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UFOs and the National Security State - Chronology of a Cover-up 1941-1973


Australian Police Investigations 1970-1989

1988 Jul 17/ 27 [SA] Bronte Lloyd’s Encounter
I27.
Jamestown(33:12,138:36) Depression/Footprints/Wound CE3

SA

Bronte Lloyd, a farmer from Spalding, in the Jamestown area, South Australia, went to bed on 17 July 1988, and five hours later he became the target of a strange intrusion. “I woke up in the early morning while it was still pitch-dark … I found I couldn’t open my eyes. Even worse, I had the feeling I was floating above my bed. First I wondered if I was dead. … Then I felt intense pain, as if big insects were biting my cheeks. I put up my hands up to brush the things away, then realized they weren’t insects, but a pair of hard tubes buried in my skin. I tried to rip the tubes out, but they writhed in my hands like snakes. After that, everything went black.” Bronte woke in bright daylight and realized the experience had been no dream. When he tried to shave, his blade encountered painful pairs of pinpricks on either cheek. He found four more tiny wounds on the side of his nose. “By that evening my face was so swollen it was unrecognizable”, he said. “And when the swelling went down, I was left with huge red marks on my cheeks and nose.”

Three weeks later on July 27th, Bronte Lloyd and his son-in-law saw some unusual red lights while seeding a paddock. Bronte's son-in-law left, but later that evening Bronte decided to investigate, and upon investigating he saw an object that at first he took to be "a car parked under trees 30 meters from the house". He got to within a few feet of the object when it was almost darkness. “I crept close and was amazed to see a shining circular craft sitting there on struts. … It appeared to be 12' across and 7' high, with a circular upper body tapered down to a square base. It rested on a couple of support legs. 2 prominent ribs ran around the outside of it. There appeared to be portholes at regular intervals and 3 ‘headlights’." Bronte retreated inside. “I raced into the house to phone the rest of the family, who were at a nearby farm.” There followed what appears to have been a CE3/Humanoid episode inside his house with a vague form and what may have been a period of missing time. “… Before I could get to the phone I saw two small, dark creatures hurtling through the house in a blur of speed. The next thing I remembered was waking in my bed.”

Police were called and they investigated. “The police came to the farm and found that a large object had disturbed the ground beneath the trees.” A square shaped depression, apparently formed through quite a lot of weight, was found. There were also "footprints" found in wet grass. Colin Norris of AFSRS visited the site and interviewed Lloyd. UFOR(SA) had some involvement with the investigation. Tom Coote investigated the case in detail, plus an unusual paralysis episode that had occurred a few weeks earlier (July 6th) which may or may not have been linked with a lupus-like condition. Lloyd also appeared on the Couchman debate, Sept. 1991, where several UFO researchers took the opportunity to talk with him. Skin specialists could make no sense of Bronte Lloyd’s strange scars. Despite numerous test and treatments, the wounds refused to go away. “The medicals can’t make out what caused the marks,” he said. “One specialist photographed my cheek. He couldn’t believe it the next week, when the mark moved half an inch to the left.” Photographs exist showing Lloyd with what could be interpreted to be several puncture wounds to the side of his face, accompanied by a nasty swollen rash. Biochemist Tom Coote undertook some analyses of "blind" samples from Lloyd. Some electrolyte level (salt levels) anomalies were found. As these were not clearly identified and Lloyd unfortunately died recently there was no way to determine if these differences are at all significant

(*John Pinkney, A Paranormal File – An Australian Investigator’s Casebook, pgs 48b,81-82, The Five Mile Press, first published 2000)
(*Project 1947, A Catalogue of Australian Physical Trace Cases, Keith Basterfield & Bill Chalker, October 1997 & February 1998)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pg 236)
(Tom Coote interview, Feb 1991)
(The Couchman Show, Sep 1991)
(*South Australian UFO Reports Listing, Keith Basterfield, 12 Nov 2004)
[*Police files are exempt from disclosure under section 6(1) of the FOI act, Basterfield FIO Request 18 Aug 2003 to SA Police, response Sep 2003]

1988 Jan 20 [WA/SA] The Knowles Family Incident
I26.
Mundrabilla(30:54, 127:32) 0410hrs Wits:4 CE2

SA

At about 1:00am, Faye 43, and her three sons, Pat 24, Wayne 21, and Sean 20, and two dogs, were in a car near Mundrabilla en route to Melbourne, Victoria, to visit relatives, when at around 1:25am, things got strange and confused. They concur that the dogs began to bark and fret, and they all reported seeing strange people standing at places along the road, one waving back at them. Then the family reported that for the next hour and a half, a brightly lit UFO pursued the car, and that they changed directions several times in an attempt to evade the object. Soon an object appeared before them on the road ahead. It was larger than the car, and its shape resembled that of an egg in an egg-cup. The light it gave off was extremely bright, white with a yellow core and appeared to have a brighter light at the top and bottom. The object obscured their view of the road behind the object. As the car approached, the object seemed to move in a strange backwards and forwards, or bouncing, motion. All of a sudden, the object then seemed to be behind them about 1200 meters. And then in next moment, they report, the object seemed to be on top of the car. The car had suddenly slowed and felt extremely heavy, slow and close to the ground, and then in next moment, Sean stated, the car speedometer showed that the car was going about 200 km per hour.

Then an extremely bright light lit up the interior of the car, and they all noted a set of three synchronised high-pitched 120db humming sounds, an 80db whirring sound, a hissing noise, and a strange sound that has been described as a repeated deep “Voom” air-compression sound. Fay touched the ceiling and it was vibrating. Pat opened the front left window, which filled the car with a dark fog of black foul choking dust, later described as like burnt “Bakelite”. The vehicle was being continuously showered with a black ash-like dust, and eventually everything became covered thick with the stuff. They all reported a sense of pressure on their bodies, and that their voices sounded strangely “robotic” when they spoke. It was reported that Wayne’s hair stood up in the air and he shouted out from the rear right, “We’ve got you now! We’re sucking your brains out!” The dogs were in a violent frenzy. Faye wound down her right hand rear window to look outside and a whoosh of ash rushed in. She placed her hand on the outside of the roof, and then with her head out looking up, she saw and felt a round spongy 3cm thing that was black and warm to touch. Her hand hurt and began to swell up, and she shouted out “Oh my God! It’s on the roof. I’m burnt! I’ve touched it!” Moments later the car seemed to be dropped and the right hand tyre burst, eventually bringing the car to a halt at right angles 50km short of Mundrabilla on the Eyre Highway. The family fled the car and hid behind a bush some 180 meters further south of the road and car. The glowing bright white UFO was about 30 meters from the ground and lit up the road. A light coming from its base, like a search light, seemed to be searching the area. Some 20 minutes later, at about 4:15am, just on dawn, the UFO suddenly vanished.

The family returned to their car, changed the tyre and sped toward Melbourne, hitting a kangaroo on the way, and passing a truck that, in theory, it was later calculated, should’ve been 70 minutes behind them. Some time later they realized the dogs had become strangely quiet, and eventually arriving at Mundrabilla, they reported the event to the roadhouse fuel station owners and three truck drivers. The roadhouse witnesses would later claim to investigators that Fay’s right hand was badly burnt and swollen, as was her face, and the car was totally covered and filled with a strange black dust. They then departed again, and eventually reported the incident to police in Ceduna, South Australia, where statements were taken by a Senior Constable, First Grade, of the crime section from Port Lincoln, before making it to Victoria and the awaiting media and public. Police records show, “I have checked with the Eucla Police and ascertained that they received a similar report to that given by the four people at the Ceduna police station. Their report had been received early on the morning of 20/1/1988, apparently from a driver of a semi-trailer.” The driver of the semi-trailer was a man at the truck-stop that had heard the story. Graham Henley’s truck had been in front of the Knowles family car at the time of the incident. Henley told Investigator Bill Chalker that at about 4:40am, at a point beyond Madura Pass, he saw a light in his mirror. Bright and egg-like, it was there for some five minutes during which it disappeared and re-appeared, eventually being lost to view behind his truck.

Tests for radioactivity were negative. Regression hypnosis revealed no abduction scenario. Dust from the top of the car taken by police within hours of the event showed nothing abnormal. Analysis of dust from inside the car revealed only known elements, and a meteor or hoax were common explanations. One of many researchers not happy with official investigation, John W. Cuchettl, invested over 1000 hours into investigations and over 410 single detailed checks and tests were performed, reassuring researchers that the case was pushed to its limits, eventually summarizing final data into a report of 340 pages, 21 chapters, 78,000 words with 143 photographs and diagram reports, which outlined many unusual findings. There were suggestions in the media, after testing only the break oil, that the dust was break oil. Cuchettl’s comparisons of the dust and the break oil show irrefutable differences. The black dust was extensively analysed, displaying numerous chemical properties of a very unusual nature. After the incident the dogs became very sick and lost a lot of hair. Blood haematology, coagulation and immunology showed significant biochemistry abnormality. Investigators discovered through experiment that the car speedometer could only reach 200 km per hour as claimed, if the car had been suspended off the ground in the air. One half of a tank of fuel could not be accounted for. No roof rack had been fitted to the car yet 4 distinct fresh markings were found on the roof of the car, plus a longitudinal 29cm indentation in the centre. Independent analysis of the damaged wheel produced over 30 items of interest, including visible cracking on the plastic hubcap, a visible crack on the steel wheel hub, suggesting an extensive force or blow to that area. A unique X-shaped fracture was found on the inside surface of the tyre, suggesting impact of extreme downward force, and analysis of extensive suspension damage suggested that the damage to the upper part of the shock absorber rod occurred with the wheel pulled downwards, as if the damage had occurred with the car suspended mid-air.

(Channel Seven, based on a report from Dr William G Spencer, General Manager of the applied science group at Australian Mineral Development Laboratories (Amdel Adelaide))
(UFORSA, UFORA)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pgs 89-103, 235)
(*UFOlogist Vol. 7#2, 2003, pgs 24-28, John W. Cuchettl)
(UFOs and the National Security State, Volume 2 – The Coverup Exposed, Richard Dolan. Pg 425-428)

1986 May 25 [SA] No Plans For Sunken UFO
I25.
Victor Harbour Day Wits:Many LRS/CO

SA
At midday on Saturday, Senior Constable G.A. Clemow, of Beachport, said he and several other Beachport people had seen a large, smoke-coloured vapour trail left by the object as it speed past at cloud height. The trail had taken more then five minutes to begin dispersing. Sen Const Clemow said a Thornleigh farmer Mr. Neil Sutherland, had told him the object looked like a rocket, with a propeller-like device at the rear, fins and a fair bit of red paint. Mr. Sutherland had described the fast-moving tube as much bigger then a family car. Beachport resident Mr Gary Chambers said he had seen the object for only a few seconds as it came down. It looked like a falling star, but in broad daylight, Mr Chambers said it was very high up I thought it burned up above the horizon. Mr George Thorn, of Victor Harbour said his wife had seen the object falling towards the sea. Moments later, though binoculars, he had seen what he thought at the time to be a very large red and white boat bobbing up and down in the heavy swell, about five kilometres offshore. It had sunk moments later and three boats found nothing.

Police and RAAF Officials said they knew of no plans to look for the object, lying in at least 20 fathoms of water. A department spokesman in Adelaide said no RAAF Hercules had reported anything and there was no sighting on any radar screens. He said the department would investigate but he knew only what had been reported. He said he was curious about a witness who described the object as looking like a "cruise missile.” “What does a cruise missile look like? I work in defence. I've never seen one,” he said. “As for the chance that the object was an extraterrestrial that did not show up on radar,” the spokesman said with a chuckle, "There's a possibility it could be anything, if in fact there is something, but at the moment we know nothing."

The object, unofficially logged as a meteorite by the RAAF base at Edinburgh, was seen by dozens of people from as far south as post MacDonnell in the South-East and south-Western Victoria.

(The Adelaide “Advertiser”, Adelaide SA, date unknown)
(*CUFON Computer UFO Network, UFO Info Service)

1985 Jun 13 [WA] Bunbury Log Records Encounter
I24.
Lake Clifton(34:15,116:09) c.0500-0515hrs Wits:1M CE2

WA

WA Police documents, dated 19 June 85, to RAAF Pearce, include a two page statement from a Lake Clifton witness. The report from 43 year old self employed farmer with property at Manjimup WA is as follows: Started off driving at 0430 hours 13 Jun 85. Driving in Car. Between 0500 and 0515hrs near Lake Clifton saw a bright orange light in the middle of the road travelling south like the witness. It appeared 300-400 yards away. Speed same as him 100-100km/hr. He travelled around a bend and the light disappeared. 6-7kms later it reappeared. “My back became extremely hot and my stomach became chewed up.” Shadow accompanied by light like Moon-light. He continued on at the same speed. Light stayed behind him. It faded every now and then. The light above his head was gone by then. Other traffic was passing in the opposite direction. No traffic travelling his way. He came to another bend and the light disappeared.

6-7 kms later it again reappeared, behind him and above him. Back became hot and stomach upset again. Smouldering smell. Light then reappeared without warning near Binniup on a straight part of the road. This time there were two lights. Then for a few minutes he slowed down expecting two lights to pass him but they disappeared. He then travelled on the Banbury. “My car was not affected in any way.” A note on file says that there was a note in the Police Log that a person called at 0550hrs 13 Jun 85 to report being followed by a UFO.

(RAAF: Folio 34 of file 5/3/1/AIR part 11, “Reporting of Unusual Aerial Sightings.”)
(WAUFOIC)
(*UFOlogist Vol. 11 #2, 2007, pg 34, Revelations, Keith Basterfield, AURA)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pg 232)

1979 Feb 5 [TAS] Hobart Find Dazed Driver
I23.
Hobart 1M 2100hrs

TAS

At about 9:00 p.m. on February 5, 1979, an intense white light lit up the hood of a car driven by a young man, near Lawitta, Tasmania. The car engine stopped, the radio went dead and the lights went out. Later that evening the man was picked up by the police in Hobart for driving the car without lights. They found him to be in a dazed condition and he did not know where he was.

He was taken to a hospital apparently suffering from shock. His vehicle, a Ford Cortina 71TC, was inspected and found to have a flat battery and low oil level. The cut off switch on the alternator needed replacing, as did wiring, especially of the headlights. The radiator’s water level was also low. Apparently disturbed by the incident, the man wished no further investigation of the matter.

(*The Abduction Phenomenon in Australia, Keith Basterfield, Vladimir Godic & Pony Godic, UFO Research Australia, online)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pg 107, 223)

1978 Nov 9 [TAS] Inspection Finds Nothing
I22.
Risdon Vale 0315hrs Wits1: Wright

TAS

A taxi driver travelling along at 30-40Km/hr saw a luminous green triangle move out from scrub at the side of the road and stop in the centre of the road. The shape was 1.5 meters tall, appeared solid and was floating some 0.3 meters off the ground. He braked the car violently, there was a high pitched squeal, static on the two way radio and then the shape disappeared. The noise was so loud that it made his ears ring. The incident was reported to police but upon inspecting the spot nothing unusual was found.

(TUFOIC)
(*A Catalogue of Australian UFO Entity and Related Reports, Keith Basterfield, October 1997 Revision, Case ID 100)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pg 221)

1977 Mar 3 [SA] Venus Revealed
I21.
Kersbrook 2110hrs (5-10mins) Wits:1M+1F NL-IFO

SA
A dog alerted a man to a light in the NW sky. It was white/red in colour and bigger than a pin-point source. There was no sound and it had a small radius of glow around it. It was just above treetops and gradually went lower in the sky. Eventually it appeared to settle in a gully. It was reported to Police but investigations revealed it was Venus.

(UFORSA SA77025)
(Adelaide “Advertiser”, Adelaide SA, 4/3/77)
(*South Australian UFO Reports Listing, Keith Basterfield, 12 Nov 2004)

1975 Mar 22 [QLD] Nebo Area Again Confirm Trace
I20.
Dingo-Mt Flora Rd, 1.3mls S of Emmerdale Station, nr Nebo (21:42, 148:42) 2230hrs

QLD

Five young people in a car were travelling in a northerly direction when they sighted an unusual object only some 30m off the road. They turned the car around and cruised past the spot, then turned again and parked by the object thus affording them a good view. A ring of lights surrounded the object and above this was a large disk shape. The object had purple coloured rings within it, which decreased in size. In the middle was a black central disk about 6 inches across. The lights which circled the UFO increased in brightness and blinked on and off quite fast. A very loud “bang” sound was heard which shook the car. The witness left the scene.

Shortly thereafter they met members of a road construction gang at their camp. One of these workers accompanied them back to the scene but when they arrived nothing unusual was visible. One of the witnesses reported the incident to the Nebo Police the next day and Senior Constable Curley from Nebo Station visited the scene to find one large round shape on the ground plus three half moon shaped marks all of which appeared fresh. The RAAF investigated the scene, interviewed one of the witnesses and spoke to two construction gang members, plus took photographs of the scene and the marks.

(RAAF: File j63/25 Control Symbol 5/40/AIR part 3)
(*UFOlogist Vol. 10 #5, 2007, pg 31, Revelations, Keith Basterfield, AURA)
(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pgs 200-201)
(ACOSB no. 10, pg 22)

1973 Dec [SA] Bordertown Forensics Baffled
I19.
Bordertown(36:19,140:46) FSA

SA

Seven circular shaped, flattened swirled areas were found in an oat paddock. They ranged from 2.1 to 4.6 meters across and were of different ages. The oats had been swirled in an anti-clockwise direction. The police forensic squad was unable to explain the marks.

(*UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, Keith Basterfield, pgs 189-190, Garry Little)
[*Police files are exempt from disclosure under section 18(1) of the FOI act,
Basterfield FIO Request 18 Aug 2003 to SA Police, response Sep 2003]

1973 Feb 4 [SA] Kimba Reports Humanoid
I18.
Kimba (33:08,136:25) 2150hrs Wits:4 Hunt/Finkler/Degnor/Inglis CE3

SA

Four people, in three separate vehicles, reported seeing an orange object in a clearing on a deserted stretch of road. A young couple, Hunt and Finkler said they saw a three meters high by one point five meters wide rectangular shape. Hunt said he saw a two meters tall “man” in a white space-suit floating in the middle of the rectangular shape, but Finkler did not. Another saw an orange rectangle with a white blob on top of it. Later, a semi-trailer driver reported to police that as he passed a clearing he noted what looked like an open doorway and a figure. The police (Constable Peter Summerton) checked the clearing by going there within an hour, but found nothing to account for the observations. [a][b]

The event can also be found in RAAF records: Hunt was driving a car 34 miles out of Kimba with passenger Finkler. He noted strange light on the western side of the highway just off the road. The red and orange light appeared 10 feet high by 5 feet wide and 2-3 foot off the ground. Inside this light was the figure of a person some 6 foot tall in a white space suit with a mask over the head and face. Passenger Finkler who was dozing at the time woke to see the light but not the figure of the person. Hunt reported the incident to Kimba police who returned to the site with him. Police regarded Hunt as reliable and could not explain the event. Later, the Police advised the RAAF that two other witnesses had reported seeing the orange light in the same location within a 15minute period. The RAAF advised the Kimba police that a “possible theoretical cause is a sighting of a phenomenon known as IGNIS FATTUS – methane gas.” [c]

(a. Whyalla News, 16 Feb 1973)
(b. Basterfield, Keith, UFOs – A report on Australian Encounters, pgs 25-28, 184, Peter Horne, Dean Piovesan, Ray Brooke)
(c. RAAF: pgs 166-175 of file 580/1/1 part 21, pgs 166-175)
(*A Catalogue of Australian UFO Entity and Related Reports, October 1997 Revision, Keith Basterfield, Peter Horne, Dean Piovesan, Ray Brooke, Case ID 013)
(*UFOlogist, Vol. 11 #2, 2007, pgs 33-34, Revelations, Keith Basterfield, AURA)
(*South Australian UFO Reports Listing, Keith Basterfield, 12 Nov 2004)
[Police files are exempt from disclosure under section 18(1) of the FOI act, Basterfield's FIO Request 18 Aug 2003 to SA Police, response Sep 2003]


1972 Jul 3/25 [VIC] Mrs Puddy’s Close Encounter
I17.
Mooraduc Level Crossing/Frankston (38:20,145:00) 2115hrs (15-20mins) Wits:1F Puddy CE4

VIC

The RAAF documents read: Weather clear. Object above car. 20 foot forward. 45 deg. Angle. Iridescent blue light. Bright. At nearest 100 feet up. Wider than the road. Sound similar to elevator. Hovering. Followed car. Last seen Junction of Mooraduc and Nepean Highways. Object 20 foot high. Notes on p 31: “No military helicopters operating. Checked with DCA and local helicopter operators. Only traceable IFR helicopter based at Sale. When Mrs Puddy made initial sighting report by phone she expressed a wish not to be interviewed” [a]

Further into the documents it is stated, “The information supplied by Mrs Puddy on the attached pro forma differs markedly from that reported by the Duty Officer on the evening of Monday 20th July. On that occasion Mrs Puddy reported as follows. She said that the object was like two saucers together, silver blue in colour, appeared above the road emitting blue light. The object ‘took control of the car’ so that Mrs Puddy pulled over to the roadside but could not open the doors, nor could she restart the engine. She reported that she ‘sensed’ but did not hear the following message. ‘All your tests will be negative. Tell the media not to panic. We mean no harm. You now have control.’ The UFO then vanished and a very scared Mrs Puddy started the car and headed home via the Rye Police Station. However, rather than the Rye Police, it has subsequently transpired that she reported the incident to the Rosebud Police station. “Senior Constable Cox of Rosebud told me that Mrs Puddy was known to him, and appeared to be a rational woman not given to flights of fancy. He was somewhat amazed when Mrs Puddy asked him the meaning of the word ‘media’. She said she had never heard it before. Senior Constable Cox also advised that a Mr and Mrs Beale of Main Ridge…” [b]

Maureen had subsequent encounters, one involving a strange ‘Men in Black’ type visitation at her home as well as a subsequent holographic-type encounter of a humanoid in her car, and an out-of-body type abduction in the presence of investigators.

(a. RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 17, pgs 26-31)
(b. RAAF file 580/1/1 Part 18, pg 103)
(Basterfield, Keith, UFOs: a report on Australian encounters, pg 11-17, 180)
(Gary Little and Bill Stableton, personal investigation)
(Magee, J, 1972, “UFO Over the Mooraduc Road”, FSR, 18(6):3-5)
(Magee, J, 1978, “Maureen Puddy’s Third Encounter”, FSR, 24(3):14-15)
(Basterfield, Keith,1992, IUR, 17(3):13-14 & 23)
(*UFOlogist Vol. 9 #3, 2005, pg 13; Vol. 11 #2, 2007, pg 33, Revelations, Keith Basterfield, AURA)
[*Police files are exempt from disclosure under section 18(1) of the FOI act, Basterfield FIO Request 18 Aug 2003 to SA Police, response Sep 2003]

1972 Dec 28 [SA] Commissioner Rebuked by RAAF
I16.
Tooligie Hill, Eyre Peninsula

SA
RAAF Correspondence dated 29th May 1972 shows, “6/32/Air(10);Headquarters RAAF; Edinburgh SA 5111; 29th May 1972; Department of Air (Attention: D/DAFI IR); For Information: Headquarters Operational Command”: … 2. As on many occassions in the past, the report arrived at this Headquarters too late to make an investigation possible without considerable embarrassment and possible adverse publicity. The various UFO societies in this State, while aware of the RAAF's responsibility to investigate UFO sightings in an official capacity, are nonetheless reluctant to pass on information on UFO sightings to the RAAF until they have "picked the bones clean". … 3. Every attempt has been made by this Headquarters to elicit the co-operation of local UFO organisations, and in particular the AFSRS, in an endeavour to gain some first-hand information on UFO sightings. ... It would appear that, in spite of sparse and rather patronising publicity by the mass media to the effect that the RAAF is the responsible UFO-reporting organisation, and arrangements with the police to have any individual sighting a UFO contact this Headquarters, the public at large in this State remains either ignorant of the correct procedure, or chooses to contact the more glamorous - and credulous - "flying saucer" society.

A second document to Headquarters Operational Command, dated 20th June, 1972, along with a copy of a report by Inspector Adolf Schlein of Port Lincoln Police, included correspondence to the South Australian Commissioner of Police. The second document: ... 1. Peculiar ground markings discovered on a farming property at Tooligie Hill, Eyre Peninsula, in late December 1971. 2. The matter first came to the notice of this Headquarters through the "Day by Day" column of The Advertiser on 27th January 1972 (which mentioned the markings) "... sighted by Eyre Peninsula farmer Robert Habner in the middle of a wheat paddock. "Farmer Habner found it while he was reaping. No tracks led to or from it. Peter is investigating" 3. This Headquarters' OIC UFOs ... contacted the Peter Powell referred to in the clipping and ... received assurances of co-operation. Mr.Powell stated that considerable interest in the Tooligie Hill "phenomenon" was being evinced by local UFO groups and added that a meeting of several of the groups, including the Australian Flying Saucer Research Society (of Colin Norris notoriety), was to be held that Sunday (30th January 1972) ... At this juncture it became apparent that a belated RAAF investigation of the "phenomenon" would attract unwanted publicity, and would in any case probably be paralleled by simultaneous investigations by civilian groups. The question of "co-operation" between the RAAF and local UFO groups would then be a matter for speculation and individual interpretation by the media. This Headquarters therefore deemed it prudent not to initiate an on-site investigation into the incident at the time. 4. (Newspaper accounts referred to) a projected "safari" to Eyre Peninsula to investigate the "phenomenon"....

Flt. Lt. King (O i/c UFOI) minuted the following: This morning I received a phone call from Mrs Habner of Tooligie Hill. She said that Messers Ianson and Mackereth (of AFSRS) had arrived and were investigating the "phenomenon" on the Habner property. As might be expected, Mr. Norris had arranged the usual publicity and the ABC, 5KA and the Advertiser, according to Mrs Habner, were on the scene or on tap. She said that she had not expected so much publicity and in any case it was Peter Powell who was supposed to be doing the investigating. His "safari" is due to arrive on Saturday and she had tried to contact him without success to tell him that he had been pre-empted. I informed Mrs Habner that there was nothing the RAAF could do about the situation and offered my condolences. Mrs. Habner seemed surprised that this HQ had not been informed officially of the "phenomenon" in the first instance as she had reported it to the police in the area. ORWO this morning noticed a leave application submitted by Cpl. A_____ of Catering Section. The address given on the application for the week's leave was c/- the Habner property. I interviewed Cpl A_____ who said he had answered an advertisement inserted in the local newspapers by Peter Powell for people to accompany him to Eyre Peninsula to investigate the finding. I briefed him on the "no-publicity" requirement and asked him to keep me informed of events." The airman referred to (above) was also mentioned in our (message) to your department. On his return from leave he was again interviewed by OIC UFOs. The "safari" had taken soil samples and photographed the markings, and also interviewed a number of people in the district, but after a week on the site had not made any findings. Present on the Habner property at the same time were two members of the Australian Flying Saucer Research Society, who also fossicked without discovering the origin of the markings.

5. (Mrs. Habner wrote to Flt. Lt. King): I am sending you, as promised, some slides and information on the mark we found in our paddock on December 28th 1971. This mark was made in the middle of a wheat crop, with no tracks or marks leading in or out. The diameter of the rim-shape which is spun into the clay soil is approximately 7 feet. 2 feet from the outer edge of the mark the crop was laid flat in an anti-clockwise spinning motion, and in the centre, which measures 45 inches across, the crop was cut to a height of 9 inches. The crop was also laid flat (anti-clockwise again) in a small crescent which joins onto one side of the mark. About 12 feet away from the main mark is the same shaped marking spun into the wheat straw, but not with as much force as the main mark. This mark was just on the top of the straw and not cut into the ground. We can only think that whatever tried to land here was put off because of a small mallee stump, and, wanting a smoother place to land, rose up and hovered over to finally land on the main "site". One family in our district say they saw a strange light which would have been in that position. They saw this on Christmas Eve. We were away from home all that evening. We have had approximately 200 visitors from surrounding districts to see it and they all wonder what could have made this mark. The cut out circle is still there and will be until we plough it up for seeding. There are still markings of the spun down straw etc too, although they are not as clearly defined as they were when fresh.... 6. (Attached) is a letter from this Headquarters to the Commissioner of Police, dealing with the incident:

The letter to the Commissioner: Dear Commissioner, … A telephone conversation between my Officer-in-Charge of UFOs and Mrs. Habner reveals that police authorities in the area were informed of the incident and indeed visited the Habner property prior to the "phenomenon" becoming public knowledge.... I am sure you will agree that, as this Headquarters was not informed of the incident in the first instance, any post-event official RAAF investigation of the incident, with attendant publicity, would prove not only unfeasible but also embarrassing to some extent. … In view of the above, I would appreciate your once again bringing to the notice of your staff the necessity of referring all UFO reports to this Headquarters with the minimum of delay. … Yours faithfully, E.T. Pickerd, Air Commodore.

The Commisioner’s reply: Dear Air Commodore Pickerd, ... I enclose copy of a report furnished by Inspector R.A. Schlein of Port Lincoln. … It appears that there was no actual sighting of a U.F.O. at Tooligie Hills in December last, and although the Inspector was aware of strange markings in a field, he did not consider there was sufficient evidence at that time to connect them with a U.F.O. Moreover, as there was already growth from the dislodged wheat heads, it seemed that some time must have elapsed since the disturbance. ...we are sorry that you have been hindered or embarrassed by the lack of an earlier report. Although members generally are already aware of the necessity to report such matters for your information, a further instruction will be issued by a notice in the Police Gazette. … Yours sincerely, J.G. McKinna, Commissioner of Police.

(RAAF Endinburgh, SA 5111; 29th May 1972; Department of Air (Attention: D/DAFI IR); For Information: Headquarters Operational Command )
(UFOs SUB ROSA DOWN UNDER, The Australian Military & Government Role in the UFO Controversy, Bill Chalker, 1996)

1971 Jun [QLD] Death by UFO
I15.
West of Bundaberg

QLD

A man prominent in Queensland’s Public life told how he believed that a UFO landing was somehow connected to the death of his son. The bereaved father, “Charles”, said that in June 1971 the body of his son “Peter” was found near a circle of dead grass on his family’s grazing property, west of Bundaberg. “Peter’s death was a terrible tragedy in our lives,” Charles said, “and it makes it no easier that it’s still a mystery after all these years. I was working on the property shortly before Peter disappeared, when I stumbled on a strange circle of dead grass about 6 meters in diameter. … It was a puzzle at the time – and even more perplexing later. Peter vanished while he was helping an employee build fences, about 3 kilometres from the homestead. … and his body was finally found within 3 meters of it. He had a strange mark on his face, which the doctor refused me to see.’ The cause of Peter’s death remains a mystery. “The strange and terrible thing is that the circle was apparently also linked with a second death,” Charles said. “A neighbour who was chasing a wild pig into the scrub also vanished. His body, too, was found near that circle. The police were unable to discover what had happened to Peter. They camped for about three weeks on our property, questioning and probing – with no result”

In 1974, the family moved to a new property. Charles recalled: “One day, after dipping cattle, I was driving my Land Rover along a dirt track. Suddenly, something appeared in the sky that changed all of my ideas about life and death. There, at about the 11 O’clock position, were two beautiful objects, about 5 or 6 meters in diameter. They were pale green, like perfectly oval gemstones, spinning and sparkling in the sun. … Now I’m a bushman and I’m sane, and, until that moment, I’d regarded UFOs as a load of rubbish. I slammed on the brakes and climbed out of the Rover, my skin prickling. They were there all right, silently spinning in the sky. It was totally cloudless. Living out in the bush, I’ve seen a lot of meteors fall, but these were nothing like meteors. They hovered there, above the road for about ten minutes while I stood, completely dumbstruck. Then they moved slowly away, until they vanished behind the mountain range. I drove home in a hurry and rang the radio station in Rockhampton. I was convinced that other people in the area must also have seen the objects. But to my amazement, mine was the only report….The experience made me think back to that ring of grass, and my son found beside it.”

(*A Paranormal File – An Australian Investigator’s Casebook, John Pinkney, pgs 49-50)