|MIDDLESEX SESSIONS, Dec. 8.|
| Patrick and Elizabeth M'Coy, Michael
Martin, Owen Bradley, Michael Moran, Fitzgerald, Cornelius Ahern, and Mary
Cunningham, were charged with riot, and assaulting several watchmen of St. Giles's parish in the
execution of their duty.
Mr. Gurney stated that the defendants were eight out of sixteen against whom a
bill had been found for a most serious riot ; the other eight did not choose to appear to take their trials at the
present sessions. The jury were, some of them perhaps, acquainted with what a riot amongst the
lower order of the Irish was. He in the course of his profession had known something of the subject, but
nothing that ever came near the present ; and it was owing to a merciful Providence that the defendants,
instead of standing where they did, were not standing at the bar of the Old Bailey to take their trials on an
indictment for murder. The defendant(s) formed part of the inhabitants of a court called Lacelles-court, in
Broad St. Giles's, which it seemed, was noted as a place of terror to all peaceable persons ; so bad was it,
that even watchmen dreaded to enter it, and whenever a row occurred there, whish [sic] was not
unfrequent, the patrole always mustered as strong a force as they could before they ventured to enter it.
On the night mentioned in the indictment a christening had taken place at one of the houses, a ceremony,
which like funerals amongst this class, was always kept up with great spirit, and frequently ended in mischief.
Such had been the case on this occasion, when, though there had been a plentiful share of spirits, yet the
mischief predominated. The company did not part till twelve o'clock, when some of them determined to visit
a friend who lodged in the court, at the house of a woman named Murphy ; M'Coy and Ahern, accordingly
stopped at Mrs. Murphy's, and knocking at her window, enquired for her lodger., Mrs. Murphy asked what
they wanted at that late hour, when one of them replied, "let the w---e come out, and
we will shew her." Mrs. Murphy's ire being roused by this attack upon her chastity, did open the door, but it
was only to throw a wet cloth in M'Coy's face, who in return broke her windows ; and some of the glass flying
in Mrs.,. Murphy's face, cut her in a dreadful manner. She upon this hailed the watch, and Roberts and the
other three came to her assistance ; and she pointing out M'Coy as the man who had assaulted her, they
were about taking him to the watch-house, when several who stood round, amongst whom were the
defendants, drawing large bludgeons, which they concealed under their coats, attacked the watchmen,
who springing their rattles for further assistance, a dreadful riot ensued, which lasted for an hour. Oram,
a patrole, received a severe cut on the head, and another on his arm. Roberts, also a patrole, was shut
into a room in one of the houses, where he was beaten in a most dreadful manner about the head and
body, and his nose was nearly severed from his face by a blow from a fire-shovel ; the women having taken
an active part in beating him when on the floor, and he was ultimately left for dead ; and after the riot was
quelled, he was found in that situation by some of the watchmen. These circumstances he would prove
and it would then be for the Jury to say whether any or all the defendants were guilty.
These facts were proven in evidence, and the Jury found all the defendants
guilty except Owen Bradley.
| Courier 10 December 1810|