Royal Commission report day 32 page 12

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The Royal Commission evidence for 21/6/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 32)

[[../../people/peA/armstrongHPC.html|Const Henry Armstrong]] 'giving evidence'

12242 Did Mr. O'Connor go about with him?— Yes, he was there at ten o'clock , when I volunteered first to go into the hotel.

12243 You did that?— Yes, the first.

12244 Where was Mr. O'Connor then?— Posted with Mr. Sadleir, on the Wangaratta side, at a tree about 60 yards from the building. He was firing at the hotel.

12245 What did Mr. Sadleir say when you volunteered?— He said, “There is plenty of time, we have all day.” He gave instructions to fire nine feet from the ground, and be very careful, and not injure the prisoners. They came out about half-past nine in the morning.

12246 Did those instructions remain in force after the prisoners came out?— No, I think not. The constables fired any place they thought the outlaws were likely to be.

12247 Is there anything you know with reference to the Glenrowan affair that has not been given to the Commission as you have seen by the evidence?— Well, I cannot say; there is a great deal of contradictory statements as far as I know.

12248 Are there any of those that you think of now that you know are wrong?— No, they were prior to my going there.

12249 There was very little done after nine o'clock ?— Very little, and it is my opinion the outlaws were shot. I was close to the building when a heavy volley was fired, and I heard a great noise as if a heap of iron was thrown down, immediately after the volley. I went and told Mr. Sadleir I thought one of the outlaws was shot.

12250 Did you see the bodies?— Yes. Dwyer and I went in first at the back, after the priest— Father Gibney. I saw two bodies at the right-hand side, but I took no notice of them. I knew Hart but I could not recognize him; they were in the little room to the right of the passage. I took very little notice because of the flames around us.

12251 They were shot together?— Yes.

12252 If Dwyer said they were one in one room and one in another?— I could not corroborate him in that.

12253 What he said was altogether wrong?— I could not say that; he might have seen more than I did. I believe they were both lying together.

12254 Every witness but Dwyer has sworn they were in that right-hand room?— Yes, I do not think Dwyer had much time to see where they were.

12265 It might have been imagination?— I think so.

12256 You and he carried out Byrne?— Yes. I took the armour off; the armour was on Byrne where he lay

12257 On the 8th December 1878 you were then stationed at Wangaratta?— Yes, I believe I was.

12258 Do you remember Wild Wright coming there one night and stopping, at O'Keefe's hotel, at Wangaratta?— I do.

12259 Do you remember he missed two horses and the saddles and bridles?— I do.

12260 Were you sent by Sergeant Steele with Dixon to make enquiry into the loss of those things?— No, I was not.

12261 Did you find out anything in reference to those missing horses after that?— No.

12262 Or the saddles and bridles?— No.

12263 Did you hear anything about them after?— I heard a statement once, three months after.

12264 Do you remember a rumor about that, that the saddles and bridles were afterwards found in the closet on the Agricultural ground?— Yes, I have heard that. I think there was a man in charge of the gardens, and he told Steele about this saddle, and it was identified as one of Wright's saddles.

12265 Do you know, in fact, that those things were found afterwards in this closet?— Nothing but what Steele told me.

12266 Were you at all aware of James Dixon having been sent by Steele to take this horse's saddle and bridle away, in order to bring a charge against Wild Wright?— Oh, by no means.

12267 There is no truth in that?— None whatever; at least, I would be the wrong one to get up a trumped charge against any one. I think that is pretty well known.....

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