Drinks for Travellers
; Supply Methods Questioned
Methods employed In serving drinks to travellers and lodgers'during hours in which tho ordinary sale of liquor is pro- hibited were questioned In two cases under the Licensing Act, heard in the Hobart Police Court, before Mr. F. N. Stops (Police Magistrate) yesterday. A complaint against Joseph Walter Scott, licensee of the Royal Exchange Hotel, was dismissed, and Frederick William Dalco, licensee of tho Ocean Child Hotel, was convicted of an offence. Inspector Bush prosecuted.
Scott was charged with having failed between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m., viz., at 8.30 p.m. on February 20, to keep every bar room in the Royal Exchange Hotel, Ho- bart, of which he was the licensee, shut and locked.
Defendant, who pleaded not guilty, was represented by Mr. N. E. Pringle.
Sergeant Dowling stated that at 8.30 p.m. on February 20, with Constable Mackey, he visited the Royal Exchango Hotel. He saw the licensee In the hall and two men standing near the bar door, of which the top was open, the bottom half being partly closed. One of the men had a glass of liquor in his hand. One man stated that he was stay- ing at the hotel, and the other said he was a traveller. The bar was lighted, and a woman was behind the counter. Tho door leading from the bar into the bar-parlour was wide open, and another woman was standing talking to about six sailors, who were in the parlour. De- fendant stated that he was unaware that he was committing any offence in regard to the two civilians, as one was a travel- ler from Brighton and the other a board- er at the hotel.
. To Mr. Pringle: The two men referred to had been .convicted in the Court for having been in the bar of the Royal Ex- change Hotel on February 20. On an ap- peal that conviction had been quashed. It might have been Mrs.. Scott in the bar.
Constable Mackey corroborated, add- ing that.while'he. was standing In the hotel he noticed someone inside the bar close the lower portion ot tho bar door. He did. not go into tho bar parlour.
COMPLAINT ALLEGEDLY BAD.
Mr. Pringle applied tor a dismissal of the complaint on the ground that there had been no proof. that defendant" was Hie licensee of the hotel .on February 20. Tho complaint did riot deal with the sale, delivery, keeping or consumption of liquor, the alleged,offence being one of keeping the bar-door open.
Mr. Stops held that according to tho wording of the Act no such proof was necessary, and that,the complaint was
Mr. Pringle stated that even if tho bar-door had been open there had ac- tually been no offence,* provided that it was open for the purpose of supplying liquor to a traveller ór.lodger. The men were such, and were entitled , to obtain drink, the licensee being justly entitled to supply them. As to the. sailors, they were also bona-fide lodgers, and ns such were entitled to their refreshments. The licensee was entitled to open tho door for the purpose of supplying those re- freshments, so long as the door, was closed after they had been supplied. That, it was contended, was what had
Defendant, cross-examined by Inspec- tor Bush, said ho was certain that ho was not committing an offence,' Ho did not remember tho sergeant saying any- thing to him about tho bai door slide being open.
Defendant's . wife, Ada Scott, stated that when the police arrived on Febru- ary 20 she was in the bar. She had served tho sailors with drinks. She served tho two civilians with their drinks through the top portion of the slide, which she closed after the drinks had been handed out. She did not open the lower portion. The door into the bar parlour was closed while tho police wore In the hotel. The sailors had regularly boarded there. Sho produced the book containing the bookings for February 20.
FOUR NAMES MISSING.
Inspector Bush pointed out that the names glven to Sergeant Dowling by four of the sailors in the bar parlour were not in the book. Replying to his question, Mrs. Scott said that she could not explain-that fact. She was positive that the door from the bar Into the parlour was closed.
Greta Keating said that she was em- ployed in the bar at the Royal.Exchange Hotel. On February 20 she went Into the bar parlour just ahead of Sergeant Dowling. She found that the door into the bar was locked. It remained closed until after the police had gone.
To Inspector Bush: Constable Mackey walked into the bar parlour and was there while she and the seageant were there. She was standing near the fire- place and the two policemen were stand ing near the table. She was certain that Constable Mackey was in there.
Mr. Stops said ho was satisfied that the bar door slide had been opened.for the purpose of supplying liquor to men who were entitled to receive lt. There was direct conflict of testimony regard- ing the door from the bar into the par- lour, and ns he had considerable' doubt on that matter the complaint would be
DOORS WIDE OPEN.
Frederick William Dalco was charged with having on Sunday, March 19, failed to keep every bar room, in the Ocean Child Hotel, . of which he. was the licensee, shut and locked.'
He pleaded not guilty, and .was repre- sented by Mr. G., P; Harvey (Crisp, Gill and Harvey).
Sergeant Woodorth stated that at noon on March 19 he visited the Ocean Child Hotel, Hobart. He found two-travellers in the bar. The door from the bar into the parlour Was wide open, as also was another door. Defendant said he thought that as the men were travellers they had a right to be in the bar.
Constable . Aitken corroborated. ' '
Mr. Harvey pointed out that if the doors were opened for tho purpose of supplying drinks to the travellers there was no offence under the Act. If the charge had been one of allowing the men to be in the bar he would have entered a plea of guilty, but the complaint was that the doors were not kept shut and locked. He asked that'the complaint be
Inspector Bush said that there was no need to open tho two doors for the pur- pose of serving drinks to the two men, who were actually in the bar.
The Police Magistrate" said that the onus was on the defence to provo that tho doors were open for a lawful pur-
Defendant stated that the bar had just been cleaned out, and the doors were left open for ventilation purposes. ' '
To Inspector Bush: He did not ex- plain to the sergeant that the doors were open for that purpose. .
The Police Magistrate found defendant guilty, but stated that as the offence had occurred but two months-after the Act came Into force, and as defendant was evidently under a misapprehension, he would record a conviction. Dalco was ordered to pay the costs, 11s.