SUSSEX SMUGGLERS. 133
they were all guilty, as charged in the indictments ; and lamented the case of his wife and children, and said he hoped others would take warning by his untimely end.
The Mills's, as I observed before, seemed no ways concerned; and the young one said he did not value to die, for he was prepared, though at the same time he appeared so very hardened and abandoned.
The halter that was used for the old man was very short, the gallows being high; so that he was obliged to stand a-tiptoe to give room for it to be tied up to the tree : the old fellow saying several times while this was doing, " Don't hang me by inches."
Tapner appeared very sensible of his crime, and prayed aloud, and seemed, as I hope he was, very sincere and devout. He declared that Jackson, Cobby and Stringer held three pistols to his head, and swore they would shoot him if he did not go and assist in the murder of Chater, the old shoemaker, who was going to make an information against their shepherd, Dimer, otherwise Diamond; that they also extorted three guineas from him by the same way of threats, to repay Jackson and Carter what they had been out of pocket on that account. He said they were all guilty of the crimes laid to their charge ; and that one T—ff, well known in Chichester, and Stringer, John Mills* and Richards (all not taken) were as guilty as himself; and as they deserved the same punishment, he hoped they would all be taken, and served the same as he was just going to be. He acknowledged cutting Chater across
* This is the John Mills, since executed and hung in chains on Slindon Common, Sussex, for the murder of Richard Hawkins, find of whom we shall give a particular account.