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Sergeant Steele’s Statement re Glenrowan outrage

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 2 Record 15 Document: Sergeant Steele re: Glenrowan Outrage

20/07/1880

Overview

Dated a month after the Glenrowan siege, this four-page statement written by Sergeant Arthur Steele of the Wangaratta Police Station, delivers his account of what transpired at Kelly’s last stand. While recognised and credited as the officer who caused Kelly to fall and be captured, Steele was also criticised for firing at bystanders. This document contains Steele’s version of the events that led to the dispute with Constable James Arthur.

 

Transcribed text Image
[initials]
Wangaratta Police Station
20th July 1880 (?)L. M. Steele
Can prove
I am Sergt. Of Police in Charge of Wangaratta Police Station. About 3 am on Monday 28th June last, I was at the Wangaratta Railway Station Expecting to meet Supt. Hare and party of Police by special train, finding the train late I went down the line in Company with (?) Lacy (?) (?) we heard firing down the line in the direction of Glenrowan. I telegraphed at once to Benalla, then started for Glenrowan with 5 min on horseback where we arrived at 5am. Took up my position about 25 yards from the back door of Mrs James Hotel, between day break and sun rise, I traced some of the Police Call to some person to go back or he would get shot.-

[End of page 1]

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 2 Record 15 Document: Sergeant Steele re: Glenrowan Outrage


I saw a figure about 200 yard to my rear coming towards the hotel he commenced firing at the Police and calling out I am bullet Proof You Cant hurt me. After firing 5 or 6 shots he sat and crouched down between some trees and commenced re loading his revolver
I ran down towards him When he stood up and fired at me he then walked out on the open ground & Commenced beating his breast with the revolver
Calling loudly come out boys and we will whip the lot of them, I called to the men, that there was no use in firing and to rush him, I ran towards him to within 15 yards when he ? me with his revolver I immediately fired at him on the outside of his right leg, he staggered and his hand dropped, he again tried to raise the revolver Where I again fired at him about 10 yards distant, on the hand and thigh which were in a line, he immediately
fell

[End of page 2]

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 2 Record 15 Document: Sergeant Steele re: Glenrowan Outrage

fell, his helmet rolled off and as I approached him he again tried to firing his revolver (?) on me but I seized hold of it and turned it away, he discharging it in my hand I then knocked it from him, and seized him by the right wrist and throat and held him down, until assistance came up.-
Myself S. C. Kelly & Const. Bracken with others divested him of his armour Bracken & myself carried him to the Railway Station where he was attended by Dr Nicholson.-
When the accused was removed from Prison I noticed a watch in his waistcoat pocket which I pulled out and looked at but finding it was not Sergt Kennedy’s I returned it, I asked him where Kennedy’s watch was, and he replied, I could not tell you It would not do for me to tell, ? asked him why he shot Scanlan and Sergt Kennedy he said he had to shoot them or they would have shot

[End of page 3]

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 2 Record 15 Document: Sergeant Steel re Glenrowan Outrage


shot him, he also stated in reply to the question, that he intended shooting all the survivors from The wreck of the train at Glenrowan. –
He also stated that he kept two Chambers of revolvers loaded the time of his Capture one to shoot the first man that came to him and the other to shoot himself
I gave the ? revolver which I took because ?(C.P ) to hold but some person took it out of his hand to look at and did not return it. I cannot therefore produce it. It is supposed to have been taken by Dr. Nicholson of Benalla

G.M Steele
Sgt 1179

[End of page 4]

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 2 Record 15 Document: Sergeant Steel re Glenrowan Outrage

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