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1900, Harry Gordon - Unfit For Publication
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The Lismore Chronicle and Richmond River Courier, Fri 16 Feb 1900 1

LISMORE POLICE COURT.
Wednesday, February 14.

    Before Mr F[rederick] G[regory] Adrian, PM.

    Harry Gordon, in custody, was charged with assaulting and committing an unnatural offence on one Sidney Cockerill.

    Senior-Sergeant Tippett gave evidence as to arresting accused on Tuesday night, at 9.30, in the lavatory of the Tunstall Public School. Brought him to the Lismore lockup. Ask for a remand for eight days for production of evidence.

    Remanded for eight days.

    The Police Magistrate complimented Senior-Sergeant Tippett, and the police generally, for making such a prompt arrest in such a serious charge.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Norther Star and Richmond and Tweed Rivers Advocate, Sat 17 Feb 1900 2

LISMORE POLICE COURT.

    On Wednesday [14 Feb] before the PM (FG Adrian, Esq.)

    Henry Gordon, in custody, was charged with committing an unnatural offence.

    Senior-Sergeant Tippett gave evidence of having arrested accused in the lavatory of Tunstall Public School at 9.30 the previous night n the above charge. Brought accused to town and confined him in the lockup. On the application of the police accused was remanded for eight days.

    The Police Magistrate, in referring to the above case, warmly complimented Senior-Sergeant Tippett and the energetic body of police under him, for the prompt measures they had taken in the matter, and he said that their timely action in bringing the offender so soon to justice reflected the highest possible credit on a body of police of which Lismore might well be proud.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Lismore Chronicle and Richmond River Courier, Tue 20 Feb 1900 3

LISMORE POLICE COURT.
Monday, February 19.

    Before the PM.

    Harry Gordon, in custody, was charged with assaulting Sidney Cockerill, and committing a horrible offence.

    Senior-Sergeant Tippett’s evidence as to the arrest of accused was read over. When I saw accused at Tunstall I asked him if he came from Lismore. He said “yes.” Asked him if he was looking for a horse near the Gasworks. He said he was, in the company of a boy. Accused said he did not know the boy’s name. Brought the accused to the Lismore lockup. The next morning John Cockerill picked the accused out from among four other prisoners, and said “That is the man.” After John Cockerill had left the yard Sidney Cockerill came in and picked the accused out, saying “That’s the man.”

    Sidney Cockerill, 15 years of age, deposed: Saw accused last Monday. He told me if I looked for a horse he would give me 5s. Met him next morning, and we went looking for the horse. Went past the Gasworks. Met Jack Mahoney just after I passed the Gasworks. Accused asked Mahoney if he saw a brown horse branded JP. Mahoney said he did not take much notice. There was scrub on both sides of the road. Accused said the horse might be in there. Went into the scrub about 50 yards, when I said, “I won’t go any further.” Then came out of the scrub. We then went up on the hill to look for the horse. The hill is covered with thick lantana. Went about 150 yards from the road. Came back to the road, and accused came after me. Came out near Crook’s house. Accused said the horse might be on the river bank. Both went down to the river bank. (Witness here described what occurred.) When I got away I ran over to Crook’s house. Was crying when I got there. Mrs Cook was at the door, and I told her something, also Mr Howard. Saw accused in the lockup the next morning with some other prisoners, and picked him out from among them. Have no doubt that he is the man who assaulted me. Met him near Lebon’s after the assault, when he offered me some fruit.

    To accused: You said I could go into town, and you would wait for me at the bridge until I came back. Never said anything about a rail being down in a paddock. When you saw me about 1 o’clock you never asked me where my father was. You did not say you were going to my father’s house.

    John Thomas Cockerill, [see Martin Kelly, 1862 and see John Thomas Cockerell, 1878] father of the previous witness, deposed: Saw the accused before. On the morning of 13th instant at 9.30 he came to my house. Accused said, “I have lost a horse branded WP [sic], will you allow your little boy to go and look for him for me. I will give him 10s if he finds him, and 5s if he is not successful. I have a very nice quiet pony, bridle and saddle, he can ride to go and look for the other one.” I said, “As you know the pony so well yourself wouldn’t it be better if you went and looked for him. I said 10s a day is not easily earned.” Accused said, “I receive 10s a day, and may lose more than one day.” I said, “What may be your employment.” Accused said, “I am a bridge-worker, and have come up to do the Lismore bridge. As soon as I finish this I go on with the Casino bridge.” I let the boy go with him to look for the horse. That was about 9.30 in the morning. About 11.15 my boy came home again. He told me something. The boy was crying, very nervous, and trembling. From information received from the boy I examined him.

    Dr AF Parker gave evidence as to examining the boy. Could find no marks or bruises or injuries of any kind.

    John Mahoney, 13 years of age, deposed: Remembered 13th instant. Saw Sidney Cockerill and accused together on that date, when I was coming to school. Met them at the culvert below the Gasworks. Accused stopped me and asked if I had seen a bay pony. Said I had not taken any notice.

    Sidney Cockerill, recalled: Remembered riding to Crook’s house. Was about 50 yards away from Crook’s house. It took me about 2 minutes to get there. Told Mrs Crook something. Then ran to Howard’s house after being at Crook’s, about 100 yards away. Mrs Crook followed me there.

    To accused: Crook’s house is on the side of the road.

    Emma Crook deposed: Live on a farm with my husband on the Gundurimba road. Remember the 13th instant between 10 and 11 o’clock: was in the paddock. Saw a man and a boy coming from Lismore. Cockerill was the boy. Don’t know who the man was. They went into the top paddock. Saw them about half way up the hill. Then saw them on the river bank. They were going in the direction of the scrub. Next saw the boy running up to the place from the direction of the scrub. The boy was very excited and crying, and holding his trousers up. The boy said, “oh, there’s a man in the scrub trying to kill me. He was jumping on my chest. He is after me now.” I told the boy to go to Howard’s. I was afraid the man might come to the house. The boy ran to Howard’s and I followed him.

    Michael Howard deposed: Remembered the 13th inst. Saw a man and a boy between 9 and 10 o’clock. They were just coming from the scrub on the river bank. The boy was first between a walk and a run, and the man was after him. The boy came to my house. About 3 minutes elapsed from the time I saw the boy till he reached the house. The boy was crying, and in an excited condition. Cockerill and I walked up to the Gasworks, and he told me something. He led me to believe he had been grossly assaulted.

    To the accused: Mrs Cook followed the boy to my place.

    Accused reserved his defence, and was committed to take his trial at the Circuit Court to be holden at Grafton on 23rd April.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Norther Star and Richmond and Tweed Rivers Advocate, Wed 21 Feb 1900 4

LISMORE POLICE COURT.

    On Monday [19 Feb], before the Police Magistrate.

    Henry Gordon, on remand, was charged with committing an unnatural offence.

    Sergeant Tippett deposed: The evidence given by me on Wednesday last as read is correct. Previous to arresting accused on the 13th inst. I asked him his name. He replied Harry Gordon, and that he came from Lismore. Asked if he was looking for a horse with a lad near the Gasworks, and he said he was. Asked if he knew the lad’s name, and he replied “No.” Then arrested him and brought him to Lismore lockup. The following morning I called upon prisoner to stand out among four other prisoners. John Cockerill, the lad’s father, then came and pointed to the accused and said “That’s the man.” The lad Sidney Cockerill also came into the yard and pointed the accused saying “That’s the man.”

    Sidney Cockerill, 15 years old, deposed: I first saw the accused in front of Mr Syer’s shop last Monday about 6 pm. He asked me if I would find his horse, and I sais “Yes.” He said he would meet me here to-morrow morning, and that he would give me 5s. if I found it. Next morning accused came to my father’s place about 9 o’clock. Accused said he would give me 10s. if I found the horse, and 5s. if I was unsuccessful. He also promised to lend me a pony and saddle to look for it. My father said I could go. Accused and I then left. Accused said, “We will go down past the Gas Works.” On the way we met Jack Mahoney, and accused asked the later if he saw his horse, and was told no. We went along the road where the scrub is on both sides. Accused said the horse might be in the scrub, and he went in and I followed. After going a few yards I said I was not going any further, and came back to the road and accused also. After going to a hill near Crook’s place we went down the river bank through thick scrub. (Witness here stated what occurred.) I ran away crying to Mrs Crook’s house, and told her something. Also saw Mr Howard. I afterwards saw accused at the lockup and picked him out from other men. Have no doubt accused is the man who assaulted me. After the assault I and another boy met accused near Lebon’s, when accused offered me fruit.

    Witness was cross-examined by accused.

    John T Cockerill gave evidence gave evidence as to accused coming on the 13th inst. and asking if he (witness) would allow his son to look for a horse, and promising the lad 10s if he found it. Had a conversation with accused, who represented himself as a bridge worker. I allowed my boy to go with accused to look for the horse. About 11.15 the boy returned crying. He was very upset, and from something he told me I sent for the police.

    Dr AF Parker, acting Government Medical Officer, deposed to examining the lad. Did not find any injuries of any kind.

    John Mahoney, 13 years, gave evidence as to meeting accused and the lad Cockerill near the Gas Works on the morning of the 13th. Accused if I saw his horse, and I said I had not.

    Sidney Cockerill, recalled, deposed: From where the assault took place to where Mrs Crooks resides is about 50 yards, and it took me about two minutes to run to the house. To Mr Howard’s it is about 100 yards.

    Emma Crook deposed: Between 10 and 11 am on the 13th I was in my paddock at our farm, beyond the Gas Works. I saw a man and a boy on the road coming from Lismore. The boy before the court is the one, but am not sure of accused being the man. They first went into the top paddock on the hill, then to the river bank. Some minutes afterwards the boy came running up to my house from the scrub. He was very excited, and said, “Oh, there’s a man trying to kill me in the scrub, and he’s after me now.” I told the boy he had better go to the next neighbour, Mr Howard. He did so and I followed.

    Michael Howard, farmer deposed: Live on the other side of the Gas Works. Last Tuesday morning saw the boy and a man in the scrub. There were coming from the river towards the scrub. Afterwards saw the boy running out of the scrub followed by the man. The boy before the Court is the one that came to my house. The time that elapsed from my seeing the boy run from the scrub till he came to my house would be about three minutes. He was crying and I went to Lismore with the boy. From what he told me consider he had been grossly assaulted. This concluded the evidence, and the accused, who reserved his defence, was committed to take his trial at the Circuit Court, to be held at Grafton on April 23. The several witnesses were also bound over to appear on that date.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Depositions for Harry Gordon 23 Apr 1900 Grafton trial 5

 


(a) Town.


Letter from Bench of Magistrates at (a) Lismore

 

transmitting Depositions

(b) Name in full of accused.

in the case Regina v(b) Harry Gordon

(c) Offence.

(c) Buggery

 

(d) Town.

Police Office(d) Lismore

 

19th February 1900

 

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) Harry Gordon

(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) Grafton

on Monday

(h) Town where Court 
to be held.

the 23rd day of April 1900

The accused is (i) Confined in the gaol at Grafton

(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) WJ Tippett; S Cockerill; JT Cockerill; AF Parker; J Mahoney; E Crook and M Howard.

 

(l) Short description to enable identification.

The Exhibits enclosed are (l) Nil

 

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

 

 

[Signed] Andrew T[hompson] Cochrane

 

Clerk of Petty Sessions

The Secretary,

Attorney General's Department.

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

 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE.

Lismore Station.
19th February 1900

Northern District,

Report relative to antecedents of:–
Name: Harry Gordon
Offence: Abominable crime of buggery 46 Vic. No. 17 Section 59
Committed for Trial at: Grafton Circuit Court
Date: 23rd April 1900

    Senior Sergeant Tippett reports:– That above accused is 30 years of age, 5 feet 5 inches high, dark complexion, dark brown hair and moustache otherwise clean shaved. Roman nose minus left eye, native of Dundee Scotland. Has been in New South Wales 4 or 5 years. The above accused came to Lismore a few days before the alleged offence took place. He has a letter in his possession from the Australian Workmen’s Union, Bourke Branch, also Certificate of Discharge signed Percy John Doyle, Manager, Muckerawa Station, Goodooga. He also states that he has a brother named Robert Gordon who is a member of the New South Wales Police Force and who was stationed in Sydney some 3 or 4 years ago. The Certificate of Discharge in accused’s possession is signed H Jordan but he states his proper name is Gordon. There is nothing further known of accused in this district.

[Signed] William J Tippett, Senior Sergeant.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

CM1900:434.

Police Department,
Superintendent’s Office, Northern District
February 23rd 1900.

Re Harry Gordon under committal for trial for unnatural offence

Memo Perhaps if some careful inquiries were made of offender’s brother said to be a member for the New South Wales Police Force the character and antecedents of accused could be learned.

[Signed] (Thos Guiness ?), Superintendent.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

CRIMINAL OFFENCE.
APPREHENSION OF FURTHER INFORMATION.

Northern District. 

Lismore Station.

Reference to previous reports or notice in Police Gazette, if any: nil.
Offence: Buggery. 46 Vic. No. 17 sec 59
Offender’s name: Harry Gordon
Full particulars: Charged with committing an unnatural offence to wit the abominable crime of buggery with Sidney Cockerell (15) has been arrested by Senior Sergeant Tippett and Constable Rossiter, Lismore Police. Committed for trial at Grafton Circuit Court. Bail not applied for.
[Signed] William Tippett, Senior Sergeant.
Lismore, 19.2.00

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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

Depositions of Witnesses.

New South Wales, Lismore
TO WIT.                                      }

The examination of William James Tippett of Lismore in the Colony of New South Wales, Senior Sergeant of Police; Sydney Cockerill of Lismore living with father; John Thomas Cockerill of Lismore naturalist; Arthur Frederick Parker of Lismore, Medical Practitioner; John Mahoney of Lismore living with father; Emma Crook of Lismore, married woman and Michael Howard of Gundurimba, in the said Colony, dairyman taken on oath, this 19th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred at Lismore 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 Harry Gordon who is charged this day before me, for that he the said Harry Gordon, on the 13th day of February 1900 at Lismore in the said Colony, did assault Sidney Cockerill and then wickedly and against the order of nature carnally know the said Sidney Cockerill and did commit with the said Sidney Cockerill the abominable crime of buggery.

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Lismore Court of Petty Sessions
14th February 1900

    Harry Gordon (aged 30 years)

    That he did on the 13th February 1900 at Lismore assault Sidney Cockerill and then wickedly and against the order of nature carnally knew the said Sidney Cockerill, and did commit with the said Sidney Cockerill the abominable crime of buggery.

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This deponent William James Tippett on his oath, saith as follows:–

    I am a Senior Sergeant of Police stationed at Lismore.

    I arrested the accused Harry Gordon yesterday 13th instant at 9.30 pm at the Turnstall Public School. He was camped in the lavatory. I charged him with having that day assaulted Sidney Cockerill a youth 15 years of age and committed upon him an unnatural offence the crime of buggery. He replied “I am innocent of the charge.” I brought him to Lismore and confined him in the lock up. He has been fully identified by two

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persons. I now ask for a remand for 8 days for production of evidence.

    To accused: I did not see you in court yesterday or on the road before I arrested you. I did not pass you on the road coming into town. You said you were lying down in the bush when I passed.

[Signed] William J Tippett.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 14th day of February 1900 before me.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

    Remanded for 8 days for the production of evidence.
Lismore 14th February 1900.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

4

This deponent William James Tippett on his oath, saith as follows:–

    I am a Senior Sergeant of Police stationed at Lismore.

    Evidence read is sworn and is true. Previous to arresting the accused on the 13th instant I said to him “What is your name?” He replied “Gordon.” I said “What is your Christian name?” He replied “Harry Gordon.” I said “Where did you come from today?” He said “I came from Lismore.” I said “Were you with a lad today looking for a horse down near the gasworks?” He replied “Yes, I was

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with a lad looking for a horse near the gasworks.” I said “Do you know that boy’s name?” He replied “No, but his father knows he was with me looking for the horse.” I then arrested him and brought him to Lismore as I have stated. The following morning, on the 14th instant I caused the prisoner to stand up in the lock up yard in a row with 4 other prisoners. John Cockerill came into the yard, pointed to the accused and said “That is the man.” John Cockerill is father of the boy Sidney Cockerill. After

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Cockerill left the yard Sidney Cockerill came into the yard, pointed to the accused and said “That is the man.”

    Accused: I did not see you that day before I arrested you.

[Signed] William J Tippett.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900 before.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent Sidney Cockerill on his oath saith as follows:–

    I am 15 years of age and reside at Gerards Hill with my father. I know the accused. I first saw him in front of (Syers ?) at about 6 o’clock in the evening last Monday. He said to me “Will you look for a horse for me?” I said “Yes.” He said “It is a brown one branded JP.” He then said “I will meet you here tomorrow morning.” He said “I will give you 5/- if you find it or not.” He then went away. I met my mother and told her something. I next saw the accused at

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my father’s place at Gerards Hill on Tuesday morning at about 9 am. He was sitting down talking to my father. I went away for milk. When I came back he was still there. A little after he came outside and said to me “If you don’t find the horse I will give you 5/- and if you do I will give you 10/- and I will give you a pony to ride to go and look for it.” I said “All right,” and my father said “You can go.” Accused and I then started. We went down the road past the bridge near Hansen. He said “We will go down this way towards the gasworks.” We went along and down the Gundurimba

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Road past gasworks. We met Jack Mahoney just after passing the works. Accused said to him “Did you see a brown horse branded JP?” Mahoney said he did not take much notice. We went on further till we were between the scrub. The accused said “He might be in here.” He went into scrub and I followed him in about 50 yards. I then said “I am not going in here.” I turned round and came out onto the road again. Accused came along with me. We then went up the hill on opposite side to look for horse. There is thick scrub and lantana on it. I went to top of hill about 150 yards from road. He was

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going into scrub. I came down onto road. He followed me. This was near Crook’s house. The accused said “He might be on the river bank.” There is also scrub there. We went down and crossed a gully. He crossed lower down than I did. He looked in the lantana bushes and came out again. We went further in, I was close alongside of him. He caught hold of me, laid his coat down on the ground. He undid my pants, laid me on the ground with my face towards the ground. He said “If you cry I will smack your bottom.” He took a piece of grease out of his pocket. He rubbed it on my bottom. He took out his person, he had

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his fly undone. He spat on his hands and rubbed his person. He put his knees on me just behind my knees. He then put his person in my bottom. I felt it. It hurt me. I cried a little. He said “I will slap you if you don’t stop.” He then put his person in me again, right in my bottom. He got up and buttoned up his trousers. I ran away with my trousers hanging down. He ran a little way after me. I ran to Mrs Crook’s house. She was standing there when I got there. I was crying. I told her something. I also saw Mr Howard and told him something. I saw the accused again that afternoon

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I saw him the next morning in the lock up with other prisoners and picked him out. I am sure it is the man, I met him near (Lehers ?) after the assault. He offered me some fruit. Jim Fitzgerald was with me. The accused said “Here is something for you.” I then went up town.

    Accused: When we got to main road you said “You can go to town if you like and I will wait at bridge for you till you come back.” I then said “I don’t want to go to town.” I did not tell you where a paddock was with pails down where a horse might get in. When I saw you in town between 12 and 1

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I never mentioned my father’s name. You did not say you were going to see him.”

[Signed] Sidney Cockerell.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900 before.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent John Thomas Cockerill on his oath saith as follows:–

    I am a naturalist and reside at Lismore. Sidney Cockerill is my son and is 15 years next birthday. I have seen the accused before. He came to my house on 13th instant about 9 in the morning. He said “I have lost a pony branded WP. Will you allow your little boy to go and look for it with me? I will give him 10/- if he finds it and 5/- if he is not successful. I have a very nice quiet little pony, bridle and saddle he can ride in to go and look for the other one.” I said “As you know the

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pony so well yourself would it not be better for you to look for it? 10/- a day is not easily earned.” He said “I receive 10/- a day wages and would be certain to lose one day, perhaps more.” I said “What might be your employment?” He said “I am a bridge worker and I have come up to do the Lismore Bridge. As soon as I finish it I then go on to Casino Bridge.” I then let my boy go with this man a little over half past nine. The boy came home about half past eleven and made a complaint to me. He was crying and very nervous and trembling. From what he told me I examined him. I divided his

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[buttocks] at the thighs. I found my hands covered with what I first thought was grease but afterwards believed in was a man’s semen. The boy’s anus was very red. I recommended a wash and went for the Police.

    No questions.

[Signed] JT Cockerill.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900 before.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent Arthur Frederick Parker on his oath, saith as follows:–

    I am a legally qualified Medical Practitioner at Lismore and reside at and am acting for the Government Medical Officer in his absence. The boy Sidney Cockerell was brought to Dr Bernstein’s surgery by Police. I there examined him. This was on the 13th February in the forenoon. I stripped the lad and examined him carefully but could find no marks of bruises or injuries of any kind. The lad told me was not hurt anywhere or in any way. I don’t think it would be possible for a man to insert his penis in the penis in the boy’s person without

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causing injury although greased. Washing the part with warm water would tend to bring it back to its normal condition.

    Bench: If the man had his penis only between the boy’s buttocks it would not cause any injury.

[Signed] Arthur F Parker, MD.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900 before.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent, John Mahoney on his oath, saith as follows:–

    I am thirteen years of age and reside at below the gasworks with my father on a farm. I met the accused and Cockerill on the road last Tuesday as I was coming in to school. Near a little culvert just past the gasworks at end of scrub. He stopped me and said “Did you see a brown pony, a bit stouter than that?” I said “I did not take much notice, but it might be on Gundurimba Flat.” This was between 9 and 10 am.

[Signed] John Mahoney.

Taken and sworn Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900 before.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent Sydney Cockerill recalled on his oath, saith as follows:–

    Bench: After the assault I ran to Crook’s house which is about 50 yards away. It took me about 2 minutes to get there. I told Mrs Crook something at once. I then went to Howard’s house. Mrs Crook followed me. Howard is about a hundred yards from Crook’s. I saw Howard there and told him something.

    Accused: The house is straight from where we were.

[Signed] Sidney Cockerell.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900.
before [Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent Emma Crook on his [sic] oath, saith as follows:–

    I am a married woman and live with my husband below the gasworks on Gundurimba Road. Last Tuesday the 13th instant I was standing outside the house. We live on the Gundurimba side of scrub. I was in the paddock. I saw a man and boy coming from Lismore. Cockerill was the boy but I was not close enough to the man to be sure. They went into our top paddock up the hill. I then saw them on the river bank a few minutes after going in direction of the scrub. I put some horses out, put up the rails and returned

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to the house. Cockerill came running up to the place from the direction of the scrub to the back gate. He was very excited and crying. He was holding his trousers up. He said “Oh, there is a man in the scrub trying to kill me, jumping on my chest. He is after me now.” I was afraid and told the boy to go to the next neighbour. He ran down to Howard’s and I followed him. I saw him there. The boy was trembling.

    No questions.

[Signed] Emma Crook.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900.
Before [Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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This deponent Michael Howard on his oath, saith as follows:–

    I am a dairy man and reside on river bank between Lismore and Gundurimba. There is a scrub on the other side of gasworks on both side of the road. I live just the other side of the scrub, the second farm. Last Tuesday about 9.15 am I saw a man and a boy there. They were going from river to road, just leaving the scrub. The boy was between a walk and a run. The man was coming after him. After a while I was changing my clothes. Not 3 minutes later the boy came to my house. He was in

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an excited condition and crying. My wife and her sister asked him some questions. I came in to town with him as far as gasworks. On the way he told me the man took him into the scrub and got hold of him. Knocked him down and started kissing him and pulled his pants off and used grease on him. He led me to believe that he had been grossly assaulted.

    Accused: Mrs Crook followed the boy to my place.

[Signed] Michael Howard.

Taken and sworn at Lismore, this 19th day of February 1900.
Before [Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

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

Statement of the Accused.

New South Wales, Lismore
TO WIT.                                      }

Harry Gordon stands charged before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the Colony aforesaid, this 19th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and for that he, the said Harry Gordon on the 13th day of February 1900 at Lismore, in the said Colony, assault Sidney Cockerill and wickedly and against the order of nature carnally know the said Sidney Cockerill and did commit with the said Sidney Cockerill the abominable crime of buggery and the examinations of all the witnesses on the part of the prosecution 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 of 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, notwithstanding such promise or threat; and the said charge being read to the said Harry Gordon, and the witnesses for the prosecution William James Tippett, Sidney Cockerill, John Thomas Cockerill, Arthur Frederick Parker, John Mahoney, Emma Crook and Michael Howard being severally examined in his presence, the said Harry Gordon 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 Harry Gordon saith as follows:– “I reserve my defence.”

Taken before me, at Lismore, in the said Colony, the day and year first above mentioned.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

26

 G. 190.

REGINA.
versus
Harry Gordon

Offence,— Buggery
    The accused stands committed to take his trial at the next Circuit Court of to be holden at Grafton, on the 23rd day of April 1900. Bail allowed the accused in £ and two sureties in £ each, or one in £ not applied for.

[Signed] FG Adrian, PM

JP.

Dated at Lismore Police
Office, Lismore
this nineteenth
day of February
AD 1900
4g 416 - 88

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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

Recognizance to give Evidence.

New South Wales, Lismore
TO WIT.                               }

Be it remembered, that on the 19th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred William James Tippett a Senior Sergeant of the Police Force, John Thomas Cockerill of Lismore in the Colony of New South Wales, naturalist, Arthur Frederick Parker of Lismore in the said Colony, Medical Practitioner and Michael Howard of Gundurimba in the said Colony, dairy man 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.

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first above mentioned, at Lismore in the said Colony, before me.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas Harry Gordon was this day charged before Frederick Gregory Adrian Esquire one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, with buggery.

If therefore, they the before mentioned persons shall appear at the next Circuit Court to be holden at Grafton in and for the Colony of New South Wales, on the 23rd day of April 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 Harry Gordon for the offence aforesaid, to the jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said Harry Gordon.

Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[No signature]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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

Recognizance to give Evidence. 6

New South Wales, Lismore
TO WIT.                                  }

Be it remembered, that on the 19th day of February in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred John Thomas Cockerill of Lismore a naturalist, Denis Mahoney of Lismore in the said Colony, road contractor 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 Sidney Cockerill and John Mahoney and Emma Crook shall fail in the condition indorsed.

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first above mentioned, at Lismore in the said Colony, before me.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas Harry Gordon was this day charged before Frederick Gregory Adrian Esquire one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, with buggery if therefore, the before mentioned Sydney Cockerill, John Mahoney and Emma Crook shall appear at the next Circuit Court to be holden at Grafton in and for the Colony of New South Wales, on the23rd day of April 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 Harry Gordon for the offence aforesaid, to the jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said Harry Gordon.

Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[Signed] FG Adrian, PM.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[On the depositions’ cover sheet is the following]

Circuit Court
Grafton
23rd April 1900
AG’s No. 35
Depositions.
CS’s No. 3
Regina
v.
Harry Gordon
Unnatural offence
Committed at: Lismore
on 19th February 1900.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Grafton Circuit Court
23rd April 1900
Cor. Pring A[cting] J[udge]
Guilty of attempt to commit Sodomy
Sentence 5 years penal servitude

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Feb 13/00 at Lismore
Buggery
[Initialled] C[harles] G[regory] W[ade, Crown Prosecutor]
28/2/00
[Initialled] B[ernard] R[ingrose] W[ise, QC, AG]
9.3.00

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Justice RD Pring’s notebook   7  8

20

[Grafton Circuit Court, 23 April 1900]

Regina v Harry Gordon. Buggery on Sidney Cockerell 9 at Lismore on 13 February 1900.
Prisoner is undefended.

    Sidney Cockerell. I am 15 years old & live with my father at Lismore. I first saw [prisoner] 10 on Monday 12 February 1900 about 6 pm in Lismore in front of Syers the bookseller. He said “Will you look for a horse?” I said “All right.” He said “If you find it I’ll give you 10/- & if you don’t I’ll give you 5/-.” I said “All right” & then we parted in opposite directions. It was half dark at the time: I did not go to look for the horse then.

21

He said if I found the horse to meet him at the same place next morning. He said it was a bay horse branded JP. I did not look for horse that night. Next morning I saw prisoner at my father’s house about 8.45. He was talking to my father. I went a message for my mother & came back; prisoner was still talking with my father. He asked my father to let me go to look for the horse; my father said I could go. Just before that he asked me to go; he said he would get me a nice quiet horse to ride & would give me 10/- if I found it & 5/- if I didn’t.

22

I then went with him – this was about 9 am. We went down towards the gasworks – walking. We met Jack Mahoney & prisoner asked him if he had seen a bay horse marked JP. We went beyond the gasworks keeping on the road through the scrub. Prisoner spend went into the scrub on the right hand side saying “He might be in here.” I followed him about 50 yards. Prisoner then stopped; he did not speak but I said “I wasn’t going any farther.” I came back towards the road & he followed me; we went along the road & then a little bit off it up a hill covered with thick lantana. We went about 150 yards up the hill away from the road.

23

I came back down the hill on to the road; prisoner came down after me. Mrs Crook’s 11 house is near there; I could see it. Prisoner said the horse might be down by the river bank – on the left side of the road. We left the road & went down towards the river; country there is last fairly level & covered with bush and lantana; there is a creek there which we crossed; we went in the scrub a little way; he caught hold of me and undid my pants. I was crying a little & he said “If you don’t stop crying I’ll smack your bottom.” he put me down with my face downwards.

24

He put his knees on me just under my knees and undid the fly of his trousers. He pulled out his person and spat on his hands & rubbed it and then he lay on top of me – I was crying – and put his person in me – it hurt me – I tried to get up; he took it out & put it in again & then got up I got & did up his fly. I ran away. I went to Mrs Crook’s & saw her standing at her door; I was holding my trousers up. I told Mrs Crook something & then I went to Mr Howard’s. I saw Michael Howard and I said something to him. I saw Mrs Howard & said something to her. I saw Mr Howard at his own (place ?) 12

25

I came with Mr Howard to the gasworks & then went home. I saw my father & told him something. He took my pants off & then my mother bathed my bottom. I saw prisoner again that day but did not speak to him. I next saw him at the police station; I pointed him out.

    Cross-examined by prisoner. I did not say where I lived when you first saw me. My father did not ask me to go with you. I never said anything about a rail being down. I saw him you about 12.30 when I was going to my father’s house after having been to the doctor but I did not say anything to you about the horse.

26

    Emma Crook. I know Sid have seen Sidney Cockerell (identifies him). Saw him on 13 February. I was in a paddock & I saw him on the road with a man. I did not recognise the man. The paddock was near our house. They were coming down the road from direction of Lismore – between 9 & 11. I saw them going in our top paddock about half way up a high hill. I saw them again on the river bank in our lower paddock on opposite side of road to the hill. They made towards the scrub. It is a pretty thick scrub. I went to first

27

turned 3 horses out of the paddock which took me 10 minutes or a quarter of an hour & then I went back to the kitchen and 5 or 10 minutes after the boy Cockerell came running up from the direction of the scrub on the river bank. He was holding up his trousers; he said something to me. He was crying & very excited. I told him something & he went in direction of Mr Howard’s & I followed him all the way to Howard’s. He spoke to the Howards. I believe it was Mrs Howard he was speaking to when I got there. I saw Mr Howard; he took the boy towards Lismore.

28

    Cross-examined prisoner. The boy told me there was a man down the scrub trying to kill him, jumping on his chest and he was after him then.

    Michael Howard. Dairyman – live about 1 mile from Lismore. There is scrub past the gasworks with roads cut through – scrub both sides of road. I know Sidney Cockerell. I remember Tuesday 13 February. I saw a man & boy over on a clear place going towards the scrub coming from the scrub by the river towards the road. The boy was about a chain ahead of the man going between a trot & a fast walk.

29

Cockerell came to my house. Mrs Crook followed him. He said something to me. When I saw him he was talking to my wife. He was excited, trembling & crying. I went with him to town as far as the gasworks.

    Cross-examined prisoner. From the time I saw him till he came to my place was about 3 minutes.

    Prisoner tenders the witness’s deposition which is read. 13

    John Thomas Cockerell. Live at Lismore – I am a naturalist. I know accused. He came to my house on 13 July about 9.30 am.

30

He said he had lost a pony & he believed my son knew where to find it. I don’t think he knew my name. I asked him to take a seat & the lad would be in in a few minutes. He said it was a bay branded JP. He waited till the lad came in. He said “I have a nice little pony, bridle & saddle & I will let your boy have it to look for the other.” I said “Where is it?” He said “Just over the hill; if he finds the horse I will give him 10/- and 5/- if he does not find it.” I said “As you know the pony so well, 10/- is not easily earned; wouldn’t it be better to look for the pony yourself?” He said “My pay is 10/- a day & I should be sure to lose one perhaps 2 in

31

looking after it.” I said “What might your employment be?” He said “I am a bridge builder.” I said “where are you working?” He said “At Lismore bridge; as soon as I have done Lismore bridge I got to Casino to a build a new bridge there.” I said “Very well I’ll let the boy go.” They went away together. About 11 I saw the boy running up the hill to my house; when he first came in he couldn’t speak for panting. He was crying & trembling. When he came to a bit he told me something. I took him into the bedroom & examined him. I stripped I took his trousers down & examined him by

32

parting the sides of his bottom and found something which I then took to be grease. I found he was very red up the anus. I examined what I took to be grease and found it to be semen in my opinion. I called his mother; she washed him with hot water & soap. I went for the police at once.

    Cross-examined prisoner.

    Arthur Frederick Parker. Legally qualified practitioner at Lismore. Sidney Cockerell was brought to me by Sergeant Tippett on 13 July. I examined him – I had him stripped & examined him. He had no marks of any kind of injury or abuse about him.

33

I examined his anus carefully. There was no evidence of crime of sodomy. This was after 12 o’clock I believe – I don’t think warm water & soap would have made all that difference. I am of opinion that there was no penetration but if there had been an attempt only there would not have been any signs 2 or 3 hours afterwards.

    William James Tippett. Senior Sergeant stationed at Lismore. I arrested prisoner at Tunstall 5 or 6 miles from

34

Lismore on 13 July at 9.30 pm. He gave me his name as Harry Gordon. I said “Where did you come from today?” He said “I came from Lismore today.” I said “Were you with a lad looking for a horse near the gasworks today?” He said “I was with a boy looking for a horse.” I said “What was his name?” He said “I don’t know his name but his father knows that he was with me looking for the horse.” I arrested him & charged him with having assaulted Sidney Cockerell a boy 15 years of age & committed on him an unnatural offence, the crime of buggery.

35

He said “I am innocent of the charge.” I brought him to Lismore the same night – the next day S Cockerell came to lockup. he

Crown case closed.

Prisoner makes a statement.

I sum up.
Jury  retire at 3.55 and,
  “   return at 4.13.
Verdict Guilty of attempt.
Sentence penal servitude for 5 years.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Clarence and Richmond Examiner, Tue 24 Apr 1900 14

GRAFTON CIRCUIT COURT.

THIS court was opened yesterday morning before his Honor Acting-Justice Pring. Mr Linsley acted as Crown Prosecutor. There were present Messrs Ackland, Windeyer, Wade, Sheridan, Gannon, Browning, W Davies (Associate), barristers; Mr WR Beaver, Clerk of the Peace; and local solicitors.

    Prior to commencing the ordinary business of the court, Mr Browning, as senior member of that branch of the legal profession their congratulations on his promotion to his present position, and gave expression to the feeling of satisfaction the profession shared with the public on his Honor’s appointment. He was assured they would receive the greatest benefit from his Honor’s reputation in learning in the law and fairness as an administrator.

    Mr RR Donaldson, on behalf of the other branch of the legal profession, also extended their congratulations to his Honor on his appointment. They hoped that he would be long spared to administered the law.

    His Honor returned thanks for the flattering remarks made, and he could assure them that he felt deeply impressed with the importance of the duties he was called up to perform. While endeavouring to perform the duties, he would ask the assistance of both branches of the profession, and this he was confident would be loyally accorded.

    CE Attwater was not in attendance when the list of jurors was called over. His Honor read a letter stating that the absent juror was away on a trip to Europe, and that he had been recently married. His Honor said that he could scarcely accept this as an excuse, and imposed a fine of 40s. This was afterwards remitted on Mr Donaldson representing that arrangements for the passage had been made prior to the juror’s notices being issued, and that a letter had been written the Sheriff to this effect.

    DS Cowan was excused from attendance on the ground of illness.
    H Harding applied to be excused on the ground of defective hearing. He was advised to confer with a medical man and renew the application in the afternoon.
    A McMillan, one of the Scottish Rifles absent in Sydney, was excused
    I Leonard applied to be excused on the ground of weakness from a recent severe illness. His Honor declined to exempt the applicant.
    Messrs JA White, Ramornie, and T See, Lower Southgate, were sworn in as magistrate.

ALLEGED UNNATURAL OFFENCE.

    Harry Gordon was arraigned on a charge of committing an unnatural offence at Lismore on 15th February last. He pleaded not guilty, and was undefended.

    Jury: H Buchanan, E Johnson, Jas Massey, Alex Cameron, D Beatson, C Cavanaugh, Jas Bailey, John Brown, John Daley, W McKnight, J Bailey, J Johnson.

    The evidence is unfit for publication. The principal witness was Sydney Cockerill, 15 years of age, who deposed to details.

    Accused made a statement denying the charge, and pleading his innocence.

    The jury, after a consultation of a quarter of an hour, found a verdict of guilty of an attempt to commit the offence. Accused protested his innocence.

    His Honor regretted to hear accused protest his innocence, for if ever there was evidence brought to a man it was in this case. He referred to the abominable nature of the offence. He saw no reason why the full term allowed by law should not be imposed. In sentencing accused to penal servitude for five years, he expressed the hope that it would have a beneficial effect upon him.

    Accused: It cannot have a good effect on me, your Honor, as I am innocent of the charge.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Clarion, Wed 25 Apr 1900 15

GRAFTON CIRCUIT COURT.

    The Circuit Court opened on Monday before His Honor Mr Acting Justice Pring.
    Mr WH Linsley acted as prosecutor for the Crown, and there were present Messrs Ackland, Browning, Gannon, Sheridan, Wade, Windeyer, and Davies (Associate), barristers; Mr Beaver, Clerk of the Peace; and the local solicitors.

A SERIOUS CHARGE.

    Harry Gordon was charged that he did, at Lismore on 13th February, commit an unnatural offence on a boy named Sidney Cockerill.
    Accused pleaded not guilty, and was undefended.
    Jury: H Buchanan, E Johnson, J Massey, A Cameron, D Beatson, C Cavanagh, J Bailey, J Johnstone, Jas Bailey, J Brown, J Daley, and W McKnight.

    Sidney Cockerill, a boy 15 years of age, stated that he met accused at Lismore on Monday, 12th February. Accused asked him to look for a horse, and he consented to do so, stating that he would go the following day. On Tuesday morning he again met accused, and they went towards the gas-works. They continued along the road for some distance, and then turned off up a hill, which was very scrubby. They did not find the horse, and returned towards the town. On the way witness [sic–accused] said the horse might be “over there” (pointing to another scrub), and when they went over the accused knocked witness down and committed the offence. When accused let him go he ran away, and told Mrs Crook of the occurrence.

    Emma Crook remembered seeing the boy Cockerill on the 13th February going through a paddock near her house with a man in the opposite direction to Lismore. She afterwards saw them on the river bank in another paddock, going in the direction of a lantana scrub. In about a quarter of an hour the boy come running up to her house and made a statement. The boy was crying and appeared very excited.

    Michael Howard gave evidence of a corroborative nature.

    John Thos. Cockerill, father of the lad, gave evidence relative to the accused coming to his place and asking him to allow the boy to go and look for the pony. He saw the boy leave with accused, and when he came back he was crying in a very excited state. The boy made a statement, in consequence of which he examined. (Witness here described what the examination revealed). He immediately communicated with the police.

    Dr Parker, residing at Lismore, stated that Sidney Cockerill was brought to his place by Sergeant Tippett on 13th February, and he examined him, but found no marks to indicate that an assault had been committed.

    Sergeant Tippett stated that when he arrested accused, the latter admitted that he

(For the continuation of Court report see Supplement).
(Continued from our third page.)

was looking for horses with the boy, but stated that he was innocent of the charge.

    [Harry Gordon] Accused made a rambling statement to the jury, denying the charge, after which His Honor summed up strongly against him.

    The jury retired at 5 minutes to 4, and returned into Court at 4.15 with a verdict of guilty of an attempt to commit the offence.

    Accused said that he was innocent.

    His Honor said he was sorry to hear accused persist in his innocence. The evidence was very clear, and he felt certain the verdict was a true one. The crime was a terrible one, and in his case he did not see any reason why he should diminish one hour of the sentence the law allowed him to impose. He sentenced accused to 5 years’ penal servitude, and hoped that at the expiration of that time accused would be a man.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Northern Star, Wed 25 Apr 1900 16

LATE TELEGRAMS.
————

Grafton, Tuesday.

    The Circuit Court opened yesterday, before his Honor Acting-Judge Pring.

    Harry Gordon, found guilty of an unnatural offence at Lismore, was sentenced to five years penal servitude.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Grip, Thu 26 Apr 1900 17

GRAFTON CIRCUIT COURT.
FIRST DAY – Monday

    At the Grafton Circuit Court on Monday, before his Honor, Acting-Justice Pring.

ALLEGED UNNATURAL OFFENCE.

    Henry Gordon was arraigned on a charge of committing an unnatural offence at Lismore on 15th [sic] February last. He pleaded not guilty, and was undefended.
    Jury: H Buchanan, E Johnson, Jas Massey, Alex Cameron, D Beatson, C Cavanagh, Jas Bailey, John Brown, John Daley, W McKnight, J Bailey, J Johnson.
    The evidence is unfit for publication. The principal witness was Sydney Cockerill, 15 years of age, who deposed to details.
    Accused made a statement to the jury and called no evidence.
    His Honor briefly addressed the jury who retired at 4 pm, returning within 15 minutes with a verdict of guilty of the lesser charge, viz, the attempt to commit the offence.
    Accused had nothing to say, beyond reaserting [sic] his innocence.
    His Honor, in passing sentence, said if ever a crime was brought home to an accused it was in this case. He law [sic–saw] no reason to abate one hour of the sentence that the law allowed. The sentence of the court was that prisoner be detained in penal servitude for a period of 5 years. His Honor said he hoped the sentence would have a good effect in detering [sic] others who might have depraved inclinations like the prisoner.
    Prisoner: The sentence can’t have a good effect upon me, as I’m innocent of the crime.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Harry Gordon, Gaol photo sheet 18

SRNSW: NRS2258, [3/5993], Grafton Gaol photographic description book, Nov 1894-Jun 1910, No. 39, p. 40, R5125.


Gaol Photo Sheet - 
Transcribed Details

No. 39
Grafton

Date when Portrait was taken: 5th May 1900

Name: Harry Gordon

Native place: Scotland

Year of birth: 1867

Arrived       Ship: Ormuz
in Colony }   Year: 1895

Trade or occupation
previous to conviction  } Labourer

Religion: Presbyterian

Education, degree of: R & W

Height: 5' 2¾"

Weight     On committal: 119 lbs
in lbs     } On discharge:

Colour of hair: Light Brown

Colour of eyes: Hazel


Marks or special features: Left eye missing

(No. of previous Portrait ... ) 

CONVICTIONS

Where and When Offence. Sentence

Grafton CC

 

23

 4

1900

Attempt to commit the crime of Buggery

5 years P.S.

 


1     The Lismore Chronicle and Richmond River Courier, Fri 16 Feb 1900, p. 4. Emphasis added.

2     The Northern Star and Richmond and Tweed Rivers Advocate, Sat 17 Feb 1900, p. 8. Emphasis added.

3     The Lismore Chronicle and Richmond River Courier, Tue 20 Feb 1900, p. 5. Emphasis added.

4     The Northern Star and Richmond and Tweed Rivers Advocate, Wed 21 Feb 1900, p. 4. Emphasis added.

5     SRNSW: NRS880, [9/7009], Supreme Court, Papers and depositions, Grafton, 1900, No. 35. Emphasis added.

6     A further three ‘Recognizance to give Evidence’ were in the original these have been combined into one

7     SRNSW: NRS7563, [7/9707] , Judiciary, RD Pring, J. Notebooks Circuit, 1900-21, pp. 20-35. Emphasis added.

8     Justice Robert Darlow Pring (1853-1922) was born on 29 Jan 1853 at Mangoplah near Wagga Wagga, NSW, second son of squatter John Pring. He was educated under Rev GF Macarthur in 1866-70, first at Macquarie Fields, then transferring with him in 1868 to The King’s School, Parramatta, where Pring was dux, school captain and colour sergeant. After being at Sydney University (BA, MA) he read in the chambers of (Sir) Matthew Henry Stephen and was called to the Bar on 15 Dec 1874. He rapidly developed a reputation for legal learning and skill in pleading, and built up a large common-law practice, becoming expert in the labyrinthine NSW land laws. After a brief term as an acting justice, he was appointed to the Supreme Court bench in 1902. As a judge he was impatient of legal technicalities, and his willingness to cut through them to expedite hearings led, during his early years on the bench, to some of his judgments being upset on appeal. Utterly humourless, given to ex cathedra moralising, he was occasionally baited by the more lively barristers: he once threatened to commit for contempt the leader of the Federal Opposition, (Sir) George Reid, who delighted in upsetting his solemnity. By 1912, he was generally considered to be one of the calmest and best lawyers on the bench. He was acting chief justice in 1918-19, declining the additional salary as a gesture to wartime economy. Pring retired in Jun 1933 and died of cancer in hospital at Leura on 14 Aug; he was buried in Rookwood cemetery. ADB, 1891-1939, vol. 11, pp. 297-8.

9     Cockerill in transcript of depositions.

10   Presumed missing word.

11   Both Crook and Cook in transcript of depositions.

12   Word incomplete.

13   Mn: Exhibit 1

14   Clarence and Richmond Examiner, Tue 24 Apr 1900, p. 8. Emphasis added.

15   The Clarion (Grafton), Wed 25 Apr 1900, p. 3. Emphasis added.

16   Northern Star, Wed 25 Apr 1900, p. 5.

17   The Grip (Grafton), Thu 26 Apr 1900, p. 1. Emphasis added.

18   SRNSW: NRS2258, [3/5993], Grafton Gaol photographic description book, Nov 1894-Jun 1910, No. 39, p. 40, R5125.