Royal Commission report day 21 page 9

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The Royal Commission evidence for 17/5/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 21)

Const Barry giving evidence

Mr. Sadleir — I brought a rope from the Benalla railway station on purpose, with that object in view, but when we looked we saw the bullets had made so many holes it was like looking through a lattice-work.

7774.7486 By the Commission— When you heard the order from somebody, whom you cannot tell, as to firing high, did you after that order fire high?— No, I fired into the window I was being fired at from. They were firing at me from that window.

7774.7487 Then, after you received from somebody the order to fire high, you did not fire high, but into the window?— I fired at where they were firing at me from.

7774.7488 Was that order given immediately Mr. Sadleir arrived on the ground?— It was some time after.

7774.7489 But you are positive as to the fact of your being fired at from the house after the order to fire high?— Yes.

7774.7490 Had you any doubt the outlaws were there then?— No.

7774.7491 Could you distinguish who was firing?— I could simply see it was a man. This window was looking out from the back.

7774.7492 Do you know the portion of the house where the bodies of Dan Kelly and Hart were discovered?— Yes.

7774.7493 Was the window you were fired at from in close proximity to that?— Yes.

7774.7494 That is north of the chimney?— Looking out north at the back.

7774.7495 In answer to a question, you said there was no window at that end of the house?— Not at the west end—that window was at the north side.

7774.7496 You recollect the position of the house; there was the front building with a chimney at either end?— Yes.

7774.7497 At the Benalla end, towards the chimney along that side of the line, was there a window in the next house?— Yes.

7774.7498 Was that the window you fired into?— No.

7774.7499 Was there a window at that end in a line with the chimney?— There was a window on the back building at that end, but not in the front.

7774.7500 If there was a window at the back end of the hotel, would not that window command the Benalla end of the hotel?— Yes, certainly it would.

7774.7501 When the first attempt was made by the captives to escape from the house, were any of the people fired on by the police?— Not that I am aware of. They escaped on the end next the platform, the women did.

7774.7502 Did you see any sign by a white handkerchief being put out of the window?— No.

7774.7503 Or by any call an attempt made by the captives to be allowed to escape?— I neither heard a call nor saw any sign that they wished to escape. I heard word passed round to cease firing, there were people that wanted to get out.

7774.7504 And the firing, did it cease entirely?— Yes.

7774.7505 When did you first go to the North-Eastern District?— 18th November 1878 .

7774.7506 Were you one of the cave party?— Yes.

7774.7507 And remained there up to the last day when the whole of that party were removed; the second party, under Mr. Nicolson; the one that left on the 2nd of April—Mr. Nicolson's?— I was not there to the finish.

7774.7508 What day did you leave the cave party?— I do not know exactly.

7774.7509 About what time?— I remained in Beechworth until it was wound up; other men took my place.

7774.7510 You stated that the Sherritt family consisted of three sons and four daughters?— Yes.

7774.7511 And the father and mother?— Yes.

7774.7512 How long before you left the cave party did you know that the Sherritt party consisted of so many?— From hearsay before.....

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