Attempted assassination of Arthur Calwell
|Attempted Assassination of Arthur Calwell|
|Location||Mosman Town Hall, Sydney, Australia|
|Date||21 June 1966|
On 21 June 1966 an assassination attempt was made on Arthur Calwell then leader of the Australian Labour Party. It was the second assassination attempt in Australian political history following Henry James O'Farrell's attempt on the life of Prince Alfred.
Calwell had just finished a rally at Mosman Town Hall and walked to his car. A 19-year-old man Peter Kocan approached with a .22 sawn-off rifle hidden in his overcoat. Calwell wound down his window, Kocan aimed the gun at Calwell's jugular and pulled the trigger. The window deflected the bullet and Calwell only suffered minor injuries.
Kocan was found guilty of attempted murder and sentenced to life imprisonment. He served time at Sydney's Long Bay Gaol before being transferred to Morriset Psychiatric Hospital for the criminally insane, where he began to study literature, philosophy and history and write poetry. His work was eventually published and Kocan was released after ten years.
- Graham Freudenberg, 'Calwell, Arthur Augustus (1896–1973)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University accessed 9 November 2013
- Shane Moloney, "Arthur Calwell and Peter Kocan", The Monthly, August 2007 accessed 9 November 2013
- Stephen Romei, "Failed assassin Peter Kocan wins top literary award", The Australian, 25 November 2010 accessed 9 November 2013
- Jane Sullivan, "Pivotal chapter in Peter Kocan's life", The Age 3 July 2004 accessed 9 November 2013