Death of the Captain of the George

John Gow was involved with the other pirates in the death of the Captain of the George. As Daniel Defoe relates:

All of this..... could not be done withoutsome Noise, the Captain, who was walking alone upon the Quarter Deck, call'd out and ask'd what was the matter? The Boatswain, who, sat on the After Bits, and was not of he Party, answer'd, He could not tell, but was afraid there was some Body Over-Board, upon which the Captain step'd towards the ships side to look over, when Winter, Rowlinson and Melvin, coming that Moment behind him, attempted to throw him Over-board into the Sea; but he being a nimble, strong Man, got hold of the shrouds, and struggled so hard with them that they could not break his Hold; but turning his Head to look behind him to see who he had to deal with, one of them cut his Throat with a broad Dutch knife, but neither was that wound mortal. And the Captain still struggled with them, tho' seeing he should undoubtedly be murther'd, he constantly cried out for Mercy to be Expected from them. During this struggle, another of the Murtherers stab'd him with a Knife in the Back, and that with such Force that the villain could not draw the Knife out again to repeat his Blow, which he would otherwise would have done.

At this moment, Gow came up from the Butchery he had been at between Decks, and seeing the Captain still alive, he went up close to him, and shot him (as he confess'd) with a Brace of Pistols.

"An Account of the Conduct and Proceedings of the Late John Gow....", (1725), Daniel Defoe, p8-9

While Daniel Defoe may have been in the trade of "tabloid journalism" of his day, it is clear that atrocities were carried out.