, Bootmakers, of 69, New Bond Street—on 29th March Stephens brought me this letter in this envelope about 3. 30: "Please give bearer one pair of fashionable French laced boots (ladies'), No. 2, value about 20s. or 25s. Enclosed please find cheque for 5l. 7s. We are not particular whether they slightly exceed the above amount. Gordon and Co."—I knew Gordon and Co.—I gave instructions for the empty box to be made up into a parcel, given to the boy, and that his address should be taken—the boy went out and ran down the street on the same side as the shop, I followed on the other side—the boy had nearly run past Maddox Street—I then noticed the prisoner standing about twenty yards up the street, beckoning to the boy—I saw him take the box from the boy, put it under his arm, and then put his hand into his pocket, and I heard money clink—I then seized the prisoner and told him I should want him to go back to the shop with me on the charge of having sent the boy with a note and a cheque to obtain goods under false pretences—I secured him with my left hand and seized the boy and called "Help" and "Police"—I could get no one to help me, and no constable—the prisoner was punching my left arm and struggling, and getting the best of me, so I let go of the boy and seized the prisoner more firmly, when he put his leg between mine and tried to trip me up—I asked him whether he was going to struggle or whether I should have to use force to take him—he said he would go quietly, which he then did—I took him back to the shop and gave him in charge—he said he knew nothing about it.

Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I did not see you till the boy turned round—I saw you beckon him—I believe I mentioned your punching me at the police-court.

THOMAS GUBBINS (Policeman D 143). About 3.30 on 29th March I was called to Mr. Norman's shop, who gave the prisoner into custody for attempting to obtain a pair of boots with a false cheque—I said "At present I shall take you into custody"—he said "Very well, I will go with you, we will have a cab"—I went to the City Bank with the cheque I found this tracing paper in a pocketbook in the prisoner's coat-pocket, it has "Peter Charles" written on it. (The cheque was dated 19th January, 1888, on the City Bank, Tottenham Court Road Branch. Pay Thomas Jones or order 110l., W. H. Carey. It had no endorsement. The other cheque was on the same bank, and dated March 29, 1888. Pay Messrs. Atloff or order 5l. 7s. for goods. Gordon and Co."

JOHN CABOT . I am a hosier and shirt maker, of 7, New Bond Street, and a partner in the firm of Gordon and Co.—my partner takes no active part in the business—this cheque is not signed by my firm—I do not bank at the City Bank, nor in the name of Gordon and Co.—I do not know anything of the letter produced, nor the envelope—I have never seen the prisoner before—I never gave anybody any authority to sign the note or cheque.

JOHN GORDON CROWE . I am a clerk in the City Bank, Tottenham Court Road Branch—we have no customer named Gordon and Co.—The cheque is from a book issued by our bank six years ago to Mr. Walter Kent, whose account was closed about two years ago—He did not return his cheque-book—it is customary for a customer to return his

book when his account is closed—we always ask for it—the two cheques produced are out of the book issued to Walter Kent—the numbers art 95215 and 95219, series "B B."

DAVID CRACKETT (Detective C). After the prisoner was charged he handed this paper to the inspector, who handed it to me—it is an address, "46, Harcombe Road, Stoke Newington"—Mr. Drew is the landlord there—I went there—Mrs. Drew pointed out the prisoner's room—Mr. Drew was present—in the room I found this cheque, dated 19th January, 1888, for 110l.—I did not actually see the prisoner write the address, but the paper was handed through the cell-door to him, and he gave it back to the inspector—he was alone in the cell, and the address was written on it when it was handed back.

Cross-examined by the Prisoner. The lad did not identify you at the station—there has been no attempt at fraud with the other cheque.

Re-examined It was found in a box.

JOHN DREW . I live at 46, Harcombe-Road, Stoke Newington—the prisoner lodged with me—I was present about a quarter of an hour after Crackett called—I saw him find this cheque of 19th January in the prisoner's box.

Cross-examined by the Prisoner. I have known you some years, and know your writing—this cheque for 110l. is not your writing—the letter is something like it, but I cannot swear to it—you told me that the people called at Mr. Skinner's office, your place of business, and that you did not want to see them, or to have anything to do with them.

Re-examined The address on this envelope to Mr. Skinner is the prisoner's writing, but I should not like to swear that the "C "in "Gordon and Co. "is the same as the "C "in "Cursitor Street"—the formation is something like it—the final "y "in "Chancery" and in "slightly" are similar, but the one is bold and the other is shaky.

The prisoner stated in his defence that he saw a man in Bond Street, whom he knew to be a bad character, hand a letter to a lad, and thought he would wait to render what assistance he could. The man had frequently been to his office and wanted him to do as the man had done. He stopped the boy and asked him what he had, and the boy said nothing, and as he was handing him the parcel Mr. Norman seized him.

GUILTY ** of uttering.

He then PLEADED GUILTY to a conviction of felony in October, 1886, at this Court.— Fifteen Months' Hard Labour.