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1905, Joseph Porter - Unfit For Publication
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Barrier Miner, Tue 25 Apr 1905 1

    The highest shade temperature locally to-day was 67 degrees.

    In the Police Court yesterday Barney Elliot was fined 20s or “the rising” for drunkenness, and Joseph Porter, charged with having committed an unnatural offence, was remanded till tomorrow.

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The Advertiser, Thu 27 Apr 1905 2


Broken Hill, April 26.

    A rainstorm struck the town last night, and what appeared to be merely a passing thundershower realised the dimensions of a heavy, protracted downpour. The storm came from the south-east, and was accompanied by thunder and lightning. At first steady, it later descended in torrents, and by eight o’clock the streets were flooded. Altogether 1.27in fell. The total for the month is 3.03in.

    Joseph Porter, about 40 years of age, was committed for trial by Mr Stevenson, SM, to-day on a charge of having committed an unnatural offence.

    William Delanty to-day was sentenced in the Police Court to three months imprisonment for having assaulted Constable Grant.

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Barrier Miner, Thu 27 Apr 1905 3


    Joseph Porter, a man between 30 and 40 years of age, was charged before Mr Stevenson, SM, in the Police Court this afternoon with having committed an unnatural offence. Mr T Jhonson appeared for the accused. The evidence of Dr JF Bartley and the apprehending constables was strongly against accused, and he was committed for trial.

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Barrier Miner, Sat 19 Aug 1905 4


    The District Court was opened this morning, before Judge Gibson.

    The August sittings of the Quarter Sessions will be opened by Judge Gibson on Monday morning. Mr John Armstrong, KC, will act as Crown Prosecutor. The list is a light one, only three cases being set down for hearing. The cases are:—

    Joseph Porter, attempted bestiality.

    Abdul Hamat, shooting with intent to murder.

    Robert Roberts, manslaughter.

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The Advertiser, Tue 22 Aug 1905 5


Broken Hill, August 21.


    The August sittings of the Quarter Sessions were opened this morning by Judge Gibson. Mr J Armstrong, KC, was the Crown prosecutor. Robert Roberts was charged with feloniously slaying Horace Cornelius. The Crown Prosecutor said the Crown was not prepared to go on with the case that day. The accused was only recently committed for trial and the case required consideration. His Honor concurred in this view, and the accused was remanded to a future court. Bail was allowed himself in £200, and two sureties of £100 each.

    Joseph Porter was placed on trial for alleged bestiality. He pleaded not guilty. The alleged offence was stated to have occurred in a yard off Argent-lane, on April 24. After the evidence of the arresting constable had been given Judge Gibson summed up in favor of the accused, who was discharged.

    Abdul Hamat, 6 an ice cream vendor, was charged with maliciously shooting at his wife Sarah Hamat, with intent to murder her, and on a second count with shooting with intent to do grievous bodily harm. The accused pleaded not guilty. He said he had never desired to kill his wife. His animosity was directed against an Afghan, who had taken his wife away from him. A verdict of not guilty was returned on both counts.

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Barrier Miner, Tue 22 Aug 1905 7


    Joseph Porter, a respectable-looking young man, was placed on his trial at the Quarter Sessions to-day for alleged bestiality. Accused pleaded not guilty, and was defended by Mr JR Edwards. The alleged offence was stated by Constables Ryan and Wickes to have occurred in a yard off Argent-lane on the morning of April 24. Accused was slightly under the influence of drink at the time, according to the constables’ evidence.

   His Honor (after hearing Constable Wickes’ cross-examination to a point where the witness said he could not remember a conversation which took place with the accused on the verandah of the police station): Have you a written statement of your evidence?—No.

    Was a written statement taken of your evidence at any time?—Yes. On the day after accused was charged.

    Where is that statement?—I don’t know. I have not seen it since.

    Do you know that you have given your evidence almost word for word the same as that given by Constable Ryan:—I gave my evidence word for word as the thing occurred.

    His Honor directed the witness to repeat the evidence, and, on his doing so, drew attention to the fact that witness had given it word for word as in the first instance. With one or two exceptions it was exactly the same as that given by Constable Ryan, not only as to the words used, but the order in which the story was told. Although witness’ memory was capable of a feat of that kind, he was unable to recollect a conversation which had taken place on the verandah of the police station on the night of the arrest.

    Witness (to the Crown Prosecutor): The conversation which took place on the police station verandah had no relation to the charge; accused asked for a pipe of tobacco, which witness gave him, and accused also complained of being sleepy.

    Constable Ryan, recalled, said, in reply to his Honor, that he had made a written statement of the evidence he gave in the Police Court, but had burnt it on Saturday last.

    His Honor: In whose presence did you make the statement?—My own.

    Don’t answer me like that again. Who was present when you made the statement?—No one.

    Did you see Wickes’s written statement?—No.

    Medical evidence was given by Dr Bartley, Government medical officer.

    For the defence, accused gave evidence on oath. He stated that he had had a few drinks on the night in question, and was ill when the constable saw and arrested him in the yard.

    Several witnesses were called, and gave evidence of accused’s previous good character.

    In summing up, his Honor drew attention to the extraordinary nature of the evidence given by the constables, and pointed out a very considerable discrepancy in the two statements, which in all other respects bore a remarkable similarity.

    After a quarter of an hour’s retirement the jury returned with a verdict of not guilty, and accused was discharged.


    Antonio’s Circus was last night the scene of an interesting weight-lifting competition under the supervision of Lex McLean, of physical culture fame. There were five candidates for honor and reward, the budding Samson proving to be Tom Basse, who beat his nearest opponent by six points. He lifted the 112lb barbell over his head 20 times in succession, a feat by no means easy of accomplishment. The performances of Les McLean and Antonio the juggler, the trained dogs and monkeys, the parrots, and the clowns all helped to make up a fair evening’s amusement. To-morrow night there will be a Californian pig hunt for boys.


    The Trades Hall Entertainers gave another of their variety concerts at the Trades Hall last night, and were favored with fairly liberal patronage. The performers’ exertions to please were at least conscientious, and they received every encouragement from a well-satisfied audience. Songs were contributed by Messrs B Sheriff, J Flannagan, D Maxwell, J Kelly, Holmes and Bert Ferguson, Master Bush, and Misses And McKenzie, Florrie Hill, and Renie Rose. A waltz clog was neatly danced by the Foyle Brothers, and a stepdance by C Taylor, Misses Snell and Landorf accomplished an elaborate cakewalk, and Mr D Maxwell caused some amusement by his burlesque weight-lifting.

L[oyal] O[range] L[odge] Social.

    The anniversary of the Tom Allen LOL, No. 256, was celebrated by a dance and supper held in the Protestant Hall last night. Mr F Morris was pianist and Mr TH Paul MC. The supper was provided and served by a committee of ladies. There was a sprinkling of spectators present, who viewed the scene from the gallery.


    There was a good attendance at the Citizens’ Hall, West Broken Hill, last night on the occasion of a skating carnival being held. About 60 people added a couple of inches to their height during the evening, and went careering around in search of amusement on the rollers. Several contests were fought out. These included a half-mile race between J Wallace and S Brokenshire. Wallace proved the victor, and he also succeeded in carrying off the prize in the Boys’ Race. A Ladies’ Race was programmed, but owing to meagre patronage it was not held.


    The Fisk Jubilee Singers arrived in Broken Hill this morning, and commence a season at the Theatre to-night. The singers include Miss Belle Gibbons (baritone), Miss Beatrice Mercer (contralto), Miss McClain (soprano), and Messrs Collins, Tisdale, Newton, and White. Mr Tisdale, the tenor, is a stranger to Broken Hill, but the others are all old (and welcome) friends.


    The disclosures in the case between Abdul Hamat 8 and his wife, Sarah Hamat, heard before Mr Acting Justice Gibson at the Quarter Sessions yesterday, have given rise to the question whether Sarah Hamat should not be proceeded against for bigamy. On her own statement, she married one Sham Rose while still being the wife of Abdul. But this marriage with Sham Rose was a Mohammedan ceremonial, not recognised by the English law. In the face of this it is scarcely likely that the police will institute proceedings against the woman.

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The Advertiser, Wed 15 Oct 1902 9

A Woman Horribly Mutilated.
A Jealous Indian Hawker.

Broken Hill, October 14.

    At half-past 6 o’clock this morning Abdul Hamat, an Indian hawker, informed the police that he had murdered his wife at his house in Wyman-street, West Broken Hill. On the police proceeding to the scene the woman was found standing in the doorway with blood streaming from a gaping wound on her left cheek. She was removed to the hospital, where she is now in a state of collapse.

    Hamat’s story was that his wife had stayed last night at the Afghans’ camel camp near at hand, and when she returned this morning he attacked her in a fit was jealousy with a tomahawk, inflicting a terrible wound, though which the teeth and jawbone protruded. The woman bled profusely, pools of blood lying all over the floors of the rooms. Hamat was charged with attempted murder at the Police Court and was remanded.

    The circumstances of the tragedy disclose a shocking state of domestic infelicity. The injured woman, whose name was formerly Sarah Simpson, has been for years a well-known character at Broken Hill. Although she is still quite young, being only 23 years of age, she married Hamat about five years ago, and one child was born of the marriage.

    According to Hamat’s statement to the police his wife had made a constant practice of leaving her home for days at a time and last night he again missed her from the house. About 5 o’clock this morning an Afghan took the woman to her home, and told her husband that she had been all night at the Afghans’ camp. The visitor at the same time, it is said, warned Hamat that if he attempted to punish his wife or interfere with her in any way he would shoot him.

    Hamat remained quiet until the Afghan had departed, when he seized a tomahawk and struck his wife a murderous blow across the face, laying open the left cheek from the chin to the middle of the ear. The weapon used was a small-headed tomahawk with a long handle. It was very blunt. Nevertheless such was the force of the blow that the blade of the tomahawk cut right through the cheek, smashing the teeth and the jawbones in a horrible manner.

    At half-past 6 the police proceeded to the scene of the outrage. As Hamat had said the woman was dead, they were somewhat surprised to see her, a ghastly spectacle, standing at the front door of the house. The unfortunate woman was, however, in a fainting condition. She was taken inside and laid upon the floor, where the wound was bandaged. She had been bleeding profusely for some time, and had apparently wandered in a distracted state about the house, for blood was everywhere. The bedclothes were saturated, and pools of blood were lying on the floor of the bedroom. When admitted to the hospital she was in a state of collapse.

    The hospital authorities this evening stated that the woman’s condition was about the same as when she was admitted.

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The Advertiser, Fri 24 Jun 1904 10


Broken Hill, June 23.

    Abdul Hamat was charged to-day on the information of his wife, Sarah Hamat, with having threatened to take her life. The plaintiff stated that she was afraid to live with the accused, as he once before assaulted her with an axe. The case was remanded till Friday.


1     Barrier Miner, Tue 25 Apr 1905, p. 4. Emphasis added.

2     The Advertiser, Thu 27 Apr 1905, p. 5. Emphasis added.

3     Barrier Miner, Thu 27 Apr 1905, p. 1.

4     Barrier Miner, Sat 19 Aug 1905, p. 4. Emphasis added.

5     The Advertiser, Tue 22Aug 1905, p. 6. Emphasis added.

6     See further articles regarding Abdul Hamat and his wife below.

7     Barrier Miner, Tue 22 Aug 1905, pp. 1, 2. Emphasis added.

8     Some further details of Abdul’s violence towards his wife, Sarah, are found below.

9     The Advertiser, Wed 15 Oct 1902, p. 5.

10   The Advertiser, Wed 15 Oct 1902, p. 5.