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1928, William Higgins - Unfit For Publication
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The Daily Examiner, Tue 4 Sep 1928 1

A REVOLTING CASE
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“LITTLE ABOVE A LOWER
ANIMAL”
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MEN SENT TO PRISON FOR 12 MONTHS.
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Grafton courthouse interior, 28 Jan 1981. Image: NSW State Library collection. Reproduction: Peter de Waal
Grafton courthouse interior, 28 Jan 1981. Image: NSW State
Library collection. Reproduction: Peter de Waal

    “This is the most revolting case I have experienced during the whole of my career in the police service,” said Sergeant A[lpin] G[lass] McAlpin, at the Grafton Police Court yesterday afternoon, when suggesting that the Magistrate, Mr EA Mahony, might, if possible, clear the court for the hearing of two charges of a vile character against William Higgins (40).

    The Magistrate, in reply to the sergeant, said that he was afraid that he could not adopt such a course, but he added that it was not necessary for anyone to remain in court, unless they wished to do so.

    Very few people remained in the courthouse.

    Higgins, who pleaded not guilty, was charged with having, on Sunday, August 26, and again on Tuesday, August 28, behaved in an obscene and disgusting manner in Fisher Park, a public place.

    Evidence was given by four young children, three girls and a boy, and their statements relating to the actions of the accused were corroborative.

    Sergeant [Edmund] Conrick told the court that the accused, when lined up with 11 other men at the Grafton Police Station, was identified by each of the youthful witnesses.

    The Magistrate, in sentencing the accused to six month’ imprisonment on each count, said: “A man like you is an absolute danger to young children. A man of your type is very little above a lower animal, and the noly [sic] way to deal with you is to keep you locked up.

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The Sun, Wed 5 Sep 1928 2

DANGER TO CHILDREN
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LITTLE ABOVE ANIMAL

Grafton, Wednesday.

    “This is the most revolting case I have experienced during the whole of my career in the police service,” said Sergeant McAlpin, at Grafton Police Court, when William Higgins, 40, pleaded not guilty. He was charged with having on Sunday, August 26, and again on Tuesday, behaved in an obscene and disgusting manner in Fisher Park. The magistrate, in sentencing accused to six months’ imprisonment on each count, sentence to be cumulative, said: “A man like you is an absolute danger to young children. A man of your type is very little above a lower animal, and the only way to deal with you is to keep you locked up.” Higgins received the maximum sentence.

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Mudgee Guardian and North-Western Representative, Mon 24 Sep 1928 3

ANIMAL TYPE
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DANGER TO CHILDREN
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    “This is the most revolting case I have experienced during the whole of my career in the police service,” said Sergeant McAlpin, at Grafton Police Court, when William Higgins, 40, pleaded not guilty. He was charged with having on Sunday, August 26, and again on Tuesday, behaved in an obscene and disgusting manner in Fisher Park. The magistrate, in sentencing accused to six months’ imprisonment on each count, sentence to be cumulative, said, “A man like you is an absolute danger to young children. A man of your type is very little above a lower animal and the only way to deal with you is to keep you locked up.” Higgins received the maximum sentence.

 


1     Daily Examiner, (Grafton, NSW), Tue 4 Sep 1928, p. 2. Emphasis added.

2     The Sun, (Sydney, NSW), Wed 5 Sep 1928, p. 11. Emphasis added.

3     Mudgee Guardian and North-Western Representative, (NSW), Mon 24 Sep 1928, p. 23.