Monday, 21 March 2016

Stabbing of a Drinking Partner

A woman who stabbed a man that she had been drinking with earlier was sentenced to ten years in prison after being found guilty of manslaughter.

On the evening of 24th April 1871 Patrick Hogan, a twenty one year old member of the Lancashire Rifles, was in bed at his home in Grosvenor Street when he heard his name shouted. On looking out of the window he saw a woman named Maria McHale talking to his brother Martin, shouting at Patrick to come down as well.

Patrick got dressed and went downstairs to the door and had his collar immediately seized by McHale, who told him that she would not let him go until she had given him what she gave to the last man. Patrick knocked McHale to the ground and kicked her, leading to her quickly running into her own property. Within seconds though she was back in the street with a knife, with which she stabbed Patrick in the heart.

The injured man was taken to the East Dispensary and then transferred to the Northern Hospital. On being arrested for wounding, McHale denied using a knife, but a bloodstained one was found in her house. Enquiries established that earlier in the evening McHale and Patrick had been sat on her step happily drinking together.

Patrick died from his injuries on 31st May and McHale appeared before Baron Martin at the assizes on 10th August, charged with murder. The defence counsel suggested that because of the provocation received a verdict of manslaughter was more appropriate and the jury agreed with this. The judge said that this could not be passed over lightly and sentenced McHale to ten years penal servitude.

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