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Court of Enquiry, John Collins and Michael Hogan, 3 Mar 1832 Parramatta  1 


Parramatta 3rd March 1832

Proceedings of a Court of Enquiry held by order of Major Poole 39th Regt Commandant Parramatta.

Captain [Thomas] Williams 4th Regt
Members Lieut Hardy 4th Regt, Lieut Bell 48th Regt

    Private Blake Dowling 57th Regt being called on states as follows. That last night about 11 o’clock, he heard some rustling under one of the beds near him, and he heard some person say “are you done now” when someone replied “No”, then the noise seemed to approach nearer to Evidence, he asked what noise is that and got no answer. He then went quietly across the Room to a Corporal, and brought him over to listen to the noise, which the Corporal did for a short time; the Corporal then went for a light desiring Evidence to remain where he was. On the light coming Evidence saw two men lying together with their bodies in contact, and upon the Corporal’s pulling the leg of Private [Michael] Hogan 62nd Regt his private parts fell out of the backside of Private [John] Collins [aka Collings] 55th Regt.

    Corporal Robert Newell of the 1st Regt being called upon states as follows–


he was last night called upon by Private Dowling to come and listen to a noise near his bed. Evidence went over and heard one man say to another “lie further up”. He then went for a light and brought with him Lieut Smith of the 4th Regt and the Corporal of the Guard. On coming up to where he had heard the noise, he saw two men lying together, one on the top of the other with his right leg over him. Then the Corporal of the Guard pulled Private Hogan 62nd Regt by the leg, and he saw his private parts erect, and came from between the legs of the other man Private Collins 55th Regt.

    Acting Corporal [John] Tool, [aka Toole] 62nd Regt deposes as follows. That he went into the Barrack room last night with a light accompanied by Lieut Smith 4th Regt and Corporal Newell 1st Regt in consequence of being told something improper was going on. Evidence saw two men lying together one on the top of the other, in the same manner as a man and wife in the act of copulation he took the upppermost man Private Hogan 62nd Regt by the leg and pulled him off the other man and Evidence remarks that his, Private Hogan’s Private Parts were in a state of erection. Evidence states the men were locked very fast and he had much difficulty in separa-


ting them.

    Color [sic] Serjeant John Smith 4th Regt being called on states as follows. He was last night called up to give a light to two Corporals, who informed him there was some unnatural crime going on in the Barrack room. Evidence said, if such were the case he would accompany them. On their going into the Barrack room, they Evidence saw two men lying together one on his back and the other between his legs; one of the Corporals pulled the uppermost one Private Hogan 62nd Regt by the legs off the other Private Collins 55th Regt. Evidence remarks that the Private parts of Private Hogan 62nd Regt were in a state of erection. When the man Hogan Collins 55th Regt was pulled from under the bed, the other man Hogan ran up and pulled his (Collins’s) shirt down over his legs as it was (pressed ?) up high, and said “don’t expose the man’s nakedness”. Evidence further states that when they went first into the room the legs of the undermost man Collins were turned round those of Hogan; whose private parts, when the men were separated came from between the thighs of the other man.

[Signed] Thos Williams 4th Regt President Captain & President.
[Signed] BW Hardy Lieut 4th Regt
[Signed] W Bell 48th Regt


Police Office Parramatta
7th March 1832

Present S[amuel] Wright Esquire 2 

John Collings Private in 55th Reg Michael Hogan Private in 62nd Regt charged with Buggary [sic].

Blake Dowling, a Private in the 57th Regt being sworn states. On the night of the 2nd inst I was in Bed in Barracks, the Bedsteads are Iron – about 11 o’clock on that night I heard a noise under a bedstead a short distance from where I lay – the noise ceased but soon commenced again. I got up and went to where Corporal Newell slept. I awoke and brought him over to my bed – we listened the noise still continued – we both heard it – after remaining for a short time the Corporal went out for a light. After the Corporal had gone out I heard


some person say “come, come that will do”. The person who said so must have been in the place from whence the noise had been heard. The Corporal was about 10 minutes when he returned with a Serjeant and another Corporal (Toole,) Newell had a light with him, but he kept it concealed until he came up to the bed where we had heard the noise. When the light was shewn I saw the two Prisoners lying on the ground between twoBedsteads. Collings’ backside was close up against Hogan’s private parts. Corporal Tool took hold of Hogan’s legs and pulled him away from Collings backside. I saw Hogan’s Prick drawn from the Arse of Collings – it must have entered the body of Collings. Hogan


when drawn away pulled down Collings’s shirt over his backside to cover it. Soon after the Corporal of theGuard came and took them to the Guard House.
(Signed) B Dowling 

Robert Newell sworn – I am Corporal in the 1st Art Royal Regt. I saw the Prisoners come into the Barrack room on the night of the 2nd inst they appeared to be intoxicated, Hogan particularly. They went to bed there are four beds between those on which Hogan and Collings sleep – about ½ past 11 o’clock I was awoke by Private Dowling of 57th Regt. He told me there was something going on near where he lay which was not right. I accompanied Dowling back to his bed – we listened and I heard a man say “lye further up.”


I then went out for a light – I got one and returned to the Barrack room in company with Serjeant Smith and the Corporal of the Guard Tool. I carried the candle in my hand the night being calm – I did not conceal it. We came up to the bed from whence we heard the noise. Collings and Hogan were lying on the ground – we looked on nearly a minute.

Collings was under and had his right leg twisted over Hogan’s left side. Corporal Tool caught Hogan by the leg and pulled him away from Collings. I saw Hogan’s private parts drawn away from between Colling’s legs. Hogan’s trowsers were down about his legs this time – soon after the Prisoners were taken to the Guard House.
(Signed) Robert Newell


John Tool sworn:– I am Corporal in the 62nd Regt. I was Corporal of the Commissariat Store Guard on the night of the 2nd inst between 11 & 12 o’clock that night. I accompanied Serjeant Smith and Corporal Newell to the Barrack room. We had a Candle with us. I then saw the two prisoners lying on the ground partly under a Bedstead. Hogan was on Collings. Hogan’s Yard was in a state of erection. Colling’s backside was naked. I separated the Prisoners, and soon after returned and took them into Custody.
(Signed) John Tool
Corpl 62nd Regt.

John Smith sworn states:– I am Colour Serjeant in 4th Regt. Between 11 & 12 o’clock on the night


of the 2nd two Corporals came to my room for a light. They stated they suspected some unnatural Crime was then committing in the Barrack room, I accompanied them. We had a light. I there saw the Prisoners, they were on the floor. Collings was lying with his legs turned around Hogan, and Hogan was between Collings legs. One of the Corporals, Tool, caught hold of Hogan’s legs and pulled him away from Collings. I then saw Hogan’s private member in a state of erection drawn from between Collings legs, the prisoners after they had been separated went to their births [sic]. There were three bedsteads between those on which the Prisoners went to lye down.
(Signed) John Smith.
C Serj 4th Regt.

Prisoners Committed to the Criminal Court for Trial.

A true copy
[Signed] S[amuel] Wright JP.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[On the depositions’ cover sheet is the following]

The King v. Collings & Hogan
Attempt at unnatural offence
Guilty 6 mths impris[onment]
Sol[icitor] Genl tried this [case]
[Initialled] J[ohn] K[inchela, AG]

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Sydney Herald, Mon 19 Mar 1832  3


    Before Judge Stephen and the usual Commission.

    Michael Hogan and John Collins, (two soldiers) were indicted for attempting to commit an unnatural crime, at Parramatta, on the 2nd of March. Guilty. Sentenced to be imprisoned in Windsor Jail for 12 months and kept to hard labour.


1  SRNSW: NRS880, [CP T152], 78, Supreme Court, Papers and depositions, 1832. The other file, SC T33, 32/70, for this case could not be located at SRNSW. Emphasis added.

2  Samuel Wright, Superintendent of Police, Parramatta. Appointed 1 Jan 1831, by the Governor, on an annual salary of £300.

3  The Sydney Herald, Mon 19 Mar 1832, p. 4.