SHORTLY before 2 o’clock on Monday morning Constable Samuel Long, 37, was shot dead in the Royal Hotel, Auburn, 11½ miles south of Sydney.
The licensee, Mr. P. C. Trautwein, was aroused by sounds from the bar and running down heard a man jump over the counter and run out of the front door.
On going to the bar, which is detached from the main building, he found Constable Long lying on the floor, and bleeding from a wound in the back of the head. He informed the local police, and Constable Everett proceeded to the spot.
Constable Long was then breathing his last.
An examination of the premises showed that the bar had been entered from the cellar. It is surmised that Long, who was on duty in the neighbourhood at the time, noticed the front door of the bar open, and on entering the premises was shot from behind.
The murdered constable was a single man, 37 years of age, and had been stationed at Auburn for the past two years. He was very popular amongst his comrades, and was held in the highest esteem by the people of the district.
The Royal Hotel is situated about 200 yards from Auburn station, on the left hand side coming from Sydney, and at the intersection of Queen-street with Auburn-road.
The building was formerly used as the private residence of Mr. Alban Gee, manager of the Sydney Meat Preserving Company. In front of the building, which contains about 20 rooms, there was formerly a garden, but the greater part of this is now taken up by the bar.
This apartment is about 40ft. by 20ft., the counter running almost its entire length. Behind the bar are a number of well stocked shelves, and underneath the counter is a small safe and a table with the cash register on it.
As soon as news of the murder was sent through all the police stations in the surrounding districts were notified and orders given to keep a sharp look out for possible suspects.
Superintendent Brennan and Inspector Morrow were early on the scene, and were soon busy directing the operations of a large body of detectives, plain clothes men, and police. A black tracker was also employed, and he was not long in getting a clue as to the direction taken by the fugitives. It was discovered that a sulky had been tied up in the bush on the other side of the railway line. It was apparent that the vehicle had been left there for some time, as the bark had been gnawed off a tree while the horse was waiting.
A number of packets of cigarettes which had been taken from the hotel were also found nearby. The tracks were followed for about a mile along the Parramatta-road, where they became confused and were lost. Several statements were made to the police on Monday that about 3am a vehicle was heard being driven along the road at a rapid pace.The Government has decided to offer a reward of £200 for information leading to the arrest of the murderer of Constable Long.
- The Sydney Mail and New South Wales Advertiser Wednesday 21 January 1903.
Footnote: Digby Grand and Henry Jones were later arrested and charged in relation to the robbery of Trautwein’s Royal Hotel and the murder of Constable Samuel “William” Long at Auburn, Sydney, and sent to the gallows.