Bridget Whalan

Evidence Type: Newspaper Report
29 February 1840


FRIDAY.—Before the Chairman and S. A. DONALDSON, Esq. J. P.

BRIDGET WHALAN was indicted for stealing, at Sydney, on the 11th February instant, one decanter of the value of fifteen shillings, the property of RICHARD JONES, Esq., M.C. It appeared that the prisoner is wife of an old blind man who is indebted to the bounty of Mrs JONES for a small periodical charitable donation. On the day laid in the indictment, the prisoner went to Mr JONES’s residence at Woolloomoolloo, in order, it would appear, to receive the usual alms for her husband, when, the servants happening to be at dinner, she laid her larcenous fingers on a cut glass decanter, which the butler had been washing out for use, and laid to drain in front of the pantry door. The prisoner was seen hastily proceeding down the avenue of the lawn in front of Mr JONES’s residence, by one of the domestics named ELIZABETH IRELAND, whose suspicions being aroused thereby, she called out to the prisoner to stop; the prisoner did so, and on the witness going up to her, she perceived the decanter lying beside the old woman, which decanter was identified by Mr JONES’s butler, as the one he had just laid before the pantry door to drain. The prisoner, in her defence, merely pleaded that she was drunk, and did not know what she was doing at the time she committed the theft. The Jury found the prisoner guilty, and the Chairman, after commenting in severe terms upon the ingratitude of the act in addition to its criminality, sentenced the prisoner to be worked in the third class of the factory for twelve calendar months, and every fourth week to be placed in solitary confinement.


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