Royal Commission report day 24 page 11
The Royal Commission evidence for 1/6/1881
(see also introduction to day 24)
Const James Dwyer giving evidence
9418 What sort of a whistle was this; did he tell you what sort?— A whistle with his fingers.
9419 Do you think it would be heard from where he was?— Certainly; and it would be heard on the top of the hill, which is further away. I crossed under the gully. I left the trench, and on the other side I saw Constable Milne, and repeated the words Mr. Sadleir had given me, and, while doing so, a bullet whizzed through the trees from the outlaws in the house. I passed on, and met Constable Alexander or Wilson, and I told the same to him. Constable Barry was the third man I met and gave the orders to. He said here in his evidence that he did not see me until I was going round with brandy. He was the third man I met and delivered orders to; and I told him the words Mr. Sadleir had given me, and not to fire low, as the people were lying flat on the ground.
9420 How did you know that?— I heard Mr. Sadleir calling out “All you innocent people throw yourselves flat on the ground, and you will not be shot”–that was Mr. Sadleir's voice.
9421 Were there shots then?— Yes; they were firing from above and below, and the outlaws firing also; and the same time I heard them call upon the civilians to come out, and they would not be molested.
9422 About what hour was that?— About half-past six o'clock .
9424 Where was Kelly?— In the centre, at the Benalla side, in the centre from the gully–that was foot-constable Kelly.
9425 That is the big fat constable in Benalla?— Yes, in Benalla. While delivering these orders the outlaws saw me running, and they expressed, “Knock that b — over.” As I was running delivering the orders from one to the other
9426 Did you run pretty smartly?— I did from one man to the other to avoid the bullets.
9427 Did you hear the whizzing?— Yes, very well, the whizzing about through the trees from the constables. Constables Welsh, Kelly, and Reilly seeing my narrow escapes, called upon me not to run about, I might get shot. If I had any word they would pass it round the line from man to man. They passed on and went to the back of the stockyard outside the fence. Constables Moore and Caussey were at the tree behind this fence.
9428 What time did you arrive there about?— About half-past six o'clock ; it was daylight then. They told me they had taken up good positions, and the outlaws' horses were standing inside the fence.
9429 Did you see them?— Yes, I did; and Constable Moore told me their object was, if the outlaws attempted to come out and make an escape with their armour on to mount the horses, they would shoot the horses and so prevent them.
9430 You knew at half-past six in the morning that the outlaws were there in armour?— Yes, that was the first time, and before that I heard them running round, and they hit their armour with the revolvers, and said, “Fire away, you , you cannot kill, we will put the daylight through you.” I said, “It is a very good idea, and I will tell Mr. Sadleir so.”
9431 To shoot the horses?— Yes, I looked down then, and saw Sergeant Steele, Constable Montford, and others round the north side, down by the railway fence.
9432 Did you speak to Sergeant Steele?— I did not, I saw them. My object was to see so as to tell Mr. Sadleir the house was well surrounded.
9433 You were not going round to tell Mr. Sadleir anything; you said you were going round to convey certain instructions from Mr. Sadleir. What did you say to Sergeant Steele?— I did not speak to him.
9434 To any one near him?— I did not; I saw they had taken up their positions.
9435 Were you not going down to convey orders from Mr. Sadleir to the men?— Yes.
9436 Then how was it you did not convey those orders to the men on the Wangaratta side?— I turned back because some of the men called out, “Bring us up some ammunition.” Some had only five and some only ten rounds. I was talking to Constable Caussey then behind the horses.
9437 Where did you go then?— I turned back the same road as I came, to get the ammunition from Mr. Sadleir, to bring it up to the men.....
Previous page / Next page
|!||The text has been retyped from a microfiche copy of the original.
We have taken care to reproduce this document but areas of the original text may been damaged.
The previous day / next day . . . Royal Commission index