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541 Crime and Outrage {SEPTEMBER 14, 1887} (Ireland). 542
his death in the courageous discharge of | for the past five years had been head
his duty; and whether the Government constable there, and during that time
have any fund at its disposal out of had earned the goodwill and respect,
which adequate compensation could be and even the affection of the most in-
provided? The noble and learned Lord telligent of the inhabitants, as he had
said, his excuse for bringing the matter done in Sligo and other parts of Ire-
forward now was, that if he did not land in which he had been stationed.
avail himself of this opportunity, he He was an active, though not too active
should not have another. He hoped the policeman, and he had always main-
case was one that might be spoken oftained the character of an upright,
free from all Party and factious con- just, and active man, as remarkable
siderations, and he had no desire to for his humanity and his discretion as
say a word that should add to the for his constant efforts to prevent out-
existing excitement.
Above all, he rage.

It appeared that last week it would avoid making any observations was considered advisable to double the which could interfere with the due admi- force protecting Mr. Sexton's house, nistration of justice in Ireland, or preju- and in anticipation of an attack, the dice the persons who were apprehended. County Inspector selected Whelehan The death of Head Constable Whelehan as the most active, discreet, intelligent, ocourred on Sunday night last, the fa- and humane officer available to proceed tality being brought about by a coura- to Lisdoonvarna in order to take the geous effort on the part of that officer necessary steps for protecting the dwellto prevent the perpetrating of two ing-house, and capturing the assailants. felonies, and to protect life and property. He would have thought that the district These felonies were, first, an attack on in which the murder took place-Listhe dwelling-house of a person named doonvarna-would, above any other in Thomas Sexton-and their Lordships Ireland, have been very free from outmight not know, but he would inform rages of this character. Head-Constable them, that under an Act of Parliament Whelehan, in order to prevent bloodshed passed by the Parliament of Ireland, it and to capture the offenders, had made was a felony to attack a dwelling-house an excellent disposition of his forces. He at night. The offence was formerly placed the main body of his force inside punishable with death, but by a modi- Sexton's house, and others at various fication of the law in the Imperial Par- efficient points of vantage, and he himliament, was now only punishable with self with another constable were at the imprisonment or penal servitude, at the posts of danger outside. It appeared discretion of the Judge. The second that while engaged with the leader of felony consisted in the party assailing the band in conflict, somebody assailed the dwelling-house, or attempting to the head constabló from behind, and assail it, intending probably also to with a murderous weapon crushed in commit some grievous personal injury his skull. He would not call the gallant to Mr. Sexton. Indeed, it now ap- man unfortunate, because he had died peared sufficiently plain that the party in the performance of his duty; and, who attacked the dwelling-house were in the circumstances, he thought a armed with deadly weapons, which, if it full, generous, and liberal provision had not been for the activity of the police, should be accorded to those whom he they might have used with deadly effect. left behind. Of course nothing could In preventing this, Whelehan lost his compensate the widow and children for life; and he had heard enough of the loss of husband and father; but Whelehan to be able to say that, if now such pecuniary compensation ought to living, he would say—"I have done my be given as would be some consolation duty, and I have done nothing more. to the widow and would afford encourageThis man had been 22 years in the Con- ment to other members of the force stabulary, and for the past few years by showing them that if they lost their had been stationed at Ennis. Ennis was lives in the performance of duty their a town with which he (Lord Fitzgerald) families would not be forgotten by Gowas a great deal in communication, as ment, by Parliament, and by the it was the borough he had formerly country itself. As far back as the time represented in Parliament. Well, he of Alfred the hundred, or district, was had read and learnt that Whelehan made responsible for crime committed


within its limits, and now, by the Statute themselves. The Constabulary were a Law of England, if an individual lost his brave and loyal body of men, to whom lifein an endeavour to capture a criminal, was due the suppression of the Fenian the Judge who tried the case had power conspiracy. It should be recollected that to award full compensation to bereaved there had been more than one armed relatives; and it was paid by the Sheriff and dangerous Fenian insurrection supand recouped by the Treasury. It pressed by them without bloodshed. rested, therefore, in such cases with the Much had been done of late to make Judge of the Court, who was acquainted them the objects of popular hatred, and with the facts, to award full, complete, popular prejudice, and as he had said and adequate compensation. He re- recently, they had even been accused of gretted that no similar enactment was in being cowards, for the reason that, force in Ireland. There were provisions having duties to perform, they did 80 in the Crimes Act of 1882, which Lord fearlessly and with a complete regard to Spencer so prudently and vigorously that discipline which is so necessary in administered, which might havo met the executive guardians of peace and the circumstances of the case ; but order. He felt it his duty to defend they had not been renewed in the the force from charges of cowardice, measure which had recently passed Par- and would point out some instances of liament-the Act for the Amendment their undoubted bravery in coping with of the Criminal Law in Ireland. Under armed insurrection in Ireland in the the Irish Constabulary Act of 1883, past, during the period of the ViceWhelehan would have £35 a-year, and royalty of the late Duke of Abercorn might rise to £40 a-year; and in case as rich in the examples of the loyalty he lost his life by any calamity over and steadfastness of the Royal Irish which he had no personal control, his Constabulary; but if there were ex. widow would receive an allowance not coptions to this general rule, they were exceeding £10 a-year and £2 58. for only of such a character as to point the each child. Nothing more could be rule, and the general conduct of the force done under that Act; and it was obvious bore comparison with any other similar that in a case of this kind such an allow force in the world. He hoped the Goance was wholly inadequate. Further, vernment would see their way to recog. it was not desirable that compensation nize the heroism of Head Constable should come from private individuals; Whelehan in a manner which would be but it should be given by the Govern- just and generous. ment so as to stamp the conduct of the THE LORD CHANCELLOR (Lord deceased officer with the approval of the HALSBURY) said, he only desired to say Government and the country. The pre- a fow wor for the purpose of remindsont occasion seemed to admit of his ing their Lordships of the powers pos. saying a few words in vindication of the sessed by the authorities, which had Royal Irish Constabulary. They might existed ever since 1682, to give rewards be described as a most intelligent body or indemnities to the relatives of those of and from the best educated of the killed in the discharge of their duty in small farming and labouring classes of endeavouring to put down crime. He the country, who formerly had the affec- thought the first Act under which this tion of their countrymen; but of late power was given was the 4th of William years a somewhat different feeling had and Mary; then the 58th of Geo. III.; prevailed. The Constabulary were sprung and, finally, the 7th of Geo. IV., from the people, and belonged to them; chapter 64, which gave absolute power but the force, on account of its loyalty not to limit any amount of compensation. and discipline, had been traduced and Under this Act he believed compensation calumniated, and much had been done to could be given as far as money could alter and lower the estimation in which be à compensation-in the form of they were formerly held. They had been money to the relatives of any person called cowards, whose only business was who happened to be killed in endeavourto baton women and children. The men ing to apprehend any person guilty of a who made this charge were themselves crime. Among the offences included in cowards inasmuch they placed the list in respect of which compensa. women and children in the front ranks, tion might be given were the crimes of in order to avoid the consequences to murder and housebreaking, and he had


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not the slightest doubt but that the pro- to assemble his men without exciting the visions of the Acts were so wide as to least suspicion in the minds of the cul. amply include the offence of which the prits, and also in the minds of the public. Moonlighters were engaged near Ennis, Whelehan was a brave man, who to which the noble and learned Lord managed his force admirably, and the (Lord Fitzgerald) referred; but, unfor- guilty party were cleverly and gallantly tunately, the Statute did not apply to taken in the very act. He (the Earl of Ireland. It was within his experience Meath) rejoiced at the heroism of Head that this Act was put into force in Eng- Constable Whelehan, and prophesied land. In 1855 a case was tried at the that his important capture would havo Old Bailey by the late Lord Campbell, i the effect of preventing repetitions of in which a Frenchmar Barthelemi, in the Moonlighting outrages; and he strongly Tottenham Court Road, shot a trades. hoped that it would be possible for the man who was trying to arrest him for Government to make some testimonial another murder which he had commit for the gallant manner in which the ted. It was then decided that certain capture had been made. The Royal sums of money should be given to the Irish Constabulary was a body of which widow of the deceased. The question the nation bad good reason to be proud. aroso what should be done in this case. Their Lordships would bear him out In the instance he referred to, the order when he said that neither the constabumade by Lord Campbell called public lary of France, Germany, or the United attention to the case, and induced a States were more lenient in their dealgreat number of persons to contribute ings with the people than the Irish Conto a subscription for the widow and stabulary. Yet these men had been children, who receired a considerable described elsewhere as cowards. Ho sum of money in addition to that given was sure that those who uttered these under Lord Campbell's order. He was words would, in calmer moments, bedesirous that the House should have lieve that it was their duty to withdraw the actual facts before them. He that aspersion upon a noble force which thought it right to lay before their Lord had done its duty to Her Majesty. How ships the law on the subject; but, un- was it that the Constabulary obtained fortunately, he was aware that there their title of “Royal ?" Was it not was no actual fund at the disposal of owing to the fact that a Fenian reHer Majesty's Government out of which bellion was practi'ally put down by compensation could be given in this 12 policemen in what was called the

He was sure that there was no Battle of Tulla ? The world in Member of their Lordships' House who general, at all events, were aware did not admire and appreciate the gal. that this noble body of men did lantry of the deceased Whelehan, or not deserve the name of cowards. who did not heartily agree with the When it was considered that the force noble and learned Lord's touching consisted only of 13,000 men, scattered Fords in which he had given expression throughout Ireland in twos and threes, to the sympathy which was no doubt sometimes without officers, separated in the minds of everyone in consequence even from non-commissioned officers, of the calamity which had overtaken bis he doubted whether, not even excepting widow and family.

the Life Guards, Her Majesty, in the The EARL OF MEATH said, that, as whole of her vast dominions, could find an Irishman, his heart was stirred when a military body which, if placed in such he read of the gallant way in which circumstances, would not lose more or Head Constable Whelehan had lost his less of its discipline and its smartness. life. He would not have lost his life if These men were courteous, civil, and he had chosen to use the firearms with kind to all with whom they came in which he was provided; but he lost it contact; and yet, owing to the unforbecause he did not wish unnecessarily tunate circumstances connected with to shed blood. It was only an Irish- Ireland, which, as an Irishman, he man who could appreciate the difficulties deplored, they had additional difficulties with which the Irish police had to conto contend with. They were Boycotted, tend in the arresting of Moonlighters. they were unable to obtain provisions, In this case, it was the duty of the head and were not allowed to speak to their constable who was in charge of the force neighbours. If it was possible for the VOL. COOXXI. (THIRD SERIES.]



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Government to do anything which ing the danger they incurred; but should show their approval of the way unless they could have the humble in which Constable Whelehan had executor of the laws who would bring acted, he hoped, as he had said before, the criminal into Court where the law it would be done. It would show the was to be administered, their laws, Irish Constabulary that the Government Judges, and juries were all in vain. He, were not careless of the way in whioh therefore, said that it was of the utmost they performed their duties. Cunstable importance to his mind that those to Whelehan had left a widow and five whom this duty was entrusted should children; and though it might not be know that thoy were supported and possible for the Government to reward sympathized with when they discharged them sufficiently, yet they could at least their duty; and when in the course of it show that they were not unmindful of they were injured, and when they were what had been done for the country by barbarously slain, that those whom they making provision for them, thereby left behind should be taken care of and doing what they could to prevent suffer- receive the sympathy and goodwill of ing and loss to the widow and children the public at large. It was in doing in consequence of the husband having his duty that this man was barbarously sacrificed his life in the performance of slain, and he believed that he died with his duty. He supported the request of the sympathy of the public at large. If the noble and learned Lord with great ever there was a body which required pleasure. It was a good thing for that sympathy and goodwill, it was that maintaining the loyalty and honesty of faithful and gallant body of men, the the service that merit should meet with Royal Irish Constabulary. Being memits reward; and in cases of such pro- bers of the same class with whom they minent bravery as that of Head Con- had to deal, the Constabulary were stable Whelehan the reward should be under temptations of a peculiar nature. meted out with no stinting hand. They were subjected to persecution ;

LORD BRAMWELL said, he was and if they discharged their duty, they glad of the way in which the request of were subject to be reviled and traduced his noble and learned Friend (Lord by statements that they were murderers Fitzgerald) had been met by the noble and cowards. The House would reand learned Lord (the Lord Chancellor), member that by their bravery Fenianand not merely for the sake of the un- isin was put down. He was, therefore, happy widow and children, because he glad that there had been this expression was quite certain that private gratitude of goodwill and sympathy on the part would take care that, as far as money of the Government, and, as far as poswas concerned, they should never miss sible, on the part of the House. He the husband and father who had been was glad- not in reference to any par. 80 wickedly slain. He was glad of the ticular case-to have the opportunity of question having been raised, however, stating the law on questions arising because he regarded it as most fitting now, and this was his justification that some indication of the Government for rising to address their Lord:hips. gratitude for the gallant service of Head Supposing a case in which the police Constable Whelehan should be made. were undoubtedly in the wrong-inHe was glad that the case had come terfering and doing things which they before their Lordships' House, because had no right to do. In the presence it was most important that there should of lawyers, who he was sure would not be some exhibition of the sympathy and contradict him, he said it was unlaw. good feeling of the Government towards ful to resist them by beating them, or the deceased and those who survived throwing stones at them, by charging him. It was a most important thing them with horses, or in any other way that that feeling should be generally than by as peaceable and pacific resistshown, and he only wished that there ance as could possibly be shown. But, had been a larger attendance of their further, after the police had left the Lordships. They might have the best scene of disturbance the notion that law it was possible to devise, they they were to be chased and pelted and might have honest and upright Judges, beaten when on the ground was to sup. they might have juries who would pose a condition of the law which was fearlessly do their duty, notwithstand - utterly untrue. In such a case as that

the police had a right to resist with a generous view in this matter. The extreme measures. He was anxious noble and learned Lord has said that no not to be misunderstood in this matter. money compensation can compensate He did not contend that, because a stone the widow and children for their loss. I had been thrown at a policeman, that entirely agree with him, but it still reofficer had

ght to fire his weapon, mains with us to do all we can on their for he had no such right. But if the behalf, not only by showing our sympoliceman's life was imperilled from pathy, but in order to keep them from continued stone-throwing and manifes. want, misery, and penury. There is tations of violence-if he did not know one consolation which the widow can but what his life would be sacrificed, or have—it is that her husband died the lives of his comrades lying disabled bravely in the discharge of his duty, a on the ground-he then said thai there manner of death in which any man may was no doubt the policeman had a right be proud to die. But, beyond that, I to resist the people, even to the extent think that we have a duty to perform to of taking the lives of those committing the Royal Irish Constabulary. It is to the illegality. It was desirable that assure them by our action in this case this should be known, and he challenged of our sympathy, and more than symanyone to deny that it was the law. pathy, of our support, when they act on

THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR behalf of law and order. That is the INDIA (Viscount Cross): My Lords, I duty of the Government. Our action in rise for two purposes - in the first place, this case should be such as to show them to express on behalf of the Government, that they may rely on the support of the as the noble and learned Lord on the Government in the discharge of their Woolsack has already done, the deepest duty-a support which I am afraid has sympathy with the widow and children been sometimes doubted. We know of Constable Whelehan in their affliction; that they do their duty; we know how and in the second, to say that anything they will be persecuted; we know how that can be done by the Government on their conduct will be maligned; we their behalf shall be done. When I saw know how they will be upbraided from the Notice of the noble and learned Lord one end of the country to the other (Lord Fitzgerald) this morning, I put simply because they have done their myself in communication with the Chief duty; and the least we can do is to Secretary for Ireland, and requested assure them of our sympathy and suphim to furnish me with such an answer port in the trying circumstances in as I could give to your Lordships' which they are placed. House whenever the matter should be brought forward. I do not profess to CONSOLIDATED FUND (APPROPRIA. know anything about the Irish Law of

TION) BILL. pensions; but the Chief Secretary, at

(The Viscount Cross.) my request, telegraphed to Dublin with

regard to the matter, and about half-an-
hour before I came down to the House

Bill read 2 (according to Order).
I received the following from the Chief LORD DENMAN said, that Lord
Secretary, with a request that I should Lyndhurst had often reviewed a past
read it to your Lordships :-

Session on the second reading of the "The Irish Executive intend to strongly re

Consolidated Fund (Appropriation) Bill. commend to the Treasury that the widow of He (Lord Denman) ventured to remind Head Constable Whelehan be granted from the the House that the Land Transfer Bill Constabulary Vote a special pension of £40 named in the Queen's Speech had been a-year so long as she remains a widow, and there withdrawn in will be an allowance of £2 10s. a-year to would further remind the House that

another place."

He each child until it attains 15 years of age. In addition to these annual allowances, the clause for dividing the lands of inthe widow will receive in her own behalf and testates, like personalty, was introduced that of the children a lump sum of about £150 by a former Government 16 years ago, from the Constabulary Force Fund."

and never again brought forward. He I think from that it will be seen, and had, since the third reading of the Bill, that your Lordships will consider, that been into France to inquire as to its the Government have, as the noble and working in a fauily of seven, one of learned Lord says they ought to, taken whom told him that, 52 years ago, each


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