Royal Commission report day 27 page 19

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The Royal Commission evidence for 8/6/1881

(full text transcription)

(see also introduction to day 27)

Mr Allen giving evidence

10962 And did you consider they were trying to secure themselves from him?— Well, I could not say anything like that, because it was a rough time just then.

10963 Did you see he had armour on while you were shooting?— No, I never heard a word about any armour or anything else, not till we were at the log when we pulled it off, because he had like a white mackintosh over the whole affair down to his heels, and the helmet standing on his head, and what with the fog and one thing and another, golly! it made him about nine feet high; upon my word it did, coming through the gloom there.

10964 What were you own thoughts?— I said it was Old Nick, and upon my word I thought it was at the time.

10965 Did you know then it was Ned Kelly when you were shooting him?— No, and I do not believe anybody else did till the helmet came off, because directly the helmet came off Steele fastened on him and said it was Ned Kelly, and we knew him by that exclamation.

10966 Do you think from what you saw and know now that you would have failed in the attempt to capture Kelly had it not been for Steele?— Well he did his part towards it, but I think Kelly would have been taken if he was not there.

10967 You do not think it would be right for any one of you that were there immediately close to Kelly then to say, “Had it not been for me he would have escaped”?— No, it would not be fair for any one man to say, “Alone I did it.”

10968 Suppose you stated, “Had it not been for me Ned Kelly would not have been caught”?— I could not say such a thing.

10969 There were men enough to rush him?— Yes, if anybody had known what he had on they could have jumped on his back and rolled him over.

10970 How far was Senior-Constable Kelly from the outlaw when Steele rushed up?— He was on the right, perhaps twenty or thirty yards away on the right hand side of him.

10971 Where was Steele before he rushed?— Kelly, the outlaw, was in that fork, and I was at the butt of it, about twelve yards off. Steele was up on the left hand side, and he ran to within about fifteen yards and dropped down like behind a little stump there and fired. I could see the lot of them, and Senior-Constable Kelly was then twenty or thirty yards on the right hand side.

10972 Did the both rush on him simultaneously?— As soon as Steele fired and the figure dropped, I ran towards him, and Steele was on to him while I was running, and Senior Constable Kelly was up as quick as myself.

10973 Not two seconds between?— It was nearly a dead heat.

10974 You swear now positively that you took the revolver out of his hand?— I do. I took the revolver from Ned Kelly.

10975 When you came in the train to the railway platform with Mr. Sadleir's party, had you any conversation with any of the police that were there as to the position of affairs?— I heard what Senior-Constable Kelly was telling Mr. Sadleir—where the men were, and how he had placed the men round.

10976 Did he speak as if he was in charge, as if he considered that, after Mr. Hare left?— He seemed to be pretty forward in it. He had this Colt's revolver in his hand, and the skull cap, and said he had got men here and there.

10977 Were you out of the train first, or Mr. Sadleir?— They were in the van, and I had only just time to jump on the engine with Driver Colman and his fireman.

10978 Who got out first?— I could not say.

10979 Did Mr. Sadleir call Senior Constable Kelly to him, or did Kelly go up to Mr. Sadleir?— When I saw them they were in conversation on the platform, and I drew near to hear what was going on, and heard what I have said.

10980 Did you hear Mr. Sadleir say anything to him?— Yes; he asked where Mr. O'Connor was; and he said, “He is in the drain in front of the hotel.”

10981 What did he say then?— I do not know.

10982 Did you hear him say, “Take me to him”?— No.

10983 Did he make any further remark about Mr. O'Connor's position?— No, not that I am aware of.

10984 Did you hear Mr. Sadleir give Kelly instructions what to do then?— No; I went away then through this woman, Mrs. Reardon, screaming out.

10985 What induced you to go?— I had been out with every police special before this, looking after the Kellys—in charge of every one; and it was on the Sunday the station master sent and asked for me to come over and see him, and he told me I would have to run a special to Beechworth; and I said, “What time do we start”; and he said, “I cannot tell, but do not go far away.” And then the arrangements were altered.

10986 You went there voluntarily?— Yes; when they came over and roused me in the morning they said the Kellys were there.

10987 You did not have charge?— No.

10988 Were you armed at all?— Yes, a breech loading Colt's revolver. In fact, I have been carrying it for a long time, and .Mr. Hare, only the Friday before, chaffed me about it.

The witness withdrew

Adjourned to to morrow at Eleven o'clock .

[~[[See report of Proceedings 8/6/1881]|6239]~]

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