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  #3631  
Old 11-08-2016, 11:42 AM
Sherlock Houses Sherlock Houses is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Graham View Post
One small but nevertheless important point that is usually overlooked about the Liverpool 'Alibi' is that although Hanratty was arrested on 11 October he did not, according to Acott, mention the sweet-shop in his initial account to Acott of his claimed visit to Liverpool. It is thus implied that Hanratty invented the sweet-shop at some point after his arrest and initial interview with the police. Acott said that he heard about the sweet-shop not from Hanratty himself but from his defence counsel on about 16 October. Following this, Acott contacted Liverpool CID to ask them to check on this, hence the unfortunate DC Pugh traipsing along Scotland Road to call at every one of its 29 sweet-shops. None of this makes one too confident that Hanratty was ever in a sweet-shop around that time; nor, indeed, anywhere near Liverpool.

Graham
Personally speaking I take much of what Acott has to say with a pinch of salt. He is not the most reliable of police officers. There are quite a number of examples of his unreliability which I will detail in a future post. For the time being I will refer to just one which is very pertinent to your post, Graham.

It is unclear who wrote the October 16th letter to the Liverpool police chief asking him to inquire into the sweetshop alibi. Paul Foot has Acott writing it [p195] whereas Bob Woffinden [p124] has the Bedfordshire Chief Constable writing it. I don't suppose however it makes that much difference who wrote it as the Liverpool police received it the very next day, October 17th. Anyhow getting back to Acott it is essential to point out that when he got wind of a potentially vital witness [Mrs Dinwoodie of course] who could corroborate Hanratty's story he decided to keep this favourable [to Hanratty] evidence to himself and not disclose it to either Sherrard or Kleinman. It was not until the last day or two of the Committal Proceedings at Ampthill [Dec 4th/5th] a full 7 WEEKS later that Michael Sherrard learned of the existence of this crucially important witness. How perverse is that a fair-minded person has to ask himself ??
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  #3632  
Old 11-08-2016, 12:12 PM
moste moste is offline
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Moste - turning to the car's mileage as no mileage in the Matthews report.

OneRound
Hi ,OR
Sorry, misunderstanding here .I was referencing the fuel gauge ,not the odometer .
Interesting point though on mileage gauges, and just to point out a possible pertinent fact . My best mate in the early 60s worked as an apprentice for Drabble and Allen , Jaguar / Daimler dealers . One of his entrepreneurial activities was fixing up old cars and selling them .
One day 'the villain' had just finished winding the cable back that leads to the odometer with a high spread electric drill,as I arrived at his back garden work shop.In those far off days it wasn't a difficult chore for a dishonest mechanic.
And it was possible to take off quite a few thousand miles in only a couple or three hours. Just a thought.I wonder where our M M was parked all day.
I wouldn't set much store by the mileage showed, on a car that has been involved in a crime of this nature, especially since (a) we don't know where the vehicle was for 12 hours, and (b) whether there was any kind of conspiracy involved.
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  #3633  
Old 11-08-2016, 04:00 PM
OneRound OneRound is offline
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Originally Posted by Sherlock Houses View Post
OneRound, in my considered view there was ample time for Hanratty to have done all the things he claimed to have done between arriving at Lime Street and leaving on a double decker bus for Rhyl.

Hanratty originally claimed to have arrived at Lime Street Station around about 3.30 pm on August 22nd. This would tally with the 3.25 pm arrival time of the 10.35 am train from Euston. [Foot p189]. Later on, for some unclear reason, Hanratty estimated the arrival time of his train as being about an hour later. It's important to bear in mind that Hanratty by mid-October had no reason to recall the exact arrival time of a train he had used almost 2 months earlier. In common with probably the vast majority of people [including Albert Harding] he was not a clock-watcher. He even admitted as much himself. At this juncture I would say that, unless they kept a detailed diary to jog their memory, 99% of people would be unable to accurately recall the time of say a very recent family visit. In all likelihood they would be an half hour or more out.

My own firmly held belief is that Hanratty caught the 10.35 am train, arriving at Lime Street Station at 3.25 pm. I find it very hard to believe that the itchy-footed Hanratty would have had the patience to linger at Euston Station for almost 3 hours waiting for the 12.15pm train to Liverpool to depart.

For argument's sake let's accept that he did arrive at Lime Street Station at 3.25 pm. It is reasonable to suppose that he would have been able to deposit his luggage at the left luggage office, have a wash and brush up and also have a hot drink at the station's buffet by 4.00 pm. Coming out of the station around 4.00 pm and then enquiring of passers-by for the whereabouts of a Carlton or Tarleton Road it is a fair assumption that he boarded a Scotland Road bound bus within 5 or 10 minutes, maybe less, since lots of buses went along Scotland Road. David Cowley's sweetshop was about 1.1 miles away from Lime Street Station in an almost straight line. The bus journey would have taken about 5 minutes allowing for fare stops and traffic lights and Hanratty would have reached the sweetshop around 4.20 pm. after making further enquiries of passers-by for directions to Tarleton or Carlton Road.

Exiting the shop between 4.20 and 4.25 pm and not having any joy in finding his ex-prison mate Aspinall's address he decided to walk back to Lime Street which would have taken a fit 24 year old male about 15-17 minutes. He would have gotten back to Lime Street around 4.40 pm'ish giving him ample time to have something to eat and drink at Lyons's cafe at 51 Lime Street, cross diagonally over the road to the nearby Reynolds Billiard Hall and return to the left-luggage office to collect his pigskin case before boarding the 6.00 pm bus to Rhyl at the side of Lime Street Station.


So in answer to your 4th point OneRound, in my opinion there would have been time enough to spare for Hanratty to do the things he claimed to have done between arriving at Lime Street Station and leaving for Rhyl.
Thanks, Sherlock.

If it is accepted that Hanratty got the Liverpool to Rhyl bus at 6.00 pm, I guess it's a statement of the bl**din' obvious that whether he had time to do all the things he claimed to do beforehand on that day in Liverpool is dependent upon what time he arrived in Liverpool.

I note your starting time here is 3.25 pm. By contrast, the Court of Appeal in their 2002 judgement were fixed upon 4.45 pm and were clearly sceptical that the resulting 75 minutes allowed to Hanratty before boarding the bus were enough.

Fair to say that - not for the first time - Hanratty's switch from his original claim did not help him.

Regards,
OneRound
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  #3634  
Old 11-08-2016, 05:09 PM
Spitfire Spitfire is offline
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I note your starting time here is 3.25 pm. By contrast, the Court of Appeal in their 2002 judgement were fixed upon 4.45 pm and were clearly sceptical that the resulting 75 minutes allowed to Hanratty before boarding the bus were enough.
Sherlock has neatly moved Hanratty's departure time from Euston to 10.35 a.m. which gives an arrival in Liverpool at 3.25 p.m which solves some of the timing problems created by Dinwoodie's evidence. Unfortunately Hanratty gave evidence to the effect that he spent some considerable time at Euston waiting for his train to Liverpool. He bought his single ticket. Had a cuppa. Bought some magazines, spoke to a porter, went to see if his train was there. It wasn't, so back to the cafe, where he had another hot drink, this time coffee according to Woffinden, tea according to Foot. All this would have taken time. How much time, I know not but certainly more than 15 minutes and if so, this would have meant that Hanratty was in time to catch the 10.20 a.m. which would have got him into Lime Street at 2.22 p.m.

So let us summarise the pro-Hanratty timings.

The great man himself, James Hanratty, initially said his train left Euston at either 10.55 a.m. or 11.55 a.m. (with a preference for the later time) and got into Liverpool at about 3.30 p.m. which time he subsequently revised upwards to between 4 and 5 p.m

Foot plumps for 10.20 a.m. train. He could not see how on Hanratty's timings for leaving the Vienna and his journey via Paddington he could have missed both the 10.20 and 10.35 trains.

Woffinden goes for the 12.15 p.m. train believing that Jim would have arrived at Euston at 10.45 a.m. which gave him time to do all that he said he had done at Euston while waiting for his train. This train is the one that got into Liverpool at 4.45 p.m.

And finally, Sherlock goes middle for diddle and plumps for the slow train leaving Euston at 10.35 a.m and getting into Liverpool at 3.25 p.m.

Hanratty thought his train stopped at Crewe and had a restaurant car. It is not clear (to me at any rate) which of the various trains satisfied those requirements. If none of them did, then the inference could be drawn that Hanratty's journey to Liverpool existed only in the mind of James Hanratty as a ruse to escape the consequences of his lunatic behaviour on the night of 22/23 August.

Last edited by Spitfire : 11-08-2016 at 05:15 PM.
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  #3635  
Old 11-09-2016, 02:52 AM
NickB NickB is offline
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As mentioned in my previous post, Woffinden (first edition, page 163) goes for a later train arriving at 4.54pm. How he thinks Hanratty managed to perform his Liverpool activities in even less than 75 minutes is not explained. He also uses the 'long wait' argument against the earlier trains, and in any case (page 121) says Jim "would probably have arrived at about 10.45" at Euston.

With regard to Acott, I think there are many things you can lay at his feet but I don't think withholding information on Dinwoodie is one of them. It was the responsibility of the DPPs office to decide what to pass on the defence. Acott can only be criticised for this if he delayed informing them or if he had not provided full answers on the matter at the committal.
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  #3636  
Old 11-09-2016, 04:50 AM
Spitfire Spitfire is offline
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One aspect of the 2002 appeal which related to the Liverpool alibi concerned the failure of the prosecution to disclose the time of the last bus from Liverpool to Rhyl.

Hanratty had told the jury that he left Liverpool at 7.30 p.m. (para 64 of the 2002 judgement). In para 186 the complaint is dealt with that the prosecution did not disclose to the defence that there was information that the last bus to Rhyl left Liverpool at 6 p.m. If the defence did not know about this, then neither would the jury and Hanratty's lack of time to complete the various tasks which he said he had done would not really have weighed against him.
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  #3637  
Old 11-09-2016, 04:52 AM
Sherlock Houses Sherlock Houses is offline
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With regard to Acott, I think there are many things you can lay at his feet but I don't think withholding information on Dinwoodie is one of them.
I disagree totally. In the interests of justice and fair-play it should have been his duty, if he had any sort of moral conscience, to inform Michael Sherrard shortly after October 17th of Mrs Dinwoodie's existence. The defence team would then have had the opportunity to question Mrs Dinwoodie themselves and explore what potentially vital evidence she had to offer 5 weeks before the start of the Committal Proceedings. Instead they were left completely in the dark for 7 weeks and only got to know of her existence through sheer happenstance.
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"Justice is an ideal which transcends the expedience of the State, or the sensitivities of Government officials, or private individuals. IT HAS TO BE PURSUED WHATEVER THE COST IN PEACE OF MIND TO THOSE CONCERNED." --'Justice of the Peace' [July 12th 1975]
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  #3638  
Old 11-09-2016, 05:59 AM
Sherlock Houses Sherlock Houses is offline
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Originally Posted by Spitfire View Post
Unfortunately Hanratty gave evidence to the effect that he spent some considerable time at Euston waiting for his train to Liverpool. He bought his single ticket. Had a cuppa. Bought some magazines, spoke to a porter, went to see if his train was there. It wasn't, so back to the cafe, where he had another hot drink, this time coffee according to Woffinden, tea according to Foot. All this would have taken time. How much time, I know not but certainly more than 15 minutes
Hanratty would have reached Euston Station that Tuesday morning with at least an hour to spare before catching the 10.35 train. Plenty of time to purchase a ticket, magazines, imbibe hot drinks whatever they were (maybe Nescafé or Maxwell House just wasn't his cup of tea) converse with a porter etcetera.

Quote:
The great man himself, James Hanratty, initially said his train left Euston at either 10.55 a.m. or 11.55 a.m. (with a preference for the later time) and got into Liverpool at about 3.30 p.m. which time he subsequently revised upwards to between 4 and 5 p.m
Well being put on the spot and trying to recall the exact departure time of a train almost 2 months earlier would give anyone a headache. What reason would the non clock-watching Hanratty have for remembering the exact times of a relatively insignificant train journey ? ?
As it happens he was only 20 minutes out with the 10.55 am guess wasn't he ? And only 5 minutes out with his initial 3.30 pm estimation. Earlier estimations and impressions I would say are much more reliable than later ones. They are much nearer in time to whatever incident was taking place. As in Valerie Storie's original description of the gunman's hair......'straight, well-greased, dark brown, brushed straight back, slightly receding at temples' which is an uncannily accurate description of the original prime suspect, Alphon's hair at the time of the murder and absolutely nothing like Hanratty's.
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"A body of men, HOLDING THEMSELVES ACCOUNTABLE TO NOBODY, ought not to be trusted by anybody." --Thomas Paine ["Rights of Man"]

"Justice is an ideal which transcends the expedience of the State, or the sensitivities of Government officials, or private individuals. IT HAS TO BE PURSUED WHATEVER THE COST IN PEACE OF MIND TO THOSE CONCERNED." --'Justice of the Peace' [July 12th 1975]

Last edited by Sherlock Houses : 11-09-2016 at 06:03 AM.
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  #3639  
Old 11-09-2016, 07:12 AM
Spitfire Spitfire is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sherlock Houses View Post
Hanratty would have reached Euston Station that Tuesday morning with at least an hour to spare before catching the 10.35 train. Plenty of time to purchase a ticket, magazines, imbibe hot drinks whatever they were (maybe Nescafé or Maxwell House just wasn't his cup of tea) converse with a porter etcetera.


Yes, Indeedy. But if he was at Euston at 9.35 a.m. (ish) then his next train to Liverpool was 10.20 a.m.
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  #3640  
Old 11-09-2016, 09:16 AM
Sherlock Houses Sherlock Houses is offline
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Originally Posted by Spitfire View Post
Yes, Indeedy. But if he was at Euston at 9.35 a.m. (ish) then his next train to Liverpool was 10.20 a.m.
No need to shout Shi... Oops I mean Spitfire. I ain't deaf. You and your gigantic text, lol.
Perhaps he hadn't finished his cuppa yet or was on his mobile and was aware there was another train 15 minutes later. Or perhaps he actually caught the 10.20 train and got to Liverpool at 2.22 pm, much earlier than he had thought.
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"A body of men, HOLDING THEMSELVES ACCOUNTABLE TO NOBODY, ought not to be trusted by anybody." --Thomas Paine ["Rights of Man"]

"Justice is an ideal which transcends the expedience of the State, or the sensitivities of Government officials, or private individuals. IT HAS TO BE PURSUED WHATEVER THE COST IN PEACE OF MIND TO THOSE CONCERNED." --'Justice of the Peace' [July 12th 1975]

Last edited by Sherlock Houses : 11-09-2016 at 09:26 AM.
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