Page 06

John Pharoah (Police officer)

… My attention was directed to a gate where a coat had been found, and at a distance of about 47 years from the gate I found some blood, a portion of brains and pieces of skull upon the grass. I lifted parts of the brains and the skull. There had been a great quantity of blood discharged. I kept possession of the parts of the skull and deposited them in the same room where Doctors Gill and Hewitson were making an examination of the body of the deceased. Several persons accompanied me in the search. We traced marks, similar to those I have described for a distance of 313 yards, over the grass then amongst the brush-wood, and down the wood to the river side. In passing through the wood there is a ridge of rocks running parallel with the river. I traced the marks across that, over a gap. The grass was laid down, as if some heavy body had been dragged along. It was as it if had been rolled with some roller, or something of that sort. In places where the body had passed between two upright saplings, the butts of them were marked with blood. We traced these marks down to the edge of the river Eden, but we could not trace them any further than the stones. We found the body in the river in a line with the marks on the shore. The place between where we lost trace of the body and the place where the man was found is a bed of large rocks, standing quite into the stream. The current at that place is very strong. We found the body at a rock much higher than those I have described, and farther in the river. The current of the river ran close up to the rock. The water was lowish at the time. The body was lying in three or four feet depth of water. I could not see exactly in what position it was lying, the water was so deep. When we got him from the water we found his shirt pulled over his head, and his body bare down to his waist. The neck band of his shirt was buttoned and bound very tightly round his neck; and his wrist bands were also bound very tight. His braces were off; they had been unbuttoned, I think. His trowsers were on. One of his leggings was also on; the other was drawn over his boot. The boots were on. We did not take off his shirt to see what was under. We removed him to his own house. He had been lying on his belly, with his hands up to his head – one hand on each side. He had no coat, or waistcoat, or handkerchief on. His waistcoat was found about 50 yards below where the first marks were seen. His hat and undercoat and a pistol are still missing. Hi s body was not examined by me before it was taken home. Saturday night was a fine moonlight night and very frosty. The ground was quite hard.

After removing the body I went and got a warrant to search the house of William Graham of Longdales. Longdales is about a mile south west from the place where we found the first marks on the ground. I went to the house accompanied by Henry Smith, another officer. We got there about four o’clock on Monday afternoon. We approached the house by a footpath through some fields. There is a small window from which we might have been seen by persons in the house, or they might have seen us from the front door. We did not see anybody standing about as we approached; but just as we got up to the door, William Graham was coming out of the front door. He came out, and I said, “It is a fine day, William”. He said, “Yes.” I pulled out my pocket book containing the warrant, and said, “I expect you know of this concern that has happened?”  He said, “Yes.” I said I had got a warrant to search the house, and he answered, “My mother is burning the gun.” The other officer then went into the house first and I followed. There are two rooms downstairs.