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1906, Tommy Connors - Unfit For Publication
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The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Wed 22 Aug 1906 1

POLICE COURT.
————
Saturday, August 18.
(Before Mr W[illiam George] Burton-Smith, PM)

A SERIOUS OFFENCE.

    Thomas Connors, an aboriginal, well-known in Dubbo, was charged with an unnatural offence.

    The accused, who had been arrested by Sergeant McKenzie and Constable Nolan on the 14th instant, was committed for trial at the Circuit Court to be held at Dubbo on Wednesday, the 26th of September.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Depositions for Tommy Connors 26 Sep 1906 Dubbo trial 2


(a) Town.

Letter from Bench of Magistrates at (a) Dubbo

 

transmitting Depositions

(b) Name in full of accused.

in the case Rex v(b) Tommy Connors

(c) Offence.

(c) Buggery

(d) Town.

Police Office(d) Dubbo

 

30th August 1906

 

Sir,
I have the honor, by direction of the Bench of Magistrates,
to transmit herewith the Depositions, and other documents in the

(e) Name of accused

case of (e) Tommy Connors

(f) “His” or “her”

who has been committed to take (f) his

(g) “Circuit Court,” or 
“Quarter Sessions.”

trial at the (g) Circuit Court

to be held at (h) Dubbo

on Wednesday

(h) Town where Court 
to be held.

the 26th day of September 1906

The accused is (i) confined in the Gaol at Dubbo. Bail not applied for

(i) “Is confined in the 
Gaol at …,” or “has been admitted to bail” (with full particulars as to sureties, addresses, occupations, and amounts, as set out in Recognizance.)

(k) As in Recognizance, both for Crown and defence, specifying also what witnesses gave evidence but were not bound over, with reason for omission.

The Witnesses bound over are (k) Angus McKenzie of Dubbo, Sergeant of Police. Geoffrey John Lees, of Dubbo Medical Practitioner. Athol Humphries by William James Howard of Dubbo, Hotelkeeper and William Beahan of Dubbo Cab Proprietor

 

(l) Short description to enable identification.

The Exhibits enclosed are (l) Nil

 

I have the honor to be,
Sir,
Your obedient Servant,

 

[Signed] L[ouis] A[ndrew] McDougall

 

Clerk of Petty Sessions

The Under Secretary,
Department of the Attorney General and of Justice.

N.B.– When a Police Constable acts as Clerk of Petty Sessions, this letter should be signed by one of the Committing Magistrates

4g 201-90


~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[Subpoena]

EDWARD THE SEVENTH, by the Grace of
God, of the United Kingdom of Great
Britain and Ireland, and of the British
Dominions beyond the Seas, King, Defender
of the Faith, Emperor of India.

 

New South Wales,
TO WIT.                   }

To: John Wilson Tattersalls Hotel, Groom; John Flood Snr, Fitzroy Street, Gaoler; Edward Vigors, Darling Street, Cabman, al of Dubbo.

    Greetings:–

We command you and every of you, firmly enjoining you, that laying aside all pretences and excuses whatsoever, you and every of you be and appear in your proper persons, before Our Justices assigned to hold Pleas before Us, on Wednesday the twenty sixth day of September instant next, by Nine of the Clock in the forenoon of the same day, at the Circuit Court in our State of New South Wales, in the Court House, situate in Dubbo
there to testify the truth, and give evidence, on the part of the Prisoner, before Our said Justices, touching a certain information to be preferred against

Tommy Connors

in the case of Sodomy
and that you so appear, from day to day, until the case is tried; and this you, or any, or either of you, are not to omit, under the penalty of One Hundred Pounds, to be levied upon your and every of your Goods and Chattels, Lands and Tenements, if you, or any, or either of you shall fail in the premises.

    Witness the Honorable Sir Frederick Darley, Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Our Justice of Our said Court this seventeenth day of September in the sixth year of Our Reign, and in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and six.

For the Prothonotary
WH Hazelton
Clerk of the Supreme Court

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

New South Wales Post and Telegraph.
State and Interstate Line.

Telegram from Dubbo office, addressed to Clerk of Peace Macquarie Street Sydney.

Rex versus Connors will instruct and assist defence.

[Signature illegible]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Tommy Connors defence witnesses required

HM Gaol Dubbo

15th September 1906

    The undermentioned Prisoners at this Gaol committed for Trial at the Circuit Court to be held at Dubbo on the 26th day of September 1906 have been duly warned, and require witnesses as below stated:–

No.

Name of prisoners

Offences

Witnesses’ names

Witnesses’ address

1

Tommy Connors

Sodomy

John Wilson (Groom)

Tattersalls Hotel, Dubbo

 

 

 

John Flood Snr (Gaoler)

Fitzroy Street, Dubbo

 

 

 

Edward Vigors (Cabman)

Darling Street, Dubbo)

Subpoenas issued 17 Sep 06

The Clerk of the Peace, Sydney

[Signed] A[rthur] G[eorge] Leer, Gaoler.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dubbo Gaol
20th August 1906

Vide GO [Government Order ?] 53, Para 8. 3

    The trial prisoner named in the margin (Tommy Connors) (particulars attached) is a full blooded aboriginal of New South Wales and in accordance with above GO will require counsel for his defence.

[Signed] AG Leer, Gaoler.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Particulars of Conviction and Prison History of Tommy Connors a prisoner in Dubbo Gaol.

Name of Prisoner: Tommy Connors
Born – Where: New South Wales, aboriginal; Born – When: -----
Convicted – Where: Dubbo Police Court
Convicted – When: 18.8.06.
Offence: Sodomy.
Sentence: Trial 26-9-06.
Magistrate: GB Smith, PM.

Previous Convictions.

Warren Police Court 31.3.93 Stealing 1 month hard labour. Dubbo Police Court 30.10.96 Indecent Language 3 days imprisonment. Dubbo Police Court 21.1.97 Obscene Language 2 months Hard Labour. Dubbo Police Court 10.3.99 Stealing 2 months hard labour. Dubbo Police Court 30.10.99 Expose person 14 days. Dubbo Police Court 7.6.00 obscene language 10/- or 3 days hard labour. Served. Narromine Police Court 6.12.00 expose person 6 weeks hard labour. Narromine 28.7.04 stealing 1 month hard labour. Dubbo Police Court 2.11.05 stealing 3 months hard labour.
Plus 17 charges of drunk or drunk and disorderly since 1893 all sentences served.

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Depositions of Witnesses.

New South Wales, Dubbo
TO WIT.                              }

The examination of Angus McKenzie of Dubbo in the State of New South Wales, Sergeant of Police; Geoffrey John Lees of Dubbo, Medical Practitioner; Athol Humphries of Dubbo, schoolboy and William Beahan of sub, cab proprietor in the said State, taken on oath this 15th day of August in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and six at the Dubbo Police Office, in the said State, before the undersigned, Police Magistrate for the District of Dubbo and one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the said State, in the presence and hearing of Tommy Connors who was charged this day before me for that he the said Tommy Connors on the 14th day of August in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and six at Dubbo in the said State, did commit the abominable crime of buggery with one Athol Humphries.

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Tommy Connors
(Aboriginal)

At Dubbo on 14th August, 1906 did commit the abominable crime of buggery with one Athol Humphries.

    On the application of the Police, the accused is remanded until Saturday, 18th August, 1906 ad 10 am.

    Bail not applied for.

[Signed] LA McDougall, JP.
Court of Petty Sessions, Dubbo, 15th August, 1906.

GAOL.

3

Angus McKenzie sworn states:– I am a Sergeant of Police at Dubbo.

    From something I was told about 8 pm on the 14th instant I went to Macquarie Street Dubbo in company with Constable Nolan in search of the accused. About 9.15 pm I found him in Macquarie Street. I said to him “Tommy I want you to come round to the lock up with me.” He said “What do you want me for?” I said “I want to ask you some questions and I’ll explain to you when I take you round there.” On arrival there I said to him “With whom are you working at present?” He said “He said with Ted Vigers, horse breaking.” I said to him “I’m going to ask you certain questions about a certain matter and whatever answers you make will be used against you as evidence in the event of my arresting you.” He said “All right.” I said “Where are you camping at present?” He said “In Howard’s back yard.” I said “Do you know a boy that lives at Howard’s that goes to school from there?” He said “No.” I said “When did you leave your camp?” He said “About six o’clock.” I said “Where were you from that time till the time I met you?” He said “Knocking about the street.” I again said “Do you feel sure that you were not in company with any boy here or at the back of Howard’s yard?” He said “No.” I then went to Howard’s and brought a boy named Athol Humphries to the lock up. In the charge room I said to him “Do you know this man?,” pointing to the accused. He said “Yes.” I said “Were you in company any time this evening or about 8 o’clock?” He said “Yes.” I said “Where were

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you?” He said “Down at the back of the yard at the hotel” – meaning Howard’s Tattersalls Hotel, where he is residing. I said “Whereabouts?” He said “Just alongside of the fence, where the breaking in sulky is.” I said “When you were with Tommy (meaning the accused) did anything take place?” He said “He caught hold of me round the middle, undid my braces, pulled down my pants and did something to me.” I said “Well, what did he do to you?” He said “He got his penus [sic] between my legs.” I said “Did he insert his penus into your body?” He said “Yes.” I said “While you were there with Tommy, did you see any other person?” He said “Yes, a little short man – a cabman – I believe it was Billy Beahan.” I said “Well, what took place then?” Pointing to the accused he said “He went away and I walked up the yard.” I said “Did you make any complaint then?” He said “No, Uncle was talking to some ladies and I felt afraid to say anything.” I then said to the accused “I am detaining you tonight and will charge you tomorrow morning.” On the morning of the 15th instant I charged the accused as he now stands charged. He said “Yes, I did it, I’ll plead guilty.” I said “What did you do?” He said “Oh, you know.” I said “Well, what was it you did?” He again said “You know.” I said “Well, as a matter of fact did you insert your penus into this boy’s body?” He said “Yes, and indicating about two inches of his first finger said “I got it in that far.” He also said then “I had drink, the drink did it.”

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I took the boy to Dr Lees surgery where he was examined on the night of the 14th instant.

    No questions by the accused.

[Signed] A McKenzie.

Taken and sworn at Dubbo, this 18th day of August 1906 before.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

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Geoffrey John Lees sworn states:– I am a duly qualified Medical Practitioner at Dubbo.

    On the night of the 14th instant about 10 minutes to 11, I examined a boy, Athol Humphries at my surgery. The boy in Court is the boy I examined. I removed the boy’s clothing and examined him for any marks of violence; also examined the rectum and anus for any secretion in order that an examination of the secretion might be made. I found neither bruises nor any other marks of violence about the region of the hips and buttocks nor did I find any secretion that could be examined microscopically, although I examined the interior of the rectum with an instrument. The boy is well developed and I should say about 17 years. It would be quite possible for an ordinary made man to insert his penus into the region of the rectum without leaving any marks of violence. It could have occurred in this instance providing no great force was used.

    By the accused: There are no bruised marks on the boy.

[Signed] Geoffrey Lees, MB Syd.

Taken and sworn at Dubbo, this 18th day of August 1906 before.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

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Athol Humphries sworn states:– I am a schoolboy at present residing with Mr Howard at Tattersalls Hotel at Dubbo.

    I have seen the accused at the hotel yard breaking in horses. He sleeps in an old hut at the back of the yard. I was in accused’s company about 7.30 pm on the 14th instant near the stables near the breaking in sulky. He took down my trousers. He first asked me if I would give him a pint of beer. I said “Yes, give me the money.” He said “No, thanks, I don’t drink beer.” He undid the front of my trousers and pulled me down and put his penus on me. I did not know what he was doing. He had hold of me round the waist and had my pants down. I felt his penus going between my legs. I felt it on me. I was standing up. His penus was erected. When he had hold of me round the waist, he just put his penus on me and moved backwards and forwards. The motion continued about 5 minutes. After he ceased the motion he still had hold of me. After a time I said to him “I have to go and see a boy about a meeting.” He walked straight away then. While he had my trousers down Billy Beahan walked past us. He could have seen what was taking place.

    By the accused: While you were doing it I told you to let me go as I wanted to see a boy. I tried to get away from you. I was down the yard before this and you took down my trousers. I did not undo your trousers.

    By the Bench: I went down the yard to obey a call of nature. The accused undid my trousers at the fly first and at the braces afterwards. He unfastened the buttons on his fly when he

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had hold of me. I did not like to try and get away for fear he would hit me. I will be 16 years of age in October. There was no emission of semen on his part. I was not wet at all.

[Signed] Athol Humphreys.

Taken and sworn at Dubbo, this 18th day of August 1906 before.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

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William Beahan sworn states:– I am a Cab Proprietor at Dubbo.

    On the night of the 14th instant I was going through the yard of the Tattersalls Hotel about 7.45 pm from Brisbane to Macquarie Street. I saw the accused and the boy Athol Humphries there. I saw them standing near a sulky. Connors seemed to have his arms round the boy’s body. I walked past them and came to the fence and had a look and the boy had his trousers down and the Blackfellow having connection with him. Just as I got to the fence they separated. I spoke to the boy. I was within 9 feet of them when I was at the fence. The boy was in a stooping position with his trousers down and the Blackfellow seemed to be on top of him. When they separated I saw the Blackfellow buttoning up his fly. I heard the Blackfellow say to the boy “Don’t say anything to anyone about this,” and patted him on the back. I reported the matter to Mr Howard the licensee of the hotel. I did not see any motion on the part of either of them. It was very dark.

    No questions by the accused.

[Signed] W Beahan.

Taken and sworn at Dubbo, this 18th day of August 1906 before.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

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(F. 2 – “Justices Act, 1902.”)

Statement of the Accused.

State of New South Wales, Dubbo
TO WIT.                                         }

Tommy Connors (hereinafter called the defendant) stands charged before the undersigned, Police Magistrate for the District of Dubbo and one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the said State, this 18th day of August in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and six for that he, the said defendant, on the 13th day of August 1906, at Dubbo in the said State, did commit the abominable crime of buggery with one Athol Humphries and the said charge being read to the said defendant, and the witnesses for the prosecution, Angus McKenzie of Dubbo, Sergeant of Police; Geoffrey John Lees of Dubbo, Medical Practitioner; Athol Humphries of Dubbo, school boy and William Beahan of Dubbo, Cab Proprietor being severally examined in his presence, and (the depositions of the said witnesses having been read to him), the said defendant is now addressed by me the said Justice, 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 against you in evidence at your trial; and you are also informed, and are to clearly understand, that you have nothing to hope from any promise of favour, and nothing to fear from any threat which may have been holden out to you to induce you to make any admission or confession of your guilt, but whatever you now say may be given in evidence against you upon your trial notwithstanding such promise or threat.” Whereupon the said defendant saith as follows:– “I have nothing to say.”

Taken before me and read over to the said defendant at Dubbo in the said State, the day and year first above mentioned.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

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G. 190.

New South Wales, Dubbo
TO WIT.                              }

REX.
versus
Tommy Connors

Offence,— Buggery

    The accused stands committed to take his trial at the next Court of Circuit Court to be holden at Dubbo, in the State of New South Wales, on the 26th day of September 1906. Bail allowed the accused in £ and two sureties in £ each, or one in £ Bail not applied for

[Signed] W Burton Smith, PM

JP.

Dated at the Police
Office, Dubbo
in the said State,
this eighteenth
day of August
AD 1906.
4g 416 - 88

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“Justices Act, 1902.”

Recognizance to give Evidence.

State of New South Wales, Dubbo
TO WIT.                                         }

Be it remembered, that on the 18th day of August in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and six Angus McKenzie a Sergeant of the Police Force, stationed at Dubbo in the State of New South Wales, Geoffrey John Lees of Dubbo in the said State, Medical Practitioner William Beahan of Dubbo in the said State, Cab Proprietor William James Howard of Dubbo in the said State, hotel keeper personally came before the undersigned, one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said State, and acknowledged themselves to owe Our Sovereign Lord the King the sum of

FORTY POUNDS EACH,

of good and lawful money of Great Britain, to be made and levied of their goods and chattels, lands and tenements respectively, to the use of our said Lord the King, his Heirs and Successors, if they the said before mentioned persons shall fail in the condition indorsed.

[Signed] Geoffrey Lees, MB Syd, W Beahan, A McKenzie, WJ Howard.

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first above mentioned at Dubbo in the said State, before me.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas one Tommy Connors was this day charged before W Burton-Smith, Esquire, Police Magistrate for the District of Dubbo one of His Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said State, for that at Dubbo aforesaid on the 14th day of August, 1906 he did commit the abominable crime of buggery with one Athol Humphries. If therefore the Athol Humphries of Dubbo appear at the Circuit Court Dubbo on Wednesday 26th September 1906 at nine AM and then and there give evidence upon an information to be preferred against Tommy Connors, then the Recognizance by William James Howard to be void and if they the before mentioned persons shall appear at the next Court of Circuit Court to be holden at Dubbo in and for the State of New South Wales, on Wednesday the 26th day of September 1906, 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 Tommy Connors for the offence aforesaid, to the jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said Tommy Connors.

Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[Signed] WG Burton-Smith, PM.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[On the depositions’ cover sheet is the following]

Circuit Court,
Dubbo
26th September 1906
AG’s No. 06/191
Depositions.
CS’s No. 2
Rex
v.
Tommy Connors
Unnatural offence
Committed at: Dubbo
on: 18th August 1906

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Court. Dubbo Circuit Court
Date. 26/9/06
Cor. Cohen Judge.
Plea. Not guilty
Verdict. Guilty of indecent assault
Judgment. 9 months hard labour Bathurst Gaol
PK White
Crown Prosecutor
Note.– In event of postponement, it should be stated whether accused admitted to bail.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Buggery
[Initial illegible]
21.8.06
Approved
CGW [Charles Gregory Wade]
23/8/06
Full List of convictions [see below] handed to Justice Cohen and in possession of his associate Mr de Lissa
28/9/06
[Initial illegible]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Justice HE Cohen’s notebook  4

10

September 26/06 Dubbo Assizes

White (PK)  submits his commission to prosecute.
Taylor (GH)     “        “   authority to act as Deputy Sheriff.
Wilson (for accused)
R v Connors (Tommy)
5 (1) Assaulting & carnally knowing Athol Humphries (buggery) on September 26/06 August 14/06
6 (2) Indecently assaulting Athol Humphries
Plea – Not Guilty.

    Geoffrey John Lees – Duly qualified medical practitioner, Dubbo. On the night of August 14 about 11 pm I examined a boy called Humphries. The boy called into Court – he is male – I examined at my surgery. I saw no marks of violence. I examined the rectum & anus – found no secretion. I examined about the buttocks. I examined from waist to lower part of thighs & found no semen. He seemed to be a normal boy. It is quite possible for a man to insert penis in region of rectum without leaving marks of violence. Assuming no force used it could b it is possible it could have been done in this case & (?) leave no marks.

    Cross-examined Wilson. I examined the interior of rectum with instruments & found nothing. With a man if of

11

prisoner’s age if intercourse had taken place I would expect to find secretion – either in rectum or on some part of body. If there had been no habitual practice, but penis inserted for 1st time, it would be more natural to find some sign of bruise or violence – if any resistance at all. I recognize I would say if the victim was passive there was no necessity for abrasion or bruising. I examined the boy at 10.50. I should expect to find some redness – very slight. There was nothing on the boy I could find that was not normal. The sphincter was a little lax but that may come from other causes. The sphincter is the band of muscular fibre at entrance to anus.

    Athol Humphries. Schoolboy at Tattersalls Hotel, Dubbo. I will be 16 next month. I know accused. On Before the night of August 14 I had seen him. I knew him before then. I had seen him about hotel. He sleeps in stable at back of hotel. On the night of August 14 I was at home. I went down the yard about 7.30 or 8 pm – to do a job for myself – I did it. I didn’t see accused till he came to me from round the stable while I was doing my business.

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The fly of my trousers was undone – I had been making water. When he came up, he took me by shoulders & asked me if I would give him a pint of beer. I said yes, give me the money & I’ll get it for you. He said no thank you, I don’t drink beer. He began working backwards & forwards at me. He didn’t undo my clothing then. He was working backwards & forwards at my legs, he was then at back of me. It I didn’t try to pull away then. He then put his hand round under my coat, undid my trousers at the back & pulled them down – be my body then uncovered just down below the posterior – one brace not unbuttoned. He was then at back of me. He put his penis between my be legs. I felt it on me – on my seat. I felt it in me he then had hold of me round the waist. I was then standing about a yard off the fence. I only felt the penis in me once. He put it between my legs then. This was going on for couple of minutes. I didn’t cry out. Billy Bean 7 walked past & as he walked up to me I run away from Tommy & pulled my trousers up – he still held me by shoulders. Billy B. (sneaked ?) round stable. After Bean walked passed

13

I asked accused if I could get away, I wanted to meet a see a boy about a meeting. He wanted me to lie on the ground or go in the stable. I asked him to let me go. I wanted to see the boy about the meeting. He said: I had better let you go & he tried to kiss me. I then went away. Accused walked one way & I the other. Billy Bean was under a buggy kneeling down. I went to bed afterwards – & after saw Sergeant McKenzie that night. I was taken to the doctor that night – Doctor Lees. McKenzie took me to the lockup that night, before I saw the doctor, to see accused. Certain things were said by Sergeant McKenzie to accused in my presence.

    Cross-examined Wilson. It was a dark night. I went near a breaking in sulky – I saw C accused breaking horses in there. I had larked with him before – the boys do – tease & catch hold of him. When he is ½ drunk they do it the more. When he came up to me I was just doing the trousers up. He seemed sober enough – He drinks beer. I was willing to get it then. I was wearing dark shirt. I didn’t see his penis at any time. I thought he was skylarking – & felt his penis in me. I felt it a

14

a little bit, in the middle of the opening. I first felt it between my cheeks pressing against me. It lasted about a couple of minutes moving backward & forwards. It lasted about 5 minutes altogether. I didn’t feel any emission or wetness. I didn’t see where Bean went to – I saw him under buggy when I left Tommy – I didn’t know him before. The penis wasn’t very stiff – not strongly erected. He seemed excited – more skylarking than anything else. I didn’t think he was making serious attempt. If I had thought so I would have called out. It was about 20 yards from 1st door of hotel. People were all up inside. I could have called out to Bean. He let me go when I said I wanted to see a boy about a meeting. He didn’t try any force on me.

    William Beehan. Cab proprietor at Dubbo. I know Humphries by sight & accused & Tattersalls Hotel. On night of August 14 last, Tuesday, I was going through the hotel yard between 8 & ¼ to 8. It was dark night, very dark. As I was going through At back of stable there is a saleyard – & a passage way – as I was going through I saw accused and Humphries alongside sulky. Accused seemed

15

to have Humphries by the body. Humphries was facing fence & the blackfellow behind him. He seemed taller than blackfellow. I can’t say anything as to the state of their clothing. I walked round stable & came back to fence. Boy had trousers down & blackfellow seemed to be committing offence on boy – from the position they were in. In about couple of seconds he let boy go – boy did pulled up his trousers & the blackfellow buttoned up his own trousers. The blackfellow patted boy on the back & said: don’t tell anybody – I got hold of boy & said something to him. I went to hotel & spoke to boy’s uncle.

    Cross-examined Wilson. At 1st I hardly knew what it was – I didn’t stop them because wasn’t sh sure. When I came back I looked through fence & they had just about finished their business. I wasn’t lying under the buggy. As near as I can recollect accused said: don’t tell anybody. I was examined before. I believe I said: “don’t tell anyone about this” I believe he said: “don’t say anything about it” I told Howard the hotelkeeper & boy’s uncle. I think I spoke to Cadell, to (Misabell ?), Cleaver. I don’t think I said before the blackfellow was having connection with the boy at that time. When I came

16

back I saw him having connection – he seemed to have hold of the boy – & I inferred it. From the position they were in I reckon they were having connection. The blackfellow seemed to have hold of the boy & to be (rasping ?) away at him – when I got back to the fence. I then went & told Mr Hearn. I reckoned it was Tommy – saw his face. I was as close to him when I walk (back ?) as to the man on sheriff officer’s seat.

    Angus McKenzie. Sergeant of Police at Dubbo. On night of August 14 I received information from Beehan, a little after 8 o’clock. I afterwards saw accused about 9.15 pm in Macquarie Street. I said: Tommy, I want you to come to lockup with me, I wish to ask you some questions. He said: what do you want. I said: I’ll explain the whole thing when you come round. He came with me. On arriving at lockup I said: Tommy, I’m going to ask you a few questions on a certain matter, & whatever answer you may make will be used against you in as evidence, in the event of my arresting you. What did he say. Objected to & not pressed. I charged him

17

on the following morning with committing the abominable crime of buggery on Athol Humphries at Dubbo. What did he say in answer – objected to. Question withdrawn.

    Cross-examined Wilson.

Crown case closes.

Defence.

    Tommy Connors examined by Wilson. I know Athol Humphries. I remember the evening police arrested me. I saw At I don’t remember seeing Athol Humphries that night. I not see him. I had had liquor that day – I didn’t ask him to get me beer. I didn’t see Beehan – I know him. I don’t remember skylarking with the boy that evening. I didn’t put my penis into his body.

    Cross-examined White. I know about penis. I wouldn’t do anything like that. I am a respectable man – I knew what I had to kiss the book for. I haven’t kissed it before. I’ve been about Dubbo, Narromine, Warren for 6 or 7 years – no other blackfellow about like me about here. I liv camp at back of Tattersalls for a long time. I saw McKenzie about 9 o’clock that night. I wasn’t sober. I was drunk all evening. Got sober in lockup. I spoke to the Sergeant.

18

He didn’t ask a question that I know of. I don’t remember he brought the boy to the cell. I don’t know what he said, I was so drunk. I don’t remember where he found me. I had no tea that day – I had breakfast. I was drunk all the while after breakfast.
Defence closes.
Case in reply.

    McKenzie recalled. When I arrested accused he was considerably under influence of liquor. He thoroughly understood the questions I asked him. I took Humphries to charge room where he was – accused seemed to understand all that was going on. He was quite sober the following morning.
8

Case in reply closes.
Wilson to jury 12.5 pm to 12.31
White to jury 12.31 “ to 12.40
I sum up 12.40 “ to 1.5 pm
Jury retire at 1.5 pm
  “   return at 3 pm
Verdict – Guilty of Indecent Assault, Not Guilty of higher offence.

19

Sentence – 9 months imprisonment with hard labour in Bathurst Gaol.

Tommy Connors antecedents


NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE.

Western District 

Dubbo Station.
20th August 189 1906.

REPORT relative to antecedents of:–

Name Tommy Connors

Offence Buggery

Committed for Trial at Dubbo Circuit Court

Date 26th September 1906

Constable Dunne, No. 7421 reports:–

This offender has been convicted as follows:–

Warren PC *

31 Mar 1893

Larceny

6 months [imprisonment] HL †

Dubbo PC

30 Oct 1896

Indecent behaviour

3 days

26 Jan 1897

Obscene language

2 months

19 Apr 1897

Drunkenness

7 days

16 Apr 1898

Drunk & disorderly

24 hours

2 Jan 1899

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 20/- or 4 days

23 Jan 1899

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 20/- or 7 days

10 Mar 1899

Larceny

2 months

3 Aug 1899

Drunkenness

Fine 20/- or 7 days

11 Oct 1899

Drunkenness

Fine 20/- or 7 days

30 Oct 1899

Expose person

14 days

12 May 1900

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 2/6 or 24 hours

14 May 1900

Drunk and disorderly

Fine 20/- or 7 days

7 Jun 1900

Obscene language

Fine 10/- or 3 days

Narromine PC

6 Dec 1900

Expose person

6 weeks

Dubbo PC

7 Jun 1901

Drunkenness

Fine 20/- or 7 days

27 Jun 1901

Drunkenness

Fine 20/- or 7 days

11 Apr 1902

Drunkenness

Fine 5/- or 24 hours

Narromine PC

28 Jul 1904

Larceny

1 month

Dubbo PC

6 May 1905

Drunkenness

Fine 10/- or 7 days

14 Sep 1905

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 20/- or 7 days

2 Nov 1905

Larceny

3 months

2 Feb 1906

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 20/- or 7 days

11 May 1906

Drunkenness

Fine 20/- or 7 days

18 Jun 1906

Drunk & disorderly

Fine 10/- or 48 hours

[Signed] PJ Dunne, Constable

* Police Court. † Hard Labour.


~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Wed 26 Sep 1906 9

CIRCUIT COURT.
————

    The Dubbo Circuit Court will be opened by Mr Justice Cohen today (Wednesday), the 26th instant. Mr Horace De Lissa being the Associate.

    The criminal cases awaiting trial are Thomas Connors, an aboriginal, charged with an unnatural offence, under committment [sic] by the Dubbo Bench, Arthur Beard, alleged perjury, from the Warren Bench, and Samuel Kennedy, alleged breaking and entering, from the Cobar Bench. There may also be several persons on bail.

    The civil cases have been postponed till Friday next, the 28th inst.

    Among the cases set down for hearing is one which Mr WB Wilkinson, the well-known land agent, claims £2000 damages for alleged slander, from Mr John Tink, of Benalong [sic].

    There will also be a divorce case, Reynolds v. Reynolds.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Dubbo Dispatch and Wellington Independent, Sat 29 Sep 1906 10

CIRCUIT COURT.
————
(Before His Honor, Mr Justice Cohen.)

    The sittings of the District [sic] Court were opened on Wednesday before Mr Justice Cohen. Mr White handed in his commission as Crown Prosecutor. Mr De Lissa filled the position of Judge’s Associate, and the Deputy Sheriff (Mr GH Taylor) occupied a seat on the Bench.

    Mr D Fitch was excused from attendance as a juror.

ASSAULT ON A BOY.

    Tommy Connors, a well-known half caste, was charged with committing an offence on one Athol Humphries on August 14 at Dubbo. A second count charged him with indecent assault.

    An order was made for the exclusion of families and young persons while the case was in progress.

    Mr Wilson, instructed by Mr McManamey, appeared for the defence.

    Dr Geoffrey J Lees deposed that he was, on Aug. 14, called on to examine a lad named Humphries; he found no marks of violence, or traces of an assault; it would have been possible for the act complained of to have taken place without leaving marks of violence.

    Witness was technically cross-examined by Mr Wilson.

    Athol Humphries, a boy of 16 years of age, gave evidence that on the night referred to accused accosted him in the yard of Tattersall’s Hotel, and took hold of him and interfered with his clothing. The witness then gave particulars of the assault, and of certain proposals made by the accused, who, he said, was practically sober at the time.

    He was cross-examined at considerable length by Mr Wilson.

    His Honor also examined him at some length, and expressed surprise that he had not indignantly left accused at the outset of the proceedings.

    William Beahan, cabman, deposed that on the night referred to in the case he was passing through the yard of Tattersall’s Hotel he saw accused apparently misconducting himself with the boy; he afterwards went round the back of the stables and watched them through the fence; Humphries; their clothing was disarranged; heard accused tell the boy not to tell anybody; witness reported the occurrence to the boy’s uncle at the hotel.

    Witness was severely cross-examined by Mr Wilson for the defence. He said the night was very dark, and the blackfellow left very shortly after his (witness’s) arrival, but he believed it was the accused who was with the boy.

    Police-Sergeant Mackenzie deposed to the arrest of accused. He stated that on taking accused to the lock-up he cautioned him that in the event of his being arrested his answers would be used against him.

    Mr Wilson objected that this was virtually a threat, and therefore the evidence in reply could not be received.

    The Crown Prosecutor said he would not press the question.

    Witness then deposed to arresting the accused. On the next morning he questioned the accused.

    Mr Wilson objected to the evidence, as accused would still be under the impression created in his mind by the remarks of witness on the previous day.

    The Crown Prosecutor replied.

    His Honor said the caution usually and properly administered was that “any statement you may make may be used in evidence against you,” whereas witness had stated that the evidence “will” be used. This made all the difference. Witness had also omitted the introductory words telling the witness that he need not answer the questions put unless he chose. Had he used the ordinary form of words he would have been safe. As it was, the remark might be considered perhaps a promise, perhaps a threat. The recent decision had made the line very difficult to draw.

    Several cases were consulted.

    Ultimately the Crown Prosecutor withdrew the question.

    This concluded the case for the Crown.

    For the defence.

    Accused, Tommy Connors, entered the box and gave evidence on his own behalf. He denied he was under the influence of liquor on the night in question; remembered meeting young Humphries, but did not recollect anything of the occurrence, and did not assault him as stated.

    He was briefly cross-examined by the Crown Prosecutor.

    Sergeant McKenzie was recalled to give evidence as to the state of accused when arrested.

    Mr Wilson addressed the jury for the defence.

    The Crown Prosecutor replied.

    His Honor summed up, and the jury retired shortly after 1 pm.

    At 3 pm the jury returned into the court with a verdict of guilty on the second count and not guilty on the major count.

    Prisoner was remanded for sentence.

- - - - -

    Mr TM Scott was excused from attendance as a juror.

————
Friday.

SENTENCES.

    The half-caste, Tommy Connors, found guilty of indecent assault, was called up for sentence. In reply to the usual question he intimated that he had nothing to say.

    Mr Wilson addressed the Court in mitigation of the sentence.

    His Honor sentenced prisoner to imprisonment in Bathurst gaol with hard labour for a period of nine months.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Sat 29 Sep 1906 11

DUBBO CIRCUIT COURT.
————
Wednesday, September 26.
(Before His Honor Mr Justice Cohen).

    Mr Horace De Lissa, Associate; Mr GH Taylor, Deputy Sheriff.

    Crown Prosecutor, Mr White.

    Mr Frith, of Narromine, made an application to be excused from service as a juryman, and his Honor granted the request.

————
ALLEGED UNNATURAL OFFENCE.

    Tommy Connors (an aboriginal) was charged with committing an unnatural offence at Dubbo on the 14th August. There was a second count of indecent assault.

    The Crown Prosecutor having informed His Honor that the hearing of the case would reveal some revolting details, the judge made the usual order that all females and persons under the age of 21 years should leave the court.

    Mr Wilson (assigned by the Crown), and instructed by Mr McManamey, defended the accused, who pleaded not guilty.

    Dr Lees having given evidence, the testimony of the boy was taken, after which W Beahan testified to ceratin facts that led to the police being informed.

    Sergeant McKenzie deposed to the arrest of the accused, and to charging him with the offence complained of. The witness said that he said to the accused, “I want to ask you a few questions. If I arrest you will you speak the truth? Whatever statements you make will be used against you.”

    Mr Wilson objected to the admission of this evidence on the ground that it constituted a threat.

    After argument His Honor pointed out the law on this point to the witness, and eventually any evidence arising out of the statements supposed to have been made was withdraw.

    This closed the Crown case.

    Tommy Connors gave evidence on his own behalf, and made a general denial of the charge. He said that he was drunk all the day he was arrested. He was too drunk to know what the sergeant said to him.

    To His Honor: He got the drink at the bar of a hotel.

    Sergeant McKenzie, who was recalled, said the accused, though under the influence of drink, was able to understand perfectly what he was charged with.

    Counsel having addressed the jury, His Honor summed up and the jury retired.

    The jury returned into court shortly before three o’clock with a verdict of guilty of indecent assault and the prisoner was remanded for sentence.

————
Friday, September 28.

SENTENCES.

    Tommy Connors, found guilty of indecent assault, was sentenced to nine months in Bathurst Gaol.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Tommy Connors, Gaol photo sheet 12

SRNSW: NRS2138, [3/6071], Darlinghurst Photograph description books, 1905-1907, No. 10179, p. 267, R5111. Emphasis added.


Gaol Photo Sheet - 
Transcribed Details

No. 10179
06.4420

Date when Portrait was taken: 9-10-1906

Name: Tommy Connors

Native place: Town unknown New South Wales

Year of birth: 1856

Arrived       Ship: BC
in Colony }   Year: BC

Trade or occupation
previous to conviction      } Laborer

Religion: R Cath

Education, degree of: Nil

Height: 5' 4½"

Weight     On committal: 147
in lbs     } On discharge:

Colour of hair: Black

Colour of eyes: Black

Marks or special features: Nil

(No. of previous Portrait ... ) 

CONVICTIONS

Where and When Offence. Sentence

Warren PC

Dubbo PC

ditto

ditto

ditto

ditto

ditto

ditto 

ditto

ditto

ditto
ditto 

ditto 

ditto 

Dubbo PC

Narromine PC

Dubbo PC

ditto 

Narromine PC 

Dubbo PC 

Dubbo PC

ditto 

ditto 

ditto 

ditto 

ditto 

Dubbo CC

31

30

26

19

16

2

23

10

3

11

30
30

12

14

7

6

7

27

28

11

6

14

2

2

11

18

29

3

10

1

4

4

1

1

3

8

10

10
10

5

5

6

12

6

6

7

4

5

9

11

2

5

6

6

1893

1896

1897

1897

1898

1899

1899

1899

1899

1899

1899
1899

1900

1900

1900

1900

1901

1901

1904

1902

1905

1905

1905

1906

1906

1906

1906

Stealing.

Indecent behaviour

Indecent language

Drunk

ditto

ditto

ditto

Stealing

Drunk

ditto

ditto
Expose person

Drunk

Drunk

Obscene language

Expose person

Drunk

ditto

Stealing

Drunk

Drunk

ditto

Stealing

Drunk & disorderly

ditto

ditto

Indecent assault on
a male person

6 months H.L.

3 days imprisonment

2 months H.L.

£1 or 7 days imprisonment – served

5/6 or 24 hours imprisonment – served

£1 or 4 days imprisonment – served

£1 or 7 days imprisonment – served

2 months H.L.

£1 or 7 days H.L. – served

£1 or 7 days H.L. – served

5/– or 24 hours imp
14 days imprisonment  |  Concu

2/6 or 24 hours H.L. – served

£1 or 7 days H.L. – served

10/- or 3 days H.L. – served

6 weeks H.L.

£1 or 14 days HL – served

£1 or 7 days HL – served

1 month H.L.

5/- or 24 hours H.L.–served

10/- or 7 days H.L.–served

£1 or 7 days H.L.–served

3 months H.L.

£1 or 7 days H.L.–served

£1 or 7 days H.L.–served

12/6 or 48 hours H.L.–served

9 months H.L.

 

 


1     The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Wed 22 Aug 1906, p. 2.

2     SRNSW: NRS880, [9/7111], Supreme Court, Papers and depositions, Dubbo, 1906, No. 191. Emphasis added.

3     Various searches were undertaken – NSW Parliamentary Library, NSW Parliamentary Hansard, SRNSW, Sydney University Law Library, &c – to obtain the full text of the above ‘GO 53’.

During October 2017 the author made a further enquiry regarding the above ‘Vide G.O. 53, para 8’ with the senior archivist at SRNSW. The response is as follows:

“It is obviously some sort of general/government order or perhaps a gaol order/regulation or directive that was set up to provide a form of legal aid to Aboriginal people.

Unfortunately I do not know specifically what it relates to. It was obviously well known as the gaoler was able to use the abbreviation G.O.

I noticed in a newspaper article of the time that Mr Wilson was (assigned by the Crown) to represent Tommy Connors.

We hold NRS 2088 General Regulations and Gaol Orders but this only covers the period 1849-74.

Whilst checking our guides and finding aides I noticed reference was also made to Prisons General Orders. Unfortunately I did not locate any for this time period.

In a search of the NSW Government Gazettes now available on Trove I located Prisons General orders 1901 Supplementary Gazette No. 394. It was set out in the correct format in that you could go to a numbered section and then a subsection but 53 did not match.

I also checked Corrective Services NRS 1853 Copies of General orders, 1914 [19/9843] which is printed and it does use G.O. for General order then a number once again it appeared to be set out in the correct format as above but once again it did not match.

I hope this may give you some ideas to pursue perhaps check with the NSW State Library if there is a history of the NSW Legal or prison system and its treatment of Aboriginal people.”

4     SRNSW: NRS5788, [2/2734], Judiciary, HE Cohen, J. Notebooks Circuit Court, 1895-1910, pp. 10-19. Emphasis added.

5     Mn: Sec 79 penal servitude for life or not less than 5 years

6     Mn: Sec 81 penal servitude for 5 years

7     aka Beahan and Beehan in the documents.

8     Mn: Accomplice . Attempt. Penetration

9     The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Wed 26 Sep 1906, p. 2. Emphasis added,

10   Dubbo Dispatch and Wellington Independent, Sat 29 Sep 1906, pp. 3, 4. Emphasis added.

11   The Dubbo Liberal and Macquarie Advocate, Sat 29 Sep 1906, pp. 3, 4. Emphasis added.

12   SRNSW: NRS2138, [3/6071], Darlinghurst Photograph description books, 1905-1907, No. 10179, p. 267, R5111. Emphasis added.