Western Champion, Fri 26 Apr 1907 1
Full moon on the 28th.
At the Bogan Gate Police Court on Friday, before the PM, a carrier named Frederick Stevens was charged with beastiality [sic]. Sub-Inspector Kenny prosecuted and Mr AE McIntosh defended the accused. The case was heard with closed door. Accused, who reserved his defence, was committed to take his trial at the next Forbes sessions. Bail was allowed and forthcoming.
Judge Murray is to take Judge Docker’s place in the Western Courts during the latter’s absence in England.
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Forbes Times, Wed 26 Jun 1907 2
The Quarter Sessions were opened at Forbes on Tuesday morning last at 10 am before his Honor Acting Judge Hamilton.
Mr Dawson acted as Crown Prosecutor and the following members of the legal profession were present:—Messrs JC Gannon and E Manning (barristers), DJ Moloney, J Robinson, AE McIntosh, FB Comins and REB Reymond (solicitors).
Dr EP McDonnell, Deputy Sheriff, occupied a seat on the Bench.
Several jurymen were excused.
AN UNNATURAL OFFENCE.
Frederick [aka Fred] Stevens was charged with committing an unnatural offence, [bestiality], at Trundle on April 11th last.
Mr Gannon, instructed by Mr McIntosh, appeared for accused, who pleaded not guilty.
Accused challenged two jurymen, while two others were excused on the grounds of deafness.
His Honor said jurors who were hard of hearing—or had other infirmities—should apply to have their names struck off the jury list. He could not do it.
One of the excused jurymen said he thought he had been “condemned.” (Laughter.)
Constable Tully then gave evidence as to the nature of the offence, which he testified was committed on the road between Trundle and Fifield but the greater part of the evidence in the case was unfit for publication.
Evidence for the prosecution was also given by Constables Wilson and Clark.
Accused gave evidence on his own behalf, totally denying the evidence of the constables.
Mr Gannon made a strong appeal on behalf of accused.
The Crown Prosecutor also addressed the jury, and after a fairly lengthy summing up by His Honor, the jury retired.
After an hour’s retirement they returned to court with a verdict to the effect that accused had been guilty of attempting the offence. A rider was added asking that accused be leniently dealt with on account of his weak intellect and his previous good character.
Accused was remanded for sentence.
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The Sydney Morning Herald, Thu 27 Jun 1907 3
The Quarter Sessions were opened before Acting Judge Hamilton, Mr Dawson being Crown Prosecutor. Frederick Stevens, charged with committing an offence at Trundle, was defended by Mr Gannon, instructed by Mr McIntosh. Accused pleaded not guilty. The jury returned a verdict of guilty, and asked for the accused to be leniently dealt with, owing to his weak intellect. He was remanded.
Frederick Stevens, charged with an unnatural offence at Trundle, was found guilty and sentenced to 12 months’ hard labour.
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Forbes Gazette, Fri 28 Jun 1907 4
The sessions were opened on Tuesday before His Honor Judge Hamilton.
Mr Dawson acted as Crown Prosecutor, and the following members of the legal profession were present:—Messrs HE Manning (barrister), DJ Moloney, REB Reymond, and J Robinson.
Dr EP McDonnell, Deputy Sheriff, occupied a seat on the bench.
Several jurymen were excused for non-attendance.
Frederick Stevens was charged with bestiality on April 11th at Trundle.
The accused who pleaded not guilty was defended by Mr JC Gannon, instructed by Mr AE McIntosh, and challenged two jurymen.
Constable Tully, on oath, deposed – I am stationed at Trundle and know the accused; on the 11th April I saw him on the Fifield-Trundle-road; I was on the same roan in plan clothes; the accused was driving six horses and a waggon; when within 10 yards of him I saw him stop the team and go between the leaders; (the evidence here is unfit for publication); I rushed my horse up alongside of him and said “I’m a police constable;” he said “Oh! You’ve caught me; (the evidence here is unfit for publication); I said “What have you got to say for yourself?” He said “If you let me off this time I’ll give you £10, I know you saw me, but let me off this time; it will ruin me if it comes out in the papers.” I said “Do you realise what you are doing?” he said “Yes!” (evidence unfit for publication). He said he was going to McIvery’s near Fifield with the load of timber; he admitted he knew it was the main road between Trundle to Fifield; he came back to Trundle with me and on the way back asked me what I thought he’d get. I said I didn’t know; he admitted the offence and that I saw him; I left accused in charge of Constables Clarke and Wilson; when I secured my horse, I went into the police office and took a statement from accused, which he signed; Wilson wrote the questions and read them to accused (statement read out and put in); Constable Clarke took accused to Bogan Gate; I did not see him again till the court.
By Mr Gannon—The statement was witnessed by three—it is customary; have known accused some time; it was on the highway; about 6ft of timber was on the waggon, and I came up behind; I have had five years’ experience; I gave evidence about Constable Ferris; I did not swear Ferris put kerosene on a man and fired it; I swore Ferris told me the man put kerosene on himself; I have been fined for breaches twice; I am not debarred from going to Parkes in plain clothes; I did not create a disturbance at the gate of the Parkes racecourse; I was fined the other day on a charge of making a vexatious report against another police officer. I saw this man about 11 am about seven miles from Trundle and 14 from Fifield; the team was all old screws; (evidence unfit for publication); I have been amongst horses a good deal; had he looked back he could have seen me; when between the horses he would be facing towards me; I said I was a police officer; he did not explain what he did do; I did not ask him to admit the offence and he would get off; he was sobbing a bit when he made the statement at the police station—he was shedding “crocodile tears”; he was not excited; he sobbed a bit; he said he offered me £10, but had only 4s on him; I did not induce him to say yes to my questions and he would get off; I did not have his head examined or ask him what cramps he was suffering from; I was only a few yards away when the offence was committed; I swear the accused did not go to relieve the chain from under the horse’s leg; I did not see him; I did not rush up and tell him to come on to Trundle or Fifield; he did not ask what for; I said, “Come back to Trundle” after I asked the question; he was aware of what happened and that it was a serious crime; he was not lame; he turned the horses and drove back with me; I did not try to get him to plead guilty or incriminate himself; I did not tell him to say yes to the statement that he offered me £10, to fortify [sic–falsify] my evidence.
By Mr Dawson—I was fined for complaining about another constable making inquiries in my district.
Mr Dawson tendered the depositions taken at the police court.
Constable Robert Arthur Wilson, Trundle, deposed he saw accused at Trundle about 4 pm on 11th April; statement (produced) was taken down by me; Tully asked the questions; accused was sober and a little bit excited or confused when he first came to the police station; I saw him at the lockup, 9 am next morning, and said he would have to go to Bogan Gate; he commenced to sob, and said it was the first time he had been in gaol and would be the last; he did not know what made him do it; I cautioned him in the usual way; (evidence unfit for publication.)
By Mr Gannon—I cautioned him next day after he made the statement; I think he appeared frightened when he commenced to cry.
Constable Francis Clarke, Trundle, gave corroborative evidence, and said accused said it was too bad to tell me; he seemed quite calm. I was present when he made a statement; I took him to Bogan Gate, and on the road he said he did not know Tully was a constable at first, but when he found out he was he told him the truth; he knew he caught him, and thought if he told Tully the truth he would let him off with a caution, and that he supposed he would get about two months.
By Mr Gannon—When he made the statement he was in a [sic] agitated way sobbing; I did not take much notice of it; I did not say if he admitted all this I thought he would get off with a caution.
Mr Gannon objected to depositions going in and Mr Dawson did not press them.
For the defence.
Frederick Stevens, 23 years, carrier, accused deposed—I was born in Sydney and been about 16 years in the country; I have been carting about six months; I live with my father and mother and have two sisters; I went to school, and to Sunday School a little. Accused put in characters given by different persons speaking of him in good terms. This is the first time any charge has been made against me; that was my first trip; I had been working at Trundle about a month. I never saw Tully before; the horses were broken in; I was never that way before; I was on the waggon and got off to shift the chain off the horse’s leg; a colt got his foot over the chain, I broke him in in November; he put his foot over the chain and I put my foot over the spreader, altered the coupling which was too long; I then saw Tully about ten yards from me, he was in plain clothes; when he got up I was standing by the leader’s chains; he wanted me to go back to Trundle, I said “What for.” He said “Never you mind” he told me to drive, and that he was a policeman. I was between the two body horses, Tully was 300 yards away then; I told him I was going to Fifield and asked him if that was the road; he said “Where do you think you’re going to;” he would not tell me why he was taking me back. Witness said he denied the offence to Tully, nothing was said about money; I asked couldn’t he fine me and let me go about my business, as the timber was bound to time; he said it was not in his power; he told me to plead guilty and say “Yes” to all the questions he asked and I would get off light; I was upset and bad when I went before the court; there is only a couple of the questions in the statement (produced) I answered; I don’t remember it being read out; I don’t remember hearing some of the questions; I did not answer the questions Clarke said I did; I know I am on my oath. (The Judge here read over part of Constable Tully’s evidence to witness) part is not true; Tully did not caution me. I can only write or read a little, witness denied totally the alleged charge; the harness is the same; my legs are crippled with rheumatics and I could only lift my leg as high as the spreader.
The Crown Prosecutor did not ask the accused any questions.
Mr Gannon addressed the jury at some length and asked that the jury acquit the accused.
The Crown Prosecutor replied, after which His Honor summed up and the jury retired to consider their verdict.
After an hour’s deliberation the jury found the accused guilty of attempt only. They also recommended mercy on account of his weak intellect, and previous good character.
The accused was remanded for sentence.
In sentencing Frederick Stevens to 12 months hard labor, His Honor said it was right that the accused was not convicted of the full offence, but it was monstrous the defence set up against the evidence of Constable Tully.
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Forbes Times, Sat 29 Jun 1907 5
(Before His Honor Acting Judge Hamilton).
The court resumed its sittings at 10 o’clock.
At the luncheon adjournment the two prisoners against whom a conviction had been returned were brought up for sentence.
Frederick Stevens, who had been found guilty of an attempt to commit an unnatural offence, near Trundle, was the first brought up.
Mr McIntosh, of behalf of the prisoner, said it might seem strange for an advocate to appeal for leniency for a person convicted of such an offence, but he would ask his Honor to be lenient in this instance, and look at the following facts. The accused was not a hardened criminal, and up to the time of his present conviction had borne an excellent character. Then, again, the jury had recommended him to mercy on the grounds of weak intellect, and he contended that it must have been more than a weak mind which had caused him t conduct himself—in fact, he thought it must be a disease with persons who were prompted to do such things. Finally, on behalf of the parents of the prisoner, who had tried to bring him up in the right course, and to whom the blow of the disgrace was very keen, he would implore for leniency. The prisoner had always contributed his utmost to the support of his aged parents.
During Mr McIntosh’s appeal the prisoner was much affected, and gave way to tears.
His Honor said he quite agreed with the verdict of the jury in finding the prisoner guilty of attempting to commit the offence. He might say that he thought the prisoner owed the facts of his not being convicted of a full offence to Constable Tully, whom the prisoner in his defence had tried to make out as an unmitigated liar, yet who, if he were as bad as the prisoner had tried to paint, might not have hesitated to say the word which would have resulted in his almost certain conviction for the full offence. But the verdict of the jury had cleared the Constable of any false impression which might be raised against him. If prisoner had been found guilty of the full offence he might have been sentenced to imprisonment for life, while for the attempt he was liable to five years penal servitude. He had been asked to deal leniently with him, and he had to bear in mind the prisoner’s previous good character. At the same time, he had to look at the manner in which he had conducted his defence, and said he would not have expected a man who had previously borne a good character to put up such a defence to defeat the ends of justice, and thereby implicate a police officer in what would doubtless be a conspiracy of the worst kind. He intended to inflict a sentence which might not be considered a lenient one, a sentence of twelve months’ imprisonment with hard labor.
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Frederick Stevens, Gaol photo sheet 6
Gaol Photo Sheet - Transcribed Details
Date when Portrait was taken: 15-7-1907
Name: Frederick Stevens
Native place: Sydney
Year of birth: 20-9-1883
Arrived Ship: BS
Trade or occupation
Religion: C of E
Education, degree of: R & W
Height: 5' 4½"
Weight On committal: 149
Colour of hair: Brown
Colour of eyes: Grey
Marks or special features: Small mole on back of left arm; scar on palm of left hand; scar on top of left thumb; scar on left forefinger. Brown scar on right thumb; scar on left side of head. Small mole on back of left shoulder; scar on left knee; second toe of left foot crossing the third.
(No. of previous Portrait ... )
|Where and When||Offence.||Sentence|
12 months H.L
1 Western Champion, (Parkes, NSW) Fri 26 Apr 1907, p. 10. Emphasis added.
2 Forbes Times, Wed 26 Jun 1907, p. 2. Emphasis added.
3 The Sydney Morning Herald, Thu 27 Jun 1907, p. 11.
4 Forbes Gazette, Fri 28 Jun 1907, p. 2. Emphasis added.
5 Forbes Times, Sat 29 Jun 1907, p. 2.
6 SRNSW: NRS2232, [3/5976], Goulburn Gaol photographic description book, 6 May 1907-17 May 1909, No. 2087, p. 40, R5121.