Standard December 19th 1893



The 12 men sentenced by Mr Justice DAY on the 22nd ult at the Liverpool Assizes to be flogged for robberies with violence have now received the well, deserved reward of their crime, a reward which sensible people not claiming to rank as humanitarians regard as the only official deterrent with ruffians who in the words of the judge, prefer, instead of working to prowl about committing depredations and making themselves the terror of the neighbourhood in which they live.

One of them a man named Joseph WOODWARD who was convicted of robbery with violence at Prescot, and was sent to gaol for six weeks only received 20 lashes with the cat a few days ago, while the other 11 prisoners were on Saturday morning flogged in a batch. The first of these 11 men was John HENRY, aged 27, sailor, who was found guilty of stealing over 3 pounds from the person of Thomas Robert COULTON in Liverpool on July 1st, and using violence, and was sentenced to two months imprisonment and to be flogged once, receiving 20 lashes with the cat.

Then came John MAHONEY, aged 19, a labourer, who for stealing with violence from Joseph PAR, on October 9th, a purse containing 2 pounds 2 shillings, a cigar case, a pipe and other property, and who pleaded this was his first offence, was sent to gaol for 3 months and ordered to receive 12 lashes of the cat.

A disreputable quartet consisting of Dennis CASSON, aged 19, a labourer, James FLETCHER, aged 18, a labourer Michael CARNEY, aged 18, a hawker, John BOYLE, aged 19, a scaler were all sent to prison for 2 months and ordered to receive 20 lashes of the cat each for robbery with violence on Vauxhall Road on October 19th, when with the assistance of others who were sent to prison and not ordered to be flogged, they stole a watch, chain, hat and 23 shillings.

The next two culprits on the list were both sentenced to be whipped twice, so their most excruciating punishment is yet to come, for before the scars on their backs are well healed they will be subject to further castigation and will be made indeed to see the error of their ways. These are Peter CUNNINGHAM, aged 27, fireman and Nicholas COUGHLIN, aged 26, a labourer, who were found guilty of robbery with violence from Thomas HEYWOOD, at Bootle on November 6th, their booty having consisted of 16 shillings, a knife, a key, a hat, and a tobacco box valued at 5 shillings, the former being sentenced to imprisonment and kept to hard labour for 4 months, and the latter for three months, and both to be twice flogged, receiving 20 lashes on each occasion. In the dock both prisoners wore an evidently assumed air of bravado, and COUGHLIN, as he descended the steps waved his hand laughingly to some friends at the back of the court. Probably on their release from gaol after experiencing the direful effects of the cat o nine tails in the efficacy of which as a crime preventer Mr Justice DAY so firmly believes they will inform their friends that the game for which they suffered is not worth the candle, but it is better to work honestly for a living.

Christopher SWEENEY, aged 18, labourer whose companion in crime Edward ROBERTS was sent to penal servitude for seven years, the cat having in this place been applied without the usual deterring effect, had been sentenced to 12 months imprisonment, and to receive 20 lashes. These were duly administered by the sturdy hands of the not unwilling warders at Walton Gaol on Saturday, and now SWEENEY, who begged so hard for another chance, will have plenty of time to determine upon reformation. He will probably keep away from the street corners in the neighbourhood of Clare Street, where the offence for which he suffered was committed.

The twelfth and last criminal to be flogged was a Spanish sailor named RUYBAL who is undergoing a term of 18 months incarceration for robbery with violence from Albert Theodore PREDOW, from whom he stole a watch and pocket book, and against whom at the trial he made an odious charge, being accordingly dubbed by the judge a pest to society. This scoundrel showed by his howls for mercy that he was as great a coward as one would have imagined him to be. The pity of it is that the companions and fellow cornermen of the recipients of the dreadful dose administered by the direction of the judicial doctor who suppressed the High Rip Gang, in Liverpool were not present at Walton Gaol to see what flogging with the cat really means.


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