transcribed by Teena from the Derry Journal

21 Mar. 1849 Omagh Crown Court

Burglary & Larceny

Robert BRICE and Patrick BOYLE for having on the 2nd Feb. last at
Strabane entered the house of Edward FAIR and for having stolen
therefrom a pint of cordial Verdict - Robert BRICE not guilty -
Patrick BOYLE guilty of larceny, not guilty of the burglary

Illegal Marriages

Samuel Galbraith MAHAFFIE <sic> for having on 1st Sept. last at
Craigmonaghan solemnized an illegal marriage between James DUNBAR and
Elizabeth M'DONALD

James DUNBAR examined - Lives in Ballylennon; was in Castlederg fair
on 1st Sept. last; met Elizabeth M'DONALD; knows Nancy FUNSTON who is
aunt of Elizabeth; went to this woman's house with Elizabeth to get
married; identified the prisoner who was lodging at Nancy FUNSTON'S
house; he came into the room; he went to the drawer and took a book
from it; gave the book to witness and swore him that he would never
inform upon him; was then married to Elizabeth McDONALD; she is
Protestant and witness is a Presbyterian; the prisoner read the
service out of a book; could not tell a word of the service; they had
a ring which prisoner put on their fingers; witness and Elizabeth
M'DONALD lived together afterwards as man and wife; gave 6 shillings
to Nancy FUNSTON for the prisoner.
Cross-examined - Did not know whether the book was in English or
Latin; never asked the prisoner for money to go to America, but the
prisoner offered money for that purpose in the presence of other
parties: did not remember saying to James VIRNER that if MAHAFFIE
offered him money he would go America; the prisoner asked witness if
he would take Elizabeth M'DONALD to be his wife; they were afterwards
married in the church of England.
Elizabeth DUNBAR examined - Her maiden name was Elizabeth M'DONALD; is
now the wife of the last witness; Mr. MAHAFFIE took tea with them in
the room, in Nancy FUNSTON's house; he afterwards swore James DUNBAR
not to discover upon him and then married them; was afterwards married
by Mr. EDWARDS, the church clergyman; the ceremony was the same as
that performed by Mr. MEHAFFIE; Mr. MEHAFFIE put the ring on witness’s
finger and James DUNBAR held on the ring; Nancy FUNSTON went out
during the ceremony and came in again; her aunt was talking to Mr.
MEHAFFIE before the ceremony took place; DUNBAR kissed witness when
the ceremony was over.
Cross-examined - Heard that Mr. MEHAFFIE was teaching a classical
school in Castlederg: could not swear what kind of book Mr. MEHAFFIE
took out of the trunk.
Nancy FUNSTON examined  - is aunt of the last witness; the prisoner
lodged with witness at her house in Craigmonaghan for upwards of a
year; was present at a portion of the ceremony in question; they gave
the prisoner 6 shillings for performing the ceremony; what witness
heard of the ceremony was the same as that used in the Church of
England. Constable John ROBINSON examined - Had served a notice Mr.
MEHAFFIE requesting him to produce a license for the marriage in
question.
Mr. M'MAHON solicitor, examined - Made a search in the prerogative
office, Dublin, for the license, but did not find it.
Mr. Edward HEMPHILL- registrar of marriages in Castlederg -deposed
that the house where the ceremony was performed was not registered for
the celebration of marriages.
Rev. Edward EDWARDS deposed that banns had been published for the
marriage in question; married the parties about 2 months afterwards.
Cross-examined - it was not usual for the clergyman celebrating a
marriage to put the ring on the finger of the man; believed Mr.
MEHAFFIE was an educated man and had been a clergyman of the Church of
England; believed that the rubric required the minister to place the
ring on the woman's finger.
Mr. MACKLIN addressed the court and jury for the defense submitting
that the marriage being imperfect in itself; did not come within the
statute which rendered the celebration of marriage, at an illegal time
and place, a felony and transportable offense. He read several
portions from the marriage service authorised by the Church of England
and argued that no evidence had been given of the marriage having been
duly performed according to the prescribed ceremony.
His lordship charged the jury at considerable length and a verdict of
guilty was returned, with a recommendation to mercy. The court said
that the prisoner had been before him on a former occasion and had
then pleaded guilty to a similar offence. He had been, at that time,
discharged, giving security that he would not repeat the crime, and it
would now be the duty of the court to call forward these securities
and forfeit their recognizances.
His lordship having addressed a few observations to the prisoner, as
to the debasing nature of his conduct, directed that he should he
removed.

John BELVINS indicted for having, on 14th Feb. last at Omagh
burglariously entered the house of Patrick TEAGUE and for having
stolen several articles therefrom - acquitted

Michael MILLAR for having on 25th April at Kilcou_r _ (?) assaulted
John LOAN - Guilty To be imprisoned 3 months and kept to hard labour
and afterwards to find security to keep the peace.

John M'QUADE and Andrew M'QUADE for having on the 4th Feb. last at
Caledon, stolen 2 sheep the property of the Earl of Caledon Not guilty

Con O'DONNELL for having 27th Jan. last at Donemana, stolen a horse
value £10 the property of Patrick CANNON  also for having same in his
possession - Guilty To be transported for 10 years

Archibald MOOREHEAD, a boy about 13 years of age, pleaded guilty to
the larceny of a silver watch, at Newtownstewart, the property Robert
HUTCHISON

Adam WILSON for having stolen 4 stones weight of flax at Omagh on 20th
Jan. last, the property of Arthur HAMILTON -
Guilty

James M'CRORY indicted for having on the 19th Feb. last at Aughnacloy
assaulted Patrick MURRAY - Guilty To be fined 6d. and bound to keep
the peace to MURRAY and his family for 7 years; himself in £50 and 2
sureties in £25 each

Margaret WILSON for having on the 20th Jan. last, stolen a quantity of
meal and a sack at Omagh, the goods of Charles CONWAY; also for
receiving same  Guilty - The court sentenced the prisoner and her
husband, Adam WILSON previously convicted of larceny, to 6 months
imprisonment and hard labour

Mary KIRK pleaded guilty to having exposed and deserted her infant
child on 15th Jan. last at Castlecaulfield

Jane M'COURT for having on 6th Feb. at Ballylennon stolen a cow the
property of Aaron M'lNTYRE - Not guilty

John RIPPEY for having 13th Nov. last at Baronscourt stolen a cow the
property of Charles SEMPLE - Guilty to be transported for 10 years
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