§ Mr. GINNELL
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether Constable John J. Rennick, convicted of manslaughter last year, is still in the Irish Police Force; if so, where and in what rank; if he is aware that Rennick when guarding the Suck Bridge, near Ballinasloe, was accustomed to amuse himself by frightening people with his rifle; if he has read the evidence that in August, 1915, Rennick threatened to shoot the eye out of the head of a boy named Patrick Johnston, and thereupon shot the boy dead through the eye; why Rennick was allowed to canvass publicans, whose trade renders them dependent on the police, and succeeded in having seven of them on the coroner's jury; why in these circumstances a second inquest was not ordered; whether he is aware that the police promised to raise a compensation fund for the boy's father if the case was not pressed; and, no such fund having been raised, whether the boy's father will be compensated out of public funds for the loss of his eldest son?
§ Mr. DUKE
Constable Rennick shot the boy named by the careless handling of his carbine. He was convicted on a charge of manslaughter at the last Winter Assizes, but discharged on his own recognisances. He is at present stationed at Tore Protection Post, Mullingar, county Westmeath, and holds the rank of constable. Except as I have stated, I am told there are no grounds for the allegations made in the question, or for the statement that the 921W police promised to raise a fund for the boy's father. It is not a case in which compensation can be provided out of public funds.
§ Mr. P. O'BRIEN
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether there is any provision made for the men of the Royal Irish Constabulary who have married without leave and are deprived of their lodging allowance, and are compelled to pay 4s. 4d. per month towards barrack rent or for barrack accommodation, even though they live out of barracks; whether they are also deprived of separation allowance, or pension, or gratuity for widow or children; whether, since the Constabulary Act of 1914, the late Inspector-General issued a circular promising such men their lodging allowance at ten years' service; is he aware that if a man has married at three years' service he is fined at the rate of £7 16s. a year until he has completed ten years, and that then he may be recognised as a married man, and if he may not it will depend on the recommendations of his officers; and whether he will remedy those grievances?
§ Mr. DUKE
The facts are as stated. The present concession by which the Inspector-General is authorised to sanction, if he sees fit, the registration, after ten years' service, of the marriage of a member of the force contracted without leave, was granted in 1914 with the approval of the Government. Permission to marry cannot be given until after seven years' service, and as marriage without such permission is a breach of the conditions of service, I cannot hold out any expectation of any relaxation of the rules beyond that which has been made by the Inspector-General.
§ Mr. GINNELL
asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he has yet made himself acquainted with the records of Sergeant Sheridan and other typical Irish policemen in order to estimate the amount of credence due to their reports; if so, why he refused an investigation of the vain attempt of the police to create a disturbance at Limerick railway station on 30th September last, which attempt respectable citizens of Limerick are prepared to prove; why he has refused an inquiry into the misconduct of the police at Killaloe, reported to him, and which the most respectable residents there are prepared to prove; and, seeing that an inquiry would vindicate the police if inno- 922W cent, what result does he expect from refusing inquiry at the instance of the accused?