GEORGE HOPKINS was indicted for stealing, on the 2nd of April , 50lbs. weight of cheese, value 3l. 10s.,[modern-day value £ 4,052] the goods of Charles Beach .
WILLIAM KLING . On the 2nd of April, at half-past nine o’clock at night, I was in my back premises in Oxford-street, and heard two whistles – I opened our back gates and looked out – I saw the prisoner and another man in conversation, and saw a bag by the prisoner’s side – this was about twenty yards from Mr. Beach’s house – I stood still – the other man then left the prisoner and met a man who was coming down the mews, which my gates open into – that man lifted the bag on the prisoner’s back – I followed them to No. 28, Parry’s-court; they gave three knocks at the door – the prisoner was taken there in about an hour and a half, and the bag and cheese found in his room.
Cross-examined by Mr. BARRY.
Q. You did not see the cheese brought from Beach’s house?
CHARLES BEACH. I am an oilman, and deal in cheese , and live in North Audley-street . On the 2nd of April, about half-past nine o’clock, I left the shop for half an hour – the Parmasan cheese was in its usual place – Kling came to me – I then looked and missed the cheese – there are 50lbs. – it cost me 18d. a pound.
Q. Where was it?
A. On a tonguetray at my door – mine is a corner house; it was not in a bag – I can swear to the cut of it, and it is eaten by rats in one place.
Prisoner’s Defence. I was coming from my father’s, who is coachman to Mr. Hanbury – a gentleman came and and asked me to carry the parcel, which I did – I did not know what was in it; the man asked if he could leave it at my room till Monday, as he was going into Surrey.
GUILTY . Aged 23. Transported for Seven Years .
Reference Number: T 18270405-213
From: Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 18 July 2018), April 1827, trial of GEORGE HOPKINS (t18270405-213).