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Striking a Superior Officer


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#1 Brummie Nick

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 07:40 PM

On http://www.1914-1918.net/crime.htm it states that for striking a Superior Officer, a soldier could receive the death penalty.
Was this ever used in WW1.


cheers Nick

#2 marina

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 07:59 PM

QUOTE (Brummie Nick @ Jul 17 2005, 08:40 PM)
On    http://www.1914-1918.net/crime.htm  it states that for striking a Superior Officer,  a soldier could receive the death penalty.
Was this ever used in WW1.
cheers    Nick



There's an account of one here:

http://1914-1918.inv...showtopic=35087
Marina

#3 Tony Lund

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 08:00 PM

I think there were around 350 official executions on the British side for a variety of offences during the war. I feel confident that someone will know of a full list of names and offences. I believe there is some sort of list in the book “Shot at Dawn”.

Tony.

#4 Alan_J

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 08:44 PM

The charge "Striking a Senior Officer" was brought in four cases that led to a death sentance that was actually carried out during the Great War.

Alan

#5 Kevin Lynott

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 08:46 PM

Four listed in Putkowski and Sykes

Pte 4881 H.A. Clarke 2nd BWI Reg on 11/8/17
Dvr 67440 T.G. Hamilton 72nd Batt 38th Brig RFA on 3/10/16
Dvr 64987 J. Mullany 72nd Batt 38th Brig RFA on 3/10/16
Pte 7711 J. Fox 2nd HLI on 12/5/16

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#6 Graham Stewart

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 09:29 PM

Hello All,
"Striking a superior Officer" falls under Kings Regulations and the Army Act, but did not necessarliy warrant the death penalty.

Unfortunatley I don't have a copy of the Army Act, but Kings Reg's 1912 amended to August 1914 does have a reference regarding punishment, which says;-
K.R.'s 1912 - Courts Martial - Sentences of a Courts Martial,Paragraph 583(xi);-

OFFENCES(cool.gif Striking a superior officer.
Disobeying a lawful command(graver cases).
Desertion other than under(a).
Fraudulent enlistment.
False evidence.
False accusations.

PUNISHMENT - Detention - The punishment period not exceedind 112 days.

REMARKS - If the offence has been repeated, or attended with circumstances which add to it's gravity, a sentence should be proportionately increased.

OFFENCES(e) Gross violence to superiors.
Disgraceful conduct under Sections 18(5) of the Army Act.

PUNISHMENT - Imprisonment - 1 year and upwards.

As I've said I have a copy of the Army Act, which would probably be more specific, but think in war time sentencing under Courts Martial would be much graver for these offences.

Graham.

#7 Graham Stewart

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 09:31 PM

Hello Again,
Sorry seemed to have hit a wrong button and put an unwanted smilie in.

Graham.

#8 marina

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 09:37 PM

QUOTE (Graham Stewart @ Jul 17 2005, 10:31 PM)
Hello Again,
Sorry seemed to have hit a wrong button and put an unwanted smilie in.

Graham.


We believe you! rolleyes.gif
Marina

#9 CROONAERT

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 10:10 PM

QUOTE (ww1b @ Jul 17 2005, 08:44 PM)
The charge "Striking a Senior Officer" was brought in four cases that led to a death sentance that was actually carried out during the Great War.




There were 49 cases of a death sentence being passed for "Striking a Senior Officer" of which, as Alan has stated, only 4 were carried out.

Interestingly, the offense of "Threatening a Senior Officer" saw 2 death sentences passed, of which one was carried out.

Dave.

#10 CROONAERT

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 10:13 PM

QUOTE (holmfirthtony @ Jul 17 2005, 08:00 PM)
I think there were around 350 official executions on the British side for a variety of offences during the war.



The exact total of executions carried out by the (British) military during and in the immediate aftermath of WW1 was actually 438 (out of a total of 3,342 sentences).

Dave.

#11 john w.

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 10:18 PM

Hubert Clarke was already in Kantara Field Punishment Centre, near Port Said, when there was a disturbance and Clarke hit the approaching NCO in the face when the latter was on the ground he then proceeded to batter him with a three foot length of wood. A Lance Corporal went to help him and he drew a razor on him and slashed him across the abdomen and it took all the strength to keep the intestines from spilling out...

He was duly shot for attacking and striking two superior officers

In Sykes and Putkowski's book there is a long account of the execution, worth a read

John

#12 CROONAERT

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Posted 17 July 2005 - 10:22 PM

QUOTE (Graham Stewart @ Jul 17 2005, 09:29 PM)
As I've said I have a copy of the Army Act, which would probably be more specific, but think in war time sentencing under Courts Martial would be much graver for these offences.



...It was.

Sec.8(1) - ...Striking his superior officer, being in the execution of his office. - Maximum penalty - Death

Dave.

#13 bernardmcilwaine

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 06:05 AM

did the two gunners listed above from the same unit,beat the crap out of the same officer,bernard

#14 Brummie Nick

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 08:29 AM

Just like to thank all that answered my inquiry.
we sure have a knowledgeable bunch on this site

cheers Nick

#15 John Hartley

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 09:20 AM

QUOTE (bernardmcilwaine @ Jul 18 2005, 07:05 AM)
did the two gunners listed above from the same unit,beat the crap out of the same officer,bernard

Different incidents, Bernard.

Hamilton had been accused of smoking on parade. The officer refused to hear Hamilton's explanation and, as he was walking away, Hamilton attacked him. Although the assault does not appeear to have been too serious, "Shot at Dawn" comments that "coupled with a bad military record it was enough to cost him his life".

Mullany was arrested after mouthing off at his sergeant-major and then attacked him and, it would appear, gave him a good "seeing to".

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#16 healdav

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 10:35 AM

I don't know about in the army, but I can assure you that in the RN if an officer gets hit by a rating the officer will be in just as much trouble as the rating. He should never have put himself in a position where a rating coulds trike him.

There are anecdotal tales of officers running away from and being chased by ratings, not because the officer was afraid but because if the rating did hit him he would be in much more trouble than if he merely threatened and the officer could effectively kiss his career goodbye for 'non officer like qualities'.

I even got a lecture about this as a civilian when doing a Naval acquaint course (I was working in the RN).

#17 GRUMPY

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 10:37 AM

just to underline that "officer" in this context goes all the way down to acting unpaid lance-corporal. Didn't have to be a Rupert, as the example above demonstrates.

#18 ian turner

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Posted 18 July 2005 - 12:45 PM

Nick,

You might like to look at my posting of 13 July under the Soldiers section. It was about Pvte Fox of the HLI.

Ian

#19 Tony Lund

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Posted 16 August 2005 - 01:38 PM

Try the book “Blindfold and Alone, British Military Executions in the Great War”

By Cathryn Corns and John Hughs-Wilson.
Cassell : ISBN 0 304 36696 X. £10.99 in paperback or can be ordered from your local library. 500 pages including a long list of executed men and their offences at the back of this book.

Tony.