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1884, John Iverson - Unfit For Publication
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Evening News, Fri 29 Feb 1884 1

BREVITIES.
————


    A Norwegian, named John Iverson, was arrested yesterday on a charge of committing an abominable offence, in company with another man, in a house in Sussex-street. Committed to the Criminal court for trial.

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Depositions for John Iverson 5 Mar 1884 Sydney trial 2

(M., 11 and 12 Vic., Cap. 42.)

Depositions of Witnesses.

New South Wales, City of Sydney.
TO WIT.                                       }

The examination of Constable Richard Bennett of the Police Force in the Colony of New South Wales, Thomas Leahey [aka Lahey], Sussex Street, Stonemason and Michael Conners (?) of Sussex street, in the said Colony, Jeweller. Taken on oath, this 28th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty four at Sydney in the Colony aforesaid, before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, in the presence and hearing of John Iverson who is charged this day before me, for that he the said John Iverson, on the 27th day of February at, Sydney in the said Colony, did attempt to commit the abominable crime of buggery.

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John Iverson

Attempting to commit the abominable crime of Buggery.

    Constable Richard Bennett on oath states:– About quarter to one o’clock this morning I was on duty in Liverpool Street and heard shouts for the Police 4 or 5 times in the direction of Sussex Street

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I ran in that direction and saw the prisoner and a man named Lahey.

    The prisoner was given into my custody by Lahey for attempting to commit the crime of buggery.

    In reply he said that he did no such thing – on the way to the station he said

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to me “Here is a pound for yourself, let me slip around the corner and I’ll run and you pretend to run after me.”

    I took the pound make and told him he would have to come with me. He then offered me another pound and said “You might as well let me go as it is of no benefit to

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you and I did not commit the offence.” I had the prisoner examined by Dr Marsden and he said that he could not see any signs of an offence being committed.

[Signed] R Bennett.

Sworn at Sydney this 28th February 1884.
[Signed] John W Dillon, PM.

5

    Thomas Leahey on oath states:–
    I reside in [332] Sussex Street, [east side, between Bathurst & Liverpool streets] and am a Stonemason.

    About 11 o’clock last night I saw the prisoner in Sussex Street and he said that he hadn’t any place to get a bed. I took him into my bed. I went to bed an hour

6

or so afterwards and was awake by feeling the prisoner taking down my trousers. He got on top of my back and put his person into my bottom. I jumped out of bed and called out for the Police.

    I went to bed with my trousers on.

    By Prisoner: You attempted to commit sodomy

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on me.

[Signed] Thomas Leahy.

Sworn at Sydney this 28th February 1884.
[Signed] John W Dillon, PM.

8

    Michael Conners on oath states:–
    I reside in Sussex Street and am a jeweller.

    About one o’clock this morning I saw the prosecutor and the prisoner in bed together. I slept in the same room as they did. I was awoke by the prosecutor calling out “Get a light

9

I have a sod in bed with me.”

    The prosecutor was then out of bed and buttoning his trousers. The prisoner was getting out of bed and buttoning his trousers.

    The prosecutor abused the prisoner and struck him.

    The prosecutor went into the street and called

10

out “Police!” and I sent the prisoner out of the room. the prosecutor accused the prisoner of having attempted to commit sodomy and the prisoner did not make any reply.

[Signed] Michael Conners.

Sworn at Sydney this 28th February 1884.
[Signed] John W Dillon, PM.

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(N., 11 & 12 Vic., Cap. 42.)

Statement of the Accused.

New South Wales,
TO WIT.                 }

John Iverson stands charged before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the Colony aforesaid, this 28th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty four for that he, the said John Iverson on the 27th day of February at Sydney, in the said Colony, did attempt to commit the abominable crime of buggery.
and the examination of all the witnesses on the part of the prosecutor having been completed, and the depositions taken against the accused having been caused to be read to him by me, the said Justice, (by/or) before whom such examination has been so completed; and I, the said Justice, having also stated to the accused and given him clearly to understand that he has nothing to hope from any promise or favour, and nothing to fear from any threat which may have been holden out to him to induce him to make any admission or confession of his guilt, but that whatever he shall say may be given in evidence against him upon his trial, not withstanding such promise or threat; and the said charge being read to the said John Iverson, and the witnesses for the prosecution being severally examined in his presence, the said John Iverson is now addressed by me as follows:– “Having heard the evidence, do you wish to say anything in answer to the charge? You are not obliged to say anything unless you desire to do so; but whatever you say will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence against you upon your trial;” whereupon the said John Iverson saith as follows:– “I have nothing to say.”
Taken before me, at Sydney, in the said Colony, the day and year first abovementioned.
[Signed] John W Dillon, PM.

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    The prisoner is committed to take his trial at the next Court of Gaol Delivery.
[Signed] John W Dillon, PM.
Sydney 28th February 1884.

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(O. 1, 11 & 12 Vic., Cap. 42,.)

Recognizance to give Evidence.

 

New South Wales,
TO WIT.                 }

Be it remembered, that on the 28th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighty four Richard Bennett a Constable of the Police Force, Thomas Leahey of 332 Sussex Street, Sydney in the Colony of New South Wales, Stonemason and Michael Conners of Sussex Street in the said Colony, Jeweller etc. personally came before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the Colony of New South Wales, and acknowledged themselves to owe Our Sovereign Lady the Queen the sum of

FORTY POUNDS EACH,

of good and lawful money of Great Britain, to be made and levied on their Goods and Chattels, Lands and Tenements, to the use of our said Lady the Queen, her Heirs and Successors, if they the said before mentioned persons shall fail in the condition indorsed.
[Signed] R Bennett, Thomas Leahy, Michael Conners. 

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first abovementioned, at Sydney in the said Colony, before me.
[Signed] Cornelius Delohery, CPS.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas John Iverson was this day charged before John Dillon Esquire one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for Stipendiary Magistrates for Sydney in the said Colony, with attempting to commit the crime of buggery.

If therefore, they the before mentioned persons shall appear at the next Court of Gaol Delivery to be holden at Darlinghurst, in and for the Colony of New South Wales, on the 3rd day of March next at nine of the clock in the forenoon, and then and there give such evidence as they know, upon an information to be then and there preferred against the said John Iverson for the offence aforesaid, to the Jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said John Iverson.
Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[Signed] C Delohery, CPS.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[On the depositions’ cover sheet is the following]

In the Supreme Court.
Darlinghurst
3rd March 1884
AG’s No. 84
Depositions.
CS’s No. 27
The Queen
against
John Iverson
Bestiality
Sodomy
See within AG
Committed at: Central Police Court
on: 28 February 1884

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Sodomy
[Initialled] W[illiam] B[ede] D[alley QC AG]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Justice J Martin’s Notebook 3

41

[Central Criminal Court, Sydney, 5 March 1884]

Regina v John Iverson – Sodomy

This prisoner being arraigned pleads not guilty
Forster states case and calls

    1st Witness Richard Bennett. Constable in the Police force. On 28 February last about ¼ to 1 am. I heard (?) cries of Police in Liverpool Street repeated four or five times. I went in the direction of the cries & there saw a man the prisoner & a man named Lahey. I found them in Sussex Street. Lahey accused the crim prisoner of the

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abominable offence which he denied. Lahey still stated that he did attempt to commit the offence on in the (issue ?) and gave him into my custody. I arrested him & on the way to the station he handed me a pound note (produced) saying take that for yourself. I said what for? He said it is (?) benefit for you let me go. I told him I would do no such thing. He afterwards offered me another pound putting which money into my hand. He said let me slip round the corner and I’ll run & you pretend not to catch me. I told him I would do no such thing, he would have to go to the station. I took him. There and some time after he was charged by Lahey with the abominable

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offence. I took Lahey to be examined by Dr Marsden in George Street. He did examine him and he stated that there were no symptoms whatever of the offence being committed in the man. This was about 1 ¾ hours after the offence was stated to have been committed.

    Cross-examined. There was no disorder of prisoner’s clothing when I arrested him. I did not see Lahey strike the prisoner.

    2nd Witness Thomas Lahey. I am a stonemason. I live in Sussex Street. On this night week I saw prisoner in Sussex Street at 10 minutes to 11. I had not known him before.

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I was coming out of a public house with a pint of beer. Prisoner asked me for some of it. I gave him some. He asked me where he could get a bed. I went down the street with him to a lodging house and he could get no bed there. It was raining & he came into my apartment and he sat down. I told him I would give him shelter for the night. He lay down on my bed near the wall. He took off his boots & hat & all his clothing except his trowsers. I went to bed in half an hour afterwards. I took off all my clothes (excepting ?) my trowsers – another man Connors 4 was also in the room.

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He was in the a bed of his own. I went to sleep and in about half an hour the prisoner woke me up. I found the belt of my trowsers undone, my trowsers unbuttoned and pulled down both front & back. I felt him on top of me & I jumped out of bed. I felt him hurting me. He was turning had me just turned over on my left side. My back was naked. He was naked. I felt his person. It touched me behind – no part of him entered into my body. I jumped out of bed & sang out to the other man that there was a sod in the bed.

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Connors struck a light. Prisoner got out of bed. I hit him. My mate shoved him out of the house. I afterwards gave him to the charge of the Police.

    Cross-examined. I met prisoner at 10 minutes to 11. I did not ask prisoner to pay me a shilling for the use of my bed. The candle was alight when prisoner & I went into the house. It was a candle and not a lamp.

    (?) (?) the prisoner was quite sober.

    3rd Witness Michael Connors. I lodged a couple of nights in the same room with last witness. I was there last Thursday night I think. I slept in the room with Lahey.

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I was awoke up about one o’clock. Lahey called me to get up and light a candle. There is a sod in bed. I got up and lit the candle. I saw Lahey out of bed pulling his trowsers & the prisoner getting out of bed buttoning his trowsers. Lahey accused him of the crime & then struck him. Lahey went out and called a policeman. Prisoner said nothing to the accusation. He didn’t deny it. Prisoner & Lahey came in about 11 o’clock.

    Cross-examined. I saw them come in at 11 o’clock – the Town Hall clock [struck] as they came in. There was a candle in the room.

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I put the prisoner out. He took a coat and put it on. (There ?) was no noise till Lahey called on me to get up.

Case for the Crown closed.
The prisoner addressed the Jury.

    I summed up and the Jury without leaving the box acquitted him of the crime charged & found him guilty of the attempt.

I sentenced to be imprisoned in the Gaol at Darlinghurst with hard labour for one year.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Sydney Mail and NSW Advertiser, Sat 8 Mar 1884 5

CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT.

MARCH 5 [1884].

    The prisoners in the Waterloo outrage were arraigned for the murder of Margaret Owen on December 26 last, and their pleas taken. John Smith, found guilty of assaulting a child, was sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonments in Darlinghurst gaol; and John Iverson, for assault, to 12 month’s hard labour in Darlinghurst.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Sydney Morning Herald, Thu 6 Mar 1884 6

CENTRAL CRIMINAL COURT.
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 5.
(Before his Honor the CHIEF JUSTICE.) [Martin]

    The Attorney-General, assisted by Mr WJ Foster and Mr Gibson, prosecuted for the Crown.

ASSAULT.

    John Iverson was arraigned for feloniously assaulting one Thomas Leahy, in Sussex-street, Sydney, on the night of February 27, 1883. Prisoner, who pleaded not guilty, was undefended. The jury acquitted him of the offence charged, but returned a verdict of guilty of attempted assault, and the prisoner was sentenced to one year’s hard labour in Darlinghurst Gaol.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

John Iverson, Gaol photo sheet 7

SRNSW: NRS2138, [3/6045], Darlinghurst Gaol photographic description book, 1883-1884, No. 2995, p. 216, R5101.

 


Gaol Photo Sheet - Transcribed Details

No. 2995
1892-84

Date when Portrait was taken: 29 February 1884

Name: John Iverson

Native place: Norway

Year of birth: 1857

Arrived       Ship: Gateside
in Colony }   Year: 1878

Trade or occupation
previous to conviction     } Seaman

Religion: C of England

Education, degree of: R&Write

Height: 5' 8½"

Weight     On committal: 148
in lbs     } On discharge:

Colour of hair: Brown

Colour of eyes: Grey

Marks or special features:

Where and when tried: Supreme CC.
5th March 1884

Offence: Attempt to commit Buggery

Sentence: 1 year HL

Remarks: Guilty

 

 (No. of Previous Portrait ... ) 

PREVIOUS CONVICTIONS

Where and When Offence. Sentence

 

 

 

 

Nil

 

 


1  Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Fri 29 Feb 1884, p. 3.

2  SRNSW: NRS880, [9/6701], Supreme Court, Papers and depositions, Sydney, Mar 1884, No. 84. Emphasis added.

3  SRNSW: NRS7378, [2/6169], Judiciary, J Martin, CJ. Notebooks Criminal, Sydney, 1873-86, pp. 41-8. Emphasis added.

4  Conners in transcript of depositions, but more likely Connors.

5  The Sydney Mail and NSW Advertiser, Sat 8 Mar 1884, p. 462. Emphasis added.

6  The Sydney Morning Herald, Thu 6 Mar 1884, p. 3.

7  SRNSW: NRS2138, [3/6045], Darlinghurst Gaol photographic description book, 1883-1884, No. 2995, p. 216, R5101.