In page 3, to add at the end of Section 3 a new sub-section as follows:—
"(4) Upon the trial, with a jury called from a panel of jurors returned under this Act, of any person for a felony other than murder, treason, or treason felony the court may, if it see fit, at any time before the jury consider their verdict permit the jury to separate in the same way as the jury upon the trial of any person for misdeameanour are now permitted to separate."
The object of this amendment is to avoid the unnecessary locking-up of juries. I may say that it meets with the approval of the judges and of the counsel who conduct prosecutions on behalf of the State. It is felt that the mandatory locking-up of juries where a case lasts from one day to the next should be reduced to the minimum, and that a discretion should be left in the court, except in cases of murder, treason, or treason-felony, to dispense with the locking-up of jurors overnight. It is very often an inconvenience to Dublin jurors that in some case which is really not a grave matter, they should be obliged to spend the night together in the Four Courts Hotel, as happens at present, under the existing condition of the law. My own feeling was rather in favour of allowing this provision to wait over for the more comprehensive Juries Bill which will have to be introduced in the winter or early next year, but I have been assured by the Under-Sheriff of the City of Dublin and by the counsel who generally conduct prosecutions on behalf of the State that it would be a very considerable relief if this provision were inserted in the present Bill. Accordingly I recommend the amendment to the Dáil.