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Trove Tuesday: Jugiong Shooting Case

I came across this article when searching Trove for information about my Stevens relatives.  My Great Grandmother Ada Stevens (nee Jones) was one of the witnesses in this case.

Source: Jugiong Shooting Case. (1931, May 5). The Gundagai Times and Tumut, Adelong and Murrumbidgee District Advertiser (NSW : 1868 - 1931), p. 2. Retrieved October 16, 2013, from


Jugiong Shooting Case.
Accused Committed for Trial.

At the police court on Monday, before Mr. Harrison, P.M., Arthur Edward Sheehan, with having an unlicensed pistol in his possession, pleaded not guilty.
He was further charged with maliciously shooting with intent to do grievious bodily harm.
Mr. Dodds appeared for accused.
Constable Davis deposed : Am stationed at Jugiong.  On 17th March was informed that a shooting affray had occurred on the previous day at Sheehans' garage, Jugiong.  Then interviewed James Clayton, saw a hole in his upper lip and where several teeth had been knocked out of upper jaw.  Then interviewed the accused and said, "What was the argument with you and Clayton yesterday?"  He said, "Just an argument." I said, "Did you shoot at Clayton with a revolver?"  He said "Yes." Said, "Do you know if you hit Clayton?"  He said, "I don't know." Said, "What did you shoot at him for."  He said, "Clayton was rushing at me and another chap following ; I thought they were going to deal with me and a man has to protect himself."  I said, "Where is the revolver?"  He said "Over at the garage near the cash box, or was when I left."  Said, "Have you a license to carry a revolver?"  He said "No, I did not think a man in business required a license."  Then placed accused under arrest and went to the garage for the revolver."  Accused put his hand under papers and said, "That's funny ; I put it there."  Asked Arthur Sheehan, jun.. if he saw anything of a revolver and he said "No."  Sheehan and I made a search of the garage and failed to find the revolver.  Then took accused to he lockup and charged him.
To the Sergeant: As we were leaving the garage accused said, "The revolver is not far away and will turn up, somebody who thinks he knows more than I do has planted it."
To Mr. Dodds : Have known accused about three years and he is a law-abiding citizen.  The answers he gave were given in a perfectly frank manner.  He gave every assistance to find the revolver.  The garage fronts the main road and the nearest building is about 200 yards distant.  Clayton never made a complaint until I saw him.  Accused was using a walking stick when he was arrested.  He said he was crippled from lumbago.
James A. Clayton deposed : Live at Jugiong.  On the 16th March, at 1.30 p.m., Tommy Goodwin and I were walking up the main road and I saw my niece, Lila Adams, talking to accused at his garage window.  Went to the door of the garage and called him out, and he rushed at me and hit me on the arm with a walking stick.  He walked on to the street and fired three shots at me.  Told him he was a bad shot and he fired the fourth shot and the bullet went through my top lip and knocked out some teeth.  I was stunned for a few minutes.  Accused returned into the garage with the revolver and I went home.  It was a small nickel revolver about 7in. long.  Produce the teeth that were knocked out.  Had to secure medical treatment in Gundagai.  Never touched accused or threatened him.  Was at the door of the garage when accused hit me.  Accused had previous quarrel with me about five years ago.  We did not speak to each other.
To Mr. Dodds : Am 37 years of age and accused is about 52.  Had four years service in France.  Have known accused all my life.  We were at Benangaroo station four or five years ago.  He squabbled with me there and he nearly kicked me to pieces.  Went to the garage to have it out with accused.  Accused did not accept my offer.  Went to the garage through my niece being there.  No one was in the garage but accused, who was sitting on a bunk, I called out to him and he said to get away and rushed at me with a stick.  After accused hit me I called him a mongrel.  From an accident I had earlier in the morning blood was running from my forehead.  Had a couple of drinks of wine in the morning after the accident.  Was at the pub, all the morning and was reading the paper on the verandah.  Never made at accused in a fighting attitude.  Never used bad language to accused.  Never apologised to Mrs. Sheehan for using language, but was so dazed after I was shot I may have used it.  Never made a complaint to the police because my aunt is married to accused's brother and I did not want to upset her.  Came from Sydney to attend this court and am a willing witness.  Accused did not tell me to leave the place to save serious trouble.  Saw a hole in front of the garage for a bowser, I might have fallen down the hole getting out of accused's road.  Did not rush for a crowbar, Goodwin never told me to rush accused.  He never spoke.  Was with Goodwin all morning at the hotel.  Was about six yards away from accused when he fired the shots.  Accused had the revolver in his pocket.  Am certain accused fired four shots.  He may have fired more.  The first three shots missed.  It was all over in three or four minutes.  Accused did not kick my hat out after me.  Saw Alf. Keane after I was shot.  Mrs J. Stevens, my niece and Tommy Goodwin were present, and the women sang out.
Dr. Byrne deposed : Treated Clayton on 18th March and found that he had a bruise on right lip with a small hole in it.  Two front teeth were missing directly behind the hole in the lip, and the gums were inflamed and slightly septic.  The injury could have been done by a revolver bullet.
Thomas Goodwin deposed : Remember 16th March was going home with Clayton for dinner.  When he got opposite the "Red Door" garage, Clayton said something.  I went past the garage and saw defendant come to door with a walking stick in his hand.  Heard words pass between them, and saw defendant strike Clayton.  Defendant drew a revolver from his pocket and fired four shots, the last one struck Clayton in the mouth.  Went towards defendant, and he raised a stick to hit me.  I struck at him but did not hit him.  Defendant then went towards the garage.  Then got Clayton and took him away.  Can't swear I saw revolver, but heard it.  Clayton was on the street when the shooting took place.  Neither Clayton or myself were inside the garage.
To Mr. Dodds : Have known defendant about 15 years. About five years ago Clayton wanted to fight Sheehan, over a row at Benangaroo.  Don't think Clayton could beat much at anytime and do not know that he likes a scrap, Clayton had his lunch at home.  Clayton's hat was never in the garage.  Never spoke to any of them at time of scuffle.  After shots were fired went to try and get revolver from Sheehan.  Thought revolver was only a toy.  Did not see any crowbars in a hole outside garage.  Never tried to incite Clayton to rush at defendant.  May have had a few drinks that morning, one of which was with Clayton.  Did not see Lila Adams at garage.  She was about 60 yards away from garage when I first saw her.  When shots were fired Clayton would be about five yards away from defendant.  Don't think defendant aimed revolver at Clayton.  Never made any complaints because I did not want to see Sheehan get into  trouble.  It was not because I thought Clayton got what he was looking for.  Clayton did not apologise to Mrs. Sheehan for language used.
Ada Stevens deposed : Reside at Jugiong.  On March 16th was passing garage and heard shots.  Saw Clayton and Sheehan outside garage.  Never saw revolver and don't know who fired the shots.
Alice Dixon deposed : On 10th March Sheehan said if I went to Clayton's he would blow my brains out.  Did not see the shooting on the 16th.
To Mr. Dodds : Did not complain about the threat as I thought it was a joke.
Sheehan was charged with the offence and said he wished to say nothing.
He was committed for trial at the Gundagai Quarter Sessions to be held on 23rd June, Bail was allowed, self in £40, and one surety in £40.
The charge for having an unlicensed revolver was dismissed.


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