Tipperary Man Wrongfully Executed in 1841 To Be Reinterred in His Native County

Holycross Abbey where Harry Gleeson is due to be reinterred

The remains of Harry Gleeson are to be reinterred in his native county of Tipperary eighty-three years after his death.   

Harry Gleeson was working on his uncle’s farm in New Inn when he came across the body of Mary ‘Moll’ McCarthy in one of the fields. Gleeson was charged, tried and convicted of the murder of Mary McCarthy. Throughout his trial and up until his sentence Gleeson always maintained his plea of innocence. Despite this he was convicted of the murder and sentenced to death by hanging. He was executed in 1941 in Mountjoy Prison.  

In 2015 work completed by the Irish Innocence Project and the Justice for Harry Gleeson Group resulted in the posthumous pardon of Harry Gleeson. Evidence they had uncovered was submitted and a review of the case was ordered. The review found that there was a significant level of uncertainty surrounding the victim’s time of death. The prosecution at the time of Mr. Gleeson’s trial declared that Mary McCarthy was murdered on the 20th of November, however upon revisiting autopsy records it was found that it was more likely that she was in fact murdered the following day on the 21st. Mr. Gleeson had provided a verified alibi for the 21st of November. This evidence meant that Harry Gleeson’s guilt could not have been accurately determined.  

Last week following a long campaign the remains of Mr. Gleeson were positively identified and prepared to be reinterred in his home county 

Funeral Mass for Harry Gleeson will be held in Holycross Abbey at 2pm on Sunday July 7th and will be followed by burial in St Mary’s Cemetery Holycross.  


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