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Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition

VPRS 4966 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion

17/05/1878

Overview

This eight page deposition by Constable Alexander Fitzpatrick was taken and sworn in on the on the 17th of May 1878. The deposition was written as part of the trial of Regina v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion. Mrs. Kelly was sentenced to three years hard labor, whilst Skillion and Williamson each received a six year sentence. In a few years, Fitzpatrick would be dismissed from the force due to his poor performance of duties.

 

Transcribed text   Image
  DEPOSITIONS OF WITNESSES.THE Examination of Alexander Fitzpatrick of Benalla in the Colony of Victoria, Police Constable and others of – in the said Colony,taken on oath, this 17th day of May, in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and seventy eight at Benalla, in the Colony aforesaid before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for The Northern Bailiwick, in the presence and hearing of Ellen Kelly – William Williamson alias Bricky and William Skillion-who are charged this day before us, for that they, the said Kelly Williamson & Skillion, on the 13th day of April last at 11 Mile Creek Greta, in the said Colony Did in company aid and abet – one Edward Kelly in an attempt to murder Alexander FitzpatrickThis deponent Alexander Fitzpatrick on his oath, saith as follows: (as over)

[End of page 7]

 

VPRS 4966 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion


 

Police v Ellen Kelly
Police v William Williamson
Police v William Skillion

Alexander Fitzpatrick sworn Saith
I am a Mounted Constable Stationed at Benalla – remember on 15 April last was on duty in the direction of Greta had occasion to pass the house of Deft. Kelly. arrived there between 4 & 5 pm. I dismounted and went in saw Deft Mrs Kelly & 3 children Stayed about an hour. left & went up on the hill in the direction of a sound of chopping – Saw Deft Williamson spoke to him – went away – saw 2 horsemen coming in & stopped in front of Kellys hut went down & Saw Skillion. he was leading one horse by bridle & another by the mane. Saw a third horse with a Saddle on. Asked Skillion who was riding he said he did not know examined horse & said it was Dan Kellys I asked where he was Skillion said up at the house. I went to the house saw Dan Kelly.

[End of page 8]

 

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told him I wanted to arrest him as there was a warrant issued for his arrest on Charge of horse Stealing he said very well – wait a little while – I suppose you’ll let me have something to eat I’ve been out riding all day. I allowed him to eat allowed him to wait he went inside & I followed him in this was just getting dusk. Mrs Kelly was present. She said you wont take him out of this tonight. Dan said to Mrs Kelly Shut up that’s all right- I then saw Skillion passing the house leading a horse. Ned Kelly then came to the doorway fired a shot at me I was standing with my back to the partition Mrs Kelly was standing with her back to the fire Dan was sitting at the table. the shot did not strike me a second or two afterwards Mrs Kelly rushed at me with a Shovel She struck me with the Shovel I was in uniform had my helmet. She struck me on the helmet with the shovel (helmet produced) struck me on left side of helmet – I use my arm to guard the shovel Ned Kelly fired again at me & the ball lodged in my left wrist. I knocked the shovel down with my right hand & turned round to draw my revolver

[End of page 9]

 

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  & found it was gone Dan Kelly had it he had snatched it out while my attention was turned. Ned Kelly remained in the same position with his revolver pointed at me. I slewed round & took hold of the muzzle of his pistol & turned it off me & said you cowardly wretch do you want to murder me- In the struggle his pistol went off a third time Skillion was present all the time he was armed with a revolver – did not use it-
Williamson came in from the bedroom as the second shot was fired – from his position he could see Mrs Kelly he was armed with a revolver or pistol When I said do you want to murder me Ned Kelly said that’ll do boys- Ned Kelly said to Skillion you bugger why did you not tell me who was here. he said if I had known it was Fitzpatrick I would not have fired If it had been any of the other buggers they would not leave here alive my wound was bleeding & I fainted when I came round I heard Ned

[End of page 10]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion


 

Kelly say to Skillion Bill would have given that bugger who went bye a pill the other day only for me Skillion said what the Benalla Cove he said no Sergt Steele & Ive got a pill for him yet Skillion and Williamson went away Mrs Kelly remained. I got up Ned Kelly said to me Im sorry that this happened it will get me into trouble I’ll get it pretty heavy -
When I got up my revolver was on the Table Taken to pieces and unloaded I put it together & Ned Kelly took it out of my hand (Revolver produced) he asked had I any more ammunition I said no he took what ammunition was in the revolver. I went outside Ned followed me. before I went outside Ned Kelly began to examine my wrist he said heres the bullet here we must have it out of that. he got a rusty razor & I wanted him to let me go home to a medical man he said you cant go away with that in your hand. I said I would operate myself. I cut the ball out it was a small pointed ball like the one produced. – Ned & his sister were

[End of page 11]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion


 

present & Mrs Kelly bandaged my arm Ned took the bullet. I then went outside Ned said I was very plucky to suffer the pain – Ned followed me outside he said now I spared you, you spare me how will we manage to say that you were shot. I said I would not mention who shot me he said You had better say you went up to arrest Dan he was in company with Williamson & I was putting the hand cuffs on him & I had my revolver out & it went off & shot me & then Dan took my ammunition from me he asked me did I know Whitlow, I said no. he said say this. two men rushed from behind a tree as you were arresting Dan describe them as two big men one of them like me & they’ll think its my brother Jim & the other Whitlow & then say I heard one of them sing out Oh! Whitlow you’ve shot him- he gave as a reason for naming these men that they were miles away.- he told me to say a lot of other things that Whitlow was supposed to have said – he made me make an entry in my book

[End of page 12]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion

  at the time of the Conversation (Book produced Marked A) & entry read. I wanted to come away & Ned would not give me my revolver he made the excuse that they were catching the horses. he said if you do say I shot you you’ll get no credit for it The Govt wpn’t reward you I’ll give you a few hundred after the Baumgarten Case is over Mrs Kelly was present then & She said you had better tell him that if he does mention it his life will be no good to him we have plenty of friends then went & got my horse & untied him. previous to this Ned called Dan to get my horse & put him behind the house where he would not be seen – he gave me my revolver & Dan brought my handcuffs. Ned went part of the way with me Dan following us – they both came as far as The pound & when I got about 2 ½ miles from Kelly I saw Williamson & Skillion coming after me on horseback I spurred on to Winton to David Lindsay & got off but could not stand up Richd. & David Lindsay helped me in & gave me some brandy & I told what had happened – they bandaged me again

[End of page 13]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion


Cross exd

& dR Lindsay accompanied me to Benalla Dr. Nicholson dressed my wrist – have been to Mrs Kellys since & looked for a bullet mark but found 2 sheets of bark removed from place where I had previously noticed the bullet mark. Knew Ned Kelly before this have no doubt about Ned Dan & Williamson & Skillion I was perfectly sober at the time

left Benalla about 2.30 pm Kellys is reckoned 11 miles. Stopped at Lindsays on the road. Had lemonade & brandy did not stop any where else got to Kellys between 4 & 5 pm. on first occasion stopped about an hour or over. was talking to Mrs Kelly all that time. Her daughter was there – no brandy drunk there. I stopped to see if Dan Kelly was about. I returned again about ¼ of an hour – went up on the range behind the place saw Williamson went down in front of Mrs Kellys old hut – saw Skillion Dan did not refuse to be arrested – I had no warrant but saw by police Gazette that one had been issued – I was about 1 ½ yards when first shot was fired they all had their revolvers levelled

[End of page 14]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion


Taken and sworn this 17th May 1878 at Benalla Before me
Robt McBean JP
F McDonnell JP

at me- no word spoken until shot was fired – hat has a dent in it – it was not the edge of the shovel struck me I know Mrs Skillion did not see me I got home about 2 in the morning I did not call & ask Mrs skillion if her husband was at home – have been in the force about 12 months. I lost my revolver after 2 shots had been fired I had seen the bullet mark in the bark before I went back to look found 2 sheets of bark removed – Williamson muttered something which I did not hear. Skillion did not say anything – Don’t know if any pistols were found at the hut – Saw a revolver there before. The shovel was like a contractors shovel worn down had no instructions to arrest Kelly – was going to relieve Sergt Strachan Miss Kelly was in the house while the firing was going on she sat down & cried

Sergt Whelan had informed me there was a warrant out for Dan Kelly

Alexander Fitzpatrick
Const 2867

[End of page 15]

 

VPRS 4966 Consignment P0 Unit 1 Item 4 Document: Alexander Fitzpatrick’s deposition in the case of Police v. Ellen Kelly, William Williamson and William Skillion

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