Friday, 11 October 2019

Agnes - The Terror of the Neighbourhood

A woman who beat a drunk man to the ground evaded any charges when he died, due to the postmortem drawing inconclusive results.

On Saturday 31st October 1857 William Evans, a 67 year old gunmaker described in the Northern Daily Times as a 'habitual drunkard', was confronted near his lodgings in Crosshall Street by Agnes Gallagher. She demanded he buy her drink or give her 3d. Evans refused and Gallagher knocked him down before continuing to punch him as he lay on the ground.

For the following two days Evans felt unwell and didn't get out of bed, but on the Tuesday he managed to whisky. His health continued to deteriorate and he died at 4pm on Wednesday 4th November. 

The surgeon who carried out the postmortem determined that death was as a result of inflammation of the lungs, but could not say if this down to violence. This led to an open verdict being returned at the inquest, at which the Coroner censured Gallagher for her conduct. The beadle of the court described her as 'the terror of the neighbourhood.'

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