Thomas Russell March 27 1786

Murdered with an axe at Cawsand, Mrs John Breese and stabbed with a bayonet John Breese an artillery man.

"... The Judge closed with the sentence of death and anatomization, he extended his arm in a threatening manner towards the evidence for the crown; and on their visiting him immediately after in the goal, in order to return him the bloody clothes which had been detained as proof, he struck one of them violently on the face, as to draw blood. Being reproved for this unbecoming act, he said his spirit was too great, and he could not endure the men whose testimony had produced his death. His behaviour, from his commitment to goal, was very inconsistent; he frequently denied, and as often confessed, his guilt, sometimes saying he killed the man first, at other times the woman. The day before his execution, he said, he regarded his punishment as nothing; and repented not of killing Breese, but was sorry for the poor woman. On the whole, he appeared to have but little religion, or remorse of his crimes; he was chiefly vexed to find the law too strong for him, and was angry with the world, and particularly with his prosecutors, for bringing him to the end he so justly deserved.–He was aged 23 years."

Extract from broadsheet printed by J Brice at the Conduit.