It is only in Chapter 7 that Crispin discovers what he has been accused of, as until then after he fled from Aycliffe he has wisely kept away from his village. However, after watching the church from afar and deducing that a "hue and cry" has been raised against him, he hides in a tree as Matthew and Luke, two men from the village, hunt for him and he hears the following piece of information:
And the steward says it was madness over his mother's death that caused the boy to break into the manor house and steal his money.
Crispin is of course shocked and dismayed to hear this accusation, and as he continues to listen, it is clear that the villagers themselves do not believe that Crispin would commit such a daring crime. However, as the plot thickens, and Father Quinel is killed, the charges against Crispin become worse, as Aycliffe, desperate to catch him, accuses him of Quinel's murder as well. So, initially, Aycliffe accuses him of robbery.