Royal Commission report day 18 page 1

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The Royal Commission evidence for 11/5/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 18)


Hon. F. LONGMORE, M.L.A., in the Chair;

E. J. Dixon , Esq., J.P., G. R. Fineham, Esq., M.L.A.

J. H. Graves , Esq., M.L.A., G. W. Hall, Esq., M.L.A.,

J. Gibb, Esq., M.L.A., W. Anderson , Esq., M.L.A.

[[../../people/peD_G/faulkinerAPmc.html|'Constable Alfred John Faulkiner giving evidence']]

The Witness . —I would ask to be allowed to make a few corrections in my evidence as reported in The Age.

The Chairman read the report referred to, and the Commission agreed that the report was not correct in the particulars named.

The Witness . —Through cross-examination, in the first part of my statement I omitted to state two or three different things I would now like to bring under the notice of the Commission.

5293 By the Commission. —Who was it that supplied you with provisions in the cave?— The provisions were sent out from Beechworth to Mrs. Sherritt’s, the old lady's, and we conveyed them from there to the cave.

5294 How?— In a bag, on horseback.

5295 If it was stated that a man named John Sherritt was employed for the purpose of carrying the provisions backwards and forwards, would that be true?— He did occasionally, once or twice.

5296 If he did say he was entrusted with that duty would it be false?— I believe he did come to the cave with provisions.

5297 Did you see him?— I believe I did.

5298 That is young John Sherritt?— Yes. As to the business I spoke of on the 3rd of November 1878 , when we arrived at Benalla, when the special train was waiting to convey the party of police from there to Beechworth: when passing through Wangaratta we were informed that the Kellys had passed through that morning en route to the Warby ranges. This information I believe was given by one of the railway officials to Constable Twomey, who was stationed at Wangaratta. He came to the train to give this information so that the police should remain there instead of going on further. I believe myself, from the facts that afterwards transpired, that had this information been followed up at the time it was given, the Kellys would have been captured about the 7th or 8th of November.

5299 Was that the time that Mr. Brook Smith was out with them?— Yes.

5300 Were you with that party?— No, I was at Wangaratta at the time he came in with the horse belonging to the police.

5301 Do you recollect hearing that a party under Mr. Brook Smith, with Constable Johnson, had followed the Kellys into the Warby ranges, and ran them so close that they found the police pack-horse, that is Sergeant Kennedy's?— Yes.

5302 Did you see that horse?— No.

5303 Did you hear they ran them so close that they had to abandon that pack-horse, and it was recovered and brought into Wangaratta?— Yes.

5304 When was that?— About the 9th or 10th November.

5305 Was it about the time that the Kellys crossed the railway towards the Warby ranges?— That was on the 3rd November.

5306 Can you fix the time of the horse being found?— About the ninth or tenth.

5307 Could they get across the line in that portion without crossing over the line. I mean, below Euroa, the roadways go under culverts in some cases. Could the Kellys get from the Mansfield side to the Warby ranges without crossing over the railway?— No, they could not.

5308 Therefore the probabilities were that they did cross then?— Yes; I believe the river was very high at that time, and they swam their horses through under the bridge, and out on the other side, somewhere close to Wangaratta.

5309 The time you think, if they had been followed up, they might have been captured was about the time the pack-horse was found?— That was about the time.

5310 Have you any knowledge of where they went after they could not cross the Murray ?— No; I believe they remained about that place. We were always under that impression, when searching under Mr. Hare, that they were.

5311 He was not in charge then; you are speaking of the 3rd November, say within a month after that — do you know where the gang were?— I could not say because I was sent to the Upper Murray.....

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