Royal Commission report day 33 page 13

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The Royal Commission evidence for 28/6/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 33)

[[../../people/peH_J/johnstonCPC.html|SConst Charles Johnston]] 'giving evidence'

12525 If the police had been handled in that way at first, they would have been more likely to have come up to the Kellys shall under any other system?— I think if they went with a thorough knowledge of the country, as they should have, and the people, they would have soon run down the Kellys.

12526 Have you been enabled to form any opinion since the capture of the Kellys, and all the information that has come to your knowledge since that, where the gang was likely to be secreted between the 12th November and the bank robbery at Euroa–have you any information or can you form an opinion as to the place?— I could not say myself. I have been informed that they were down in the Broken River , that will be in a line from the Warby Ranges to Euroa.

12527 They were not seen or anything known of them from the information you had when you got to Glenrowan on the 12th November until the time they stuck up the bank at Euroa on the 9th December. They must have been secreted somewhere between those dates. Have you been able to form any idea where they were secreted, residing, living?— No, I cannot form any idea.

12528 Do you think it is probable they were secreted somewhere at the back of the sister's hut at Greta, in the ranges at the back there?— They might be.

12529 Is that a very probable place up there?— It is, between that and the back of Kilfera, and between that and Dedongadale station.

12530 As they were not seen at the time, and no one can give an account of where they were, is there any other place where they were likely to he secreted and obtain the assistance of friends to supply them with the ordinary necessaries of life even for a month?— Yes, on the Broken River and Strathbogie. It was said that Ben Gould was supplying them with provisions.

12531 I want you to consider about this particular time before they hand means, where was the most likely place for them to have been between the Wombat murders and the Euroa affair?— With their friends at the back of their mother's; at the back of Kilfera; and at the back of Wangaratta, the Warby Ranges. Those are all likely places.

12532 In fact, they had friends and relations in different places?— Yes.

12533 If they were secreted at the back of their mother's place at Greta, were they likely to be supplied with the necessaries of life from any other source than from their mother's place?— Yes, the Lloyds and the Quinns. They could have been supplied from those or Mrs. Skillian.

12534 Then, if they were in the Warby ranges, at the back of Wangaratta, who are the probable parties?— The Harts and this Bryan I allude to.

12535 Then the Broken River ?— Rody Maher and others could supply them.

12536 At the time the bank was stuck up at Euroa, were you able to obtain information as to which direction they came from to the bank?— Yes, from the Warby Ranges.

12537 Then, if they had been stationed there all that time after they came from the murders of the police, they would have been supplied with provisions from whom?— From Bryan, or the Harts, or Joe Byrne’s people, or this Maher on the Broken River.

12538 Would it be easy for four men, between the 1st November and the 9th of December, such as the outlaws were, to go unobserved from the back of Mrs. Skillian's place to the place where you say they were likely to be stationed at the back of Wangaratta, and from there to the Broken River?— They could travel it at night.

12539 Either by night or day is it likely they would have been observed if they travelled from one point or the other within that month?— Well, I believe I could travel myself without being observed.

12540 Is there any point now that you wish to bring under the notice of the Commission that we have not mentioned?— I do not remember anything just at present.

12541 Where are you stationed now?— At the Victoria barracks.

12542 You have been removed from Violet Town ?— Yes, I applied to be removed, but they removed me before they had a station to give me.

12543 Then you are simply stopping at the barracks doing barrack duty awaiting some vacancy in some other country district?— Yes.

12544 Do you consider you have been unfairly punished in that?— Yes. I do consider I have been unfairly punished, because I consider they had no right to remove me till they hand a station to give me....

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