Arthur Thompson, John Torpy and Richard Broad, 1913
Below also see: John Torpy, 1928
John Torpy, 1929
Jack Williams, 1930 – Buggery
The Sydney Morning Herald, Mon 14 Apr 1913 1
“COME FOR A RIDE”
It is possible that the three men in the sulky travelled briskly to town, or else they were not alone in their method of robbery. For Reginald Dargan, 48, of Lord-street, North Sydney, has informed the Detective Office of the following incident.
At somewhere about 10 pm on Saturday Dargan was standing outside the Hotel Australia when three men in a sulky drove up. They talked to him for a while, and then suggested that he should go for a ride with them. Dargan complied, and they drove him out along Oxford and Flinders streets on to the Randwick road. When near the Zoo, they drew up in a shadowed part of the road-way There were no vehicles in sight, so the men forcibly helped Dargan to alight. He resisted them as much as possible They thereupon knocked him down and relieved him of a gold watch and chain, a sovereign case, and some money, valued in all at £10.
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Clarence and Richmond Examiner, Tue 15 Apr 1913 2
CRIME IN SYDNEY.
SYDNEY, Monday.—Mr Booth, ex-MLA, whilst taking a short cut across a paddock to his home in Leichhardt on Saturday night, was set upon by three men, who, it is alleged, followed him some distance in a sulky, garrotted and brutally mauled, and robbed him of a watch and chain, and some money also. It is believed that they are the same three men who picked up an acquaintance with Reginald Dargan in the Hotel Australia and induced him to go for a ride in a sulky with them. When in a lonely road at Randwick, Dargan was subjected to the same treatment as Booth and was robbed of money and jewellery to the value of £10.
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Evening News, Thu 17 Apr 1913 3
TWO MEN ARRESTED.
ALLEGED ASSAULT AND
The Darlinghurst police have arrested two men in connection with the robbery alleged to have been committed on Reginald Dargan, who lived in Lord-street, North Sydney, on Saturday night.
Dargan’s story is that while he was waiting outside the Hotel Australia three men drove up in a sulky and he was induced to go for a ride with them. When near the Zoo, he says they assaulted him, and robbed him of his gold watch and chain and sovereign purse.
The two men, who were arrested by Senior-constable Robertson and Constable English, have been charged with assault and robbery.
Dargan’s watch has been recovered.
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The Sun, Thu 17 Apr 1913 4
Accused Before The Court.
At the Central Police Court to-day, before Mr Barnett, Arthur Thompson, aged 21, John Torpy, [aka Jack Williams], 23, and Richard Broad, alias Hawchoar, 29, were charged with assaulting Reginald Dargan on April 12, and robbing him of a gold watch, chain, pendant, medal, silver sovereign-purse, and £5 in money, valued in all at £25.
Sergeant Mankey asked for a remand, as the police had not prepared their case.
Mr Barnett asked for the facts of the case.
Sergeant Mankey stated that it was alleged that the accused men were in a sulky in the city. They picked Dargan up and drove him to Centennial Park, where Dargan was robbed and thrown out of the vehicle. Dargan remained on the roadway, where the police found him.
Accused were remanded until April 23, ball being fixed at £80.
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Barrier Miner, Fri 18 Apr 1913 5
GAROTTING IN SYDNEY.
THREE MEN IN A SULKY.
Mr R Booth, of Lyttonville, Henry street, Leichhardt, ex-MLA for that district, was the victim of a highway robbery on Saturday night (reports the “SM Herald”).
He was returning home at between 9 and 9.30 pm by a short cut fron Piper-street, Annandale. The neighborhood is not thickly populated, and there are acres on acres of fenced-in paddocks.
Mr Booth had gained the Balmain-road, when he noticed a sulky, in which sat three men coming along behind. As they came nearer he heard them murmuring one to another. Presently the horse was pulled up, and a man alighted. At the same time Mr Booth got through the fence of Inglis’s paddock to hasten his journey.
He had gone several yards when he became aware that one man was following him, a second also being in the background.
“Give us a smoke,” called out the foremost man.
“I don’t smoke,” replied Mr Booth. As he said this the three men ran towards him. One got him by the shoulders and threw him to the ground Then his companions fell-to. They searched him knocking him about a good deal in the process.
Having secured a gold watch chain and two silver sleeve links, the robbers hurried to the roadway, stepped into the sulky, and whipped up the horse, furiously travelling in the direction of Annandale.
The Superintendent of Detectives would like to know of the man who was apparently walking towards Leichhardt when the hold-up took place, and who held the horse’s head in response to the men’s request.
It is possible that the three men in the sulky travelled briskly to town, or else they were not alone in their method of robbery, for Reginald Dargan, 48, of Lord-street, North Sydney, informed the Detective Office of the following incident:
At somewhere about 10 pm on Saturday Dargan was standing outside the Hotel Australia when three men in a sulky drove up. They talked to him for a while, and then suggested that he should go for a ride with them. Dargan complied, and they drove him out along Oxford and Flinders streets on to the Randwick-road. When near the Zoo they drew up in a shadowed part of the roadway. There were no vehicles in sight, so the men forcibly helped Dargan to alight. He resisted them as much as possible. They thereupon knocked him down and relieved him of a gold watch and chain, a sovereign case, and some money, valued in all at £10.
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Evening News, Fri 2 May 1913 6
DRIVEN TO CENTENNIAL PARK.
Story Of A Robbery.
The case in which it was alleged by Reginald Dargan that he was taken by three men in a sulky out to Centennial Park and robbed of his watch and chain and £5 in money, on the nigbt of April 12, was before Mr Barnett, at the Central Police Court this morning. The three young men—Arthur Thompson, John Torpy, and Richard Brood [sic]—were charged with assault and robbery, and evidence was given by Dargan to the effect that he was met by the accused in the city, and driven in a sulky to Centennial Park. He had been drinking, and could not remember where he was driven before being taken to the park, but on arrival there was taken out of the trap, and Brood then caught him by the throat and held him down. Torpy was with Brood, and one of them “went through him.”
Mr Barnett: You cannot say which of the accused “went through you?”—No.
But somebody did?—Yes.
How many took, part in going through you?—Two.
Witness added that Thompson was standing a little distance away.
Mr Barnett: How long did they take to go through you?—About half a minute.
Did they go way then?—Yes.
Why didn’t you get up and follow them?—I was too exhausted through being held by the throat.
The three accused, who reserved their defence, were committed for trial.
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The Sydney Morning Herald, Sat 7 Jun 1913 7
(Before Judge Rogers and a jury.)
Mr CA White, Crown Prosecutor.
ROBBERY IN COMPANY.
Arthur Thompson, Richard Broad, and John Torpy, three young men, were arraigned on a charge of attempting to choke Reginald Dargan, a linotype operator, at Centennial Park on April 12, with Intent to enable them to commit robbery. There was a second count of robbery in company, of a watch and chain, a pendant, and medal, a sovereign purse, and £5 in money, the property of Reginald Dargan.
Mr JW Abigail appeared tor Thompson, Mr ER Abigail for Broad, and Mr PK White for Torpy. Each of the accused pleaded not guilty.
The case for the Crown was that at about 11 pm on the day in question the three accused, together with Dargan, who had all been drinking together, drove from the city along the Randwick-road to Centennial Park, where all the parties alighted from the buggy, which was driven by Thompson. Whilst they were out of the buggy, the alleged robbery took place. Only the watch had been recovered, and that was found in the possession of Torpy’s younger brother, who stated that the accused Torpy had given it to him. Torpy when arrested stated that he had received the watch from the accused Broad. Thompson when arrested denied any complicity in the offence, and declared that the other two accused committed the robbery. When Broad was arrested he said, in the presence of the other two accused: “You are both trying to put me into it, I will tell the truth about it later.”
Thompson’s defence was that, whilst he admitted driving the other two accused and Dargan, who was under the influence of drink, to Centennial Park, he did not get out of the buggy, and drove back to town alone because Dargan would not return, saying he wished to have a sleep.
Broad denied that he gave Torpy the watch, and stated that he himself saw Thompson hand the watch to Torpy.
Torpy stated that Thompson gave him the watch, and told him to mind it, as he was afraid the police were coming to his house to look for it.
Whilst counsel were speaking on the garrotting charge, his Honor said that counsel might confine themselves to the second count. He (his Honor) had some doubt as to whether three persons could be convicted of garrotting. The only evidence of garrotting was against one of the accused, and that was very doubtful evidence.
The jury returned a verdict of not guilty against Thompson, but convicted Broad and Torpy on the second count of robbery in company.
Thompson was discharged. Broad and Torpy were each sentenced to two years’ hard labour in Goulburn Gaol.
John Torpy, 1928
Daily Advertiser, Thu 25 Feb 1926 8
CRIME IN THE STATE
Increase Last Year
POLICE ANNUAL REPORT
Juvenile Crime Serious
The annual, report of the Police Department was tabled in the Legislative Assembly to-day by the Chief Secretary, Mr Lazzarino.
The Commissioner, Mr Mitchell, reported that the police prosecutions for 1925 showed that there had been an increase both in respect of serious crimes, and the total number of cases for all classes of offences. The total serious offences during the period under review numbered 605 more than the total for the previous year, and the aggregate number of cases under all headings showed an increase of 4276.
Although the serious crimes reported totalled 8126, decreases occurred in some of the most serious in the category, such as: Murder and attempts at murder, 23; assault and robbery, 19; stealing from the person, 46; burglary, 44; jewellery stolen, 319; aud horse an cattle stealing 134. One of the principal increases recorded was in respect of offences against girls, the increase being 29.
“'The amount of crime committed by persons of tender years is still serious and on the increase,” reported the Commissioner.
During the term reviewed, 24 persons were declared habitual criminals, making a total of 128 since the Act came into force in 1905. The criminal statistics for the metropolitan districts showed a net increase of 819, but there was a notable decrease totalling 1056 in offences against good order.
During the year Ministerial approval I was given for the appointment of 50 additional police, and effect will be given to that approval as soon as funds become available. Applications for appointment during the year totalled 1240, but only 166 were successful. The force numbered 2965, including 32 trackers, at the end of last year.
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National Advocate, Tue 24 Apr 1928 9
THEFT FROM BEDROOM
£26 CIGARETTE CASE
Six Months’ Gaol
A gold cigarette case which the owner said cost £26/10/- in the Old Country and would be worth more in Australia, was the principal exhibit in a case heard at the Bathurst Police Court yesterday in which John Torpy (37) described as a showman, received six months’ hard labor for stealing the case, as well as an aspro tin and a tube of pills, the property of Mrs Winifred Bailey a visitor from Sydney. The articles, the police alleged, were stolen from Mrs Bailey’s bedroom at the Royal Hotel on Thursday evening last. Torpy who was defended by Mr Frank Kenny pleaded not guilty.
Sergeant Clarke stated that at 10.30 on Thursday night last, in company with Sergeant Daley, he questioned defendant in the vestibule of the Royal Hotel and searched him, but found nothing on him. Defendant who was drunk, denied having been upstairs that night. Witness arrest ed him on a charge of drunkenness. At the lockup on the following morning, defendant said he did not remember being spoken to on the previous night by witness and Sergeant Daley in the vestibule of the Royal Hotel. Witness produced certain articles.
Mr Kenny objected to the articles being put in as evidence as they had not been identified.
Witness handed in an aspro tin, a gold cigarette case and a tube of pills which he said had been handed to him by Sergeant Daley.
Mr Scobie SM said the articles could be put in as exhibits and be marked for identification.
Winifred Alice Bailey, wife of Arthur Harold Bailey, and a resident of Sydney, stated that she was staying at the Royal Hotel on Thursday last. At five minutes past ten on that night, she put a parcel of papers and her bag on her dressing table, and then left the room for a few minutes to go to the bathroom. On returning she saw a man outside who reeled and nearly ran into her. He had a beer laden breath. When she returned to her bedroom, she found that the flap of her bag which she had left closed had been opened.
The cigarette case, an aspro tin and a tube of pills were gone. She then went downstairs and made a complaint to the porter. She identified the articles produced as her property. She could not recognise defendant as the man she saw at the hotel.
Defendant [John Torpy] at this stage was requested to put on a brown overcoat and hat, and thus attired he stood up to enable witness to testify as to whether he was the man she saw in the hotel. She hesitated on seeing defendant thus attired, and said she was not quite sure whether he was the man or not.
Mr Scobie: Can you say definitely whether that is the man?
Witness: I did not see his face, but he was dressed exactly like that.
Mr Kenny: Did you lock your door that night when you went to the bathroom.
Witness: I did not lock the door. As a matter of fact, I do not think I did so.
Were there any other men in the vestibule when you went down? I was too agitated to notice.
But were there any other men there?—I did see another man in a black overcoat and he tried to make a fuss.
Further questioned by Mr Kenny, witness smilingly said that she smoked about eight cigarettes a day. She would not admit that the cigarette case fell out of her pocket and on to the lounge floor.
In reply to Mr Scobie, witness said that when she saw defendant outside her door, he was making towards the staircase.
Did he appear to be in a hurry?—Yes he seemed to be in a great hurry.
John Chadwick, porter at the Royal Hotel stated that when Mrs Bailey reported the loss of a gold cigarette case, she pointed out defendant, who was standing in the vestibule. Witness asked defendant if he was staying at the hotel and he said “No”. Mrs Bailey said, “That is the man.” While witness was talking to defendant, who had had a few drinks, the aspro box fell at defendant’s right boot. Witness asked him if he owned the articles and he said “No.” Mrs Bailey identified the articles as her property.
In reply to Mr Kenny, witness said he did not say anything to defendant about the cigarette case found on the lounge. He did not consider that it was his business to do so.
Mr Kenny: You were guarding him as it were.
When you picked up the articles first, Mrs Bailey did not actually claim them?—No, she claimed them ten minutes afterwards.
Did you see him take these things from his pocket?—No. I was on the left hand side of him and they dropped out on the right hand side. He added that the cigarette case was found in the lounge by Miss Eviston the book keeper at the hotel.
Mrs [Winifred Alice] Bailey, recalled, said she was quite positive the cigarette case was in her bag when she placed the bag on the dressing table. The cigarette in the case at present was a Capstan—a different brand to the brand she smoked. The cigarette case cost £26/10s in the old country. It would coat more in Australia.
Mr Kenny submitted that defendant was in such a drunken condition when the theft was alleged to have taken place that he could hardly have committed it
Mr Scobie: Some people say a man is not drunk until he rolls over someone.
Defendant said he was very drunk on the night in question, and could not remember what happened. He elected to he dealt with summarily.
Sergeant Daley produced the police record showing that defendant’s convictions included two years at the Sydney Quarter Sessions in 1913 for robbery in company, and six months’ at the Central Police Court, Sydney in 1916 for stealing from the person.
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The Sydney Morning Herald, Tue 24 Apr 1928 10
John Torpy, 37 years, showman, was sentenced to six months’ goal by Mr Scobie. SM, at the Bathurst Police Court this morning for stealing a gold cigarette case, valued at £28/10/-, and other articles, belonging to Mrs Winifred Bailey, a visitor from Sydney, who was staying at the Royal Hotel.
Accused, who was sentenced in Sydney in 1913 to two years for robbery in company, and six months in 1926 [sic] for stealing from the person, entered Mrs Bailey’s bedroom while she was absent in the bathroom.
John Torpy, 1929
The Armidale Express and New England General Advertiser, Fri 15 Mar 1929 11
Showman Fined £3.
John Torpy (40), a travelling showman, was charged at Armidale Court of Petty Sessions on Monday morning last with being drunk and using indecent language in Beardy-street on Saturday night.
He pleaded guilty. “I didn’t even remember being locked up, until Sunday morning,” added Torpy.
Const[able] Rankin said that about 8.20 he saw defendant very drunk near the New England Hotel. Torpy used the language complained of and witness arrested him.
To the Bench: The big crowd about comprised men, women and children. They could hear the language; witness had, [sic] although six or seven yards away. The expressions were used to Torpy’s companion.
Messrs H Sargeson and A Purkiss, JsP, fined defendant 5/-, or 24 hours, for the drunkenness and £3, in default 14 days, on the more serious count.
Jack Williams, 1930
National Advocate, Tue 6 May 1930 12
SHOW GROUND INCIDENT
Man Committed for Trial
At the Bathurst Police Court yesterday before Mr WS Bromhead, SM, Jack Williams, alias John Torpy, 39) was charged with having committed a serious offence at the Bathurst Show Ground on May 1. He pleaded not guilty. Mr WH Henlen appeared for defendant, who after evidence for the prosecution had been heard, was committed for trial at the Bathurst Quarter Sessions to be held on May 22. Bail was allowed in £60.
Evidence was given by Constable Cook, of Wallerawang, who was on duty at the Bathurst Show Ground early on the morning of May 1. He said he saw a light in a tent and heard voices. Looking into the tent he saw defendant and another man, who was very drunk. Witness described what he saw and added that he called the men “a pair of dirty mongrels.” Defendant, when arrested, said “The drink has done this, cannot you charge me with being drunk, or with riotous behavior?” At the police station, defendant asked to be allowed to see a doctor and his request was granted.
Witness, replying to Mr Henlen, admitted that he did not interfere with the men until a certain offence was committed.
Mr Henlen: You saw them acting in a certain way, previously to that, do you think it is a policeman’s duty to prevent crime if he possibly can?
Witness: It is.
Cuthbert William Lamrock, a resident of Durham Street, also gave evidence for the prosecution.
Albert Fall, [Alfred Fell] an elderly man living in the country, said he was drunk on the morning in question and wanderered [sic] in the direction of the Show Ground. He did not remember much of what took place, but he must have walked into the river, for his clothes were wet and he was very cold. He met defendant, and remarked that he would like to find a place in which to lie down. Defendant said “You can come in with me.” He remembered lying down and feeling very cold, but he had no recollection of anything else that took place.
Cross-examined by Mr Henlen, witness said he could not say that any of the incidents alleged which the solicitor detailed had occurred.
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National Advocate, Thu 22 May 1930 13
BATHURST QUARTER SESSIONS
Cases for Hearing
The Bathurst Quarter Sessions will open this morning before Judge Thomson, with Mr BV Stacy as Crown Prosecutor. The following cases have been set down for hearing: Ludwig Godtel and Alex Burdack charged with breaking and entering a store at Lyndhurst, and steal therein; second count, receiving; also charged with stealing at Lyndhurst; Athol Royden Forbes, breaking and entering a garage and stealing therein at Lithgow; Jack Williams serious assault; second count indecent assault; Norrie Lionel Mill Smith, stealing at Bathurst.
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National Advocate, Fri 23 May 1930 14
Jack Williams, a middle aged showman, pleaded not guilty before Judge Thomson at the Bathurst Quarter Sessions yesterday to a charge of hiving [sic] committed a serious offence at the Bathurst Show Ground on May 3. He was defended by Mr WH Henlen.
The case for the Crown was that early on the morning of the date in question Constable Cook, of Wallerawang, who was on duty at the Show Ground heard voice in a tent. Looking inside the tent, he saw two men, accused and a man, who was helplessly drunk. A certain offence took place.
Constable Cook described what he saw.
Mr Henlen: Seeing that the other man was drunk, do you not think you might have tried to prevent the offence.
Witness: I interfered at what I considered an appropriate moment.
Further cross-examined, witness said that accused asked permission to see a doctor, and this was granted.
Mr Henlen: And the doctor is not to be called?
Witness: That has nothing to us.
No charge has been preferred against the other man?—That is so.
Defendant [Jack Williams], on oath, stated that on morning in question, the other man who was very drunk, cold and wet came to his (accused’s) tent. Witness allowed him to remain there. There was no truth in what Constable Cook said and owing to the construction of the tent, the constable could not have seen what he declared he had seen.
Replying to the Crown Prosecutor accused admitted that there [were] previous convictions against him for various dishonest practices.
Me Henlen: Have you ever been charged with an offence of this sort?
When the constable came in he put the handcuffs on both of you?—Yes.
Mr Henlen addressed the jury and the Crown Prosecutor, in reply asked whether it was reasonable to suppose that the constable had trumped up a charged [sic] against accused.
The jury, after a retirement of three quarters of an hour, returned a verdict of not guilty, and accused was discharged.
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The Sydney Morning Herald, Sat 24 May 1930 15
BATHURST QUARTER SESSIONS.
At the Bathurst Quarter Sessions, before Judge Thomson,
Jack Williams, a showman, was acquitted on a charge of committing a serious offence at the showground.
1 The Sydney Morning Herald, (NSW), Mon 14 Apr 1913, p. 9. Emphasis added.
2 Clarence and Richmond Examiner, (Grafton, NSW), Tue 15 Apr 1913, p. 5. Emphasis added.
3 Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Thu 17 Apr 1913, p. 6.
4 The Sun, (Sydney, NSW), Thu 17 Apr 1913, p. 1. Emphasis added.
5 Barrier Miner, (Broken Hill, NSW), Fri 18 Apr 1913, p. 5. Emphasis added.
6 Evening News, (Sydney, NSW), Fri 2 May 1913, p. 4. Emphasis added.
7 The Sydney Morning Herald, (NSW), Sat 7 Jun 1913, p. 9. Emphasis added.
8 Daily Advertiser, (Wagga Wagga, NSW), Thu 25 Feb 1926, p. 1.
9 National Advocate, (Bathurst, NSW), Tue 24 Apr 1928, p. 3. Emphasis added.
10 The Sydney Morning Herald, (NSW), Tue 24 Apr 1928, p. 12.
11 The Armidale Express and New England General Advertiser, (NSW), Fri 15 Mar 1929, p. 9. Emphasis in original and added.
12 National Advocate, (Bathurst, NSW), Tue 6 May 1930, p. 1. Emphasis added.
13 National Advocate, (Bathurst, NSW), Thu 22 May 1930, p. 1. Emphasis added.
14 National Advocate, (Bathurst, NSW), Fri 23 May 1930, p. 1. Emphasis added.
15 The Sydney Morning Herald, Sat 24 May 1930, p. 16.