Early Modern Crime and the Law

Anne Locker, theft of sheets

Denbighshire 1709

NLW Great Sessions gaolfiles 4/39/8
(unfoliated file) Examinations before Peter Ellice JP, 3 February 1709

[Mary Hughes, spinster, servant to Kenrick Eyton esquire of Wrexham, sworn]... deposeth & saith that on Fryday last was seven night betweene twelve & one a clock att noone this deponent & one Gwen Roberts another of the said Mr Eyton's servants putt severall flaxen sheetes on a hedge neare the said Mr Eyton's in Wrexham to drye after they had beene washed and this deponent & the said Gwen Roberts came afterwards about foure a clock that evening to fetch the said sheetes home but five of 'em were taken away whereupon this deponent by her said masters order procured a warrant of Peter Ellice esquire to search for the said sheetes and found three of them in the house of Christopher Woods of Wrexham labourer and suspecting one Jane Locker to have stolen the said sheetes the constable tooke her into his custody & she confessed she had stolen the said sheetes & said two of 'em were att the said Woods's house amongst other cloaths in a tubb of the said Woods where accordingly this deponent & the constable found the said two sheetes. ... [mark]

[Gwen Roberts, sworn, confirms Mary Hughes' statement]...

[Elizabeth Gittins, spinster, servant to Richard Benjamin of Wrexham, glover, sworn]... deposeth & saith that on Fryday last about twelve a clock att noone she putt two blew callicoe aprons of Mary the said Richard Benjamin's wife's to drye on the said Richard Benjamins hedge in his garden in Wrexham and went to fetch 'em about five a clock that evening but they were taken away ... [mark]

[Mary Benjamin wife of Richard Benjamin, sworn]... deposeth & saith that she found her said aprons att the said Woods house & Rebecca Woods wife to the said Christopher Woods said she found the said aprons under a bed as she was laying a cleane paire of sheetes upon it. ... [autograph]

[Mary Parry, servant to Sarah Davies of Wrexham, widow, sworn]... deposeth & saith that on Wednesday last was seven night in the morning she putt severall of her masters cloaths to drye in a neighboures garden & come about foure or five a clock that evening to fetch 'em home but mist a flaxen sheete & a coloured apron the apron this deponent found in Woods house & the sheete the said Jane Locker told this deponent was with squire Eyton's where this deponent found it accordingly ... [mark]

[Anne the wife of Thomas Jackson of Wrexham, gardener, sworn]... deposeth & saith that on Fryday last about one a clock in the afternoone her grand daughter Judith Jackson a little girl by her order put a flaxen table cloth on a hedge neare her house which was taken away in halfe an houres time which this deponent found in the said Woods hosue hid betweene the matt cords of a bed there and the said Jane Locker owned she stole the same .... [mark]

[Margaret the wife of John Jackson of Wrexham, joiner, sworn]... deposeth & saith that she putt a smock (which was left with her to wash for one of Mr Whiteham of Wrexham servants) on a hedge in her husbands garden & in a few minutes it was taken away & this deponent asked the said Jane Locker whether she knew anything of the said smock who answered if it were anywhere twas in Woods house where this deponent found it hid under the bed betweene the matt & cords ... [mark]

[Elizabeth the wife of Edward Browne of Wrexham, labourer, sworn]... deposeth & saith that she being employed to wash some cloaths for Esther Matthews of Wrexham widow putt a smock of hers to drye on a hedge in the neighbourhood on Satturday last was sevennight about one a clock in the afternoone which was taken away in about a quarter of an houres time & this deponent found it in the said Woods house & the said Jane Locker owned she had stolen the same ... [mark]

[Jane Locker]... confesses she did steale the said five sheetes of Mr Eyton the two blew callicoe aprons of Mrs Benjamin the sheete & apron of Mrs Davies the table cloth of Thomas Jackson & the smock of John Jackson's wife & the smock from Edward Browns wife & confirms what the rest of the witnesses have deposed to be true and further sayd that the said Woods wife had two of Mr Eyton's sheetes of her for a debt due to Woods & that Woods wife asked this deponent where she stole the sheetes & this deponent said not at the towne then Woods said she wou'd pack 'em up & keepe 'em till they left the towne. ... [mark]

[Rebecca the wife of Christopher Wood]... deposeth & saith that she denyes that she encouraged the said Jane Locker in stealing the things above mencioned and says she knows not how she came by the same ... [autograph]


Indictment: Jane Locker of Wrexham Regis, spinster; on 21 January 1709 at Wrexhan Regis, stole 5 flaxen sheets (value 20s) of Kenrick Eyton esquire
Found guilty, benefit of statute, branding