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Tags Amy Adams , Ellie France , Mark Lundy , murder cases , New Zealand cases

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Old 11th February 2015, 03:14 PM   #1
Samson
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Did Mark Lundy murder his wife and child?

Mark Lundy is being retried for murdering his wife and child, and intriguingly the prosecution has moved the time of the murders to several hours later to fit a new theory. The wiki as usual is a good intro, and up to date with current trial.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lundy_murders

We need the autopsy report, as it may help solve the case quickly, by determining which of these wildly irreconcileable TOD's is plausible.
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Old 11th February 2015, 04:14 PM   #2
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I've just read that. Good Lord, what an extraordinarily weak case the original conviction was! I remember hearing parts of the story at the time, but I didn't pay a great deal of attention to it. The times are absolutely impossible, surely. Even if it was autobahn door-to-door with German speed limits, you'd never do it. How was he ever found guilty on that evidence?

I'm disconcerted by the way the Crown seem to be going after him on an entirely different modus operandi this time. That's actually fairly shocking. They seem to have realised they can't make it stick (I'm at a loss to know how it stuck the first time), so they've constructed an entirely new case against him at a different time.

They have in effect just admitted that the original conviction was a blatant miscarriage of justice. If I was on that jury, there's not a lot would make me convict after that admission.
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Old 11th February 2015, 04:35 PM   #3
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Quote:
Mr Lundy's legal team submitted that examination of stomach content to determine time of death was internationally discredited as bad science.

Funny thing for them to do. If it was impossible for him to have driven the round trip to carry out the murders at 7.15, why not leave the time of death there? Surely they don't want to let in the possibility that the murders were carried out later?

The statement, just like the similar statements in the Kercher case, is misleading. I still think the originally-estimated time of death was too precise, and that "smell" thing sounds like woo. But if they ate at McDonald's at quarter to six, and there was recognisable Big Mac in there after death, they sure as hell weren't killed after midnight. Not unless they went out and had a second Big Mac meal at about ten!

The Crown is trying way too hard to pin it on the husband. It's Billie-Jo Jenkins all over again. The husband must have done it even if there was functionally no time for him to get there, and look at that infinitesimal spot of biological material that is far less than should be deposited on a murderer and which he inexplicably failed to launder away.
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:20 PM   #4
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stomach contents

"Crown expert pathologist James Pang said at the outside the deaths could have happened at 7.15pm, based on his examination of Christine and Amber Lundy’s stomach contents.

Hislop consulted British forensic pathologist Professor Bernard Knight who said deciding time of death on stomach contents was unreliable." Link

Now that the prosecution wants to move the TOD forward to a seemingly unreasonable time, it is unclear how the defense is going to respond.
EDT
Dr. Knight's position is more nuanced than the quote above suggests:
"Hislop presented an affidavit to the Privy Council last night from leading world expert in forensic pathology, Professor Bernard Knight, who deemed Dr Pang's use of stomach contents to estimate the time of death of Christine and Amber Lundy as 'so unreliable as to be of little value".

Dr Pang had noted a distinct 'absence of gastric smell' when he examined the bodies, and used this as the basis of his time of death estimate.

Professor Knight questioned how this was an important factor in determining time of death, saying he had never heard of such a suggestion, labelling it 'utterly without foundation and little short of ludicrous.'"
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:27 PM   #5
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I wish people would realise there's some solid ground between "absolutely precise" and "totally useless". The 1 hour 10 minutes thing sounds bonkers to me. Someone is arguing to a pre-determined conclusion, as you said. And smell? What, really? [citation needed] But if it was known they ate a meal at McDonald's about six, then it should surely be possible to distinguish between death an hour or two after that, and death six hours after that! And they had two bodies to look at, twice the data. Should have been easily possible to lay down some parameters.

An adult might eat again after a meal at six, but a seven-year-old child probably would have no more than a bedtime snack. If there were half-digested bits of Big Mac in there, he's innocent. This case is a complete car crash.
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:28 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Funny thing for them to do. If it was impossible for him to have driven the round trip to carry out the murders at 7.15, why not leave the time of death there? Surely they don't want to let in the possibility that the murders were carried out later?

The statement, just like the similar statements in the Kercher case, is misleading. I still think the originally-estimated time of death was too precise, and that "smell" thing sounds like woo. But if they ate at McDonald's at quarter to six, and there was recognisable Big Mac in there after death, they sure as hell weren't killed after midnight. Not unless they went out and had a second Big Mac meal at about ten!

The Crown is trying way too hard to pin it on the husband. It's Billie-Jo Jenkins all over again. The husband must have done it even if there was functionally no time for him to get there, and look at that infinitesimal spot of biological material that is far less than should be deposited on a murderer and which he inexplicably failed to launder away.
Here is more detail from the herald
quote
Dr Pang told the jury he estimated the time of death between 7 and 7.15 on the evening of August 29, 2000. This was based solely on the basis of examining the stomach contents of the murder victims - a full stomach containing potato chips and probably fish - and he noted the "distinctive" absence of the smell of gastric juices.
He did not take the temperatures of the bodies when they were found in the house, or examine them for rigor mortis. He also did not weigh the stomach contents.
Given the time of the purchase of the meals at McDonald's at 5.38pm and the journey time home, Dr Pang said the digestion process was in the early stages which led to his estimated time of death. His evidence was backed up at the trial by Professor Gilbert Barbezat, a consultant gastroenterologist, who was confident the murders happened within an hour of the last meal. Professor Barbezat had never done an autopsy but had seen more than 100 of them.
end quote

link: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/ar...ectid=10892202

Now he was with the prostitute in Petone at 11 36 pm, so he has an effective alibi through to 1 30am, 8 hours after the victims ate, yet they died with full stomachs and recognisable contents.

This is truly amazing.

It never occurred to me at the time, but the prostitute alibi is unlikely from a PR point of view. (where murder has occurred or muderous intent is in mind)

I hope the NZ taxpayers see value for money here, 3 months prosecuting an impossible case.
By the way the second meal idea doesn't fly, because it would be recorded at the local store, though I am sure you realise that!

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Old 11th February 2015, 05:32 PM   #7
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The (dinner) table has turned

"Dr Pang told the jury he estimated the time of death between 7 and 7.15 on the evening of August 29, 2000. This was based solely on the basis of examining the stomach contents of the murder victims - a full stomach containing potato chips and probably fish - and he noted the "distinctive" absence of the smell of gastric juices.

He did not take the temperatures of the bodies when they were found in the house, or examine them for rigor mortis. He also did not weigh the stomach contents.

Given the time of the purchase of the meals at McDonald's at 5.38pm and the journey time home, Dr Pang said the digestion process was in the early stages which led to his estimated time of death. His evidence was backed up at the trial by Professor Gilbert Barbezat, a consultant gastroenterologist, who was confident the murders happened within an hour of the last meal. Professor Barbezat had never done an autopsy but had seen more than 100 of them.

The defence case at trial was that the murders happened after 10.52pm, based on computer time evidence, and therefore Lundy had a "cast iron" alibi as he was with a prostitute a short time later at 11.36pm." link.

How the computer came to be switched off at 10:52 in not entirely clear to me. It also sounds as if the defense might wish to reconsider its TOD.

EDT
"Dr Pang carried out the autopsies on both bodies, Amber's beginning at 7.30pm on 29th and that of Christine at 9am the following morning. He found that both stomachs were "quite full" and he was able to identify the stomach contents as a meal such as would be purchased from the fast food restaurant from which Mrs Lundy and her daughter had obtained the takeaway the evening before. He and Dr White (who accompanied him during the autopsies) noted that there was no smell of gastric juices. This indicated to Dr Pang that the digestive process had not begun. He described the duodenum in both bodies as empty which he took to be a further indication that the digestive process had not started. On the basis of these factors he made what he described as an "estimate" or an "educated estimate" that the deaths had occurred within an hour of Amber and her mother having eaten the meal. Dr White confirmed the absence of the smell of gastric juices.

The third witness for the prosecution on this issue was Professor Gilbert Barbezat, a gastroenterologist. He said that the absence of the smell of gastric juices was "very striking". He accepted that absolute certainty was not possible but he provided a "reasonably confident estimate" that death had occurred within an hour of the food having been ingested. The pathological evidence, together with the absence of gastric smell, suggested that the stomach was not yet in the emptying phase. It was in what he described as the "lag" phase. The emptying phase, in the professor's opinion, usually began within 15 to 45 minutes of the food having been eaten. While there were several factors that could alter that timing, Professor Barbezat considered that it was significant that the material findings were identical in both Amber and Christine's cases. This reduced considerably the risk of error in estimating the time of death." Link.

BTW The brain tissue evidence reminds me of the Chamberlain case.
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:38 PM   #8
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Fish and chips? Do you get that at McDonald's?

These estimates seem poorly founded and the job hasn't been done well. But that doesn't mean you can just put the ToD anywhere you like. Take the data points you do have and see how they look.

There doesn't seem to me to be a window long enough for him to do the round trip until after the prostitute left. If he called the "escort agency" at 11.30 then how long does the prostitute alibi him for? To 00.30 at least. That drive is going to take 2 hours unless you want to be noticed. He has an alibi until 2.30 am, I'd say. Not much earlier than that. And if he had all night, and wasn't trying to make it look as if he'd done the impossible, why would he shoot off at speed the minute he'd paid the woman off, anyway? He had all night.

You'd have to postulate them eating much later. I'm picking up that it was a takeaway, they didn't eat in? But what mother with a small child buys a McDonald's at quarter to six, then keeps the congealing mess before microwaving it for a midnight feast?

William of Ockham called. He says somebody else did it.
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:52 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Chris_Halkides View Post
"Dr Pang told the jury he estimated the time of death between 7 and 7.15 on the evening of August 29, 2000. This was based solely on the basis of examining the stomach contents of the murder victims - a full stomach containing potato chips and probably fish - and he noted the "distinctive" absence of the smell of gastric juices.

He did not take the temperatures of the bodies when they were found in the house, or examine them for rigor mortis. He also did not weigh the stomach contents.

Given the time of the purchase of the meals at McDonald's at 5.38pm and the journey time home, Dr Pang said the digestion process was in the early stages which led to his estimated time of death. His evidence was backed up at the trial by Professor Gilbert Barbezat, a consultant gastroenterologist, who was confident the murders happened within an hour of the last meal. Professor Barbezat had never done an autopsy but had seen more than 100 of them.

The defence case at trial was that the murders happened after 10.52pm, based on computer time evidence, and therefore Lundy had a "cast iron" alibi as he was with a prostitute a short time later at 11.36pm." link.

How the computer came to be switched off at 10:52 in not entirely clear to me. It also sounds as if the defense might wish to reconsider its TOD.

EDT
"Dr Pang carried out the autopsies on both bodies, Amber's beginning at 7.30pm on 29th and that of Christine at 9am the following morning. He found that both stomachs were "quite full" and he was able to identify the stomach contents as a meal such as would be purchased from the fast food restaurant from which Mrs Lundy and her daughter had obtained the takeaway the evening before. He and Dr White (who accompanied him during the autopsies) noted that there was no smell of gastric juices. This indicated to Dr Pang that the digestive process had not begun. He described the duodenum in both bodies as empty which he took to be a further indication that the digestive process had not started. On the basis of these factors he made what he described as an "estimate" or an "educated estimate" that the deaths had occurred within an hour of Amber and her mother having eaten the meal. Dr White confirmed the absence of the smell of gastric juices.

The third witness for the prosecution on this issue was Professor Gilbert Barbezat, a gastroenterologist. He said that the absence of the smell of gastric juices was "very striking". He accepted that absolute certainty was not possible but he provided a "reasonably confident estimate" that death had occurred within an hour of the food having been ingested. The pathological evidence, together with the absence of gastric smell, suggested that the stomach was not yet in the emptying phase. It was in what he described as the "lag" phase. The emptying phase, in the professor's opinion, usually began within 15 to 45 minutes of the food having been eaten. While there were several factors that could alter that timing, Professor Barbezat considered that it was significant that the material findings were identical in both Amber and Christine's cases. This reduced considerably the risk of error in estimating the time of death." Link.

BTW The brain tissue evidence reminds me of the Chamberlain case.
It is disconcerting to have only the victims' brother and uncle as an alternative suspect. No winners in this one.
It is perplexing, for example did Lundy hire a hit man? Does that ever happen for domestic purposes? Nothing seems plausible, but the prosecution's TOD is that car crash alright, and quite unbelievable. Without poor Meredith's stomach, I would never have understood how there could be obfuscation and mass ignorance leading to such tragic results for whole families.
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Old 11th February 2015, 05:58 PM   #10
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Filet-o-fish

"A receipt found in the Lundy home showed Christine and Amber had bought McDonald’s takeaways at 5.43 on the Tuesday evening. The meal consisted of one chicken burger, one filet-o-fish burger, nine chicken Mc- Nuggets, one large fries, one medium fries and two apple pies...It was known early on that Christine Lundy had taken a short phone call at 6.56 that night so was alive at least until then." link.
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Old 11th February 2015, 06:15 PM   #11
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I wonder how sure the prosecution are that the second phone call wasn't faked? It would be very complicated to do that and it would need two people to be covering for him, one of them the business associate. I'll bet the cops tried to falsify it though.

If that wasn't faked, he has an alibi right through until 2.30 am, assuming the prostitute left about 00.40 by the timings given. There simply isn't a window big enough to get there and back, before that.

The story about the stomach contents isn't as bad as all that, from that reference. Maybe a bit more wiggle-room than they say, but not significantly more. The only other possibility is if they left that McDonald's food to get cold then heated it up for a midnight feast. Yuk.
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Old 11th February 2015, 06:31 PM   #12
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The original TOD might have been in the right range

It looks as if the absence of gastric smell is not recognized has having any validity. In my opinion, this issue has been unintentionally misleading. Instead, the lack of contents in the duodenum and the existence of recognizable bits of food point strongly away from a late TOD.
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Old 11th February 2015, 11:48 PM   #13
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Whenever a prosecutor has to radically revise his theory of the crime, as in this case, it means he has no clear idea of what happened. He is struggling to shoehorn the facts to fit an accusation.

A lot of this could be avoided if the authorities would start their investigation by trying to figure out what happened, instead of targeting suspects and trying to make a case against them.
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Old 12th February 2015, 02:28 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Charlie Wilkes View Post
Whenever a prosecutor has to radically revise his theory of the crime, as in this case, it means he has no clear idea of what happened. He is struggling to shoehorn the facts to fit an accusation.

A lot of this could be avoided if the authorities would start their investigation by trying to figure out what happened, instead of targeting suspects and trying to make a case against them.
There is little known here that can not be quickly learned from the internet. I have no doubt that those with curiosity here can replace the process happening in Wellington with a better theory. I can see a very fast drive before the crime, but not after, due to very present fear of attracting attention, so the prosecution are sensible to abandon the round trip.

Lack of alternate suspects and other forensic evidence is unhelpful to the accused, and I have no idea what happened.

Nothing fits, but something is true.
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Old 12th February 2015, 03:09 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Chris_Halkides View Post
It looks as if the absence of gastric smell is not recognized has having any validity. In my opinion, this issue has been unintentionally misleading. Instead, the lack of contents in the duodenum and the existence of recognizable bits of food point strongly away from a late TOD.

I agree. The gastric smell thing is unfamiliar to me, but then it's not my area of expertise. It sounds unreliable though. The nature and location of the alimentary tract contents reveal quite a lot though. It really does sound as if they were dead within a couple of hours of eating, maybe three at the very outside.
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Old 12th February 2015, 03:19 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Charlie Wilkes View Post
Whenever a prosecutor has to radically revise his theory of the crime, as in this case, it means he has no clear idea of what happened. He is struggling to shoehorn the facts to fit an accusation.

A lot of this could be avoided if the authorities would start their investigation by trying to figure out what happened, instead of targeting suspects and trying to make a case against them.

My God you can say that again. It appears that the Crown has simply abandoned the entire basis of the original conviction and is trying to convict the same man again on completely different grounds. If they had very clear DNA evidence or something like that to implicate him I can see why they'd be trying to find a way, but it sounds as if it's nothing more than a determination to convict.

That "brain tissue" story sounds very dodgy. Sion Jenkins and Paul Esslemont all over again. A tiny spot of material on a garment, when the actual murderer would almost certainly have been liberally spattered with blood. And an actual murderer would have washed the garment, given half a chance, which both these people had. The tiny speck of material would indicate the garment hadn't been washed. But if it hadn't been washed, where's the rest?

This case needs a lot more than "I have found a time window in which the accused might conceivably have done it" to make it stick.
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Old 12th February 2015, 03:46 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
My God you can say that again. It appears that the Crown has simply abandoned the entire basis of the original conviction and is trying to convict the same man again on completely different grounds. If they had very clear DNA evidence or something like that to implicate him I can see why they'd be trying to find a way, but it sounds as if it's nothing more than a determination to convict.

That "brain tissue" story sounds very dodgy. Sion Jenkins and Paul Esslemont all over again. A tiny spot of material on a garment, when the actual murderer would almost certainly have been liberally spattered with blood. And an actual murderer would have washed the garment, given half a chance, which both these people had. The tiny speck of material would indicate the garment hadn't been washed. But if it hadn't been washed, where's the rest?

This case needs a lot more than "I have found a time window in which the accused might conceivably have done it" to make it stick.
I would like to report some behavioural evidence from memory.

The lead detective said he watched Lundy after an interview at his house (not sure where at this stage), and he did not drive away, but unbeknown to Lundy watched him walk to the corner of his house in shoulder slumped dejected style, then when believing himself to be out of sight (detective assumed driven away but he had watched/followed him) recovered a jaunty and rapid walking style.

I was convinced by this at the time as being guilt written large...

Now this digestive evidence is doing my head in.

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Old 12th February 2015, 03:56 AM   #18
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Who knows what that might mean. Did he wiggle his hips after putting on a pair of shoe covers? Did he eat pizza at the wrong time?

Why was the detective watching him? Because he was suspicious, I presume. Suspicious people tend to read more into what they see than can really be justified. Maybe Lundy simply decided to pull himself together at that moment. It can happen.
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Old 12th February 2015, 04:02 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Who knows what that might mean. Did he wiggle his hips after putting on a pair of shoe covers? Did he eat pizza at the wrong time?

Why was the detective watching him? Because he was suspicious, I presume. Suspicious people tend to read more into what they see than can really be justified. Maybe Lundy simply decided to pull himself together at that moment. It can happen.
All above, yes, but I hope you can accomodate the idea of a "reformed" believer in simple and persuasive narratives that cement beliefs.
I am uncertain about this case,
But I am certain that politicians and lawyers are unsafe at any speed in these difficult cases, you, Charlie, and many here have changed my world view.
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Old 12th February 2015, 04:05 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Samson View Post
There is little known here that can not be quickly learned from the internet. I have no doubt that those with curiosity here can replace the process happening in Wellington with a better theory. I can see a very fast drive before the crime, but not after, due to very present fear of attracting attention, so the prosecution are sensible to abandon the round trip.

Lack of alternate suspects and other forensic evidence is unhelpful to the accused, and I have no idea what happened.

Nothing fits, but something is true.
This. A very dubious case being pushed against the evidence.

Pang's behaviour is odd to say the least; stomach contents are (and my FP lectures were 25 years ago and a very small aspect of my degree) indicative and not reliable to quarter hour accuracy. Why did he fail to take liver temp, isn't this still the standard technique to estimate ToD? And no examination for rigor?
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Old 12th February 2015, 04:16 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by catsmate1 View Post
This. A very dubious case being pushed against the evidence.

Pang's behaviour is odd to say the least; stomach contents are (and my FP lectures were 25 years ago and a very small aspect of my degree) indicative and not reliable to quarter hour accuracy. Why did he fail to take liver temp, isn't this still the standard technique to estimate ToD? And no examination for rigor?
Pang had a watcher who said time of death was soon after eating, and as has been noted, two corpses to study, almost eliminating chance medical complications in the sample.
Any sentient human being that chooses to watch the prosecution case with the revised TOD will self destruct in a fit of old fashioned apoplexy.
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Old 12th February 2015, 04:31 AM   #22
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I don't like body temperature as a measure of time of death. Too many variables. Ambient temperature, body weight, clothing or coverings and so on. Also, I don't know about human corpses, but some animal corpses will start to heat up again due to internal bacterial fermentation.

Nevertheless, the more data points you have the better. He should certainly have taken those temperatures.
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Old 12th February 2015, 04:52 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I don't like body temperature as a measure of time of death. Too many variables. Ambient temperature, body weight, clothing or coverings and so on. Also, I don't know about human corpses, but some animal corpses will start to heat up again due to internal bacterial fermentation.

Nevertheless, the more data points you have the better. He should certainly have taken those temperatures.
Rolfe, I am glad you have said this, because to me it is common sense. Reductio ab adsurdum says tell me when a snap frozen chicken died. The stomach contents analysis in Meredith Kercher's death offered something that would make a total mockery of all the purported accuracy that gradients of liver temperature could bring to the party when discussing Rudy and his time of slaughter.

In fact Chris has already made the point, as a scientist, that he likes stomach contents as a guide. I will only dispute what a scientist says when I know I know more.

There is so much going on here.
I now have no faith in the law to solve difficult cases, but complete faith in science. This is fertile ground for phd research for the young crowd who follow these cases, because it has escaped my attention that so much misery has been perpetrated.
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Old 12th February 2015, 05:05 AM   #24
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Someone just gained his PhD from the University of Wales for a thesis about the farcical eyewitness evidence in the Lockerbie case.
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Old 12th February 2015, 05:36 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Someone just gained his PhD from the University of Wales for a thesis about the farcical eyewitness evidence in the Lockerbie case.
Good. There will be a tipping point created by internet analysts, of this I am certain.
When I contrast the disgraceful conduct of our ex justice minister Judith Collins with the straightforward discussions here, I know things will change in our life times.

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Old 12th February 2015, 05:42 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Samson View Post
I would like to report some behavioural evidence from memory.

The lead detective said he watched Lundy after an interview at his house (not sure where at this stage), and he did not drive away, but unbeknown to Lundy watched him walk to the corner of his house in shoulder slumped dejected style, then when believing himself to be out of sight (detective assumed driven away but he had watched/followed him) recovered a jaunty and rapid walking style.

I was convinced by this at the time as being guilt written large...

Now this digestive evidence is doing my head in.
The curse of discussions like this is people latching onto meaningless details like this, which in their imagination are the signs of a guilty person, or at least someone hiding a guilty secret. Of course, as Rolfe points out, there's nothing to be inferred from someone switching from a dejected demeanour to a purposeful one, even if it happens to coincide with a moment when they might not think they are being watched. It's gratifying that you now recognise this.

My reaction when I read something like this in an argument for guilt is, "where is the presumption of innocence?"
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Old 12th February 2015, 05:52 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Antony View Post
The curse of discussions like this is people latching onto meaningless details like this, which in their imagination are the signs of a guilty person, or at least someone hiding a guilty secret. Of course, as Rolfe points out, there's nothing to be inferred from someone switching from a dejected demeanour to a purposeful one, even if it happens to coincide with a moment when they might not think they are being watched. It's gratifying that you now recognise this.

My reaction when I read something like this in an argument for guilt is, "where is the presumption of innocence?"
I started the thread for the best reasons, find the truth, not the poor bastard is innocent.
It is really useful to know that minds are open here.
We need a realistic narrative that either includes or excludes Lundy.
Strangely, both cases seem persuasive, but only one can be true.

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Old 12th February 2015, 05:55 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Samson View Post
Good. There will be a tipping point created by internet analysts, of this I am certain.

I think so. It's not just the free discussion of the evidence, it's the sheer free availability of the evidence on a wide scale.

At the time many of these crimes happened, the internet was in its infancy. People put up web pages you couldn't interact with, and communicated by email. At the time of Lockerbie, few people even had computers. The investigators could be reasonably certain only a few people would ever get to see the raw data they were cherrypicking and mangling.

The huge stack of evidence I got, wasn't shared over the internet. The files are too damn large. But I was able to meet a detective in a coffee shop and he handed me - a wee memory stick! The equivalent of a car-boot full of papers, weighing almost nothing, and although the pdfs weren't searchable, I could at least scan the pages from the comfort of my armchair. Nobody was going to photocopy tons of paper to let an internet observer get a look, but they were prepared to hand over a memory stick. And the photos were high quality, in colour, and you can zoom in on them.

So the internet allows the interest to be stimulated, and it allows groups of like-minded individuals to congregate and share ideas. And it allows some sharing of raw data. Digital technology allows sharing of a stupendous amount of raw data. Nobody could have foreseen this.

It does need a trial or some sort of legal process to get that evidence out in the open though.
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Old 12th February 2015, 05:59 AM   #29
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A brave new world is here. Defence council want 400 an hour. Internet sleuths want truth, it is their meat and drink.
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Old 12th February 2015, 06:10 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Samson View Post
A brave new world is here. Defence council want 400 an hour. Internet sleuths want truth, it is their meat and drink.

Excellent point. I've spent money on trying to get the truth out about Lockerbie. I've had to explain to concerned people that I'm fine with that. It's my hobby, and people spend money on their hobbies. I remember saying to one person, look, I know people who have spent more on musical instruments than I'm spending on this.

Sometimes I get marginally narked when I look at the enormous fees that have been paid to some people to do the job I'm doing for free, and they took the money and screwed up. But only marginally.

How's that book coming along, Mr. Bill Taylor QC?
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Old 12th February 2015, 06:12 AM   #31
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What's the law in NZ? How much will a jury be allowed to hear about the first trial? Any? Or is it like in American law where they can only discuss the first case if the prosecution foolishly introduces some of that case/testimony?
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Old 12th February 2015, 07:18 AM   #32
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the phone call before 7 is helpful, but the computer may be misleading

My hunch is that the computer's being turned off close to 11 PM is a red herring of some kind. However, I don't have any special knowledge of computer forensics, and I have not yet looked into the matter closely (the computer was said to have a virus). On the other hand, the phone call just before 7 puts a lower bound on the TOD, and the digestive evidence puts an upper bound on it. I agree with Rolfe's estimate.
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Old 12th February 2015, 07:20 AM   #33
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Has there been another hearing since we started this thread? Does anyone have a good link to a newspaper covering the appeal as it happens?
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Old 12th February 2015, 07:51 AM   #34
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computer virus and life insurance

Day 4. Interesting how one witness's view of the family's finances changed over time. Day 3. Some stuff about the computer virus and life insurance.
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Old 12th February 2015, 08:47 AM   #35
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Of course, it's a retrial, not an appeal. Makes a difference.
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Old 12th February 2015, 08:52 AM   #36
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Oh, the computer had the KAK worm. Mine was sent that as an email attachment about that time, but nothing happened because CompuServe just turned it into a text file! It caused screaming alarms when I tried to move the email archive to a new computer though.
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Old 12th February 2015, 10:17 AM   #37
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ProPath

Link. start quote This was established by a method called immuno-staining. It is not widely used in forensic analysis (ESR does not do it), and the officer in charge of the Lundy case, Detective Sergeant Ross Grantham – who declined to be interviewed – had to search the world for a lab to do it at all. All those he contacted apparently told him that a definitive result from such a tiny sample was highly unlikely. Finally, Grantham tried a Dallas company called ProPath, and it was ProPath’s director of immunohistochemistry, Rodney Miller, who made the crucial call: testifying at the trial, Miller was adamant that the particles were brain or spinal cord tissue.
It was the first time the immuno-staining method had ever been used on fabric.
Well, not quite the first. A week before Grantham showed up at ProPath with the shirt, Miller did a little experiment. “I was rinsing off a fresh chicken to be used for dinner,” he wrote later, “and noticed spinal cord tissue protruding from the severed neck of the chicken.” Smearing some of this tissue on an old shirt, he was able to confirm its origin by immuno-staining. “Little did the chicken know,” he added, “that she would be contributing greatly to putting a guilty man behind bars.” end quote

Link to a newsletter from Miller (who is an MD) here. Dr. Miller wrote, "I think we all know that if he committed this crime in Texas, his punishment would be a bit different."
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Old 12th February 2015, 10:19 AM   #38
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My God. Holy accredited testing, Batman!
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Old 12th February 2015, 02:46 PM   #39
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more on immunohistochemistry

"Affidavits sworn by Professors Phillip Sheard, Helen Whitwell and Kevin Gatter - all experts in immunohistochemistry - concluded the tissue was poorly preserved and it was impossible to reach any conclusion as to the nature of the material. They concluded the IHC procedure was an "uncontrolled experiment" which could not produce a reliable outcome.

What the Privy Council said:

The fresh evidence "at a minimum" raised questions about the use of IHC in the forensic setting of a criminal trial. "[IHC's] widespread and successful use as a diagnostic tool is undisputed but its acceptance as a means of establishing a scientific proposition as an element of proof of guilt remains untested by any experimental or empirical means," said the Law Lords." Link.

It sounds as if the case may pivot on this technique.
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Old 12th February 2015, 02:52 PM   #40
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I work with a couple of experts in (diagnostic) immunohistochemistry. If it gets technical, I'll ask them what they think.
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