Royal Commission report day 37 page 6

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The Royal Commission evidence for 20/7/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 37)

Const Robert Alexander giving evidence

13083 By Mr. Nicolson — The Chairman asked you a little ago what you would do under similar circumstances again. Your answer to that was not quite direct. Have you considered, suppose you were placed in the same position, what you could have done that would have been better?— I would act according to the instructions of the man in charge.

13084 You mean to say you would not act with more decision than you did on that occasion–is that what you mean?— No; I mean that I would do as I was instructed by the man in charge of me.

13085 About the Warby Ranges, you were asked about the finding of the horse?— Yes.

13086 There is one occasion you have omitted to speak about, as to which the Chairman wished, I think, an answer from you; it is about the last expedition the party were out on, when Mr. Sadleir and I accompanied you–do you not remember that?— I was not at the time in Sherritt's hut.

13087 No, I mean at the Warby Ranges , when you found the horse?— Yes.

13088 Do you remember the party going out afterwards–about the last party that went out–and Mr. Sadleir and myself were with you?— I remember two parties–your party and Mr. Sadleir's party– meeting in the ranges, and Sergeant Steele was there at the same time.

13089 That was what the Chairman was asking about. Will you relate to the Commission, as far as you can, what occurred?— I remember meeting you on the ranges on that day, and Sergeant Steele took his party over the ranges, and Mr. Sadleir's party came back looking for Steele’s party, but could not find them.

13090 Were you not down following some tracks previously?— Yes, that was with Inspector Brook Smith.

13091 But with Mr. Sadleir and myself, and Steele 's party, previous to that?— I remember following a blazed track; I do not remember what you speak of.

13092 Your recollection seems to be indifferent?— I do not remember. All the tracks I remember were with Mr. Brook Smith .

13093 By the Commission— You never followed those tracks up afterwards?— No; I cannot remember it.

13094 By Mr. Nicolson — Were you not out following tracks that morning, when Mr. Sadleir and myself were with you?— I cannot remember.

13095 There is one important thing about that hut–you say you had suspicions that your presence there was known?— Yes.

13096 What orders were given you when you were placed there about precautions against surprise, and what precautions did you take, especially after you became aware of the danger — did you appoint a guard outside, or anything?— No, there was no guard put outside.

13097 By the Commission— Did you hear whether there were any instructions to have a man, or not have a man outside?— I never heard.

13098 By Detective Ward You remember the night that Mr. Hare and I went down?— Yes.

13099 Sherritt and you and Duross were in the house?— Yes.

13100 You say I spoke in a whispering voice–did I enter the house at all–who met me at the door?— You came inside the sitting-room. It was not I met you at the door; it might have been Duross I am not certain.

13101 By the Commission— You are certain Detective Ward was inside?— I am certain he was inside the sitting-room.

13102 By Detective Ward— How far in did I go?— I remember the position because you shook your hands this way–[illustrating by gesture]–and said, “Say they are gone down to Byrne's.”

13103 What did I say?— You said, “ Mr. Hare is outside, say the others are gone down to Byrne’s.”

13104 Was not I asked something?— You might have spoken to Duross, that is all I heard.

13105 How could you not hear all?— I was in the inside room, in the bedroom; I just came out in time to catch that part of the conversation.

13106 Tell all the conversation you heard?— I had no conversation with you at all, but I heard you say this, and it was as much to me as Duross–it was to both of us.....

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