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1868, William Palmer - Unfit For Publication
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The Newcastle Chronicle, Thu 3 Dec 1868 1

TUESDAY, DEC 1, 1868.
Before H Scott, Esq, PM.


Before H Scott, Esq, PM.


    Sarah Pierce, in custody, on remand, was charged with being a vagrant.

    The prisoner was found guilty, and sentenced to be imprisonment in Maitland gaol for one month. She implored the Police Magistrate to send her to Sydney, but her prayer was not complied with.


    James Downie pleaded guilty to using obscene language on the 1st instant, in Hunter-street. He was fined 10s, or in default to be imprisonment in the lock-up for 48 hours.


    Henry James Seton, musician, pleaded guilty to being drunk in Hunter-street, on the 1st instant. He was fined 5s, or 24 hours in the lock-up.


    John Charlton, cab-driver, appeared on summons, to answer the charge of wilfully and obscenely exposing his person in a public place of resort within the boundary of the city of Newcastle, on the 29th of November.

    The defendant said he was swimming a horse and had a shirt on.

    Constable Griffiths said: Last Sunday morning about ten o’clock, in consequence of a report made to me, I went down to the breakwater. I saw the defendant swimming a horse. He was undressed, with the exception of a crimean shirt, and was indecently exposed. There were people about at the time. I ordered the defendant out of the water. He came out and dressed himself. I told him I should summons him. He said there had been a great many there besides him, and that he did not know he was doing any harm.

    By Senior-Sergeant Donohoe: The place where the defendant was swimming the horse is a public resort. A great many people walk past there on a Sunday.

    By the defendant: There were no females passing at the time. The prisoner was remanded for sentence until the cases against three or four other parties had been heard.


    Charles Hooper, cab-driver, was then charged with the same offence.

    The defendant pleaded not guilty, stating that he had his clothes on.

    Constable Griffiths proved the case. He said the defendant had only his shirt on. He was indecently exposed.

    The defendant said he was not aware that he was doing any harm. He saw other people going there, and thought he might as well go.


    Robert May and William Palmer were charged with similar breaches of the law. The circumstances were the same as in the cases above reported. In Palmer’s case the constable stated he was perfectly naked.

    The Bench found the prisoners guilty, and sentenced them to be imprisoned in the lock-up until ten o’clock the same night.

    The prisoner Palmer was sent to Maitland gaol for one month, with hard labour, the Bench remarking that he had made himself liable to six months’ imprisonment. All the defendants were particularly cautioned not to be guilty of the same offence again, or a much heavier penalty would be inflicted. The offence was a very serious one, and one that must be put down.


1  The Newcastle Chronicle, Thu 3 Dec 1868, p. 3. Emphasis added.