Ireland Old News
The Waterford News, 9 July 1852
|It is said that Mr. Greene and Sergeant Shee will be returned [elected] for
the county Kilkenny.
On Monday evening, at the meeting in Broadstreet, Rev Mr Kent announced that Lord Carew had recommended his tenants both in the County and the City of Waterford, to vote for the Liberal Candidates.
In the case of Boyse versus Rossborough, the hearing of which occupied five days in the late Wexford assizes, has terminated with a verdict for the defendant.
Very fine new potatoes are now selling in our market at 1s per stone; inferior ones less; old potatoes at 8d to 9d per stone
We have heard that Mr Christmas would not have entered the political arena on the present occassion, only he thought that Mr Meagher would not have again come forward.
We have been told that bullion is not as plenty in Peter-street at this election, as it used to be in the good old times; we wonder had the potato blight anything to do with this depression?
Mr Charles Gavan Duffy has entered legal proceedings against Alderman Greene of the Wexford press, for an attack on his character; it is only in extreme cases that the press should resort to such means; but still there are times and circumstances in which we hold it to be such a duty.
The barque which was lately stranded in Tramore, has been removed to Waterford river, after sustaining but a little damage.
Mary Greene pleaded guilty to the charge of having set fire to the house of Anthony Power at Cappoquin, on the 30th of March.
Mary Halligan also pleaded guilty to the charge of having abandoned her child at Carrick-on-Suir.
Mary Nugent was indicted on several counts for having concealed the birth of her child, and for throwing its dead body in the river Blackwater, at the bridge of Lismore, on the 10th of April, to all of which she pleaded "Not Guilty."
The following jury was then empannelled:--
On the part of the Crown, Margaret Jones, Mary Doyle, Dr. John Edmond Curry, Johanna Walsh, and Police Constable Murray, were produced as witnesses, but his Lordship considered that the case was not sufficiently made out against the prisoner by strictly legal proof, and consequently instructed the jury to find a verdict of acquital. -- Verdict accordingly.
|COUNTY COURT — Wednesday.|
|Barron [sic] Pennefather having arrived from Wexford, entered this court at 10 o'clock, and proceeded to complete the business not entered upon by Judge Moore.|
|CONSPIRACY TO MURDER.|
|This is the case which was tried at the last Spring Assizes, as against John
Ahearn, who was then found guilty of the crime, and sentenced to death, but
which was afterwards commuted to transportation for life. The indictment runs to
the following effect:--
John Ahearn, Maurice Ahearn, and Patrick Brown stand indicted that they, on the 27th October, in the 15th of the Queen , at Killongford, in the county of Waterford, with malice propense, did conspire to murder James Troy, against the peace and statute. In consequence of the prisoners not agreeing to join in their challenges, John Ahearn was tried at alone at the last Spring Assizes, and the further hearing of the case was postponed till the present time. Mr. George, Q.C., having inquired if the two remaining traversers would now join in their challenge, and being answered in the negative, His Lordship remarked that they had the right of doing so ; but if it should turn out that the Court would be unable to go into the case of the second at this Assizes, he could not, under such circumstances, complain, if detained in prison until the next Commission. His Lordship then requested that they would consider well what they were about to do. The prisoners not being satisfied, Mr. George signified his intention on part of the Crown to proceed with the trial of Maurice Ahearn, who was then placed at the bar.
Mr. Dennehy (Clerk of Crown) commenced empaneling a jury for the purpose. [Those names marked (c) were challenged, and the names to which the numerals are affixed were sworn to try the case.] Nelson T. Foley (1), George L. Keane (c), Philip Kearney (c), Robert Backes (c), John W. Langley (c), B. W. Kielly (2), Alexander Kennedy (3), Edmond Russell (c), Mathew W. Biggs (c), James A. Merrit (c), John R. Steele (c), Stephen Gamble (4), Thomas Smith (c), Hancock Strangman (c), Henry Langly (5), John Wyse Furlong (6), Richard Barker (c), Henry Wilson (7), William Moore (8), John W. Maher (9), George Moore (c), Wm. Budd (c), Thomas Kelly (10), George Kelly (11), John Caulfield (c), Robert Carroll (c), Paul Heney (12).
Mr. George stated the case in a remarkably clear manner, and differing in no material point of view from the manner in which the like duty was performed by Mr. Scott, Q.C., at last Assizes, and with which our readers are acquainted. Richard Roberts, (C.E.,) was the first witness called, who proved the accuracy of the map, which had been prepared by him, of the neighbourhood in which the murder was committed
Thomas Sherlock sworn, and examined by Mr. Pennefather, Q.C.—I reside in Bandon ; I have been acting as agent for Mr. H. Walsh, the owner of the property of Grange, for over 10 years ; I know the prisoner—he held part of those lands, and his yearly rent is about £62—John Ahearn and Patrick Brown were also tenants on those lands ; James Troy was my bailiff on this property ; in the month of June, '52 [sic], the prisoner was indebted to me, and I took his note for the rent then due—I had made an abatement on him previously ; I subsequently ordered proceedings to be taken on that note, and upon those of other of the tenants, including John Ahearn and Patrick Brown ; Mr. Kelly was my Attorney ; the Sessions took place at Dungarvan about the 1st of October, 1851.
Court—What became of those notes?
Witness—I obtained decrees against Maurice Ahearn and others—against Ahearn for £38, 6s. 10d., exclusive of costs ; the decree against Maurice Ahearn was since paid £20—the balance—was paid about a month ago ; the first payment was made upon it about the time the case occurred.
Witness, voluntarily—I must say that up to that time I fancied that Maurice Ahearn was one of the best tenants on the lands.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—I cannot say that the rent was £77 a-year, as I have not my books with me ; the amount of the note was something over the half years rent, I believe ; I thought up to that time that he was a very honest man—I never had any trouble with him.
George Keilly (Solicitor) examined by Mr. Lawson, Q.C.,—I recollect the sessions of Dungarvan, which took place in October '51 ; these are the documents [the I. O. U's.,] on which processes were issued from my office they purport to be witnessed by James Troy ; I recollect the 26th of October—the sessions were going on ; those cases were not called on, on the first day ; I know Maurice Ahearn now ; I cannot say that he had any direct communication with me ; these decrees [handed witness by counsel] were obtained at that sessions ; the handwriting of the late James Troy was proved by another party ; I cannot say that any of the parties against whom those decrees were granted were then present.
Cross-examined by Mr. Curtis—Troy was an attesting witness to the notes ; I knew him as the bailiff of Mr. Sherlock, and believe that he acted generally in that capacity ; I know of his being an attesting witness in other cases—he appeared in court on the proceeding [sic] evening to prove some handwriting—it was a defended case ; I think the defendants name was Hannigan but I do not know any more about him.
To the court—Troy was there on the first day of the sessions, the 27th ; on the 28th the decrees were obtained, that was the day on which his death was proved ; I am not aware of his having to prove against any other tenants on the 26th.
William Hally examined by Mr. George.—I live about an English mile from the lands of Grange ; I know the Ahearn's [sic] and Brown ; I saw Maurice Ahearn at my house on Sunday evening, the 26th of Oct. ; he said that he intended to defend the process against Mr. Sherlock, but I did not hear him say anything then about Troy ; I heard him say at one time that Troy was a blackguard and ought to be kicked [The foregoing evidence was not given by this witness at the former trial]—I was in Dungarvan on the 27th—I had a process against a man named Hannigan ; Troy was there also, as he was a subscribing witness ; he proved my case, which came on about night fall ; the Court broke up about six o'clock ; I believe that my case was second to last ; when we came out, he told me that he was badly off for his supper and a bed ; I went to Keane's house with him for the purpose, and did not stop long there—I settled for his bed and supper ; we went out together, and I brought him to Fitzgerald's to give him half a glass of spirits ; when we were leaving Keane's, I saw John Ahearn, brother of the prisoner, at Keans's door—he was standing I believe inside of the door ; I did not see any person with him then ; he went down the street in the same direction with us ; when we went into Fitzgerald's he stopped outside ; we did not stop but while Troy was drinking the half glass of whiskey ; we then came out and I proceeded with Troy about half way to Keane's house and took leave of him for the night ; Troy went towards Keane's house ; after I took leave of him, John Ahearn went in the same direction ; I went home then, and never saw Troy alive again afterwards ; I knew Patrick Brown, and saw him in Dungarvan that day ; I did not see Maurice Ahearn that day ; I heard that Troy was killed about eleven o'clock on the next day.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—My case was one of the last in the evening ; I had only one witness ; Hannigan had witnesses against me and disputed my claim ; Hannigan was there with his brother and a number of witnesses—I cannot say how many ; Hannigan lives about a mile from Grange, and in the same direction from Dungarvan, but beyond Grange ; Hannigan and his friends would go home the same road with the Ahearns ; I was not a bit astonished at hearing Troy called a blackguard ; I cannot say how long before the murder was committed that I heard that expression used—it might be two months ; no one heard him make use of the expression but myself—it occurred in the entry ; I did not make an entry of what he said then ; I never heard anything of Maurice Ahearn but the best of good character before this occurrence.
Patrick Keane, a lad of about thirteen years of age, was next produced, and examined by Mr. Lynch—I live with my step-mother in Dungarvan ; I knew James Troy and recollect the October Sessions there ; he came to my father's house about 7 or eight o'clock—there was another man named Hally with him ; they went into the kitchen, which is opposite the shop door ; it is separated from the shop by a partition of boards, and there is a square window cut in the boards something larger than the crown of a hat—it is without glass ; a person in the shop could see into the kitchen ; while they were there a man came into the shop, and there was another outside the door ; I would know the man who came into the shop—he was here at the last Assizes ; I heard that his name was Herrn ; he asked my step-mother for milk.
Mr. Meagher objected to let in the observations of John Ahearn. The Court ruled in his favour.
Examination resumed—I saw John Ahearn look in towards the kitchen ; he left the shop shortly after that ; I saw James Troy and Hally leave the kitchen shortly after that, and he went out before them ; Ahearn turned down the street before them.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—I was at the last Assizes ; I was not sure of John Ahearn in Dungarvan ; I got sure of him after I was examined in the Crown Office ; I knew him amongst other men in the jail ; I admitted in Dungarvan that I could not be sure of him there ; I saw him the night that Troy was killed ; I saw him four days after that in jail when he was taken for the murder ; I was brought to see him, and could only swear to the best of my belief ; I was brought by the police to the jail on that occasion. To the Court—I was asked if he was the man, and I said to the best of my belief that he was—I had a full opportunity of seeing him then. [This had reference to his identification at Dungarvan.]
Mr. Meagher resumed the cross-examination, but nothing more of any importance was elicited.
Ellen Keane [step-mother of the last witness] was examined by Mr. Pennefather, and corroborated the direct evidence given by the boy.
Edmond Lynch was next produced, and stated that he was a bailiff on the lands of Grange, and in the habit of assisting James Troy. He also proved to having seen Troy in the square of Dungarvan, and not far distant from the Ahearns, who were there also. [The testimony of this witness was of no importance.]
William O'Brien [examined by Mr. Lawson]—I live at Lockinagrene in this county I knew all the parties ; I live about three or four miles from them, and my sister is married to Brown ; I was at the sessions of Dungarvan on Monday and when the court was over, I went to Mrs. Maurice O'Brien's house to take my lodgings there ; I saw Pat. Brown and his wife, Maurice Ahearn and Jame [sic] Troy and to the best of my belief Troy's daughter with them—two or three of them came in together ; John Ahearn and Maurice's wife and his own wife came in afterwards ; they went into the room and called me with them ; they called for half a pint of whiskey and a shilling's worth of bread, a gallon of porter, and to the best of my belief a pint of whiskey while they were there ; we all sat down together ; I was sober at the time, as I was then and now a teetotaler ; I heard Troy say that he was going to decree the tenants of Grange to-morrow, and if they would take his advice they'd make up £3 17 [the cost of the keepers] between them that he would go home with them and not attend as a witness on the following day ; he also said that after that he would be done with Mr. Sherlocks employ ; there was a sign of liquor on him at the time, but not much ; they said that if he'd go home with them then, they with the other tenants, would make up the money for him as it would be unfair to ask them to pay it all, and when made up they would put it in the hands of one Connolly till after the sessions ; he said he would not go home with them upon that condition, but if they would then make up £3 he would trust to Dennis Flynn to make up the remaining 17s., he also said that it should be lodged with me as I was present ; I refused to take it, but his daughter and himself pressed me to take it ; I did so and I was to keep the money until after the sessions, and if he was to save them from the decrees I was to give the money to him and if not I was to return it to themselves ; when they had finished the drink we all went out together and went over opposite Maurice Duggans house in the square where Maurice Ahearns horse and cart were in the yard ; when the horse and cart were brought out Troy said he would not go home ; his daughter pressed him and after some words I heard her say that wherever he'd stop she would stop with him ; I then went away to my lodgings ; Troy was very drunk but able to walk well ; Maurice Ahearn and Patrick Brown would not be noticed as having drunk anything. John Ahearn had more sign of drink upon him than any of them ; the women were all sober.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—Biddy got a fair share of what was going, I saw her first with a glass of whiskey drinking it ; I don't know whether it was porter or a dandy of punch she drank after ; I saw another glass of whiskey in her hand and she drank a part of it and spilled the remainder of it ; after all there was no sign of drink upon her ; Troy drank like the rest of them ; I saw no attempt made to make him drunk more than any one else ; I saw Brown stop him at one time, take the glass out of his hand, saying that it was not his turn and drank it himself.
Bridget Troy [daughter of deceased] examined by Mr. George—I knew of my father making a distress upon the lands of John Ahearn, about a month before his death ; on the 20th October he left home about four o'clock in the morning ; I left the house about two o'clock the same day ; our pig had been taken by the police the same day ; I went to Dungarvan, which is about eight miles from home, and reached town about half past five in the evening ; I could scarcely see any one at the time, but for the gas which was there ; Maurice Ahearn was with my father when I met him ; I saw him at the Widow O'Brien's house ; when they went in first there was but a part of the company there, but they came in afterwards ; they sat down and called for three half pints of whiskey altogether, three half gallons of beer, and a shilling's worth of bread. [The testimony of this witness coincided exactly with that of Wm. O'Brien, up to the period of his leaving them in the square] We all went towards home then, passing up by the "White Joiner's" ; there is a gate on the side of the road between the "White Joiner's" and the Sluice ; I saw the car at this side of the Sluice with the four men in it ; while my father was walking, before he got into the car, he was between Patrick Brown and Maurice Ahearn, who were supporting him ; I did not see my father get into the car ; the women remained with me ; the men in the car drove on before us, but not very fast nor very easy—the night was dark, and they were soon out of our sight ; Brown had a single horse, which was ridden by his wife ; it was at the Dungarvan side of the Sluice I saw the car for the last time ; Ellen Ahearn and I went on together, and Brown's wife was behind with the horse ; at Roche's forge, in Killongford, we met Pat Brown facing towards Dungarvan—I did not see anyone with him, nor had he a stick with him then. [The witness stated that he had a handstick with him at the public-house.] He said he came back to see what was keeping us ; he waited for his wife who had not come up at the time, and Ellen Ahearn and I went on to the short-cut. [This was described as being a pathway over a hill, to avoid a more lengthy way by the high-road which wound round it.] We sat down at the end of the pathway to remain until Brown and the two women should come up ; we were not sitting there more than three or four minutes till we heard three blows given ; they were in the direction of the high-road as I would go home from where we sat ; I cannot say how far they were from me—they could not be far—they were heavy dead blows, and did not make a sharp noise. [Instead of sharp, the witness used the word bright.] Brown was in the opposite direction at the time, not having come up with the women ; I did not go by the way I heard the blows ; after hearing the blows we went back towards the forge and remained there till Brown and his wife and John Ahearn and his wife came up to us ; we all then proceeded towards home together and went up the short cut ; when Brown came up to us with the women, himself and his wife were riding the horse ; he came a part of the way with us up the path but said that he would not get to go that way with the horse, and that he should take him by another path down in the Glynn—I don't know how he went ; all the women went over the mountain, and Brown overtook us shortly after ; his wife got up with him then and went before us—they were at home when we reached his house ; I stopped at Brown's house that night and slept on a table in the room ; it was very late in the night when we reached there, and I remained but about two hours and got up very early in the morning ; Brown's wife and I went to Maurice Ahearn's house, which is about half a mile from it ; I went in and went up in the room ; Maurice Ahearn's wife was dressing herself, Ahearn himself was in the bed ; his wife said, "Biddy, it was Maurice made the noise last night" ; Maurice was then in the room and heard her say so ; I asked him why he did it and he said he did it to know if it were you were there ; he said that he parted with the car at Killingford short cut, and that it was on before him ; I asked him then where my father was, and he said he supposed that he was with John ; he said that my father and John were in the car then—Mary Brown was in the kitchen when he said that ; I went down to John Ahearn's house then—Brown's wife was with me ; I saw two girls there ; I went to the room door and heard John Ahearn speak—The Court thought that what John Ahearn said was not admissable on the present occasion.
Examination continued—I went to my father's house, where I remained for a short time, and then went to Patrick Brown's ; all the men were there ; I said to them, you are all here now but one, and you have not given me any account of him ; the three women went out and left me—I heard nothing of my father from them ; I went towards Dungarvan shortly afterwards, about the pig that was taken the day before ; it was then I heard of my father's death from the police ; I went to the place about three weeks after that to where I heard the noise, and pointed it out to the police.
Cross-examine by Mr. Meagher—It was at the "White Joiner's" that my father got into the car, not at Hudson's Gate ; I could not say that at the last Assizes that it was at Hudson's Gate, because I knew that it was not ; Brown asked me to get into the car ; I refused to do so, because I did not like to do it and leave the other women or treat them in that way.
Nancy Curran was next examined, and stated that she was a servant at Mrs. O'Brien's in Dungarvan on the night the parties were there. Her testimony was of very little moment.
Patrick Broderick examined by Mr. Pennefather—I live two miles from Grange ; I act occasionally as bailiff I play the fiddle also ; I was acting as keeper on the lands of Grange in Sept. '51 ; I went to Brown's house about the 12th of Oct., and saw his wife on that occasion ; she asked me in Brown's presence did I hear what Troy did now—Mr. Meagher objected to this evidence.
The Court agreed with Mr. Meagher and ruled accordingly.
John Deacon (process server) was next examined as to a certain expression used by John Ahearn in his presence previous to the sessions at Dungarvan. The expression was that a man named Farrell said to him (Ahearn) that the tenants had no spirit or they would go into the house and bring out Troy and make four quarters out of him.
Mr. Meagher objected to the evidence at the commencement but His Lordship ruled against him, remarking that if it should seem objectionable to him when the witness had concluded that he would withdraw it from the jury. Mr. Meagher objected to its being at all heard by the jury and requested his lordship to take a note of the objection which he did.
Doctor W. George Clarke was examined as to the appearance of the body at the inquest.
A few Police constables were also examined, after which Counsel for the Crown intimated that they had closed.
Mr. Meagher submitted to his Lordship that leaving out the evidence of Deacon, which he had stated he would, there was not one scintilla of evidence left to go to the jury. His Lordship thought that there was.
Mr. Curtis then addressed the jury for the defence in a speech of great length, remarkable throughout for its point and ability, and which we regret not having space to insert.
His Lordship at the conclusion of Mr. Curtis's address charged the jury in as impartial a manner as it was possible for man to do. He recapitulated every particle of evidence and explained the law where he thought that they might not fully understand it, as it bore on the case under their consideration. The charge occupied nearly an hour in delivery.
The jury then retired to their room and after the elapse of about ten minutes returned into the court with a verdict of Guilty.
His Lordship then directed the clerk of the crown to ask the prisoner what he had to say why sentence of death and execution should not be passed upon him according to law. Mr. Denehy having done so, it was interpreted to him, and his reply again interpreted to the Court, to the effect, that there were several witnesses in Court not called upon who could prove that he was not near the car. His Lordship remarked that as he had confided his case to Counsel he should now abide the issue. It is of very little use (continued his Lordship) to address him before passing sentence ; but it may be very necessary to state to the country in general how very clearly the case was made out against him. The jury have no doubt whatever of his guilt, and nobody who has attended in Court through the trial but is satisfied that his and John Ahearn's hands were those that deprived that unfortunate man of his life. Nobody could doubt it, and if it had not happened that some circumstances occurred of which I am ignorant, I should have felt it my duty to pronounce sentence of death upon him of which he could not expect any remission. The circumstance to which I allude is the changing of the capital sentence of John Ahearn ; I am not aware of what led to it as the case was not tried before me ; but not being able myself to make any distinction between the guilt of John Ahearn and that of the prisoner at the bar, I shall think it right to let his case be submitted to government for their discretion and give them an opportunity of considering what ought to be done. I shall satisfy myself by directing that sentence of death be recorded against him. He may be brought up to the Queen's Bench and execution awarded, but in my opinion it is not likely that it will take place. It may be changed to transportation for life ; but if it had not been commuted in the case of John Ahearn, I should not have felt myself at liberty to recommend any change of sentence in this. I left it to the jury to find if he was actually guilty of murder and they came to the conclusion that he was so guilty ; and found a verdict accordingly on evidence which appeared to them satisfactory. Let sentence of death be recorded against Maurice Ahearn.
Patrick Brown was ordered to be put forward. He was then informed by his Lordship that time would not permit of his trial being then proceeded with, and that he should therefore remain in custody till the next Assizes.
Counsel for the Crown ; Messrs. George Lynch, Lawson and Pennefather. Agent : Mr. Kemis, Crown Solicitor. Counsel for defence : Messrs. Meagher and Curtis. Agent : Mr. Feehan, Mr. Hassard was in attendance as Counsel for Patrick Brown.
This terminated the business of the Assizes.
Submitted by dja
The Waterford Mail, 10 July 1852
|County Rule of Court
Maurice Ahearne, murder of James Troy, Sentences of death recorded.
|The long panel was called over during which there were several challenges on the part of Maurice Ahearne, who stood at the bar, charged with conspiring, with others, to murder James Troy at Killingford, on the 27th of October, 1851. The following gentlemen were then sworn as a petty jury.|
|The prisoner was then given in charge and the first witness, Richard Robers,
civil engineer, was sworn and examined by Mr. Lynch, Q.C. A map was produced of
the locality of the murder, which he had drawn, and which described several
points connected with it—the fatal spot was upwards of two miles from
Dungarvan. Thomas Sherlock, of Bandon, was sworn and examined by Mr.
Pennefather.—He deposed he had the management of the lands of Grange, near
Dungarvan. The prisoner was one of the tenants on the land. The deceased, James
Troy, was bailiff on the lands. The prisoner owed rent, and witness took
promissory notes from him, Browne, and John Ahearne. He obtained decrees against
Maurice Ahearn [sic] for £38 at Dungarvan October sessions, '51— also
obtained decrees against several other tenants. Thought Maurice Ahearn was an
honest man, and one of the best tenants on the land. On his cross-examination by
Mr. F. Meagher, he said he was connected with the land as agent for ten years.
He never had any trouble with the prisoner, but the reverse. Witness made large
allowances to the prisoners, owing to the pressure of the times. The reductions
were made with the consent of Mr. Edmond Hartigan Walsh, the landlord.
George Kelly, solicitor, sworn and examined by Mr. Lawson. At last October Dungarvan sessions was employed by Mr. Sherlock to issue civil bills against the prisoner and other tenants for rent due on their promissory notes, to which the deceased James Troy was a subscribing witness. Obtained decrees on the civil bills (produced) on the proof of Troy's handwriting by a man named Edward Lynch—Troy's death was proved also to have taken place the day before. Cross-examined by Mr. S. Curtis—Nothing material was elicited. Troy, he said, was examined by a witness against the tenants the day before, the 27th of October, and was to be examined the day after against the other parties.
William Healy examined by Mr. George—knew the Ahearns, Maurice and John, and Brown. He (Brown) is not a relation of the Ahearns to his knowledge; saw the prisoners the Sunday before the sessions, and he said he intended to defend the processes. The prisoner said Troy was a blackguard, and ought to be kicked. He, witness, had a process against one Hannigan, on a promissory note, to which Troy was a subscribing witness, and proved to it. Went with Troy to Keane's lodging house in Dungarvan, and settled for his bed and supper. Went from Keane's to Fitzgerald's public house—saw John Ahearn standing at Keane's door when coming out. John Ahearn followed them down to Fitzgerald's—witness gave Troy half a glass of whiskey, and then walked a few yards with Troy towards Keane's house, and then left him. I never saw him alive after that evening. I saw Pat Brown in Dungarvan that day, but did not see John Ahearn there. The next day Troy was killed.
Cross examined by Mr. Meagher. It was within two months of the process that he heard Maurice Ahearn call Troy a blackguard. Never heard anything against the prisoner, but that he was an honest man.
Patrick Keane (a small boy) examined by Mr. Lynch, Q.C.—Lives in Dungarvan with his father— remembers the October Sessions—saw James Troy in his father's house at that time, about 6 or 7 o'clock in the evening with a man named Healy—they went into the kitchen which is opposite the shop. There is a boarded partition in which there is a window between the shop and the kitchen. A person could see into the kitchen through the window. A man came in, John Ahearne, who was tried last Assizes.—He asked his witness's step mother for some milk. Saw John Ahearn looking through the window, after which he left the shop on seeing Troy and Healy come from the kitchen—he went out before them and passed down the street.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—was examined last Assizes—said he did not well know John Ahearn—saw him in jail, and knew him—saw him in Dungarvan bridewell but was not sure of him. A policeman brought him to the jail to see John Ahearn and then he knew him. To the judge— when I saw John Ahearne in Dungarvan I said to the best of my belief it was him. I was not sure of him then. To Mr. meagher—when the man came into his father's shop was sitting on the settee in the kitchen, and was looking in the hole in the partition to the shop—there was a fire in the kitchen, and a candle in the shop. I never knew John Ahearn before I saw him in the shop.
Ellen Keane stepmother to last witness, was examined by Mr. Pennefather—She keeps a lodging house in Dungarvan and knew James Troy, who came in with Healy to her house about 7 o'clock on the evening of the first day of the sessions—there is a hole in the partition but no glass. When Healy and Troy went into the kitchen a tall man came into the shop and looked into the kitchen through the hole. A second man stood outside, and Healy and Troy went out in a few minutes. The man asked if James Troy was there, and on being told he was, the man looked in through the hole in the partition.
Edmund Lynch was examined by Mr. Pennefather—knew John and Maurice Ahearne and Pat Browne —they were tenants on the land—acted as bailiff with Troy—saw John and Maurice Ahearne and Pat Browne in Dungarvan at Mrs. Keane's house near the square the first day of the sessions—saw Troy in the square and the Ahearnes a little down from him—went to Keane's house, and he and Tom Keane went out to look for Troy—it was then about two hours after dark. Slept at Keane's that night—Troy didn't come to Keane's that night. Deposed to Troy's handwriting to promissory notes next day at the sessions. Cross-examined by Mr. Curtis—witness is a very general attendant at every sessions in Dungarvan.
William O'Brien examined by Mr. Lawson—Lives at Knockinagreena, in this county; knows John and Maurice Ahearne, and Pat Brown—Brown is married to witness' sister. Saw Pat Brown and his wife, Maurice Ahearn and James Troy and Troy's daughter came into Mr. Maurice O'Brien's public house. John Ahearne and his wife and Maurice Ahearne's wife came in after. They called for a half a pint of whiskey, a gallon of porter, and a shilling's worth of bread, and a pint of whiskey after. Troy said he was going to decree the tenants next day, and it was their own fault, for if they would make up £3 17s, the bailiff's fees, he would not decree them. They said they would if he went home with them, in order to get the other tenants to subscribe. They said they would give him £3, which was lodged in witness's hands; remained in the house while they were eating and drinking; went over with Maurice Ahearne for his horse and cart. Troy said he wouldn't go home that night, and his daughter wanted him to go — Troy was very drunk, but able to walk. John Ahearne had more sign of drink than any of them except Troy. The women were sober.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher — Biddy Troy began with a glass of whiskey — she took either a dandy of punch or some beer after — she took another glass of whiskey afterwards, but spilt some of it. Biddy was not the worse of the liquor she drank. Brown and John Ahearne prevented Troy from drinking more whiskey.
Bridget Troy, daughter of the deceased James Troy, was examined by Mr. George — was living with her father last October — he was driver under Mr. Sherlock — On Monday the 27th of October her father left home at 4 o'clock in the morning — witness left home at 2 o'clock that day, for Dungarvan which is eight miles from it. She reached Dungarvan after the gas was lit. She saw near O'Brien's public house, the Ahearnes, Browne, their wives, and her father. They called for three half-pints of whiskey, three half gallons of porter and a shilling's worth of bread. She drank a glass of spirits — Paddy Browne gave her father spirits and she told Browne it was a shame to give it to him, and she poured it into the jug back again. Browne filled it again and gave it to her father. They were speaking about costs and desired William Brien to take the £3, towards the costs and keepers. The Ahearnes wanted her father to go home with them to see if the balance of the costs, seventeen shillings. Saw a dark colored stick in Paddy Browne's hand in the public house. Her father had drank "his nough" (? more than enough.) [sic]
They left O'Brien's and went to Duggan's to get Morris [sic] Ahearne's horse and car. They all, except O'Brien, went to a public house at the "White Joiners". Saw her father, Maurice and John Ahearne, and Pat Browne come up on a car to a place called the sluice. Witness and the women were walking—she said she would not go in the car, and the women said she ought to see her father home. Went on with Ellen Ahearne to Killingford, and saw Paddy Browne returning towards Dungarvan—saw no one with him— he had no stick with him when he was returning. She and Ellen Ahearne were sitting at the "short cut" waiting for the other two women, when she heard three blows, "very deaf blows that made very little noise." when they heard the blows they went to the forge, where Browne and the women joined them. Browne went part of the way with them by the short cut, and had to return as he could not bring the horse that way. Witness and the two Ahearnes wives went to Browne's house that night, and remained there that night— it was very late when they arrived at Browne's house. In the morning went to Maurice Ahearne's house and his wife was dressing. She, the wife, said "Biddy, it was Maurice that made that noise last night." She asked Maurice why he made that noise and he said it was to frighten her—she asked him where was her father, and he said he believed he was at John's (Ahearne) She then went to John Ahearne's house, and saw his wife there —heard John Ahearne speak in the room; went to her father's house with Brown's wife, and then went with her to Brown's house, where she saw the two Ahearnes and Browne, and his wife there. They all went out and left her alone in the house—after Browne's wife again came in she went to Maurice Ahearne's and asked him would he go that day to Dungarvan, he said not, as he had to go to Youghal. She then went to Dungarvan and on her way was told by the police of her father's death.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—She was asked by Browne to get into the car at the White Joiners to mind her father—her father was not in the car. Brown did not ask her to get into the car at Hudson's gate, or at the sluice —she did not get into the car when she saw her father in the car as she did not wish to leave the women who were walking—went next day to Dungarvan to get her father to release a pig of his which was seized the day before by the police—she did not at the time know he was killed.
Nancy Curran, servant at O'Brien's public house, examined—She corroborated the evidence as to the parties drinking in the house and the quantity of liquor drank by them—also as to the party going to Duggan's in the square, for Maurice Ahearne's horse and cart.
Patrick Broderick examined by Mr. Pennefather—Lives at Slievegrine—plays the fiddle, and acted as keeper on the lands of Grange in Sept. '51. Knows Pat Browne—was in his house about the 12th of October he his wife and two children were there. Browne's wife said—[Here Mr. Meagher objected to this line of examination.]
His lordship agreed with the objection, and the witness was desired to stand down.
John Deacon examined by Mr. Larson—Is a process server—went to the lands of Grange in October last to John and Maurice Ahearne and Patrick Browne to serve processes.
The witness was here about to detail a conversation he had with John Ahearne on that occasion, when Mr. Meagher objected to any conversation held with any of the parties previous to the date of the charge of the conspiracy. He read some extracts on the law of conspiracy in support of his arguments and objection.
The Crown Counsel argued on its admissability.
The Judge said as the counsel pressed its admissability he would receive it.
Examination resumed—John Ahearne said the process I served on his daughter was of no use as she was not of age—she was to the best of his knowledge—John Ahearne said if the tenants had any spirit they would bring out Troy and make four quarters of him, as he was a rogue or a ruffian, and that the tenants were making up money to keep him (Troy) at home from giving evidence.
Cross-examined by Mr. Meagher—Heard Mr. Kildahl was to succeed Mr. Sherlock as agent.
Subconstable William Johnson examined by Mr. George—Went to Killongford on the morning of the 28th October, and saw the body of a man at the side of the road that had been murdered—the body was lying partly on the face, within seven perches of the "short cut," near the bend of the road. Found a stick (produced) near the body—also a stone (produced)—on both of which there were marks of blood—the back of his head was broken in—there was blood also about the head.
Constable James Flanagan examined by Mr. Lynch—Arrested Maurice Ahearne on the evening of the day the body was found at the Piltown Cross. Where the prisoners lived is about three miles from Youghal.
Dr. William George Clarke examined the body of a man named James Troy who had been murdered. The bones of the head were broken—there were contused lacerated wounds, and the brain itself was broken.
To the Judge—A fall from a car could not cause such wounds, not even if the wheel of a car went over it.
Constable John Riordan proved to the identity of the body of the murdered man.
The case for the prosecution having closed Mr. Meagher argued that no conspiracy was proved, and consequently there was no case to go to the jury.
His lordship was of opinion there was.
Mr. S. Curtis addressed the jury on the part of the prisoner in a very able manner, contending that there was no conspiracy sustained by the evidence produced on the part of the crown.
There was no evidence produced for the defense.
His lordship then proceeded to charge the jury, and commented on the evidence in one of the most lucid and clear charges we ever heard delivered to a jury—it was also a voluminous one, and not a single particle of evidence given by so many witnesses as were examined, escaped his lordship's observation—and what makes this mnemonical and legal knowledge the more extraordinary is that his lordship never took a single note of the evidence himself, and which was taken by his lordship's secretary, Mr. De Moulins, and to which the learned baron, during his long charge, never had a necessity to recur.
The jury retired, and in a few minutes returned into court, with a verdict of guilty.
His lordship directed that sentence of death be recorded against the prisoner, which is tantamount to transportation for life.
Mr. Hassard, counsel for Patrick Browne, the other prisoner charged as one of the conspirators, and who would not join in his challenges with Maurice Ahearne, applied to the court to have him put on trial.
His lordship said the other jurors had been told their attendance would not be further required, and he could not, under the circumstances, fine them then if they did not answer to their names.
Mr. Hassard having persisted in his application, the county panel was called over by the clerk of the crown, but their [sic] being not a single answer, his lordship directed the prisoner to stand over for trial till next assizes.
—Mary Nugent, for concealing the birth of a child, near Lismore, was acquitted.
—Mary Hallahan was found guilty of a similar offence near Carrickbeg.
The only remaining record, one of ejectment for the tithe, in which Mr. Lynbery was plaintiff, and James Power, defendant, was settled as the jury were about being sworn.
Counsel for plaintiff—Mr. Walsh and Mr. Tandy; agent Mr. R. Smith
Counsel for defendant—Mr. Harris; agent Messrs. Elliott and Newport.
The business of the assizes which was unusually light, having terminated, the Hon. Justice Moore proceeded to Clonmel on Wednesday, and the Hon. Baron Pennefather on Thursday. The commission was opened by Judge Moore in Clonmel, on Friday (yesterday).
Submitted by dja
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