HC Deb 03 August 1882 vol 273 cc582-3

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether it is true that Sub-Constable Finney, stationed in the iron but at Derreenavoggy, near Keadue, reported on the night of the 18th of April that he had been fired at by five men on the public road, and that he had returned the fire; whether it did not afterwards appear that this statement was unfounded, and that, instead of being attacked, the sub-constable had waylaid and threatened to shoot five persons; whether on the night in question Sub-Constable Finney had not asked a man named Muldoon to take his (Finney's) revolver, and fire a shot at him; whether, subsequently, be did not stop two men, named Patrick Walsh and John Regan, and, without provocation, present his revolver and threaten to shoot them; whether Messrs. Muldoon, Walsh, and Regan, summoned Sub-Constable Finney before the Keadue Petty Sessions; and, whether, a few days before the trial day, the Crown entered charges against Finney; whether it was suddenly discovered, on the day preceding the trial, that Finney was insane; and why the opinion of the local dispensary doctor was not taken as to alleged insanity of Sub-Constable Finney; whether Finney has since been discharged from the Ballinasloe Lunatic Asylum; and, what steps the Government mean to take in his regard?


I answered the five first Questions now put to me on the 25th ultimo. The hon. Member will see my Answer in The Times of the 26th. With regard to the Question why the local dispensary doctor was not consulted, the Sub-Inspector explains that when he received information that the constable was insane he ordered him into head-quarters in Boyle at once, as he considered it much safer to have him there than in a confined hut. From a Report dated the 31st of July, I learn that the sub-constable, though not then discharged from the asylum, has been pronounced almost convalescent, and is about to be discharged. As regards the further steps to be taken with respect to him, I beg to say that having been placed in a lunatic asylum, legally certified as a dangerous lunatic, he cannot be retained in the Constabulary, and must accordingly be discharged.