ATTEMPT TO MURDER THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH. PRELIMINARY MAGISTERIAL INQUIRY INTO THE CHARGE AGAINST HENRY JAMES O'FARRELL. (CONDENSED FROM THE "SYDNEY MORNING HERALD.")
Ok Friday, the ISth instant, a special Court was held4n the Debtori' Prison, Darlinghurst Gaol, Mr. H. Toss, the Water Police Magistrate, presiding, to inquire into the charge against Henry James O'Farreli of wounding, wnh|intent to kill, his Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh, on the 12th instant, at Clontarf, near Sydaey. Amongst others present there were bis Excellency the Bight Hon. the Earl of Belmore, Captain Beresford, Lieutenant Haig, Viscount Newry, the Hon. Eliot Yorke, Mr. Toulmain, Mr. O. W. Brierley, the Attorney-General (Mr. Martin), the Colonial Treasurer (Mr. Eagar), and Mr. Wisdom, M.L. A. The face of the prisoner (who was attired in the prison dress of white canvas) presented a sickeniog sight. The left side of his face was very much swelled, and the right side cnt and bruised in several places, whilst his right eye was black, protruding, and closed, and his left livid with bruises and capable of being only partially opened. The skin down the front of his no 3« was abraded, and that feature was also considerably swollen. Prisoner is about 5 feet 10 inches in height, and strongly built, has strawcoloured hair, and wears all-round whiskers and a medium-sized moustache. Hejis about thirty-fire years of age. Unable to see except with difficulty, yet he was observant of the proceedings, and although he asked a few questioas he was never disturbed from the almost stolid indifference to the various statements of the manner in which his crime was committed. Mr. John Williams, Crown Solicitor, conducted the examination, and the depositions were taken by Mr. Lees, of the Walter Police Court. John Waisthall Orridge, examintd : I am Superinteudent of Police for the Southern dUtrict of this colony j I apprehended prisoner yesterday, and now charge him with wounding with intent to murder his Royal Highness Alfred Ernest Albert, Duke of Edinburgh, at Clontarf, Middle Harbour ; about 3 o'clock yesterday afternoon I was at Clontarf, partly on duty, and saw the Duke of Edinburgh and Sir William Manning walking from the lunoheon booth in the direction of the beach ; a picnic was being held there for the benefit of the Sailors' Home, and there was a large assemblage of people present ; when the Duke and Sir William got some distance from the booth with an open space around them, the people keeping away, I saw the Duke and Sir William apart from the rest of the people ; when they had got half-way to the beach, I was then myself about seventy yards from the Duke; I then saw the prisoner rush up from behind ; he came suddenly from the crowd, took sereral quick stops, and when within about two yards of the Duke, whoso back was towards him, I saw him present a revolver at the Duke's back j I immediately began to run towards the Duke ; as I was running I saw and heard a a revolver discharged, and immediately I saw the Duke fall on bis hands and kneea ; the pistol was pointed directly at his back; a second shot was fired before I reached prisoner ; I could not tell at whom the pistol was pointed, as I was running quickly and the crowd was getting in the way ; but a second shot I heard before I got up to him ; when I got up to prisoner he was seized by gentlemen who ware closer to him than myself, and from them 1 got hold of him, and then some police came to my assistance; I had no conversation with him until I delivered him into the custody of the gaoler here ; whilst in the cab driving up from the steamer to the gaol I saw that the prisoner was a good deal knocked about in the face ; one eye was bunged up, and his face bleeding ; he said, " I've made a mess of it, and all for no good ;" I saw a shot fired before the Duke fell ; I saw him fall immediately after the shot was fired ; I think I stated the prisoner was about two yards from the Duke. Cross-examined by prisoner: Did I make the remark that I had made a mess of it and all for no good?— Yet. Prisoner : £ think you are wrong. In the struggle it was the party that came behind that caused the second shot to explode. 1 have^o further questions to ask the witness. Henry Clarke, examined: I am a merchant, Victoria Wharf, Sussex-street, Sydney ; I was at the pionio at Clontarf yesterday ; I called Mr. Pearce's attention? to the Duke, [saying, casually, "There is the Prince," at the same time looking towards the Duke ; immediately after I spoke I saw a person, not exactly running, but coming at a smart walk, after the Duke ; I recognise prisoner as being the man ; he came from the crowd ; I was in front of the prisoner, and almost in a line with him and the Duke ; I should say I was about twenty feet from him ; I saw the prisoner with something in his hand, bnt at the time I did not really know what it was ; he presented whatever he had in his hand at the back of the Duke ; I suppose he was then about four or six feet from the Duke ; Ido not think he was more than four feet ; I heard a report and saw a flash as from a pistol ; I then perceived it was a pistol he held in his hand ; it was pointed at the Duke's back ; the Duke immediately fell on his knees and uttered some kind of exclamation— "Oh, oh," — or something of that kind ; I cannot exactly say what it was ; I then ran towards the prisoner, and before I reached him a second shot was fired ; I distinctly saw the second shot fired, and saw the pistol also ; it was fired by the prisoner in the direction of the Duke, but whether it was aimed at him or any other person I cannot tell ; before I reached him another person had seized him round the arms from behind. Prisoner had no question to ask this witness. Simeon Senry Pearce, examined : I am a magistrate of the colony ; I was at Clontarf yesterday and saw the Duke of Edinburgh there; about three o'clock in the afternoon I wa3 in company with Mr. Clarke (the last witness), crossing the green between the luncheon tent and the trees that fringe the beach of Middle Harbour ; at this time Mr. Clarke called my attention to the Duke passing; on turning round I heard a report of firearms, and saw the Duke fall ; he fell forwards on his hands and knees, as far as I remember, and I heard him cry "Oh, ob," or something to that effect ; I saw the 'prisoner retreating backwards from where the Duke fell ; he was retreating with a pistol in his hand; I think it was a revolver ; I saw it in his hand ; I could not see what it was until he fired the second shot; Sir William Manning was making towards the prisoner, and the prisoner continued to retreat backwards with a pistol in his hand levelled in the direction of the Duke and Sir William ; at this time I was immediately opposite prisoner and about ten feet from him ; I saw Sir William bend his head forward, and. immediately the prisoner fired the shot ; Sir William was moving towards the prisoner then, and immediately this second shot was fired he fell to the ground, and I concluded he was shot; the prisoner continued to retreat with the pistol in his hand, and a person came up behind— a person I did not know— (a man in lic;ht clothes, I think)— and threw bis arms right around prisoner's body, embracing him in his arms; I, with several others, rushed on the prisoner and seized him; Mr. Clarke got at him behind, and, as far as I could see, pulled him down on his back ; I noticed the police come up and take him into custody ; I assisted the police in getting him on board the steamer; I have not the slightest doubt about prisoner being the man ; I looked at him well to make sure of him; he was never out my sight till he was safely in the custody of the police; I saw him safely on the stage, near the steamer, incustody of the police; afterwards saw the Duke lying on his tent, but did not see tbat he was wounded ; I saw his coat with holes in it ; it was brought up from the tent. Cross-examined by prisoner: Are you sure you saw Sir William Manning fall?— Yes, I did; he went on his hands and knees as far as I remember and I concluded he was shot ; that was the second shot, and I concluded it had gone through him. John Harding, one of the bandsmen on board the * Galatea,' gave corroborative evidence. Charles Pritchard, examined : I am bandmaster of H.M.s. 'Galatea,' and with the rest of the band was at the picnic at Clontarf yesterday ; the last witness is one of our bandsmen ; he handed me a revolver yesterday; I saw a person advance and fire a shot from a revolver; I could not swear what person' it was ; he had a hat on ; he fired the shot at the back of the Duke of Edinburgh ; I never lost sight of bim ; the Duke was coming direct to us ; we never lose sight of him when we are playing at public places, unless when he goes to dinner or luncheon ; the man who fired was behind the Duke, and so close to him that he might have picked hia pocket when he fired ; the Duke fell instantly, making an exclamation at the time. I saw some one seize the man who fired, and then saw a second person advance to him. The Duke was barely a couple of feet from the man. As I advanced I saw a gentleman lay hold of the mane
arms, and I oaught hold of him by the hair of the I head, and a pistol fell. I saw it fall. The crowd I came round so quickly that we were moved some < few yards, and when we got up I saw the pistol in the hands of witness Harding. He gave it to me. I gave it into the hands of our officer, Lieutenant Bradley. Cross-examined by prisoner: In reference to a second shot, did you hear and see a second shot ? I Baw and heard it.— Was it not while the struggling was going on ? It was when a gentleman caught hold of bis arm and knocked it down that he was in the act of firing the second shot. The Crown Solicitor : He had pointed the pistol ? Tec, and was then seized by some gentleman, a stranger to me. He distinctly held it up to take aim with it. By prisoner : Who was it that it was aimed at ? Whatever gentleman was with the Duke. It was aimed in the direction of the Duke. It was exactly in the same direction as the first shot, as the man had receded a little sideways. — Was it not to intimidate Sir William Manning from advancing? He was advancing— -that is, the gentleman who was with the Duke was advancing towards the man who fired the shot. By the Crown Solicitor: Was it immediately before or after the mana arms were seized ? I cannot nay whether it was immediately before or immediately after his arms were seized. — All passed very quickly ? Yes. William Henry Bradley, examined : lam navigating lieutenant on board her Majesty's ship ' Galatea.' I was at the Sailors' Home picnic yesterday, at Middle Harbour. I received from the last witness a revolver. I have it with me. [Revolver pistol produced. The weapon bears the name of Smith and Wesson, Springfield, Massachusetts. It has a six-barrelled revolving cylinder, and the barrel, which is about seven inches long, turns upon a hinge, admitting of the removal of the cylinder for the purpose of loading. The ammunition used is a detonating capsule cartridge.] When I received it it was ia exactly the same state as now, except that it was then covered with sand. Two alternate chambers are discharged, the intermediate one appearing to have missed fire. The cap of the one between the two chambers discharged appears to have been struck by the hammer, and to have missed fire. William Vial, examined : I am a coachmaker, Elizabeth-street, Sydney. I was at the Sailors' Home Picnic, at Clontarf, yesterday, and saw the Duke of Edinburgh there. I saw his Royal HighI ness leave the lunoheon table. I had been in the tent, and left it to walk down the green with two young ladies. I saw the Duke leave the luncheon booth and proceed to the small pavilion or tent put up for bis accommodation. Near that place he was talking with two or three gentlemen, among whom Sir William Manning was one. I next saw his Rojal Highness present Sir William with an envelope. They were then standing close together in front of the small pavilion. They left that place together, and walked down the green towards where I was standing, which was a position almost in a line between the ' Galatea ' band, stationed under the trees near the beaoh, and the pavilion the Duke and Sir William were coming from. I noticed his Royal Highness on the way down stop to speak to the Hon. George Allen and Mrs. Allen. Just as the Duke and Sir William got directly oppoiite me in a line, I stood a little on one side to let them pass. I was still looking at them, when I saw a man come up from the side and behind, and make four or five quick steps towards the Duke and Sir William. Before I had time to move towards him, he levelled a pistol towards his Royal Highness's back and fired. Aa nearly as I could judge, he was about four feet from the Duke— that is, the point of the pistol was about four feet off when he fired. The Duke fell on his hands, and rather on his right side, exclaiming, " My back is broken," or something to that effect. Sir William Manning on the moment turned round and faced the man. The man retreated in a side direction towards me, and sang out to Sir William Manning;, " Stand back." He presented the pistol at Sir William, and drew the trigger, but the pistol did not go off. At that moment I sprung upon him, got my arms round his, [and clasped my hands tightly in front of him. He then had the pistol levelled again in the direction of his Royal Highness and Sir William Manning, who were both in aline with him, the Duke being on the ground, and Sir William just recovering himself after falling. The four of us were in a line. I had jumped on his back, and pinioned his arms to hia side, whilst he had the pistol pointed ready For another shot. Whilst I held him in that way he twisted his right arm round, and pointed the pistol at me, uttering an oath at the time, — "You b y b— — r" I think were the words used ; when he found he could not fire at me he levelled the pistol agaia in the direction he had it before, and then I passed my right hand quickly down his right arm, knocking it down and diverting the direction of the b»ll to the ground ; whilst in this position I put my right heel in front of his to throw him over if I could, but just then I was caught by the hair of the head and treated unmercifully for a time, being thrown down, kicked, and beaten in the hurry of the people to get hold of him ; I saw Mr. Clarke there ; I had no idea of what became oE the man ; I had as much as I could do to extricate myself, some having hold of me by the beard and whiskers, others giving me blows until I bled from the mouth and nose ; wnen I came to inquire after the man he was gone. The man I speak of was in build and size about the same as prisoner, but when I saw him he was not defaced as now. He is now somewhat altered in appearance by his bruised and swollen face. I believe he is the man. I forgot to mention that I sang out for assistance, which came in a moment. Very little time elapsed from the first moment of the whole affair till the finish. I had seen his face before I got hold of him. I saw it when he was retreating, and also when he looked over his shoulder at me, as we were then face to face. Prisoner had no question to ask this witness. Alexander Watson, examined : I am a surgeon of the Royal Navy, now serving on board her Majesty's ■. ' Challenger.' I left his Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh only a few minutes ago. I saw him yesterday, ten minutes after he was wounded. I was at the Sailors' Home picnic at Clontarf. I saw him fall, and rushed to his assistance. I heard a pistol shot, and was close to him. I could not say whether I was in front of him or behind him, there being a crowd all round. Immediately on hearing the pistol shot I went to his assistance, and gave directions for conveying him to the tent. There I had him stripped and examined, and found he was wounded in the back, over the ninth rib, about two inches to the right of the vertebral column. I examined the wound as far as I could with the probe. It was a recent pistol shot, with slight bEenaorrhage. The bullet has not yet been removed. The pistol produced is one by which such a wound could be inflicted, judging from the size of the balL The bullet penetrated the three skins. The probe penetrated the wound about an inch and a-half. I have not the slightest doubt the wound was from the shot I heard. 1 heard the shot and immediately saw him fall. Prisoner had no question to ask this witness. Senior-sergeant Rawlinson, examined : I assisted in arresting prisoner yesterday at Clontarf. I saw a pistol taken from him by police Sergeant Musgrove. It was taken from the outside breast pocket of his coat. 1 helped to bring prisoner from the steamer to Darlinghurit. I accompanied him in the cab. He said something to me on the way from the steamer to the cab. He looked round at me and said, "I am very much obliged to you for getting my . face washed." This was on the wharf, as we were coming from the steamer to the cab. I had caused the blood to be washed from his face. He also said, "I don't care for death. I'm sorry I missed my aim — I made a b y mess of it ;" this was said to me voluntarily j I had not spoken to him at all ; he said he was a Fenian and " God save Ireland;" this was not on the wharf, it was when I first got hold of him at Clontarf ; he was then kicking and plunging, and I had hold of one of his legs ; he said " I'm* Fenian — God save Ireland." I was from twenty to twenty-five yards from him when the shots were fired, and came up immediately he was laid hold of. There was a rush made. Immediately after he had said he had made a " — — mess of it." He said, " I can't help it now." ' Prisoner had no questions to ask this witness. (To be continued.)
The following appeared in our Second Edition on Saturday :— Sydney hai been naturally thrown into a state of intense excitement. On Thursday, the 12th instant, H.B.H. the Duke o£ Edinburgh had gone to Clontarf, Middle Harbour, a ipot some distance from Sydney, where it is proposed to erect a Sailors' Home, and where on the occasion of the Duke's visit there was a picnic and the usual demonstrations of loyally.
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ATTEMPT TO MURDER THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH. PRELIMINARY MAGISTERIAL INQUIRY INTO THE CHARGE AGAINST HENRY JAMES O'FARRELL. (CONDENSED FROM THE "SYDNEY MORNING HERALD."), Daily Southern Cross, Volume XXIV, Issue 3339, 30 March 1868
ATTEMPT TO MURDER THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH. PRELIMINARY MAGISTERIAL INQUIRY INTO THE CHARGE AGAINST HENRY JAMES O'FARRELL. (CONDENSED FROM THE "SYDNEY MORNING HERALD.") Daily Southern Cross, Volume XXIV, Issue 3339, 30 March 1868
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