James Barry, a labourer, was charged in the violent assault on Mr. Michael Slevin, a surgeon, 41, Drury-lane. Mr. Slevin stated that he was standing at his own door when the prisoner came up and accused him of quarrelling with his wife and beating her, and stated that he was a detective and would not allow that sort of thing. Witness said it was not true. The prisoner struck him a violent blow on the neck, and followed it up with a second blow. Witness then made an effort to defend himself, and struck the prisoner, who with a third blow felled him to the ground. It was not true that he had been quarrelling with his wife; he had never had an angry word with her in his life. Committed to prison for one month, with hard labour.
Manchester (England) Observer, May 12, 1867.
A Scoundrel.-- James Barry, described as a labourer, was charged with the following unprovoked and serious assault on a surgeon. Mr. Michael Slevin, a gentleman apparently near sixty years of age, stated that while standing at his door, in Drury-lane, last night, at eleven o'clock, his wife crossed the road, having just left him, to make a purchase. Almost instantly afterwards, defendant advanced upon, and struck him a violent blow with his fist beneath the right ear. Witness indignantly desired to know the cause of such an outrage, but the only reply was a second blow on the same spot, accompanied by some remark about his (defendant) being a detective. Witness became somewhat alarmed, and by that time perceiving that his assailant was somewhat in liquor, although he well-knew what he was about, he struck at him in return, and endeavoured to keep him off, but the fellow seized and dragged him along. Mrs. Slevin by that time returned across the road, and as she did so a third blow was given, which struck him to the ground, his head coming in contact with some iron railings as he fell. Defendant was quite a stranger to him. Mrs. Slevin spoke to seeing the scoundrel running away from her husband, whom she thought was lying dead. She followed and preferred this charge. Mr. Flowers sentenced him to a month's hard labour.
Lloyds Weekly Newspaper (London, England), May 12, 1867
James Barry, a labourer, living in Abbey-place, Little Coram-street, was charged before the magistrate at Bowstreet, on Saturday, with a violent assault on Mr. Michael Slevin, surgeon, 41, Drury-lane.
Mr. Slevin stated that about half-past seven o'clock he was standing at his own door, his wife, who had gone out for a few minutes, having asked him to wait there for her. The prisoner came up and accused him of quarrelling with his wife and beating her; and stated that he (the prisoner), was a detective, and would not allow that sort of thing. Witness said it was not true, and desired the prisoner to mind his own business. The prisoner struck him a violent blow in the neck, behind the jaw, and under the ear, causing him to reel against the railings, and followed it by a second blow on the other side. Witness then made an effort to defend himself and struck the prisoner, who with a third blow, felled him to the ground. It was not true that he had been quarrelling with his wife. He never had an angry word with her in all his life.
Mrs. Slevin, who witnessed the assault, said she came up as quickly as she could, and found her husband insensible. At first she thought ha was dead. The prisoner was running away.
Police-constable Groves, 83 F, pursued the prisoner, and took him into custody.
The prisoner said he saw the complainant beating his wife, and merely remonstrated with him, when the complainant turned upon him and struck him.
The case was adjourned for the attendance of a witness, a Mrs. Hudson, living close by, who confirmed Mr. Slevin's statement, and said that he was known to live happily with his wife, and that they never quarrelled.
Mr. Flowers said there conld be no doubt of the truth of one part of the prisoner's statement, that the complainant struck him, which, after receiving two such violent blows, he was perfectly justified in doing; except indeed that it was indiscreet and useless to strike a man so much his superior in physical strength, the prisoner being young and vigorous, while the complainant was evidently advanced in years. This aggravated the brutality and cowardice of the assault.
The prisoner said he was very sorry. He was so drunk at the time that he did not know what he was doing.
Mr. Flowers said it would have been more honest if he had said that at first, instead of trying to screen himself by telling a deliberate lie. He was afraid he was dealing with the case more leniently than he ought when he committed him to prison for one calendar month with hard labour.
The Commonwealth (London, England), May 18, 1867.