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Decisions of the Superior Courts of New South Wales, 1788-1899

R. v. Chubb [1840] NSWSupC 4

murder, convict escape, bushrangers. Aboriginal trackers

Supreme Court of New South Wales

Dowling C.J., 1 February 1840

Source: Sydney Herald, 3 February 1840[1]

            SUPREME COURT - (Criminal Side)

            Saturday, February 1st - Before the Chief Justice.

Thomas Chubb was indicted for shooting at Richard Smith, with intent to murder him, at Wallowa Creek on the 20th October, and Frederick Knowles was indicted for being present, aiding and assisting.  Other counts laid the intent to be to do some grievous bodily harm, and to prevent the lawful apprehension of their own persons.

The prisoners were both runaway convicts, and on the 29th October went in company with another bushranger named Rees to the house of Mr. Brown, a settler residing near the Vale of Clywd, which they robbed of a considerable quantity of property.  The next day Mr. Brown went to a neighbouring Police station, and Sergeant Sneyd and trooper Smith of the mounted Police went with him in pursuit.  They went to the house of Mr. Walker who joined them with two native blacks.  The blacks traced the bushrangers all day and at night the party came up with them encamped near the head of the Wallowa Creek.  By leaving their horses and crawling on their hands and knees they got close to them, and challenged them before they were observed.  All three of them ran away and Sergeant Sneyd shot Rees dead, Smith followed Chubb, who turned round and fired at him but luckily missed him.  One of the blacks knocked Chubb, down and he was secured; he lamented that he had fired off the pistol before he encountered the blackfellow.  In the camp were found, three double barrelled guns, five single barrelled guns, and five pistols.  The prisoners had committed a great number of serious outrages.  Guilty to be transported to a Penal Settlement for life never to be allowed to return to Sydney.


[1]              See also Australian, 23 January 1840.

Published by the Division of Law, Macquarie University