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1899, James Read - Unfit For Publication
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Barrier Miner, Tue 28 Mar 1899 1

A SHOCKING CHARGE.
————

JAMES READ, aged 46 years, butcher, employed by Mr Torrington, of South Broken Hill was arrested yesterday afternoon on a charge of committing an unnatural offence on Saturday last. He was charged with the offence before Mr Makinson, PM, in the Police Court to-day. He was defended by Mr AJ Hall. Dr Thomson, acting Government medical officer, deposed to having examined a boy; he found no trace of such an offence as that alleged against the accused having been committed. Senior-constable Mackie deposed to arresting accused; he told him (accused) that the boy had made a serious complaint about him, and accused said, “I was very drunk on Saturday night; when I am drunk I hardly know what I am doing; I did not do it unless I did it when I was drunk.” At this stage the case was adjourned till 10 o’clock tomorrow morning. Accused was allowed bail in his own surety of £100 and two sureties of £50 each.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Barrier Miner, Wed 29 Mar 1899 2

A SHOCKING CHARGE.
————

JAMES READ, aged 46 years, butcher, employed by Mr Torrington, of South Broken Hill was arrested yesterday afternoon on a charge of committing an unnatural offence on Saturday last. He was charged with the offence before Mr Makinson, PM, in the Police Court to-day. He was defended by Mr AJ Hall. Dr Thomson, acting Government medical officer, deposed to having examined a boy; he found no trace of such an offence as that alleged against the accused having been committed. Senior-constable Mackie deposed to arresting accused; he told him (accused) that the boy had made a serious complaint about him, and accused said, “I was very drunk on Saturday night; when I am drunk I hardly know what I am doing; I did not do it unless I did it when I was drunk.” At his stage the case was adjourned till 10 o’clock to-morrow morning. Accused was allowed bail in his own surety of £100 and two sureties of £50 each.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Advertiser, Mon 10 Apr 1899 3

BROKEN HILL.
———◦———

Broken Hill, Apr 9.

    Judge Gibson opened the April sittings of the District Court yesterday.

    James Read, charged at the Police Court with having committed an abominable offence, was committed for trial at the Circuit Court which opens to-morrow. Bail was allowed.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Depositions for James Read 10 Apr 1899 Broken Hill trial 4

NEW SOUTH WALES POLICE.

South Broken Hill Station.
April 8, 1899.

South Western District,

Report relative to antecedents of:–
Name: James Read
Offence: Buggery
Committed for trial at: Broken Hill, Circuit Court
Date: April 10th, 1899

    Senior Constable Mackie reports:–
    That the accused James Read, has been living at South Broken Hill, for the past 8 years, and has not during that time been convicted of any offence.
    The Senior Constable has also searched the files of Police Gazette, and photos of criminals at Broken Hill, and so far as can be ascertained, Read has not been previously convicted.

[Signed] Alex Mackie, Senior Constable, No. 5564.

1

(M., 11 and 12 Vict., Cap. 42.)

Depositions of Witnesses.

Broken Hill
TO WIT.               }

The examination of John Thompson of Broken Hill in the Colony of New South Wales, Medical Practitioner, Alexander Mackie Senior Constable of Police, Frederick Barnett, school boy, William Chambers, labourer and Anna Schmidt, married woman all of South Broken Hill in the said Colony, taken on oath the 28th and 29th days of March in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety nine at Broken Hill in the Colony aforesaid, before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, in the presence and hearing of James Read who is charged this day before me for that he the said James Read on or about the 25th day of March 1899 at South Broken Hill in the said Colony, did commit an unnatural offence to wit the crime of buggery upon one Frederick Barnett.

2

This deponent on his oath saith as follows:–

    My name is John Thompson. I am Acting Government Medical Officer at Broken Hill.

    Yesterday afternoon Senior Constable Mackay [sic] asked me to visit the South Broken Hill Police Station, where about 3.30 I examined the boy Frederick Barnett. The boy walked a little lame but there is no sign of any abrasion, bruising or tearing around his seat. I introduced a piece of cotton wool into his seat which caused a great deal of pain but there was no trace of seminal fluid on the cotton wool. There a boy’s shirt was shown to me, state there was no seminal fluid on that shirt. I examined a man’s shirt and a rug this morning, there are no traces of seminal fluid on either of those.

    There was a redness of the skin about the seat, but that we often see, it is caused by sweating and insufficient washing. The insertion of a man’s penis would probably

3

cause some pain and reddening of the skin.

    Mr Hall: The boy was not kept as clean as he ought to be and the redness and soreness about the seat was probably caused by sweating and insufficient washing. It might have been caused by the boy riding bare backed on a horse.

    I found no evidence on examination of the boy that the offence on [sic] buggery had been committed. I was informed that the shirt that was shown to me was the shirt that the boy was wearing on Saturday night. I was given to understand that the man’s shirt and the rug 5 shown to me, belonged to the accused.

    The rug and man’s shirt produced are the ones that were handed to me.

    The insertion of cotton wool in the seat would cause pain at any time, and in any case.

[Signed] John Thompson.

Taken and sworn at Broken Hill this 28th day of March 1899 before me.
[Signed] J[oseph] F[rancis] Makinson, PM.

4

This deponent on his oath saith as follows:–

    My name is Alexander Mackay [sic].

    I am a Senior Constable of Police at South Broken Hill.

    About 4 pm yesterday in consequence of a statement made to me by Frederick Barnett, a boy living in South Broken Hill, I went to Torrington’s slaughter yards near South Broken Hill. I there saw the accused James Read. I said to him “That boy Barnett that I took home from your place last night has made a very serious complaint against you.” Read replied “He can’t say anything against me.” I said “He says you committed an unnatural offence upon him on Saturday night last.” Read replied “I did not do anything to the boy, but I was very drunk on Saturday night.”

    He said “I did not do anything to the boy unless I did it when I was drunk. When I

5

am drunk I hardly know what I am doing.” I said “You are charged with committing an unnatural offence upon Frederick Barnett at South Broken Hill on or about the 25th March 1899.” He replied “A doctor ought to be able to tell.” I said “The boy has been examined by a doctor.” I then went with the accused Read to his house and on getting there I said to him “Have you a box of Vaseline in the house?”, and he replied “Yes’” and shortly afterwards he said “No, there is none in the house, it is all done.” He said “A boy named Chambers took it away and I don’t know whether he has brought it back yet or not.” The A boy named William Chambers was unharnessing the accused’s horse at the time. I said to the accused “How long has the Vaseline been away?”, and he replied “Oh, for a long time.” I said to the boy Chambers in the presence of the accused “When did you take the Vaseline away from here?”, and he replied “Yesterday afternoon.” I said “When did you bring it back?”, and he replied “This morning.”

6

The accused then unlocked the door of his house and went inside and rushed over to a table near to the bed. He picked up something in his hand and I said “What have you got there?” He replied “It is nearly all done”, and he put down the Vaseline box produced 6 about the centre of the table.

    He said “I suppose I’ll get into it, this all comes through that bloody boy not going home.” I then took him to the Police Station and there charged him with committing an unnatural offence to wit the crime of buggery, upon one Frederick Barnett at South Broken Hill on or about the 25th March 1899. He made no reply to the charge.

    While we were in the accused’s house the accused said “When I came home on Saturday night I did not take off my clothes, I laid down on top of the bed with my clothes on and went to sleep.” About 6 pm on Sunday the 26th instant, I went to the accused’s house at South Broken Hill, in consequence of

7

a complaint which was made at the Police Station.

    I saw a boy named Frederick Barnett at the accused’s house. I spoke to the boy, and while I was speaking to the boy the accused Read came out of the house. I said to accused “What do you mean by keeping these boys about your place, Read?”, and he replied “Well I don’t give them any encouragement and they don’t get anything to eat here.” I said “You know where this boy lives, you could have taken him home.” He replied “I kept him here last night because it looked like a thunderstorm.”

    The boy Barnett’s father lives between quarter and half a mile from where the accused lives.

    By Mr Hall: Saturday night looked like a thunderstorm. On Monday when I was at the accused’s house I had a look around the house. I took possession of some a rug and a shirt, the accused’s property, at the time, in addition to the Vaseline. The accused told me that he had been wearing that shirt on Saturday night. I also took a shirt

8

belonging to the boy Barnett and Dr Thomson examined it, and the other shirt and rug. I could not say from my own knowledge if Read was drunk on Saturday night.

    Read’s cottage is in Knox Street, South Broken Hill. The nearest house is about 250 yards from it. Read has been living there to my knowledge for 3 and a half years. He works out at the slaughterhouse minding pigs, that is the only occupation I have ever known him to follow.

[Signed] Alex Mackie.

Taken at sworn at Broken Hill this 29th day of March 1899 before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

9

This deponent declaration made in accordance with 46 Vic: 17 Sec. 343 saith as follows:–

    My name is Frederick Barnett. I am 11 years of age. I live with my parents at South Broken Hill. I know the accused Jim Read. I went to his place about 9 o’clock in the morning on last Saturday. He lives at South Broken Hill. I went out to the slaughter yard with him that day, and up the town with him that night, and we went into Smith’s pub [Prince Consort Hotel, South Broken Hill, publican Frederick Schmidt] and we went to Torrington’s. Torrington is a butcher. Jim Read told me to wait under a tree, and he went back to Smith’s pub again and he shouted me some lemonade. Then we went to Pinnick’s the grocer, we there got some potatoes, onions and pepper and milk, and then we went home to Jim Read’s, and he could not unlock the door and I got through the window. Read afterwards unlocked the door. The accused went over the Chamber’s to get some matches and a candle. I don’t know what time that was, it was after dark when all the light-ning was. Read then

10

went to bed and I cooked the tea. I had my tea and he did not want any. Then I went to bed. I took my clothes off. Read took his off before he went to bed. I went in the same bed as the accused. Then he insulted me in the night. He stuck his tommy in me. He stuck it into my behind, and then he put Vaseline on my behind, he continued for nearly a quarter of an hour. He hurt me. Het old me not to tell nobody. I told him to stop or I would tell on him, while he was doing this. When I went to bed, and when he lifted me round, I was lying on my back, and he lifted me round on to my side. He lifted me round with my back to him. That was when he commenced to put his tommy into my behind. The accused’s hands and arms were both round my belly while he was doing this. He was moving and bumping against me. He got the Vaseline out of a little tin with pictures on it. The box produced is the one. He kept the Vaseline on a table formed of two boxes near the bed.

11

I had been to Read’s place before. He has done it to me 4 times, 3 times before Saturday night last. I slept at Read’s 5 nights altogether. I slept on the same bed as him. That was when this occurred. Mr Mackie took me away from Read’s place. Once I complained to Will Chambers, and my father, and Mr Mackie about the accused’s conduct.

    I think the accused was a bit drunk when I went home with him on Saturday night, but he could stand up straight. He knew what

    We took 2 bottles of beer and 1 bottle of Porter home from the hotel that night. The accused drunk some beer, there was a little pannikin and he had some in it when he was in bed.

    Read could find the key hole that night but there was a lot of dirt in it. The accused had a good bit to drink at the hotel that afternoon. I asked Read to have some tea and he said he did not want any. Read committed this offence on me on 3 former occasions, that was each occasion that I slept in Read’s bed. I did not know

12

that he would do it to me again when I got into bed with him on Saturday night. Read never told me to go home that night, he told me to go home with him for the night as it was too wet for me to go to my own place. I went home with him. I would just as soon as gone home with him as gone to my own home. I made my bed on the floor with chaff all the nights I was there. I did not attempt to make my bed on the floor on the Saturday night. I did not keep my clothes on when I went to bed with the accused because they were wet, but I kept them on up to the time of going to bed. I was wearing a shirt when I went to bed, and the accused was wearing a shirt also, those are the 2 shirts that the Police handed to Dr Thomson for examination. The candle was out and the room was in darkness when the accused attempted to insult me. I can’t explain my statement, in my evidence, that I saw the accused take the Vaseline from the little tin box that I have identified on Saturday night. I got up just at daylight on Sunday morning and I stayed about Read’s house

13

till the afternoon when Mackie took me away. It was on the second morning I told Will Chambers what Read had done to me. That was on Thursday morning the week before last that I told him. He was over at Read’s when I told him. I said that Read had stuck his tommy in me, and he said “The dirty old wretch.” This was just at sunrise. I told my father of it first on last Sunday night.

    I told my father after I told Constable Mackie, what Read had done to me. I know it was wrong of me to allow Read to do this to me, I knew that it was an abominable and filthy crime. Read said he would not do it no more, that is why I did not go away that night. That is something I have made up just to answer your questions. I could easily have left the house while Read was in bed. It was on Monday morning in the Police Station that I first told Constable Mackie what Read had done to me. Read did not put Vaseline on my behind till after he had stuck his tommy into it. I am quite

14

positive that he put his tommy right into my behind. I was lying on my side and Read had both his arms round my belly when he did this. I have given in my evidence all that I said to Read when he did this to me. I did not make any attempt to get away from Read. I stayed there all night. My father asked me about this on Monday morning, before I had been to the Police Station. My father then came to me and said “What did Read do to you?” That is how he started the conversation. I replied “He was sticking his tommy in me.” He sent for Mackie the Policeman, and Mackie did not come over, he was not at home. When I came home on Sunday, after staying away all night he asked “What did you stay with Read for all night ?” I don’t know what time it was when I went to the Police Station on Monday. I rode a horse barebacked from Torrington’s to Jim Read’s, about half a mile, on Sunday last prior to seeing Mackie the Constable.

    By Police: There was no light when the accused was putting the Vaseline on me, but

15

he put his hand over and got it. I told my father some of it on Monday morning and I told Constable Mackie all of it afterwards, my father was present then.

[Signed] Fred Barnett,

Taken and sworn at Broken Hill this 29th day of March 1899 before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

16

This deponent on his oath saith as follows:–

    My name William Chambers. I am a labourer and reside at Knox Street, South Broken Hill.

    I know the accused James Read, he lives near me. I saw him on last Saturday night, it was coming up to 9 o’clock, he then came up to the fence at my place and asked for a small bit of candle and a few wax matches. I spoke to him, and gave him the candle and matches. He was just about half boosed [sic] then.

    By Police Mr Hill: I think Read had been drunk, and was recovering.

    My place is about two or three minutes’ walk from the accused Read’s place. It was not in lamplight that I saw the accused, it was a very wild cloudy night and the moon was not showing at all.

[Signed] Wm Chambers.

Taken at sworn at Broken Hill this 29th day of March 1899 before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

17

This deponent on his oath saith as follows:–

    My name is Anna Schmidt.

    I am the wife of the licensee of the Prince Consort Hotel at South Broken Hill.

    I know the accused now before the court. I saw him in my hotel last Saturday night, I would not be sure about the time, but I should think it was after 7. There was a boy with him. I would not know the boy again if I saw him. I served the accused with a pint of beer at my hotel that night, and the boy had a drink of ginger ale. I gave him the bottle to drink out of. The accused was standing at the counter and the bar was lit up. I saw the accused distinctly, he was not very drunk, I should say he was in muddled state. I think he could stand up straight, he was leaning on the counter, he is often like that and I did not take particular notice if he could stand up. I did not consider him too drunk to serve him. I served him with 2

18

bottles of beer and a bottle of stout too. He took that away with him.

    By Mr Hall: I know it is an offence to serve a drunken man with liquor in a hotel if he is very drunk.

[Signed] Anna Schmidt.

Taken and sworn at Broken Hill this 29th day of March 1899 before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

19

(N., 11 & 12 Vic., Cap. 42.)

Statement of the Accused .

New South Wales, Broken Hill
TO WIT.                                }

James Read stands charged before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace in and for the Colony aforesaid, this 8th day of April in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety nine for the he, the said James Read on or about the 25th day of March 1899 at South Broken Hill, in the said Colony, did commit an unnatural offence to wit the crime of buggery upon one Frederick Barnett and the examination of all the witnesses on the part of the prosecution having been completed, and the depositions taken against the accused having been caused to be read to him by me, the said Justice, (by/or) before whom such examination has been so completed; and I, the said Justice, having also stated to the accused and given him clearly to understand that he has nothing to hope from any promise of favour, and nothing to fear from any threat which may have been holden out to him to induce him to make any admission or confession of his guilt, but that whatever he shall say may be given in evidence against him upon his trial, notwithstanding such promise or threat; and the said charge being read to the said James Read, and the witnesses for the prosecution, John Thompson, Alexander Mackie, Frederick Barnett, William Chambers, and Anna Schmidt being severally examined in his presence, the said James Read is now addressed by me as follows:– “Having heard the evidence, do you wish to say anything in answer to the charge? You are not obliged to say anything unless you desire to do so; but whatever you say will be taken down in writing and may be given in evidence against you upon your trial;” whereupon the said James Read saith as follows:– “I reserve my defence. I don’t want to call witnesses now.”

Taken before me, at Broken Hill in the said Colony, the day and year first above mentioned.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

20

G. 190.

REGINA.
versus
James Read

Offence,— Buggery
    The accused stands committed to take his trial at the next Court of Circuit Court to be holden at Broken Hill, on the tenth day of April 1899. Bail allowed the accused in £100 and two sureties in £50 each, or one in £

[Signed] JF Makinson, PM

JP.

Dated at Broken Hill Police
Office, Broken Hill
this eighth
day of April
AD 1899
4g 416 - 88

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

(O. 1, 11 &12 Vic., Cap. 42.)

Recognizance to give Evidence .

New South Wales, Broken Hill
TO WIT.                                }

Be it remembered, that on the 8th day of April in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety nine Alexander Mackie a Senior Constable of the Police Force, William Chambers of Broken Hill in the Colony of New South Wales, labourer, Frederick Barnett of Broken Hill in the said Colony, and John Thompson of Broken Hill in the said Colony, Medical Practitioner personally came before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the Colony of New South Wales, and acknowledged themselves to owe Our Sovereign Lady the Queen the sum of

FORTY POUNDS EACH,

of good and lawful money of Great Britain, to be made and levied on their Goods and Chattels, Lands and Tenements, to the use of our said Lady the Queen, her Heirs and Successors, if they the said before mentioned persons shall fail in the condition indorsed.

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first above mentioned, at Broken Hill in the said Colony, before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas James Read this day charged before JF Makinson Esquire one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, with sodomy.
If therefore, they the before mentioned persons shall appear at the next Circuit Court to be holden at Broken Hill in and for the Colony of New South Wales, on the 10th day of April next, at nine of the clock in the forenoon and then and there give such evidence as they know, upon an information t09o be then and there preferred against the said James Read for the offence aforesaid, to the jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said James Read.

Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

(O. 1 11 & 12 Vic., Cap. 42.)

Recognizance to give Evidence.

New South Wales, Broken Hill
TO WIT.                                }

Be it remembered, that on the eighth day of April in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and ninety nine Frederick Schmidt of South Broken Hill in the Colony of New South Wales, hotel keeper, for Anna Schmidt of South Broken Hill in the said Colony, married woman, personally came before the undersigned, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the Colony of New South Wales, and acknowledged himself to owe Our Sovereign Lady the Queen the sum of

FORTY POUNDS EACH, [sic]

of good and lawful money of Great Britain, to be made and levied on his Goods and Chattels, Lands and Tenements, to the use of our said Lady the Queen, her Heirs and Successors, if she the said before mentioned Anna Schmidt shall fail in the condition indorsed.

Taken and acknowledged, the day and year first above mentioned, at Broken Hill in the said Colony, before me.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

The condition of the within written Recognizance is such, that whereas James Read was this day charged before JF Makinson Esquire, one of Her Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the said Colony, with sodomy.
If therefore, they the before mentioned persons shall appear at the next Circuit Court to be holden at Broken Hill in and for the Colony of New South Wales, on the 10th day of April next, at nine of the clock in the forenoon, and then and there give such evidence as they know, upon an information to be then and there preferred against the said James Read for the offence aforesaid, to the jurors who shall pass upon the trial of the said James Read.

Then the said Recognizance to be void, or else to stand in full force and virtue.
[Signed] JF Makinson, PM.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

[On the depositions’ cover sheet is the following]

Circuit Court.
Broken Hill
10th April 1899
AG’s No.
Depositions.
CS’s No. 13
Regina
v.
James Read
Unnatural Offence
Committed at: Broken Hill
on: 8th April 1899

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

25 Mar 99
1 Assault with intent to commit sodomy
2 Indecent assault on male
[Initial illegible]
10.4.99

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Verdict
Not guilty
[Initial illegible]
10.4.99

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Advertiser, Tue 11 Apr 1899 7

BROKEN HILL.
———◦———

Broken Hill, Apr 10.

    The Circuit Court opened to-day.

    James Read was acquitted on a charge of committing an abominable offence in South Broken Hill on March 25.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Barrier Miner, Tue 11 Apr 1899 8

CIRCUIT COURT.
————

THE Circuit Court was continued this afternoon before Mr Acting Justice Gibson. 9

A REVOLTING CHARGE.

    James Read was charged with committing an abominable offence on a boy at South Broken Hill. He was also charged, on a second count, with committing an indecent assault. He pleaded not guilty, and was defended by Mr AJ Hall.

    Accused was committed on Friday last. The case for the Crown was that on the night of March 25 the boy slept at accused’s house in South Broken Hill and that during the night the offence was committed.

    No evidence was given for the defence.

    The jury, after a quarter of an hour’s retirement, returned a verdict of acquittal.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

The Sydney Morning Herald, Tue 11 Apr 1899 10

CIRCUIT COURT.
———◦———

Broken Hill, Monday.

    Sittings of the Circuit Court opened this morning before Mr Acting Judge Gibson. Mr W Bevan was Crown Prosecutor.

    James Read, charged with committing an offence on a boy, was acquitted.

 


1     Barrier Miner, Tue 28 Mar 1899, p. 4. Emphasis added.

2     Barrier Miner, Wed 29 Mar 1899, p. 1. Emphasis added.

3     The Advertiser, Mon 10 Apr 1899, p. 5.

4     SRNSW: NRS880, [9/6982], Supreme Court, Papers and depositions, Broken Hill, 1899, No. 13. Emphasis added.

5     Mn: Exhibits “A” & “B”

6     Mn: Exhibit “C”

7     The Advertiser, Tue 11 Apr 1899, p. 5.

8     Barrier Miner, Tue 11 Apr 1899, p. 4.

9     Acting Justice Gibson’s notes could not be located at SRNSW.

10   The Sydney Morning Herald, Tue 11 Apr 1899, p. 7.