PATRICK CONNOLLY, JOHANNA WILLING, THOMAS MANSELL, KIRBY KIRBY.
16th August 1869
Reference Numbert18690816-777
VerdictGuilty > unknown; Guilty > unknown; Not Guilty > unknown
SentenceImprisonment; Imprisonment

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777. PATRICK CONNOLLY (26), JOHANNA WILLING (37), THOMAS MANSELL (34), and JOHN KIRBY (55), Feloniously assaulting William Beard, and other constables, in the exercise of their duty.

MESSRS. POLAND and BESLEY conducted the Protection; and MR. WILLIS the Defence.

FREDERICK GURLEY (Policeman R R 51). On 22nd July, at 7.30 p.m., I was on duty in High Street, Deptford, and saw thirty or thirty-five persons at the bottom of the street, blocking up the thoroughfare on the pavement, and causing an obstruction—I spoke to Connolly who was there, and told him to move on—he said that he should not—I said that the shop-keepers complained that respectable people could not pass, and begged he would move away—he said, "No, I shall not, not for you; I shall stand here just as long as I like"—I asked him civilly to move again—he said, "No, I shall not, not for a b—like you"—I went into High Street and got the assistance of Beard, we returned together, and Connolly used very bad language—Beard asked him to move away and not make a disturbance there, upon which Connolly struck him a violent blow on the mouth with his fist, and ran twenty yards down King Street—I ran after him and caught him—Beard came up, and Edwards and Walsh—Connolly knocked me down twice, a mob got round, and stones and brickbats were thrown in all directions—I still held Connolly when I was knocked down—I was struck on the arm with a stone, thrown by Kirby—I also received a kick in the ribs—I cannot say who from, but Connolly hit me in the chest—I saw Mansell within four yards of me, throwing stones—I lost my helmet in the tussle with Connolly, he was so violent—I held him a quarter of an hour, and then he got away, and went down Old King Street—Kirby was taken on the Saturday night.

Cross-examined. Q. Was this the first day you had been on duty in Deptford? A. Yes—there was a public-house at the corner of the High Street, but it is shut up now, and at that time—I cannot five you the names of the persons who complained of the obstruction, as I am a stranger there, but the draper and the corn-chandler complained—I did not put my hand on Connolly's shoulder, and I did not see Beard do so—he did not touch Connolly before Connolly touched him—I live at Lee—I have been at Deptford before, but not on duty—Beard did not lay hold of Connolly when he struck him, nor did he draw his staff—a number of people ran after Beard and me, pretty nigh 1000 surrounded me when I had hold of Connolly—he was very violent, I was thrown down three tines—I have seen Kirby before, when I have been in plain clothes—he was about five yards from me when he threw the stone which hit me on the arm—it was pretty nigh half a brick—I should have apprehended him at the time, but the mob was so great that I could not get at him—I stated at Greenwich Court that I saw Mansell throwing stones.

WILLIAM BEARD (Policeman R R 53). I was on duty on 22nd April, and found Connolly in High Street, and a number of people on the pavement—I asked Connolly to go away, and create no disturbance—he struck me on the mouth with his fist, and ran away; but he was taken—stones were then thrown in all directions—constables Welch and Edwards came to our assistance, and while I had hold of Connolly's arm, a man came and struck me a blow on the eye, with a stone in his fist, which rendered me blind for three days—Connolly behaved very roughly—we were in uniform.

Cross-examined. Q. Are you often on duty in High Street? A. No—I do not know that these people are in the habit of standing there of a night—I did not push Connolly to move him on, he was standing quietly on the kerb—I did not put my hand on him—I said, "Go on, do not create a disturbance"—there was no disturbance; but there would have been—I know nothing about the other prisoners—I helped to take Connolly—I held him in King Street—I did not draw my staff, nor did I see Gurley do so, or Welch, or Edwards—the blow on the eye rendered me blind.

MR. POLAND. Q. Was there an expression about two strange b—? A. I heard somebody in the mob use it—that was the first day I was on duty there.

WILLIAM EDWARDS (Policeman R 220). I saw Gurley attempt to take Connolly in King Street; they scuffled and fell, and another man kicked Gurley when he was on the ground—I laid hold of Connolly, and he struck me a violent blow on the right eye, and gave me a black eye—it was discoloured nearly a fortnight—he kicked me several times about the body and legs, and said that he would kick my b—guts out—he put his leg across, and threw me on my back, and I fell, with my back across the kerb stone—he also kicked me on the ribs—he tore his shirt and trowsers while we had hold of him, to prevent us from taking him—only just the bottom of his legs was covered, a great many stones were thrown, one of which knocked off my helmet, and Connolly trod upon it—I was struck several times by stones—Connolly was rescued by the mob—I followed him into Queen's Court, and ultimately got him to the station—Mansell came up to me, and said, "Let him go; you will not take him"—I said, "We will"—Mansell struck me on the jaw with his fist, and knocked me down, and when I was down he kicked me on the side—I saw him throw several stones, some of which struck Welch—Kirby threw several stones, one of which struck me behind the ear, and another struck Gurley—after Connolly was arrested I saw Willing in Queen's Court, and she threw a stone, which hit me on the shoulder, and she was directly taken in custody—Gurley took his staff out; but I told him to put it away, and he did so, and none of us used our staves—no blow was given by any policeman—I am still under the doctor's care—I brought up blood several times, and am suffering from internal injuries—there was nearly half a pint of blood on one occasion—I have not done duty since—I was present when Mansell was taken, on a warrant, some days afterwards—I pointed him out, in a beer-shop in Deptford.

Cross-examined. Q. Did you see a man strike Beard? A. Yes—that man did not strike me—I have seen Mansell every night—I have been on duty there sixteen years—I saw Kirby's hand move, and put my head on one side, and a stone struck me—I was knocked down four or five times—I saw both Munsell and Kirby throw several stones—I did not tear Connolly's dress, nor was it torn in the attempt to take him—ho tore his shirt all to pieces—I saw the woman throw the stone in Queen's Court, which is paved with dirt and gravel—the chief stones were granite, which was being put down in Queen Street—there were a great many granite stones in Queen Court, but I cannot say how they come there; they must have been brought from King Street.

EDWARD WALSH (Policeman R 170). On 22nd July I was in High Street Deptford, in uniform—I saw Connolly strike Gurley and Edwards, and kick

Edwards in the eye—stones were thrown in all directions—I saw Connolly get away, and afterwards saw him taken—I saw him tearing his clothes off in King Street—I had hold of him at that time—100 people or upwards were in the crowd—I saw Mansell there, but did not see him do anything.

Cross-examined. Q. You did not see Kirby or Willing? A. No—Edwards was knocked down two or three times by Connolly—the struggle with Connolly lasted twenty minutes or half an hour, and then he was rescued—four of us were struggling with him, but I did not see Beard at the latter end—I cannot identify anyone who threw stones.

THOMAS WORTH (Policeman R 196). I was called into Queen's Court, and found Connolly there—the constables were trying to take him in custody, and he was kicking and behaving in a very violent manner; his clothes were all in shivering—I saw Willing standing at her door, and saw her throw a stone, which struck Edwards—I took her in custody—other stones were thrown, one of which struck me in the back.

Cross-examined. Q. Were other females standing by Willing? A. No; her door is the first from the court entrance—there is an entrance to the court from King Street—it was full of people, who were crowding up against her door—I passed her door to go to Connolly—the stone was thrown when we were bringing Connolly out of the court—I was holding his arm—the woman was next me, behind me; I looked that way, and saw her throw the stone and hit Edwards on the shoulder.

EDWARD HUGH DOWNING , M.R.C.S. My father is Divisional Surgeon—on 23rd July, Edwards came to the surgery with a bruise on his left side, and a black eye, such as would occur from its being thrown on the kerb stone—spitting of blood from the stomach came on two or three days alter, and he has been unable to attend to his duty since—he is very weak.

Cross-examined. Q. Might the blood have come from his mouth or throat? A. No, it was black blood, which generally comes from the stomach.

Witnesses for the Defence.

BRIDGET HOWARD . I am married, and live in Deptford—on the evening of the 22nd July I was at New King Street, Deptford, with a baby in my arms—I stood by Kirby's side, just by the policeman's shoulder, and the man who struck the policeman made his way out of the people, and just as the policeman got up he got away—Kirby did no more than the baby in my arms—I did not see him throw any stones, he had just come home to his house from his work, and saw the crowd; he said nothing, but stood there—he went straight home before the police left—he works at Mr. Brain's.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Q. What is the name of the man who did the deed? A. I do not know his name, I know him by sight—I saw him knock the constable down—he wore a white jacket, and was a stout man—I have known Connolly ten or eleven years—I saw him there, between two policemen—Kirby lives in New King Street, two or three minutes walk off.

ELIZABETH MANSELL . I live at 18, New King Street, Deptford, and am Mansell's brother's wife—on the night of the 22nd July, when the police attempted to take Connolly, Mansell was standing by but took no part in it—I was looking at the man who knocked the policeman down, it was none of the prisoners—he struck two different men—one man struck the police-man and knocked him down—they had Connolly down and had their knees

or their boots on his stomach—I have been fifteen years in this country and I never saw such treatment before—their staves were out and they knocked him about fearfully—to the best of my opinion they were drunk.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Were all the police drunk? A. Yes—they had all got their staves out, hitting Connolly over the head, and kicking him—I did not see him do anything to them—I did not see a con-stable thrown on the kerb by Connolly, or see him strike or hurt any of them—I might have seen Connolly before, but I should not have known him if I had met him in the street—I do not know where be lived, but I know where his sister lived.

MICHAEL SHEA . I lodge at Willing's house—I heard a noise, and went to the door with Mrs. Willing—when they were coming back, the policemen stepped back and took Mrs. Willing by the shoulders—she had never thrown a stone or done anything else.

Cross-examined. Q. How long did you remain at the door with her? A. Four or five minutes—I have lodged with her two years—I did not go into the crowd—I have known Connolly four or five years—he is not a friend of mine, nor is Mrs. Willing—I do not know where Connolly's sister live—Connolly has not been at Mrs. Willing's to see her—I have not seen him there.

KATE MAHONEY . I live in Queen's Court, opposite Mrs. Willing—on 22nd July, when the mob came, her door was shut; her lodger came and opened it and she came out and folded her arms, and never stooped or turned, and I saw the police pass by a step or two, and drag her by the shoulders—there are no loose stones in the court—she did not throw stones—she had her arms folded till the policeman dragged her by the shoulders.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Q. How far did she go from the door? A. She never moved from it—I saw Michael She come out—he did nothing—she came and stood by his side at the door.

JOHANNA MCCALLAGHAN . I live in Queen's Court—I know Mrs. Willing—I saw the crowd come into the court on 22nd July, and saw Mrs. Willing standing at her door, with her hands like this, and she never picked up a stone—she stood like that till the mob passed out again—if she had thrown a atone I must have seen it.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Q. How long did she stand there? A. A minute or two.

MARY LEARY . I am married, and live at 22, Barnes' Alley, Deptford—on the night of the 22nd July I saw Connolly lying on his back in the road, and the four policemen beating him with their staves—I asked a policeman not to kill him, and he turned round and struck me on the arm—Connolly did not tear his clothes off, the policemen tore them off—the tallest policeman, Welch, is the one who I asked not to kill him—he struck me a slight blow with his staff, on my arm—I saw one man strike the police, but I should not know him again—everybody cried out that he was killed, and this man used him most shamefully.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Q. How long have you known Connolly! A. Almost ever since I have known myself—I am his sister—he lives in the same street that I do—I have known Mansell two years and Kirby twelve years, as neighbours—I have never been examined as a witness before; but I was called at the Police Court in this case—I said but a very few words—Connolly got on his back by the policeman throwing him down.

SAMUEL COLLINS . I live at 3, Queen's Road, Peckham, and am manager

for Mr. Brain, a market gardener—I have known Kirby five years, and never wish to have a more sober, honest, industrious man, and should he be acquitted I will give him work in the morning—on 22nd July I saw him in the grounds at 7.10—he was perfectly sober.

BRIDGET DENNY . I live at 16, Queen Street, Deptford—I was at the bottom of High Street on the night in question, and saw Connolly standing quietly, kicking up no row by insulting anybody: but the policeman shoved him, and hit him on the head, and felled him—he said to the policeman, "I am quiet enough, and not insulting anybody; give us a lucifer, I want to kick up no row in the street"—the policeman took out his staff, and Connolly ran—he had not struck him then—the policeman struck him first, before he drew his staff, and shoved him down, and Connolly said, "Give us a lucifer to light a pipe; I do not want to get cross," and then the policeman floored him, and pulled out his staff to hit him—Connolly was standing on the kerb stone—I saw him standing there about ten minutes before the policeman came up—he was near the corner of High Street—I do not know which of these policemen it was, because I did not notice his number—I was only just across the road—the policeman hit Connolly on the side of the head with his fist, when he asked for a match, and Connolly returned the blow—the policeman then took out his staff to hit him—I told Connolly to run, or he would get killed—he ran away, and four policemen caught him before he got far; but he got away from them, by two of them being drunk—I saw no more, because I had my baby in my arms, and I went home.

Cross-examined by MR. POLAND. Q. Which two were drunk? A. I cannot say—I saw Connolly return one blow, no more—he never kicked a constable, or threw him down—I have known him, for the last five years—I am not related to any of the prisoners.

Connolly here exhibited one of his arms, which was bruised and swollen.

CONNOLLY— GUILTY **— Two Years' Imprisonment.

MANSELL— GUILTY Twelve Months' Imprisonment.

WILLING and KIRBY— NOT GUILTY .


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