Alexandra and Yea Standard, Gobur, Thornton and Acheron Express at KellyGang 17/5/1879

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The public mind was again agitated on Monday by what appears to be another unfounded rumor concerning the gang of outlaws who have so long eluded the police. The rumor in the present instance was circulated from Dandenong, and at first it appeared probable that the story was a true one. On Sunday the local policeman at Dandenong learnt that there existed a Kelly scare amongst the farmers in the vicinity of the Scottish Creek about twenty miles from Dandenong, where it was reported that a band of armed men had been seen in the ranges in the State Forest by some splitters. One man Stillard a small farmer and splitter, had positively asserted that he had seen three men on Wednesday last. They were, according to the representation made, all mounted and armed. That story became known as Mr H Wooster, a splitter, who conceived it to be his duty on Sunday to inform the constable at Dandenong, who telegraphed information to Melbourne.

The superintendent of the district, Mr Hare, was on duty in Benalla, and was at once communicated with. He left Benalla by a goods train, and started in a buggy for Dandenong early yesterday morning, he being accompanied by two constables. After a ride of about fifty miles the party found Millard, the splitter, who was ? and very materially modified the first story. He said that on Wednesday last he met a man respectably dressed on the ranges. The man asked him if lie had seen a grey mare, branded J. W. or G. W., and he (Millard) replied in the negative. The man then made some remark about the horse being a valuable one, and about having some mates camped on a hill opposite, and when he was turning to go away Millard noticed that he had two pistols in his belt. Mr Hare showed portraits of the Kelly gang, and Millard then stated that the man he had seen did not' resemble any of the gang. Millard's story was partly corroborated by two other splitters, who said that on Wednesday they met a stranger in the ranges who was inquiring if' they had seen a grey horse, but they did not see any firearms on him.

These men were also shown the portraits of the outlaws, but they were unanimous in the opinion that the man they had seen in the ranges in no way bore a resemblance to any member of the gang. There were no traces of a camp visible In the ranges, and Superintendent Hare arrived at the opinion that the man was not connected with the outlaws; and circumstances connected with his appearance had been greatly exaggerated. He there after returned to Melbourne last night, having driven during the day a distance 40 miles. His return to Melbourne does not appear to be known in the district, ? received the following telegram from our correspondent late last night :-"Inspector Hare and a constable have been to Melbourne? To-day, and it turns out that one ?  his place as reported stating that he was Kelly and spoke of his mother and sister and the he had four mates camped near them but these men were not seen. From the ? -tion given of the man who struck up ? it may be considered certain he ? of the Kelly gang. The police are in pursuit. –Age.


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