Sequel to a St Mary's Gate Row

A row occurred on Saturday last in St Mary's Gate, which culminated in three cases of assault being brought. The first one was that of Stephen Connolly, St Mary's Gate, who was summoned by an old woman, Julia Clancy, for assault, on the 19th inst.

Complainant, who appeared with her face all plastered up, said defendant struck and kicked her, making the marks she bore. It was the second time he had assaulted her. An old woman named Mrs Gregory, and Mary Gormly corroborated.

Defendant said there was a general quarrel which started over some mattresses, in the midst of which he and a man named Gormly had a fight. Defendant denied, however, assaulting the complainant. He called Sarah Davies and several other witnesses to corroborate him.

The bench considered the defendant had committed an unwarrantable and cowardly assault on an old woman. He would be committed for two months hard labour. As to some of the evidence given on behalf of the defendant, the bench did not believe a word of it.

Michael Gormby, St Mary's Place was next summoned for assaulting Annie Connolly on the 19th inst. The complainant said the assault occurred at the same time as the previous case. She was protecting her husband from the defendant, and had a poker in her hand, when defendant took it off her and kicked her twice on the body. A little girl called Annie Dawes said she saw complainant kicked, but could not say where.

Jane Lubbuck and Herbert Shacroft were called to give evidence, after which the defendant pleaded not guilty, and Polly Clancy and Arthur May denied that defendant committed any assault. The bench reserved their decision.

Still another case arising out of the row was brought, Mary Gormby being summoned for assaulting Annie Noakley. Complainant said there was a row, and in order to stop it she threw a bucket of water over all of them. Defendant then struck her in the face with the bucket, cutting her lip. A little girl and complainant's daughter corroborated. The Bench ordered the defendants in the last two cases to bear the costs.

Derbyshire Times and Chesterfield Herald, 26th September 1896

Events background

The 1891 census shows Stephen Connolly's parents-in-law, Thomas and Ann Noakley, lived at 6 St Mary's Place, Chesterfield. Julia Clancy (then aged 62 years) lived at 7 St Mary's Place with her son-in-law Michael Gormaley and daughter Mary. Other newspaper reports hint that this wasn't the first time Stephen had been convicted of assault.

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