!! Connaught Journal; Aug 30, 1824 "Assizes - Attack on police at Churchtown"
- THE CONNAUGHT JOURNAL
GALWAY, MONDAY, AUGUST 30, 1824
ATTACK ON THE POLICE AT CHURCHTOWN
Timothy Doolan, Garrett Brown, Wm. Flynn, John M'Auliffe, Edmund Fleming,
John Meenan, John Boland, and John Brown were given in charge for the attack
upon the Police at Churchtown.
William Lumsden examined.
Stated that he commanded the party of Police stationed at Churchtown in the
month of January, 1823. Witness then proceeded to detail the particulars of the
attack, the whole of which are already known to the public; witness did not
identify any of the prisoners.
The prisoner Flynn lived immediately adjoining the Police Barracks. He was
taken up, and soon afterwards ????? but did not abscond. There were, he things,
thirteen or fourteen Policement stationed at Churchtown at that time. Flynn, he
always thought a very industrious man, and a man of good character.
John Walshe (the approver) gave the same account of the occurrences at
Churchtown that he had given on the former trial last Assizes, and in the
leading facts he was the same that Mr Lumsden had given. The prisoner, William
Flynn, whom witness identified, came from Churchtown, and informed the assembled
assailants that that was the time to make an attack on the Police, for that Mr.
Lumsden was dining at Mr. Crofts, and the rest of the Police had got some
whiskey from Innishowen and were drinking. Witness, as before, described the
allotment of business, the appointment of sentinels, pass-words, &c. Witness
identified all the prisoners, and affirmed he was quite positive of their having
been at the attack on the Police.
Mr. Jackson cross-examined this Witness.
Witness was taken under the Insurrection Act; was charged with being
concerned in the attack on Granasheen and on Mr. Heffernan; it swearing here to
save his life; has been a servant to Thomas Connor; was at the attack at
Sallypark, and the destruction of the barracks at Liscarroll; was always ready
to go on any expedition; has been at several farmer's houses; swears that he
never said that he liked to hear the cries of men, women and children; has taken
thirteen oaths, and in breaking one broke the rest; did not tell all to-day that
he told at the last Assizes, the questions not having been put to him; does not
recollect having broke any oath, but the Whiteboy oath; never took that except
three times; never administered more than three or four oaths; has been allowed
ten shillings a week; declares that the party did not send a spy forward to
Churchtown, and he (witness) did not depose to that effect last Assizes; swears
that he left the house of Thomas Connor to go to the attack at five in the
evening, and did not return until morning.
To a question by a Juror - Some of the prisoners were armed; every one of
these prisoners was at the muster of the assailants, previous to the attack.
James Moynehan (another approver) gave testimony to the same effect as
Walshe, and identified Doolan, Garret Brown, and Meenan; has had conversations
with Walshe, the other informer; not this subject.
This witness underwent a long cross-examination, much of which would be
Bryan Carr, a policeman, went over the general outline of the occurrences,
in pretty nearly the same terms as the preceding witnesses. At the last Assizes,
identified a man named Brusnehan, who has since been executed; now identifies
Wm. Flynn as one of the assailants on that occasion.
Cross-examined - Flynn was seven or eight yards from his own house during
the attack; his house was on fire, for it was under the same roof with the
Wm. Crowley, chief constable of police; also went over the same ground as
the other witnesses. Being cross-examined, he gave a good character of William
Dr. M'Fadden was examined as to the wounds and deaths that took place on
Thomas Connors, (reputed uncle to Walshe) - remembers the attack on
Churchtown and deposes that Walshe could not have been there - for he spent the
whole night in witness's house.
Cross-examined - Walshe might have got out without witness's knowledge.
James Flynn - Knows the prisoner, Wm. Flynn, and remembers the attack upon
the barrack; the prisoner and the witness went to bed together and when he house
was broken into, prisoner and witness got under the bed; and when the house took
fire, they made their escape into the street; prisoner supped at home; they had
been working together during the preceding day.
Cross-examined - They got out of the burning house in their shirts, and
went into a neighbour's house.
James Hogan - Knows the three Flynns; they came into his house while the
attack upon the Police was going forward.
Mr. Milward gave a good character of William Flynn; Mr. Crofts was here
last Assizes to give Flynn a character; the Flynns are very decent people.
Cross-examined - Many men of good character have been implicated in the
Mr. G.S. Crofts, also gave a good character of the prisoner; but, in
cross-examination made the same admission that Mr. Millward had done.
Mr. Rogers gave a good character of Fleming, with whom he has had many
Mr. Wrixon also gave a good character of Fleming, and added, that he had a
gun for shooting ducks, which he gave up at the commencement of the disturbance.
The Rev. Daniel O'Brien, Parish Priest of Churchtown, gave a good character
of Flynn and Fleming.
Mr. Robert Freeman likewise spoke favourably of Flynn, as did Mr. Glover,
both of Flynn and Fleming.
The case being closed on both sides his Lordhship proceeded to charge the
Jury, in the course of which he observed, that their verdict must depend upon
the opinion as to the guilt or innocence of Flynn.
The Learned Judge made several other observations, and concluded by
observing they had an important duty to discharge, which he was sure they would
perform with strict impartiality and justice. The Jury retired, and in a few
minutes returned with a verdict of Not Guilty for all the prisoners.
The Court was crowded and appeared gratified at the verdict.
Cathy Joynt Labath
Ireland Old News