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!! Connaught Journal; Aug 9, 1824 "Carlow Assizes"

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  • Cathy Joynt Labath
    THE CONNAUGHT JOURNAL Galway, Monday, August 9, 1824 CARLOW ASSIZES VERY IMPORTANT TRIAL Thomas Kelly was indicted for stealing two pigs the property of James
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 4, 2005
      Galway, Monday, August 9, 1824

      Thomas Kelly was indicted for stealing two pigs the property of James
      Doyle, of Browne's-hill, in the county of Carlow, which two identical pigs the
      said Kelly afterwards sold in Newtownbarry, in the county of Wexford, some
      Saturday in the month of June last.
      Jonathan David Clarke, Esq. stated the case for the Crown with his usual
      eloquence and legal knowledge. -
      He said, that the pigs had been stolen on the day or night laid to the
      indictment, out of a certain house, belonging to the prosecutor! that the said
      two pigs were of a considerable value, and let the Gentlemen of the Jury, who
      were probably all owners of more or less pigs - let them, he would say, put the
      matter to their own feelings as men conversant in the pig-trade, what must be
      the disappointment of the prosecutor when he found that his two excellent pigs
      had been stolen. This practice of pig-stealing had risen in a most alarming
      height, and if not checked in its progress by the corrective of legal
      punishment, there was no saying where it would end- there was no man who could
      calculate on the safety of his pigs for one hour. He hoped and trusted the
      Gentlemen of the Jury would give the subject all the consideration which so
      important a case deserved, and if they clearly saw, by the evidence which should
      be produced before them on the trial, that they clearly saw, by the evidence
      which would be produced before them on the trial, that the charge of stealing
      would be fully brought home to the prisoner at the bar, he must anticipate the
      conviction of the unfortunate pig-stealer. But, if on the other hand, they
      should entertain a rational doubt either of the personal identity of the pigs,
      or of the prisoner's guilt, his Lordship would tell them that the prisoner was
      entitled to the benefit of that doubt, and, consequently, to acquittal. In their
      hands he should confidently leave the case, after he should produce the
      necessary evidence- to Gentlemen of their vigorous minds and enlightened
      understanding he felt that it was unnecessary to say another word on the
      subject, and he should not, therefore, trespass further on their time, or on the
      time of his Lordship.
      After Counsellor Clarke sat down, considerable time was lost in identifying
      pigs. The most accurate description that could be given was, that they were
      Connaught pigs with short tails.
      Mr. Hawthorn, a weaver, was produced as an evidence to identify the pigs -
      he stated that he lived between the Church and the Chapel, and appeared very
      indignant at being called a mongrel by one of the Lawyers. He proved - Quere,
      what did he prove?
      On his cross-examination he said he was a loyal Protestant- and a sodger
      with a good kerecter.
      Isaac B. Bethel, Esq., Barrister at Law, and Mr. Barrett, Attorney, at the
      same calling, volunteered for pure humanity sake, to defend the prisoner.
      Mr. Bethel showed considerable ingenuity, and a very profound knowledge of
      law, in his defence of he pig-stealer. He quoted several Statutes both ancient
      and modern, which made it imperative on the prosecutor to identify the pigs. It
      had been stated, he said, by Learned Counsel on the opposite side, that the pigs
      which had been conveyed from and out of the custody of the prosecutor, were
      Connaught pigs with short tails. Now, with great deference to that Learned
      Gentleman, he, (Mr. Bethel), would confidently assert that cocked tails were,
      time immemorial, a characteristic mark of Connaught pigs - and this he could
      account for by reference to physical causes, were it not that he feared to
      trespass too long in the attention of the Court.
      After the case had been closed, his Lordship delivered an elaborate charge
      to the Jury on the manifold mischiefs which the crime of pig-stealing caused in
      society - and the Jury, after a short consultation, found the prisoner - Guilty.

      Cathy Joynt Labath
      Ireland Old News
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