INSIDE THIS ISSUE
Blast From the Past
Disney Land Police
Next Month's Meeting
Tents for Single Men during the Depression.
River Torrens 1930
National Police Remembrance Day on the 29th September 2006 will be a day of great significance with the unveiling of the new memorial and the official opening of the exhibition in Old Parliament House Canberra.
The Academy at Fort Largs is the focal point for the local ceremony which will be held at 11.00am on that day. I urge members who to attend this ceremony at the Wall of Remembrance which is always a very moving ceremony and rewarding for those who attend. See the flyer in this issue for more details.
I have been absent for several weeks in Townsville but volunteers have remained very busy with many projects. Rex Greig reports that the FJ Holden will have all the chrome work done soon and when assembled will be just about complete. The chrome work however is quite extensive and I was surprised to discover that it consists of some 80 parts which all have to be carefully fitted. Museum tours were enjoyed by the West Beach & Enfield Probus Clubs, together with outside visits to the Fleurieu Peninsula Family History Group, the Senior Education Group & the Manningham Legacy Widows & I thank Kevin Beare, Holger & Ros Kruse, Helen & Bob Ward , Bob Boscence & Elees Pick for their time & efforts.
Our 254th monthly meeting on Friday 1st September was attended by a smaller than usual group of some 30-35members who heard our guest speaker David Lacelles speaking about the peace keeping duties in the Siani Desert during the 1980s. It was a very interesting talk supported by photographs and included the history of the area. Peace keeping in these areas is often forgotten but our forces do risk their lives and live in difficult conditions whilst performing this very demanding and important work. Bob Job conducted a vote of thanks and presented David with a certificate of appreciation and a book to a round of applause. The raffle conducted by Colin & Joyce Beames raised $63.00.
Christmas is not far away and our committee has been busy planning for the event. An information & booking flyer will be included in the October issue of the Hue & Cry.
Next month’s meeting on the 6th October will feature Fred Killick – WW2 the Normandy Landings. Fred was there at Normandy and we look forward to seeing you at what promises to be a very interesting meeting.
Final in this series
written by Shelia Burnette
Chicagoland USA Police Department
Vancouver, British Columbia Police
Located in the old Coroner's Court, this museum is run by the Vancouver Police Historical Society. As with most other police museums, the department's history is outlined.
In addition to the department's unique beginnings, other highlights at the museum include Historical Action Settings; displays using evidence from actual crime scenes. Titled "History, Mystery and Intrigue," the displays feature scenes from famous Vancouver crimes, including cases such as the man who tried to murder his wife by putting arsenic in chocolate milkshakes and "Babes in the Woods," the still ¬unsolved case where the skeletal remains of two young brothers were found in Stanley Park.
Paris, France Police
Created in 1909 by Police Prefect Lepine, this free museum relates the history of Parisian law enforcement back to the 16th century, including souvenirs dealing with the history of both Paris and France. More than 2,000 documents alone can be seen there, including the bills stuck on the Capital's walls to instruct the Parisian citizenry on police infonnation and warnings.
Of great historical interest are items such as the gaolbooks of the Conciergerie prison that record the arrests of figures like Ravaillac and the Comtesse de la Motte (implicated in the case of Queen Marie Antoinette's necklace); private seals of Louis XVI; and portraits of 14 "lieutenants generaux," forerunners of the Prefects, who headed the Paris Police force between 1667 and 1789. These items are included in a section devoted to the old regime (before the Revolution).
The modem Prefecture of Police was created by Napoleon in 1800, and the museum's third section follows it from the time of Bonaparte to today. More historical artifacts can be found here, as well as displays dedicated to crimes, particularly theft and prostitution. On display are weapons used by criminals, the 17th Century "Sword of Justice," two scale models of guillotines and doors from old prison cells.
Czech Republic Police
The Museum of the Police of the Czech Republic is something most people in the United States won't see, but excellent photos at the Web site give you a sense of what it must be like in person. It is housed in a monastery created in 1350 by Emperor Karl IV for the Augustus monastical order. The monastery was liquidated in 1784 by decree of Emperor Joseph II, with the state using the building ever since. It has been mostly used as a museum since the mid ¬1960s, but opened to the public in its current state in 1991. The museum encompasses 1,700 square meters and has 3,100 items on display. The architecture is so impressive, it may even detract from the exhibits.
Our own "Black Museum"
FROM THE POLICE JOURNAL
Each year brings its new crop of retiring policemen & from time to time we see someone leaving us who has for some reason or other stood out from the crowd during his years of service, & Sergeant Jack Connell is just such a person. He joined the Force on the 10th October 1927 & he was then a strapping young mounted constable stationed at the barracks. On the outbreak of the waterside workers’ strike at Port Adelaide about September 1928, he, together with a number of other policemen, went into camp at Port Adelaide. The camp by present day standards was a pretty rough affair set up in Reid’s old timber mills. In the initial stages the men just slept on beds set up at various places in the mill & later moved into tents supplied by the army; subsequently the tents made way for wooden huts built to house the troops. These were the days of the old mounted & foot police & both branches were stationed there to cope with the industrial unrest at various times during the following three years.
Leaving Port Adelaide he returned to barracks until 1934, when he transferred to Renmark which was manned by Sgt Hanlin (mounted branch), Jack Connell & Alf Horsnell (mounted branch),
Perc Strauss (foot branch), & at a later stage they were joined by Detective Copp.
He moved from Renmark to Thevenard on the West Coast in May 1936, & in September of 1937 was transferred to Innamincka in the far north east of the state.
The transfer from Thevenard began by a train trip from that station to Port Lincoln, where he went aboard the Minnipa for the trip across the Gulf to Adelaide. Arriving in town he purchased a Chev utility for the princely sum of 60 pounds. Loading his worldly goods onto the ute he drove to Innamincka via Broken Hill, completing a transfer journey of 1246 miles which must surely be a record distance for a police transfer in South Australia.
Among many of the interesting events that occurred while at Innamincka was the arrest of a mental defective with homicidal tendencies.
Leaving Innamincka in his trusty utility, accompanied by a local Justice of the Peace, and a blacktracker, he drove to Cordillo Downs Station in the north-east corner of the state, near the Queensland border where the arrest was made. Then followed the nerve-wracking journey from Cordillo Downs to Peterborough, a distance of 720 miles. Peterborough was the nearest practical place in South Australia where a doctor could be located to make the necessary examination and certification. These were the times when policemen really did things the hard way.
Innamincka in those times could almost be called a marriage bureau, for a number of constables stationed there met their future wives & married, & Jack was no exception. It was here that he met & married Mrs Connell who was a nurse in the town.
From Innamincka he transferred to Oodnadatta in May of 1942 & because the Police Pantechnicon was not available then, furniture was shipped by mail truck from Innamincka to Broken Hill & then by rail from Broken hill through Quorn to Oodnadatta. It had become obvious by this time that Jack certainly was not being handed any plums with his station transfers.
Receiving a report of the murder of an aboriginal shepherd near Tieyon Station, close to the north-east border of the Northern Territory, Jack, together with two blacktrackers, drove to Granite Downs Station where he obtained a horse plant from Mr Robb the station owner. The plant amounted to about nine horses, having pack horses for himself & the trackers. A patrol was then made to locate the murderers & it is not difficult to imagine the rugged conditions of a patrol in that country. Four of the aborigines were located in one camp & the other five were arrested at various places. Having gathered together his nine suspects he returned to Granite Downs Station & the suspects were then taken by truck back to Oodnadatta. The journey lasted six weeks, covering a distance of about 750 miles through parts of the Northern Territory & the Musgrave & Everard Ranges. At Oodnadatta the suspects were brought before the court & committed for trial at the Supreme Court at Port Augusta. They were subsequently tried at Port Augusta & convicted of manslaughter.
Another incident that occurred at Oodnadatta began with a report of a white youth about 18 years of age who wandered away from a cattle camp on Mount Dare Station after an argument. The tracks of the horse ridden by the youth were followed for several miles near Abminga, on the north-south line, and they were there lost among other horses & cattle tracks. At this stage it was presumed that the youth had reached Abminga & “jumped the rattler.” However, some months later a report was received of a skeleton that was found at the side of a creek some 30 miles east of Abminga. The patrol on horseback was made to the area & the skeleton was recovered & brought to Adelaide where Professor Watson at the university established that it was the skeleton of a white youth about 18 years of age. An inquest established that the skeleton was that of the youth who had wandered from the camp at Mount Dare Station. He had apparently wandered in a circle & perished.
From Oodnadatta Jack was off to Maree in October 1944, another station that was not exactly sought after. Arriving at Marree he was instructed by the then Commissioner of Police, Mr Johns, to purchase & break in a team of camels to use on police patrols. This job was done & the camels were used on patrols as far as Birdsville in Queensland.
From Marree he went to Tumby Bay in 1945, Tailem Bend in 1952, Kadina in 1954, No 9 City Division in 1959, and then to barracks in May of 1961 as an administration sergeant with No 20 (Mounted) Division, where he saw his last day of service.
During his career Jack received two honourable mentions & two reprimands & he does not know to this day whether the honourable mentions cancel out the reprimands or the reprimands cancel out the honourable mentions. Whichever way it goes, it did not interfere with his Long Service and Good Conduct Medal, which was awarded on October 3, 1958.
Other highlights that rate a mention was his appearance on radio with the late Jack Davey in one of his well known quiz shows. Jack chose the subject of geography & won himself a free trip to Western Australia.
During his time in the north he apparently caught the imagination of the author of the book of “Southward Journey” who saw fit to make a mention of Jack in the pages of his novel.
He played League football from 1928 – 1934 with West Adelaide, & in that time played in two carnivals & other interstate games. He had as a team-mate Sergeant Jim McInerney, who is still with us.
He had many sporting accomplishments & rowed with the East Torrens Rowing Club for four seasons. During the State championship eight races, he was a member of a crew, which won the championship with seven crew members. Shortly after the races had started Dave Much, who was also a member of the crew, lost an oar & then dived overboard so that he would not interfere with the seven crew members who were left to complete the course, & to the amazement of all, the seven man crew finished the three mile course in front of the rest.
Jack will spend his retirement at his home at 30 Devitt Avenue, South Payneham, when he is not out making the most of his free time, & to use the words of Jack “he would have it all over again if he had the chance.”
Memoirs of the late Sergeant (Retired) Bob Clark (cont’d)
Members of the Mounted Branch from Barracks commenced to be sent out on relieving duties at country stations &I made my first trip at a country posting at Tanunda where I spent a month.
In addition to your normal pay in those days Constables were paid two shillings & sixpence a day extra to assist in the cost of living & you were always out of pocket as a result.
In this first assignment I boarded with a family privately as did the other single constable who was stationed there. At the time I was there the Doctor who was of German descent was permitted to practice by the A.M.A. but was not permitted to use the term legally qualified medical practitioner. Because of that restriction he was not competent to issue a normal death certificate & his district included the towns of Tanunda, Angaston, Nuriootpa & smaller areas. As a result all deaths occurring in those localities had to be referred to a Coroner for a certificate to bury. The Doctor was a very cooperative person & in each case he prepared his own report & would then take you to the home of the relatives. In the month that I was there I prepared Coroner's Reports in at least 6 cases & at least this gave you experience in preparing that type of report.
The first case I was called on to make a report on involved the death of the wife of a very prominent winemaker & I took statements from the husband, the son & the housekeeper. In each case being treated to a glass of refreshment before commencing the report. I'm afraid that the glasses used by those people were much better for serving seasoned wine drinkers than young policeman & I was thankful there were no more relatives to be interviewed.
I formed a very high opinion of this Doctor both as a Doctor & as a citizen & I was very surprised some years later at the outbreak of World War II to learn that he had been interned-apparently he still had German allegiance.
Some time after that I was sent to relieve for a month at Barmera which I always regard as the worst month of career in the Force. There were only 2 alternatives for boarding, the Hotel which, on our very poor allowance. was out of the question, & the other was a local boarding house, the proprietor of which adopted that take it or leave it attitude knowing full well there was no other place to go. The meals there were very poor & 2 of us had to sleep in an unlined galvanised iron shed with a door at one end and window at the side. Neither of which were fitted with screens to keep out the mosquitoes & sleeping there in the month of January was almost impossible & I was very pleased to return to the Barracks at the completion of that month.
Whilst there we received a call one morning from a farmer at Kingston which was on the opposite side of the river informing us that an employee on his property had committed suicide. We notified a Coroner who went in his own car to the farm & the other Constable & I went in his vehicle. On arrival we were taken to where the body was lying & it was found that suicide had been by shooting himself through the head with a 12 gauge shot gun & there was very little of his face left. The Coroner together with the other Constable had armed themselves with a bottle of brandy & the work of preparing the report was left to me. I found it very difficult to persuade the Coroner to view the body & I'm sure he took his biggest swig of brandy immediately after doing so.
After the report had been prepared we were obliged to get the body into our car to convey it to Barmera which proved very difficult, as the body had become very rigid & had to be placed in almost a vertical position on the back seat & with the head covered with a blanket. On arrival at the punt we found a few unemployed youths waiting to get a lift over the river & during the trip they became very curious as to what we had in the back seat. On being told they adopted the "Oh yeah" attitude & they were invited to have a look. When one of them pulled the blanket back & exposed the head it was very smartly replaced & we had no more queries from them nor did we have any requests for a lift. My fellow officer was not standing the strain very well either & this was not helped when we went to dinner that day to find that fritz was on the menu!
On the 9th instant, about 8.45 pm, Police Constable James Bond, of Kilkenny was shot at by some person unknown, who was evidently concealed in a plantation opposite the Police Station. The occurrence took place as the constable was passing through the front entrance gate to the station. Several pellets (swan shot) struck him on the legs & lower part of the body. The constable, after being hit, turned around quickly & discharged his revolver at a dark form (which he took to be that of a man) disappearing through the plantation. The revolver shot, however, was not effective, & the offender escaped, the constable being too seriously injured to go in pursuit. There appears to be but little chance so far of obtaining a description of offender, as the night was exceptionally dark & no one, as far as can be ascertained, saw anything of the shooting or noticed anyone in the plantation.
On Friday 28th July, 2006 many of our members received SAPOL Service Medals, in recognition for their continuous, ethical & diligent service over an extended period.
Service Medal with 40 year clasp
Retired Sergeant John Phillips
Retired Sergeant Robert Dale
Retired Chief Inspector Bryan Dowling
Retired Asst. Commissioner Thomas Howie QPM
Retired Commissioner David Hunt QPM
The late Retired Deputy Commissioner Patrick Hurley
Retired Deputy Commissioner Raymond Killmier AM QPM
Retired Superintendent James Sykes
Retired Sergeant Lexton Teague
Retired Senior Sergeant Edwin Trotter
Service Medal with 30 year clasp
Retired Ast. Commissioner John Lockhead OAM
The late Retired Chief Superintendent Laurence McEvoy
Retired Chief Inspector Barry Presgrave OAM
Retired Sergeant Colin Beames
Retired Detective Sergeant Ian Grose
Retired Senior Constable Alan Hyson
Retired Senior Constable Ernest McLeod
Retired Senior Sergeant Dirk Meertens
Former Detective Sergeant Donald O’Doherty
Retired Sergeant Norman Stacey
Retired Detective Sergeant John Testrow
Service Medal with 20 year clasp
Retired Senior Constable Val Harvey
Retired Sergeant Allen Cliff
Former Senior Constable Brian Lancaster
SERVICE MEDAL & SERVICE AWARDS
The Commissioner of Police has expanded eligibility criteria for the SAPOL Service Medal & Service Award to include sworn & non sworn employees who resigned, retired or died, providing the employee was serving on or after 14th February 1975. Existing criteria must be satisfied. Posthumous awards will be considered, but SAPOL will only issue one medal in these circumstances.
To be considered for recognition former sworn or non sworn employees will be required to apply using a SAPOL prepared application form. The partner or relatives of a deceased member should also apply in this way.
Enquiries to Senior Sergeant Jim Leaney,
Service Medal Project, Executive Support Branch,
telephone 820 42663
This Month's Birthdays
Tony and Elees share their
Dorothy has her own
special technique for
dealing with her birthday
At 6.30 on Thursday morning, July 15, 1920, condemned murderer, Alexander Newland Lee was removed from his cell on the eastern side of the Adelaide Gaol, where he had been incarcerated since his trial. He was then taken by guards to the second floor of the newer portion of the complex, & re-confined in a cell that opened directly on to the ‘drop’.
He ate a hearty breakfast, & for about an hour, while awaiting the final act, he was closeted with the Rev. W. H. Hanton who had been ministering to the spiritual needs of the condemned man.
The crime, or crimes, for which Lee had been sentenced to death, were among the most horrendous ever recorded. It involved Lee’s wife & three of his five innocent children, all of whom died agonizing deaths, brought about by the administration of strychnine.
Lee, a shearer by trade, had lived contentedly with his family in the small rural town of Rhynie not far from Riverton.
Lee’s suffered a painful and disabling injury to his right hand in a freak shearing accident, which resulted in him having to obtain medical treatment for some weeks, at the Willows Hospital near Nuriootpa. Here, it was said, he became enamoured of a young woman who was working about the place.
About a fortnight prior to the sudden deaths of his family members, he accepted a temporary job, droving cattle. While droving in the north of the State, it is believed he purchased a quantity of strychnine & in compliance with regulations signed his name in the Poison Book.
On looking back over the stories surrounding the case it is difficult to sort fact from fiction. But, it would appear that Lee, who was supposedly away droving, came back after dark one night in the hope that no one would see him, & somehow managed to poison his wife & three of his children, who had suddenly become a burden to him.
Before he could slip quietly away under the cover of darkness however, a local storekeeper, out walking his dog was reported to have seen Lee skulking about.
An old newspaper report however, states that Lee, on returning home found his family writhing in agony from having drunk milk into which some mouse poison had accidentally been spilt. He then cycled about 300 yards (300 metres) to the local hotel to rouse his brother, Mounted Police Constable Woodhead, and a doctor.
Lee, on returning to his home once more, was just in time to see one of his little boys drawing his last breath. The little girl was the last to go, & she died in agony.
There was a post-mortem examination & an inquest before the unfortunate victims were interred in the Riverton Cemetery on Good Friday morning.
Lee’s explanation of the occurrence was that some mouse poison had possibly been dislodged from a shelf, & fallen into the milk, which the family had drunk before retiring.
On Easter Sunday Detectives Nation and Goldsworthy of Adelaide, arrived in Rhynie to conduct a full investigation, & arrested Lee on a charge of murder.
The subsequent trial ended with Lee being found guilty of murder & having the sentence of death passed on him.
At the height of the trial, Lee’s brother is quoted as saying, “If they don’t hang Alec I’ll shoot him myself, he is no good.”
As poison, is more often chosen by women murderers, than their male counterparts, Lee is believed to have been the first male to be hanged in South Australia where the Poison Book was used as evidence.
The headstone on the graves of the unfortunate victims give an indication of the revulsion felt by the parents of the murdered woman & her children, towards Lee, for they refused to include their daughter’s married name of Lee, in the inscription.
Although Lee reverently acknowledged his religion he remained impenitent to the last, making no confession or admission of any kind, and taking all knowledge of the crime, with him to the grave.
The “Register” of July 16, 1920, reported:
“LEE HANGED - The condemned man Alexander Newland Lee who was sentenced to death for the murder of his wife and three children was hanged at the Adelaide Gaol at 8 o’clock on Thursday morning. The Rev. W.H. Stanton [Lee’s spiritual adviser] said that the doomed man made no statement. The execution was entirely of a private nature, and only officials required to attend were present. Death was instantaneous. Lee maintained a calm demeanour to the end. He walked erect to the “drop’, turned to a warder and exclaimed “Good-bye Jim.” He met his death unflinchingly.
Supreme Courthouse, Adelaide, July 15th, 1920.
The following certificate and declaration of the execution of Alexander Newland Lee are published pursuant to section 13 of the Criminal Law Consolidation Act, 1876.
W.L. STUART, Master.
SCHEDULE BI, Edward Kinmont, being the medical officer in attendance on the execution of Alexander Newland Lee, at the prison, at Adelaide, do hereby certify and declare that the said Alexander Newland Lee was, in pursuance of the sentence of the court, hanged by the neck until his body was dead.
Given under my hand this fifteenth day of July, in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and twenty, at the said prison.
E.KINMONT, Medical Officer.
SCHEDULE CWe, the undersigned, do hereby testify and declare that we have this day been present at the prison, at Adelaide when the extreme penalty of the law was carried into execution on the body of Alexander Newland Lee, convicted at the criminal sessions of the Supreme Court, held on the 17th day of June, 1920, and sentenced to death, and that the said Alexander Newland Lee was, in pursuance of the said sentence, hanged by his neck until his body was dead. Dated this fifteenth of July, A.D. 1920, at the said prison.
OTTO H. SCHOMBURGK,
WALTER H. STANTON,
R. BRUCE BRITTAN
T.F. DRISCOLL, F.C.
W. LAWRENCE, F.C.
There was, however, a strange “fringe benefit”, if one could call it that. The newspaper “Observer” of July 24, 1920, carried the following -
“Proposed Execution Holiday. Many strange resolutions have emanated from the Trades Hall in recent times, but a new one of the “stop work” variety was provided at a meeting of the Building Trades Union, held in the Labour citadel on Thursday July 15”.
[The day that A.N. Lee was hanged. Editor]
The latest resolution adopted is as follows -
“That this body recommends to all unions that a general-stop-work holiday should be called on any day upon which an execution takes place, as a protest against capital punishment.”
The two remaining Lee children, Amelia and Alice, who were not poisoned, were fostered & brought up by a local couple, who were fond of them. The girls, from that time onward, always used the surname of their foster parents.