HC Deb 17 March 1885 vol 295 cc1434-5

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, If his attention has been called to the case of Mr. Charles Hillman, an alleged lunatic, as reported in The Times of the 24th February; whether his attention has been called to the comments of Mr. Baron Huddleston, in delivering judgment, as follows:— Somebody—who it was we do not know, and everybody repudiates it—somebody sent the policeman and the other man with the blacksmith to the house to break open the door and take him away. Somebody had hired a carriage to take him and two men to go with him. Somebody had caused this to be done without any order, or any previous inquiry, or any personal examination: without any of the conditions prescribed by the statute to authorise the exercise of the jurisdiction, the applicant was put into a carriage and carried away to the asylum; and, whether he can state what action, if any, the Commissioners in Lunacy have taken in the matter. Will the complainant be left to his own resources to vindicate the Law, or will any steps be taken by the authorities to find out and punish the "somebody" to whom the learned Judge referred?


The Secretary of State has called the attention of the Commissioners in Lunacy to this case; and they have reported to him that, after consideration, it appears to them that certain persons have been concerned in the unlawful taking and confinement, as an insane patient, of Mr. Charles Hill-man; but they are of opinion, having before them the certificates of three medical men and the statement of the Medical Superintendent of the Lunatic Asylum for the county of Sussex, that Mr. Charles Hillman was in fact insane, and a proper person to be placed under care and treatment; and finding no evidence of malice or bad faith on the part of any of the persons referred to, they do not consider that a primâ facie case exists for the prosecution of such persons.