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Judicial CP - December 1954

Truth, Adelaide, 4 December 1954

Migrant's Appeal Against "Severe Sentence" Fails

Lashing For Armed Thief

SELF-CONFESSED armed robber Donald James Beaumont (25), truck driver, of Grange Rd., Hindmarsh, failed to get a 12-stroke whipping quashed when he appealed to five judges in the Court of Criminal Appeal this week.

But a six-year gaol sentence imposed by Mr. Justice Mayo in Adelaide Criminal Court at the same time as the whipping was reduced to four years.

THE five judges who heard the appeal were: the Chief Justice, Sir Mellis Napier, Messrs. Justice Abbott, Reed and Ross and Mr. Acting Justice Hannan.

mugshot of Sir Mellis NapierTall, good looking Beaumont sat tight lipped as the Chief Justice said he could see no reason for reducing the severity of the whipping sentence.

Appealing for Beaumont, Mr. C. Villeneuve Smith said that Beaumont's accomplice, Robert Edward Terry, who was convicted by a jury and is now serving a six-year gaol term, was the dominating force behind the robbery. Terry had already received a 12-stroke whipping.

Recalling the facts of Terry's trial in October, he said: "Beaumont and Terry entered the home of Mr. and Mrs. J.H. Lipman at Walkerville on August 15. Both men were masked and Terry had a rifle.

"The Lipmans were held-up in their library, bound and gagged, and robbed of about 120. Terry was the man in charge of the operation; he gave the orders and saw they were carried out. Some five years ago he had worked for the Lipmans and knew exactly where the safes were and where money was likely to be hidden.


"Terry was the dominating force, and without Terry there would have been no crime committed that night. Apart from this fact, I submit that when Mr. Justice Mayo passed the same sentence on both, he failed to draw a distinction between the two men."


Accomplices In Crime

"ONLY once before during the past 24 years in this State has corporal punishment been imposed for this offence and that was in a crime of great brutality. Only on four occasions during the same period have more severe sentences been imposed."

Interjecting, Mr. Justice Abbott said: If for no other reason, and there are other reasons, a whipping ought to be imposed as a deterrent.


mugshot of Mr R.J. KearnanOpposing the appeal, the Crown Prosecutor, Mr. R.J. Kearnan said that from the evidence in Terry's trial, it was quite clear that it was a carefully planned, checked and rehearsed offence "carried out by two men who had previously served sentences for joint criminal enterprises."



"It is clear that both parties contemplated some sort of violence which was used. They also made use of a weapon, which Beaumont previously knew was part of the plan.

"Robbery with violence, in general, should be punished with a flogging," Mr. Kearnan said.

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Colin Farrell
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