The Manawatu Times. SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1878.
Manawatu Times, Rōrahi III, Putanga 55, 20 Paengawhāwhā 1878, Page 2
The Manawatu Times. SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1878.
W"E^ understand tlaa,t Inspector Aitchison;"V-wrlllpay his usuaVoffiqiafcvisit to. Palinerston in the course of a few days, and the, circumstance, ia most • fur tuna te^ as there are several matters which it is necessary should be. ; brought prominently bafore the. der partment he represents. In the first place, we make bold to assert that in no 'other town in the Colony 'is there, such l inadequate provision ;|or the custody of prisoners, or the , l<>dg ineu.t of the officer in charge. ; Wi th regard to the first, there is a ! veatherboa,rd, weather-Jjeaten, and [timerworn h.u.t, oomposßd •of rotten itpt^ra, planks, placed so widely a,part ■ that not only do. they ajimit tne.light ! of daj ■ through the. erevicesj but a I Irnifejorduselcouid : bey easily passed jth rough; To think- of detaining an unwilling occupant would be the .height of presu.uiption, unless one of ' two. cou rses were followed :. either to secure the prisoner to the, ring.; holt in the floor, or for the Constable to keopvcoatuiu^l watch day and night. Not long since, Constable G-iliespie had a lodger whose ex-, ; pjcsrienoe ranged from Mount Eden • t(); the. ordinary country lock-up, and lie assured the. officer, upon his professional honor, that, in his experiqncs of -sixty years, Kg. had found no gaol that was a parallel- to the Palmerston. He' did not v?ant to escape, but lie boasted that i£ he did, with tho. handle: of his bucket tin a prize, ho would guarantee to :j^layo liijtasclf qut«ide iii bujb f^W;
minutes. Beside the two cells, by courtesy. -so-called, there are the officer's quarters, if an apartinont of about ten by ten can be referred to in the plural number. In this den the policeman in charge is supposed' to live and bring up his family, and, we have no doubt, the same apartment is expected to., do duty as the police, office. It is. needless to say that Constable Gillespie has been" compelled to seek else-where that convenience which the Government should have provided, and out of his weekly pay of £2 9s, expend onesixth on house rent. As the ordinary pay of a constable in Wellington is eight shillings per day, it is generally supposed that a removal to country districts, where the rate is a shilling less, must be supplemented by extras in the. shape of a house and grounds, and, we believe, such provision is invariably made. Such being the. case, then, it is manifestly unjust to place the Constable in charge at Palmerston at such a disadvantage. Bu.t putting aside altogether his grievance — and we must say we consider he has a just one-^-the public have a right to demand that steps will be immediately taken in the matter. During the past week; the town has been visited by a gang of rascals, two of whom were placed iu supposed security. The Constable 'was living quarter of a mile away-, and if the confederates oi the imprisoned men had only had the will/they could have let theircomrades free in a few minutes. Had. they done so, the Constable would have been severely censured, and we assert, unjustly. We are advocates in the strongest sense of the term for the police, and all other public officials, executing their duties faithfully and fairly, but we claim tha.t to enable them to do so every facility should be placed in their way. Then, agajn, there is the matter of providing for country duty. T/he Histrict Qoustable,, although supposed tq be a trooper and to pa.trol.the country, is actually allowed no horse wherewith to perform that duty. It is true he is granted £25 per- year for. a horse, that in x whenever he finds that there is actual necessity for* a. journey into the bush, he caji hire from livery an aniinal for the. work. But we ask those whose business compels them to hire horses, how far £25 would extend in' paying for a year'? expenses ? "V^e a.re awar-e that should any special case arise, the Constable has power to. incur extra expenses, and charge it to. the Department ; but, then, he has to give a very minute return of the york so done. To, do, the vyork of th,e District efficiently, the Constable should, at intenvals, patrol th^e extent oi his charge, ajad not, as at present, have to wait until some, outrage or robbery is " committed before visitiug the scene. As long as the present arrangements are in force, such police, supervision, is a farce ; aud holding, the Constable responsible for the security or good order of a district, while withholding the requisite means of carrying it out, manifestly u.njust. We trust, then, that the Inspector* will make such representations as will cause steps, to be -taken for the erection of a proper gaol, w;ith officer's quarters attached. There, is., ample room iri the police paddock, aiid, by the utilisation of the material now ratting a.^xay in theGoyerument stables, no outlay beyond the bare labor would be required.