The Argus (26)

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Hugh Bracken, constable, stationed at Glenrowan, deposed, - I was made a prisoner by the Kelly gang on Sunday night last at half past 10 o'clock. I know the deceased. He was a repairer on the railway line. He was also made a prisoner. He was at Mrs Jones's hotel when I arrived, and was with the others. He was all right about 1 o'clock on Monday morning. I made my escape after 2 o'clock am. I saw the police approach the house within three minutes after my escape. I had given them notice that the Kellys were in the hotel. They were fired on from the hotel. The police returned the fire, and continued the attack till it was all over. I next saw the deceased when he was taken out of the building. He was then alive. He was taken out of the hut at the back of the hotel. The fire had not reached that place. Deceased was not affected by the fire. He died shortly afterwards. The hut he was taken from still stands unburnt.

Thomas Dixon, bootmaker, residing at Beanalla, deposed,- I have seen the body of Martin Cherry and identify him. I was present at the burning of the house. I went to the hut as soon as the priest came out. I heard there was a man wounded in the hut. With others I helped to bring him out. I said, 'Martin, how are you?' He said, 'Oh,you know me.' When we were bringing him out, he said 'Oh, don't hurt me.' I searched further, and on coming out found deceased dying. I went for a glergyman for him. I believe he has money in the bank. His bank book was said to be found in his house. His sister said he had promised to send her money next month.

William Phillip deposed,- I am a constable stationed at Benalla. I searched the pockets of deceased and found a £1 notes besides a paper and a small purse.

John Sadleir, superintendent of police, stationed at Benalla, deposed,- I had charge of the attacking party of police on Monday morning at Glenrowan. The firing continued at intervals both from the hotel and by the police. It was not until the captives had made their escape from the hotel that I was made aware that deceased was lying wounded in the back kitchen. I then endeavoured to avoid firing into this kitchen. In firing the main building it was arranged that deceased was to be rescued before the fire could reach him. I rushed up to the kitchen myself first. Saw Dixon and others lift out the body of deceased, who was then alive. He died in a few minutes.

The verdict given by the presiding magistrate was that 'Having heard the evidence given here with touching the death of the deceased Martin Cherry, and having carefully considered the same, I find his death was caused by a gunshot wound, received during the time he was a prisoner of the Kelly gang in Jones's Hotel, Glenrowan, on Monday last, and that no blame can be attached either to any member of the police force or to any civilians who were then firing at the Kelly gang and Jones's hotel and kitchen.'


(From Our Own Reporter)

Beechworth, Wednesday

The inquiry upon the body of Aaron Sherritt was continued at the local police court this morning, before a jury of twelve. Mr Foster, PM, conducted the inquiry. The evidence given on the previous day having been read over to the jury, the examination of Mrs Ellen Barry proceeded with. She deposed as follows:- Byrne used to keep me between himself and the door during the time I was outside the house speaking to him. There was only the door at the back of the house, no window. The persons occupying the back room could not have fired on Byrne through the back door during the time he was there.

To Mr Foster.- Two shots were fired at the house, I am sure. There were other shots fired in the front of the other, I do not know by whom. No shots were fired at the police. Constable Duross, when the knock came, as I said before, went into the bedroom to the three other constables. His object was to conceal himself in order that any one coming into the hut might not know the police were there. I cannot exactly fix the time which elapsed between the time I saw Byrne and was joined by Dan Kelly. Deceased was pointing out a sapling to Weeks. It was more 'for a lark.' That he pointed out the sapling, not to show Weeks his way. I have no reason to suppose that there were more than Byrne and Dan Kelly there. The doors were open some time. After Byrne fired at the side of the house he told me to go and see if any of the boards were knocked off. I went and looked at the boards, and I found they were all right, and I went and told Byrne so. I was talking to Byrne for about 10 minutes. He was talking about his mother and other things. He walked me back to the house by the arm. Weeks was with us. Dan at this time was gathering bushes to set fire to the house. Dan said he was going to fire it. He asked me if there was any kerosene in the house. I said 'No' He said, 'What is burning on the table, then?' I said 'A candle.' I cannot say whether he set fire to the bushes or attempted to do so, with matches. I only saw him going round the house picking them up. Weeks was standing close to me nearly all the time. Joe said, 'We will burn the place.' I said, 'Don't for God's sake, do that, or the girl will be burnt too.' He said, 'You go in and bring her out.' I said, 'If I go in I shan't be let out again perhaps.' He said, 'We will see about that.' I said, 'Well, don't burn the house whatever you do.' I then went into the house, and remained inside. I heard the dog barking during the night, and a noise of some kind, but I could not say what it was. To the Jury.- I remained there all that night. The police went away in the morning. Some of the men went out of the bedroom into the front room during the night. I do not know whether they went outside. I was lying down. I thought the outlaws were outside and would fire into the house. My daughter was under the bed. Both Byrne and Dan Kelly had ordinary hats on. Their faces could be seen clearly. The police could not see Byrne through the calico partition. You could not see him from inside the house, but he had a good view as the place was lighted by the fire and candle.


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