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ACQUITTAL OF THE ACCUSED. (FEOM " PBESB" 00BES8F05DXITT.) Stdnet, August 13 After a protracted trial, m which great public interest was manifested, George Dignan and George Johnston, charged with shooting with intent to murder Constable Slater, were found not guilty, and were on Saturday discharged. The constable was shot when trying to arrest three men who were attempting to commit a burglary at the residence of Mr Justice Stephens at Paddington on June 25th. Slater swore positively to Dignan and Johnson as two of the men concerned, but strong testimony was given on behalf of both the prisoners. With a view of establishing an alibi m Dignan's case, five or six of his relations swore positively that he was at home when the constable was shot, while two disinterested witnesses swore positively that they saw Johnson at Balmain (seven miles from the scene of the affray) shortly before the affair occurred. It was at first suggested by counsel for the defence that Slater bad shot himself m order to acquire a, good reputation and earn promotion, but this view bad to be abandoned before the case closed. The foreman stated that the jury were of opinion that Slater was shot while m the execution of his duty, but they had some doubt as to the identity of the prisoners, and gave them the benefit of the doubt. On being discharged, Dignan became highly excited, and, pointing to Slater, said, " I pray God Almighty to forgive that man for the falsehoods he swore m the box."

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Bibliographic details

ATTEMPTED MURDER OF A CONSTABLE., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2204, 20 August 1889

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ATTEMPTED MURDER OF A CONSTABLE. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2204, 20 August 1889

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