HC Deb 23 December 1915 vol 77 cc636-7W

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he can state by whose authority and on what grounds was Constable Daniel O'Driscoll, 39 B, Dublin Metropolitan Police, arrested on the 4th September, 1915, and charged before one of the divisional magistrates of Dublin with being a lunatic, and subsequently committed to the Richmond Lunatic Asylum; by what doctor's orders was the said Constable O'Driscoll examined on behalf of the authorities to ascertain his mental state before he was arrested as a lunatic; what steps, if any, have been taken to inquire into the action of his superior officers, having regard to the fact that Constable O'Driscoll was discharged from the asylum by the direction of one of the inspectors of the Lunacy Department of Dublin Castle as being perfectly sane; why was Constable O'Driscoll reinstated in the police, having regard to the fact stated in the last paragraph; whether and why Superintendent Dunne, of the B Division, used influence to try and get the said Constable O'Driscoll to leave Dublin; and what instructions, if any, did the said Superintendent Dunne give to have the offices of Messrs. Roger Greene and Sons, 11, Wellington Quay, Dublin, the solicitors for the said O'Driscoll, watched?


Constable O'Driscoll was detained in College Green Police Station on the 3rd September, 1915, for having violently assaulted Station-Sergeant Sands and threatened to take his life. The medical officer was at once sent for, and after examination he (Doctor Dallas Pratt) pronounced him to be insane. He was then arrested and formally charged with being a dangerous lunatic upon the authority of the Chief Commissioner, Dublin Metropolitan Police. He was subsequently examined by Doctor Walsh (dispensary doctor) and certified to be a dangerous lunatic and committed by the divisional magistrate to the Richmond Lunatic Asylum. He was discharged from the Dublin Metropolitan Police as medically unfit on the certificate of the principal medical officer to the Dublin Metropolitan Police. He was subsequently released from the asylum, but has not been reinstated in the Dublin Metropolitan Police. After his release from the asylum O'Driscoll repeated his threats against Station-Sergeant Sands. Chief Superintendent Dunne did not use any influence in the matter, and gave no instructions of the nature referred to in the question.


asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he can state the precise arrangement whereby the taxpayers of Dublin city and county residing in the Dublin Metropolitan Police area will be relieved by the new proposal; whether it is intended to have the proposed retrenchment benefit the Imperial Treasury or the local rates; and whether it is deemed advisable to reduce the number of the force, which in ratio to the population is the highest in the three Kingdoms, notwithstanding the absence of serious offences?


I regret that I do not completely understand the first two parts of the hon. Member's question, and so can only reply to them that the extent to which a locality profits from reduction of taxation resulting from reduced Votes of Parliament is proportionate to the burden of taxation on the locality. If the Dublin Metropolitan Police Force is referred to in the last part of the question, the answer is that I do not consider it advisable, in the present state of affairs in Dublin, that there should be any reduction in this force beyond that which has resulted, and may result, from not filling vacancies due to men joining the Colours or leaving the force for other reasons.