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1 correction by jhempenstall - Show corrections

BUSHRANGING IN VICTORIA. TWO CONSTABLES SHOT AND A SERGEANT MISSING. [FROM THE "ARGUS" REPORTER]   MANSFIELD, Monday night. The police heard privately that the Kellys, for whom they had been looking for months past, were in the ranges at the head of the King River. The Kelly family live at Greta, fifty miles from here, and the brothers were understood to be in con- cealment where Power once hid himself. Two parties of police were secretly de- spatched last week—one from Greta, con- sisting of five men, with Sergeant Steele in command, and one of four from Mans- field. Though the movements of the Mansfield party were supposed to be dark, the object of the expedition leaked out, and, no doubt, was rapidly telegraphed across the bush to Edward Kelly. The ranges are infested with a brotherhood of Kellys, Lloyds, Quinns, &c. They occupy land amongst the hills, and ostensibly carry on the operations of cattle-breeders. From the account given by Constable M'Intyre, it appears that the Mansfield party started on Friday, equipped with revolvers, one Spencer rifle, and a double-barrelled gun, lent by a resident of the township. They had a tent and a fortnight's provisions. They reached Stringy-bark Creek, twenty miles from here, on Friday evening, and camped on an open space on the Creek. It was the site of some old diggings. They pitched the tent near the ruins of two huts. They were about fifteen miles from the head of the King. No special precautions were thought necessary, because the party supposed they were a long way from Kelly's whereabouts. The ranges round about were almost unin- habited, and the party were not quite sure whether they were on the watershed of the King or the Broken River; but both Ken- nedy and Scanlan knew the locality inti- mately. It was Kennedy's intention to camp for a few days, patrol backwards into the ranges, and then shift the camp in. About six a.m. on Saturday, Kennedy and Scanlan went down the creek to explore, and they stayed away nearly all day. It was M'Intyre's duty to cook, and he at- tended closely to camp duty. During the forenoon some noise was heard, and M'Intyre went out to have a look, but found nothing. He fired two shots out of his gun at a pair of parrots. This gun- shot, he subsequently learned, was heard by Kelly, who must have been on the look- out for the police for days past. About 5 p.m., M'Intyre was at the fire making the afternoon tea, and Lonergon by him, when they were suddenly surprised with the cry, "Bail up ; throw up your arms." They   looked up, and saw four armed men close to them. Three carried guns, and Edward Kelly two rifles. Two of the men they did not know, but the fourth was the younger Kelly. The four were on foot. They had approached up the rises and some flags or rushes had provided them with ex- cellent cover until they got into the camp. M'Intyre had left his revolver at the tent door, and was totally unarmed. He therefore held up his hands as directed, and faced round. Lonergon started for shelter be- hind a tree, and at th same time put his                     hand upon his revolver. But before he had moved two paces, Edward Kelly shot him in the temple. He fell at once, and as he laid on the ground said, "Oh Christ,   I am shot." He died in a few seconds. Kelly had M'Intyre searched, and when they found he was unarmed, they let him drop his hands. They got possession of Lonergon's and M'Intyre's revolvers. Kelly remarked when he saw Lonergon had been killed, "What a pity; what   made the fool run?" The men helped themselves to several articles in the tent. Kelly talked to M'Intyre, and expressed his wonder that the police should have been so foolhardy as to look for him in the ranges. He made inquiries about four different men, and said he would roast each of them alive if he caught them. Steele and Flood were two of the four named. He asked M'Intyre what he fired at in the forenoon, and said they must have been fools not to suppose he was ready for them. It was evi- dent that he knew the exact state of the camp, the number of the men, and the de- scription of the horses. He asked where the other two were, and said he would put a hole through M'Intyre if he told a lie. M'Intyre told him who the two ab- sent men were, and hoped they would not be shot in cold blood. Kelly replied "No, I am not a coward. I'll shoot no   man if he holds up his hands." He told M'Intyre that the best thing he could do was to advise Kennedy and Scanlan to sur- render, for if they showed fight or tried to run away they would be shot. M'Intyre asked what they would do if he induced his comrades to surrender. Kelly said he would detain them all night, as he wanted a sleep, and let them go next morning without their arms or their horses. M'In- tyre told Kelly that he would induce his comrades to surrender if he would keep his word, but he would rather be shot a thousand times than sell them. He added that one of the two was father of a large family. Kelly said, "You can depend on   us." Kelly stated that Fitzpatrick, the man who tried to arrest his brother in April,   was the cause of all this; that his (Kelly's)   mother and the rest had been unjustly "lagged" at Beechworth. Kelly then caught sound of the approach of Kennedy and Scanlan, and the four men concealed themselves, some behind logs, and one in the tent. They made M'Intyre sit on a log, and Kelly said, "Mind, I have a rifle for   you if you give any alarm." Kennedy and Scanlan rode into the camp. M'Intyre went forward, and said, "Sergeant, I   think you had better dismount and sur- render, as you are surrounded. Kelly at the same time called out, "Put up your   hands." Kennedy appeared to think it was Lonergon who called out, and that a jest was intended, for he smiled and put his hand on his revolver case. He was

instantly fired at, but not hit; and Ken- nedy then realised the hopelessness of his position, jumped off his horse, and said, "It's all right, stop it, stop it." Scanlan, who carried the Spencer rifle, jumped down and tried to make for a tree, but before he could unsling his rifle, he was shot down and never spoke. A num- ber of shots were fired. M'Intyre found that the men intended to shoot the whole of the party, so he jumped on Kennedy's horse, and dashed down the creek. Seve- ral shots were fired but none reached him. Apparently the rifles were empty and only the revolvers available, or he must have been hit. He galloped through the scrub for two miles, and then his horse became exhausted. It had evidently been wounded. He took off the saddle and bridle, and con- cealed himself in a wombat hole until dark. He then started on foot across country, and walked until three p.m. on Sunday, when he reached M'Coll's place, near Mans- field. Two hours or so after M'Intyre reported the murder of the troopers, Inspector Pew- tress set out, accompanied by M'Intyre and seven or eight townspeople, for the camp. The police station was so empty of weapons that all the arms they could take were one revolver and one gun. They reached the camp with the assistance of a guide, at half- past 2 this morning. They found the bodies of Scanlan and Lonergon. They searched at daylight for the sergeant, but met with no traces of him. The tent had been burnt and everything taken away or destroyed. There were four bullet wounds on Lonergon and five on Scanlan. Three additional shots had been fired into Lonergon's dead body before the men left the camp. The extra shots were fired so that all might be equally im- plicated. M'Intyre is certain that Kennedy was not hit, but no one here at present ventures to do more than hope that the brave fellow has not been since murdered. It is M'Intyre's belief that Kelly meant to spare none, but dispose of them in a way to render their fate a mystery. Now that they now M'Intyre has escaped, they may pos- sibly let Kennedy live. A large party will be despatched at 7 to-morrow morning to succour Kennedy if alive, and run down the murderers. They will provide them- selves with food for several days. Two extra police arrived today, and three more will be here in the morning in addition to any who may be sent from town by rail to- night. M'Intyre is weak from bruises and from 48 hours' severe exertion. The sorrow felt for the death of Scanlan is universal throughout the district. He seems to have been a brave, cool, amiable, excellent man. Kennedy was an efficient bushman and a resolute officer. He has a wife and five children, and, fortunately for them, should he be killed, his circumstances are good. Scanlan was unmarried, and his station was Benalla. Lonergon was from Violet Town. He has left a widow and four children, badly off. The public ought not to be satis- fied until the band of villains by whom the district from here to Greta is kept in a state of terrorism is effectually put down. The report as to Constable Meehan being stopped between here and Benalla last night, is groundless. He was unarmed, and sup- posed himself cornered by two horsemen, who followed him down the road. To escape capture he quitted his horse, and found his way to Broken river on foot this morning. He had lent his revolver to   M'Intyre before he left Mansfield. I met   him this morning mounted, on the way to Benalla with his despatches, fully convinced that he had made a narrow escape; but no traces of any marauders have been seen. The   coach passed the spot to day. The wet   weather is likely to obliterate all tracks on   the ranges, and render the pursuit of the Kellys difficult, but an efficient party will be sent out. The offenders referred to by our corre- spondent are two brothers named Edward and Daniel Kelly, for the arrest of whom warrants were issued some months ago for various offences, the most serious being a murderous attack made on Constable Fitz- patrick. The Kellys are well known as notorious criminals. Their father died a long time ago, and the family remaining consisted of two brothers, their mother, and four young sisters. Edward is 22 years of age, 5ft 10in high, medium build, has a fresh complexion, dark brown hair, and hazel eyes; whilst Daniel is only 17 years of age, 5ft 6in high, medium build, having a fair complexion and blue eyes. The former was arrested in 1870 on sus- picion of being the mate of Power, the bushranger, but was discharged owing to the evidence of identification being insuffi- cient. In February, 1874, he was discharged from Pentridge, after serv- ing a term of three years' imprison- ment for receiving a stolen horse. The younger brother was discharged from Beechworth gaol in January last, where he had been imprisoned for three months for wilful damage to property. They lived between Winton and Greta, on the Eleven mile Creek, and their house formed a con- venient rendezvous for criminals of all classes. Soon after the younger brother's discharge in January last a warrant was issued for his arrest on a charge of horse- stealing, and on the 15th of April Mount- ed-constable Fitzpatrick, of Benalla, pro- ceeded to the house to apprehend him. Finding him there he at once placed him under arrest, but unfortunately for himself consented to allow his prisoner to take sup- per before leaving. Whilst standing guard over him, the elder brother, Edward, rushed in and shot him in the left arm, two inches above the wrist, with a revol- ver. A struggle followed, and the broth- ers, assisted by their mother and two men named Williamson and Skillian, soon over- powered the constable, and he was beaten to the ground insensible. On regaining consciousness, he was compelled by Edward Kelly to extract the bullet from his arm with a knife, so that it might not be used as evidence; and on promising to make no   report against his assailants, he was allowed to depart. He had ridden away about a mile when he found that two horsemen were pursuing, but by spurring his horse into a gallop he escaped. Of course, on regaining safety he no longer considered the promise which he had made to the criminals as binding but reported the affair

to his superior officer. The result was that a number of policemen from the surround- ing districts set out for the scene of the outrage, and arrested Mrs Kelly, William- son, and Skillian, who were all recently convicted at the Beechworth Sessions. The brothers Kelly escaped, and have ever since been at large. Vague reports as to their being seen in different parts of the north-eastern part of the colony were re- ceived, but the police for a long time could not obtain no tangible trace of them. For some months back the Government have been offering a reward of £100 for the capture of Edward Kelly, on the charge of shooting Constable Fitzpatrick. If the Kelly's are concerned in this last affair, as there seems little reason no doubt, they must now be in league with at least two other ruffians as desperate as themselves and four such characters makes formidable gang of outlaws. Sergant Kennedy who is reported as missing, was stationed at Mansfield under Sub-inspector Pewtress. The two constables who have been shot were both efficient members of the force. Scanlan was well known in Melbourne when stationed here, but that was a good many years ago. At one time he acted as orderly for the chief commissioner, and was subsequently told off for duty at the Theatre Royal. Up to an early hour Saturday morning the police authorities in town had received no intelligence of the affair, a circumstance which is perhaps to be accounted for by the probability that Sub-inspector Pewtress, of Mansfield, on learning of what had taken place from constable M'Intyre, hastened off immediately to the scene of the encounter, and was unable for want of time to telegraph to Melbourne.—Argus.