HL Deb 11 May 1837 vol 38 cc795-6
Lord Segrave

said, that in consequence of what had fallen from him, and from the noble Duke on the cross-bench the other night, on the subject of the execution at Gloucester, he understood that the high sheriff supposed that some imputation had been cast on his conduct. But, certainly he could state, that there was no imputation thrown out on the part of the noble Duke, or on his own. He knew the high sheriff very well. He was a most respectable man, and if these indecencies took place at, or rather after, the execution, he was convinced that no man would be more shocked at the circumstance than that gentleman. He believed that the conduct of the executioner was most disgusting. After what occurred on Friday night he wrote to the governor of the county gaol, who, in answer, stated, that the conduct of the executioner was, to say the least of it, marked by great levity, and his impression was, that the man was drunk. If the greatest decorum were not observed On such an occasion, the most brutalizing effects must certainly follow. He had stated his authority for what he had said, and he hoped, that on investigation, other evidence would be adduced to outweigh that which led him to the conclusion at which he had arrived. He feared, however that such would not be the fact.

The Duke of Richmond

had meant to cast no imputation on the sheriff, but he thought it right to call the attention of the Go- vernment to the circumstance. With respect to the recent case of Greenacre, he greatly disapproved of the conduct which was pursued towards that individual. He believed that, on the 27th of April a remonstrance had been made against allowing persons to see him who had not a proper cause. The magistrates of the city of London might at present allow individuals to see persons in that unhappy situation, even though it were contrary to the will of the sheriffs. He thought that a provision should be made to prevent orders being given to visit persons awaiting execution, except they were issued by the Secretary of State or by the sheriffs. Subject dropped.