New South Wales Police Force
Regd. # ?
Stations: Broken Hill, Tiboobrra as O.I.C.,
Brewarrina for only 2 months
Died 10 May 1924
Illness – Suicide
On a Saturday morning in 1924 Sergeant Ellis of the Brewarrina Police Station ended his life by shooting himself in the chest and head. Little is known of the sergeant and his death other than a brief extract from the local (Brewarrina) newspaper which indicates that: “Sergeant Ellis was up and about on the Saturday morning attending to his duties and seemed as cheerful as ever, and Constable Woodward received a rude shock on going for the sergeant to accompany him to breakfast, to find him lying dead in a pool of blood on the floor. An examination by Dr. Duncan showed that Sergeant Ellis had shot himself twice, over the heart and in the temple. The body of the Sergeant was placed in a lead-lined coffin and forwarded to Singleton yesterday morning for interment”
The NSW Register of Coroners Inquests and Magisterial Inquiries, 1834-1942 indicates that an inquest was held into the sergeant’s death on 12 May, 1924 at Brewarrina. It was found that Sergeant Ellis died at Brewarrina as a result of a “bullet wound in the head wilfully self-inflicted.”
A year after the sergeant’s death the following announcement appeared in ‘In Memoriam’ column of The Argus, dated 9 May, 1925: ELLIS – In fond and loving memory of my dear fiance, Sergeant James Ellis, who died at Brewarrina, N.S.W. on 10th May, 1924. The link that bound us here below still binds my heart to thine. (Inserted by Flora Thomson, Hampton.)
The sergeant was a native of Wyalong and in 1919 was transferred from Broken Hill to Tibooburra as the officer-in-charge of that station. He was then transferred to Brewarrina on 4 March, 1924. He had only been at Brewarrina for two months when he died at the age of 39 years.