Freeman's Journal

2 October 1856

  Mysterious Death:—On Tuesday, at twelve o'clock, an inquest was held by R BYRNE, Esq, at Thistle House, the residence of Captain CROKER, on the body of Theophilus MORTON, coachman to Captain CROKER, who came by his death under the following circumstances.  Dr BRANKER, who had been attending professionally at Thistle House, deposed that the deceased was directed by his master to have the car ready to convey him to Dundalk.  After a delay of about twenty minutes Captain CROKER and himself walked into the yard, and on pushing in the stabledoor saw him lying on his back and with his feet towards the door, and his head close to a bucket; he was not quite dead; there was blood on the pavement, on examination he found there was a wound on his mouth; his lip was split open; there was another wound on the back of the head.  He was of the opinion that his death was caused by injury to the brain, but how it was inflicted he could not say.  Verdict—" We find that Theophilus MORTON died from injury of the brain, received in the stables at Thistle House, on Monday, 29th September, but how said injury was inflicted there is no evidence to show, and we are of opinion that no blame is attachable to any one."  The presumption is that deceased was kicked by the horse in the the face and that the injury on the back of the head was caused by a second kick while falling, or when already down, or by falling on a stone.

© Nick Reddan 2005

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