Royal Commission report day 26 page 3

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The Royal Commission evidence for 7/6/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 26)

Mr Carrington giving evidence

10044 Was he nearest to Ned Kelly at that time?— Yes, he seemed to be the nearest.

10045 You understand now that other figure was Ned Kelly?— Yes, the one in the hat.

10046 Did you consider that Dowsett nearest to him?— I think he was a little nearer than the others. They were all well sheltered, they were all behind fallen timber piled up—trees that kind fallen. In fact, we were the most exposed; we were standing on the station without any cover at all. Then after this firing had gone on for some time and it did not take any effect, Sergeant Steele ran out from tree where he had been firing and fired at Kelly's legs and brought him down, and, as the police closed on him, we ran and jumped the fence from the station, and went up to Kelly. As I got up I saw Sergeant Steele with Kelly's arm in the air, and the pistol go off. Ned Kelly was lying against a tree, and one of the police kicked him. Then they began cutting the straps of his armour, the wires that held it on, and got it off; and two or three took him by the shoulders, helped him to walk to the station; got him over the fence, and got him to the station, and put him into the guard's van first. The doctor looked at his wound, and a little while after they took him into the station master's house and put him in a bunk. He complained of cold, and was shivering. I went out again then, and went round several times, round to the back; of the hotel and made a bird's-eye view. I drew Ned Kelly while he was lying in the van, and while he was in the station master's house; and I made drawings of the armour on the station. We could do nothing; we were walking round the station and about the ground. The police were stationed behind trees.

10047 About what o'clock was this you are speaking of now?— This was after Kelly was taken, up to the time they were called upon to surrender.

10048 What o'clock was that?— I could not tell you, my watch had stopped. It was broad daylight when Kelly was caught.

10049 It would be between seven and ten o'clock ?— Yes, something like that. What struck me was the movements of the police posted behind the trees. They kept looking round towards the station as if they expected somebody. They were standing idly, some of them leaning their rides against trees and putting their hands in their pockets.

10050 Did any officer seem to have command over them then?— No; that was what struck me. There seemed to be no one in command, and I thought they were looking for some one to give instructions. For instance, two advanced to a tree close to the house, and stood there some time.

10051 On the Beechworth side?— Yes, they were for two hours waiting. We were there from two on the Sunday morning till four the next day; you cannot fix the time very well, I was busy with my own work. Those were the things I noticed when I was going round.

10052 Can you fix any portion of the day when the police received any instructions or any commands from their superior officer?— Well, the first decided step was when the hotel was fired; that seemed to be the only time. I thought then they must have been ordered to do that.

10053 Is it the fact that the impression you formed from the early portion of the morning, say from three o'clock till just before the firing of the hotel was, that there was no superior officer taking command and giving any instructions to the men?— That is what it seemed to me.

10054 When you first approached the place did Mr. Hare give any orders?— I do not know. After Mr. Hare left the station I do not know what orders were given. I only know of the one by Mr. Hare, “Come along, boys.”

10055 How long after Mr. Hare retired from Glenrowan was it that you saw any officer of police except Senior-Constable Kelly?— It was after Ned Kelly was taken that I first saw Mr. Sadleir.

10056 Did you know Mr. Sadleir?— I knew him by sight.

10057 Did ,you know his position in the force?— No, I did not.

10058 You did not know of your own knowledge whether be was a senior constable?— I knew he was an officer in the force, but I did not know what grade.

10059 Did you know he was a superior officer to any other on the ground?— It never struck me to think anything about that.

10060 You saw Mr. Hare leaving the station with Mr. O'Connor—how long after he left did you see Mr. O'Connor on the station?— I did not see him after that.

10061 When did you see Mr. O'Connor after that time?— I never saw him till now.

10062 What position were you in at the time the people were released from the hotel in the morning?— I was at the station when the civilians came out; I ran out to where they were.

10063 Did you not see Mr. O'Connor at that time?— No.

10064 Is it possible for Mr. O'Connor to have been present and ,you not seen him?— Certainly.

10065 During the morning, from the time that Mr. Hare left till the place was fired, you did not see Mr. O'Connor all the day?— No......

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