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  • I’ve been asked for examples of when a Doctor changed his estimate in light of witness testimony. From The Temperature of Death by David Barrat we get these

    The classic case was Dr Charles Graham Grant in the 1904 Emily Farmer murder case. His estimated time of death didn't match witness evidence about the movements of the alleged murderers and he changed his estimate.

    David also showed that Professor Bernard Knight changed his evidence about the time of death of Peggy Pentecost in 1939 following witness evidence showing that the accused man was innocent if his original estimate was correct.

    Just two examples but examples nonetheless. A Bernard Knight was a bit of a legend in Forensic medicine.

    Regards

    Sir Herlock Sholmes.

    “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

    Comment


    • Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

      I won’t accept what isn’t true Trevor. I’ll ask you…..when are you going to stop trying to eliminate witnesses purely on the grounds of perceived minor discrepancies. You appear to require absolute perfection in a witness without the need for calm assessment. So what is there to accept…..that witnesses can be mistaken? Of course they can but this doesn’t mean that we should assume that they were?

      The ‘doubt’ about Richardson usually centres on the fact that Chandler said that he hadn’t mentioned the boot repair when he spoke to him on the morning of the murder. So we have to look at the detail by assessing all possibilities. So…

      1. We shouldn’t just assume that Chandler was right (especially considering that he only said that Richardson hadn’t mentioned the boot repair, not that he hadn’t mentioned sitting) The boot repair was mentioned however in the press days before the inquest.
      2. It also has to be remembered that the boot repair wasn’t important. It would have been perfectly understandable if he’d just said that he’d gone to check the back door and sat on the step. There’s nothing sinister or suspicious about it. The reason that he sat on the steps was irrelevant. Far too much is made of this.
      3. As Jeff has said, further information often comes out sporadically; when further questions are asked to try and gain more detailed information. This is perfectly normal and understandable.
      4. And finally, why would Richardson have lied to ‘prove’ that he couldn’t have missed the body when he could have, a) accepted the possibility that he could have missed the body, b) said that he’d pushed the door all the way back to fence, c) said that actually he’d stepped into the yard, d) said that he’d used the outside loo, e) that he’d gone to check the outbuilding or f) that he’d stood in the yard having a smoke. All very, very simple, very obvious things which he apparently avoided to lie about being at the scene with a knife. How can this be said to make any sense.

      Richardson cannot be dismissed. Neither can Cadosch. Proper assessment is required and not just a dogmatic attempt to exclude witnesses because it’s convenient to do it.
      I am not dismissing Richardson the coroner's court testimony suggests that his testimony is unsafe to totally rely on because of the direct conflict with Chandler and what was said at the crime scene. How you explain the reasons for the conflict is nothing more than wild speculation on your part, but there was a serious failure by the coroner to not identify this conflict and to try to expand on the testimony of both parties to resolve this issue because make no mistake if Chandler is correct as to what Richardson told him then he clearly could not have seen the body.

      And we should not assume that the sound Cadosh said he heard came from No 29

      www.trevormarriott.co.uk
      Last edited by Trevor Marriott; 10-01-2023, 01:07 PM.

      Comment


      • Originally posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

        I am not dismissing Richardson the coroner's court testimony suggests that his testimony is unsafe to totally rely on because of the direct conflict with Chandler and what was said at the crime scene. How you explain the reasons for the conflict is nothing more than wild speculation on your part, but there was a serious failure by the coroner to not identify this conflict and to try to expand on the testimony of both parties to resolve this issue because make no mistake if Chandler is correct as to what Richardson told him then he clearly could not have seen the body.

        And we should not assume that the sound Cadosh said he heard came from No 29

        www.trevormarriott.co.uk
        But it's not "Direct Conflict" that's just sexing it up to make it sound more than it is. Neither contradicted the other. The material point of both statements made by Richardson are to the effect that he WOULD have seen a body had one been there. He didn't.

        If WB: "Did he say anything about cutting his boot?" JC: "No". WB: "Did he say that he was sure the woman was not there at that time?" JC: "Yes" puts Richardson and Chandler in direct conflict, then you and I have had very different experiences of conflict.

        Witnesses add information to their initial statement all the time. It's what the Police hope for when they go back and re-interview them.
        If the police have a suspect in custody, go back to the witnesses and ask new questions and they get more information, the police don't come away thinking "Well... they changed their story we can't trust them at trial..."
        Witnesses remember all sorts of details that appear unimportant when first questioned, which is probably why the detectives and the coroner didn't get shirty and consider Richardsons new information as "Changing his story" or being in "direct comflict" with what he had told Chandler before.
        Because the Material Point remained, however hard people may want to disparage it... he didn't waver from the opinion that he WOULD have seen a body had there been one there.

        IF he had been "changing his story" like Philips later did over Time of Death, then I imagine Baxter would have had more to say on the matter. The only witness the coroner seemed to have any issue with was Philips to the point of threatening him with a second opinion if he didn't present the evidence he was being told to! That whole business about who gets to decide what evidence is put before the coroners inquest... now THAT is what I would consider "direct conflict" in the inquest.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

          I am not dismissing Richardson the coroner's court testimony suggests that his testimony is unsafe to totally rely on because of the direct conflict with Chandler and what was said at the crime scene. How you explain the reasons for the conflict is nothing more than wild speculation on your part, but there was a serious failure by the coroner to not identify this conflict and to try to expand on the testimony of both parties to resolve this issue because make no mistake if Chandler is correct as to what Richardson told him then he clearly could not have seen the body.

          And we should not assume that the sound Cadosh said he heard came from No 29

          Yes we should. It’s what he said. He was certain of it. To dismiss it we would require contrary evidence……and Phillips ToD doesn’t count.

          www.trevormarriott.co.uk
          It’s an exaggeration to call it a conflict though. All that Chandler said was that Richardson didn’t mention the boot repair at the time. He didn’t say that Richardson didn’t mention sitting on the step. If Richardson had testified after Chandler and had had said “I did tell him about the boot repair” then that would have been a conflict. There was no conflict for the Coroner to identify.

          Then we get Richardson expanding and mentioning the boot repair to a newspaper reporter on the 10th (well before he testified at the inquest so he wasn’t bowing to police pressure)
          Last edited by Herlock Sholmes; 10-01-2023, 02:11 PM.
          Regards

          Sir Herlock Sholmes.

          “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

          Comment


          • Originally posted by A P Tomlinson View Post

            But it's not "Direct Conflict" that's just sexing it up to make it sound more than it is. Neither contradicted the other. The material point of both statements made by Richardson are to the effect that he WOULD have seen a body had one been there. He didn't.

            If WB: "Did he say anything about cutting his boot?" JC: "No". WB: "Did he say that he was sure the woman was not there at that time?" JC: "Yes" puts Richardson and Chandler in direct conflict, then you and I have had very different experiences of conflict.

            Witnesses add information to their initial statement all the time. It's what the Police hope for when they go back and re-interview them.
            If the police have a suspect in custody, go back to the witnesses and ask new questions and they get more information, the police don't come away thinking "Well... they changed their story we can't trust them at trial..."
            Witnesses remember all sorts of details that appear unimportant when first questioned, which is probably why the detectives and the coroner didn't get shirty and consider Richardsons new information as "Changing his story" or being in "direct comflict" with what he had told Chandler before.
            Because the Material Point remained, however hard people may want to disparage it... he didn't waver from the opinion that he WOULD have seen a body had there been one there.

            IF he had been "changing his story" like Philips later did over Time of Death, then I imagine Baxter would have had more to say on the matter. The only witness the coroner seemed to have any issue with was Philips to the point of threatening him with a second opinion if he didn't present the evidence he was being told to! That whole business about who gets to decide what evidence is put before the coroners inquest... now THAT is what I would consider "direct conflict" in the inquest.
            Exactly AP. There’s much exaggeration going on. When Chandler spoke to him on the morning of the murder all that he wanted to know was whether the body was there. If Richardson had just said that he’d sat on the step then than that’s all that was required. The reason for him sitting there (to try and repair his boot) came out after being further pressed on the point. There’s no mystery about this.

            Plus it would have been a completely useless, potentially self-incriminating lie. Why is the unbelievable being used to override the perfectly believable and normal?
            Regards

            Sir Herlock Sholmes.

            “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

            Comment


            • Originally posted by A P Tomlinson View Post

              But it's not "Direct Conflict" that's just sexing it up to make it sound more than it is. Neither contradicted the other. The material point of both statements made by Richardson are to the effect that he WOULD have seen a body had one been there. He didn't.

              If WB: "Did he say anything about cutting his boot?" JC: "No". WB: "Did he say that he was sure the woman was not there at that time?" JC: "Yes" puts Richardson and Chandler in direct conflict, then you and I have had very different experiences of conflict.

              Witnesses add information to their initial statement all the time. It's what the Police hope for when they go back and re-interview them.
              If the police have a suspect in custody, go back to the witnesses and ask new questions and they get more information, the police don't come away thinking "Well... they changed their story we can't trust them at trial..."
              Witnesses remember all sorts of details that appear unimportant when first questioned, which is probably why the detectives and the coroner didn't get shirty and consider Richardsons new information as "Changing his story" or being in "direct comflict" with what he had told Chandler before.
              Because the Material Point remained, however hard people may want to disparage it... he didn't waver from the opinion that he WOULD have seen a body had there been one there.

              IF he had been "changing his story" like Philips later did over Time of Death, then I imagine Baxter would have had more to say on the matter. The only witness the coroner seemed to have any issue with was Philips to the point of threatening him with a second opinion if he didn't present the evidence he was being told to! That whole business about who gets to decide what evidence is put before the coroners inquest... now THAT is what I would consider "direct conflict" in the inquest.
              Well, your interpretation of conflict is cleary different to mine.

              Chandler stated one thing in his testimony, Richardson stated something different conflicting testimony under oath about a recent event.

              Richardson was never challenged about the change in his story. If Chandler is correct about what Richardson told him then Richardson could not have seen the body.

              www.trevormarriott.co,uk

              Comment


              • Originally posted by A P Tomlinson View Post

                So you believe that Richardson would have seen a body had it been there when he went to check the padlock, like he told Chandler?
                Hi APT,

                Sorry, I may have express that view poorly. I believe that he went to the back door and looked down to the cellar, to see if all was right, and then went away to his work, as he told Chandler, and that he didn't mention the boot cutting to Chandler, or to the two press reporters on the day. I believe that had he done what he told Chandler he would not have seen the body. I can't see that he would have even contemplated that he could have succeeded in cutting leather from the inside toe of a lace-up boot sitting on a step in the dark using a rusty blunt knife with a broken blade and no handle. To again quote Vanderlinden: He does certainly seem to go from one story of very little import to another where he becomes "the crucial witness."

                Cheers, George
                They are not long, the days of wine and roses:
                Out of a misty dream
                Our path emerges for a while, then closes
                Within a dream.
                Ernest Dowson - Vitae Summa Brevis​

                ​Disagreeing doesn't have to be disagreeable - Jeff Hamm

                Comment


                • Originally posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

                  Well, your interpretation of conflict is cleary different to mine.

                  Chandler stated one thing in his testimony, Richardson stated something different conflicting testimony under oath about a recent event.

                  Richardson was never challenged about the change in his story. If Chandler is correct about what Richardson told him then Richardson could not have seen the body.

                  www.trevormarriott.co,uk
                  "Could not"? Not sure how you come to that degree of certainty. The Detective who was in the back yard and saw the scene had no issue with his claim from the first time he said he would have seen the body had it been there.
                  I imagine Chandlers understanding of the geography of the crime scene was pretty good. (I've missed a few memos... at this point I have no idea if Chandler is one of the coppers we are supposed to trust or ignore... or possibly consider a suspect.) It's not like it would take much effort to verify, either way.
                  He stands at the top of the stair... and looks. He can either see the body, or thinks "Hold on, he would have to have come all the way into the yard to see this..."
                  It's just that that yard isn't big. The door isn't that wide, and while the very top of the body may have been obscured by the corner of the door, the parts that had been discarded over her Right shoulder would have almost been at the foot of the step. And the lower part of the body would be visible.

                  (If only James Mason's production crew had done a better job of research, and told him the ACTUAL location of the body, we might have had a much clearer, colour, view of it from the 1967 film... instead of the weird view of a dog's nose from the cellar. I've only seen the one minute clip, if anyone has seen the rest and can say whether it gives any more views I'd love to know.)

                  I'm still waiting for someone to give me a more credible reason for him conspiring to pervert the course of justice than "five minutes of fame".
                  IF he's lying about his capacity to see a body, then if anyone at all is able to put the body there before him... he's doing time. I don't reckon he's winning many pub quizzes at the best of times, but if he then compunds that lie by not merely emphasising his capacity to have seen a body had one been there, but putting HIMSELF there potentially with a body someone else saw... with a bloody KNIFE (you know what I mean...)... he's outright dumber than a post and I would doubt his ability to tie his boot laces.

                  And there's neither evidence nor a serious motive for him to have done so. His name is in the paper, it's going to be in the paper again... he can dine out on the story for years. It makes no sense to lie unless he has a better reason than attention seeking.

                  I could probably buy it being a lie if it had gone the other way. If he'd made a big thing about going into the yard and sitting down for a few minutes with his unbooted foot, inches from potential viscera, and not seeing it. Then deciding he HADN'T done that when it came to delivering his inquest testimony, and it was just a quick lean out of the doorway... glance at the lock and back in. Basically covering his ass like Philips did with the ToD...
                  That would be more suspicious. But doubling down on a lie at the inquest when he has no idea who is up next and what THEY might have to say?
                  I don't buy it. It makes no sense.

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by GBinOz View Post

                    Hi APT,

                    Sorry, I may have express that view poorly. I believe that he went to the back door and looked down to the cellar, to see if all was right, and then went away to his work, as he told Chandler, and that he didn't mention the boot cutting to Chandler, or to the two press reporters on the day. I believe that had he done what he told Chandler he would not have seen the body. I can't see that he would have even contemplated that he could have succeeded in cutting leather from the inside toe of a lace-up boot sitting on a step in the dark using a rusty blunt knife with a broken blade and no handle. To again quote Vanderlinden: He does certainly seem to go from one story of very little import to another where he becomes "the crucial witness."

                    Cheers, George
                    Cheers George.
                    I think he comes over as more of a bit of a pudding than a crucial witness. I just went through my reasoning in reply to Trevor, and its just such a needless pointless really really dangerous lie in the first place. If he COUDN'T really tell whether there was a body there to BS that he would definitely have seen it, and for him to double down at the inquest for the attention it might garner. Its just a bit implausible in my opinion. It needs a better motive for him to tell such a dangerous lie.
                    Last edited by A P Tomlinson; 10-01-2023, 03:22 PM. Reason: To convert a badly punctuated stream of consciousness into a more coherent statement...

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Indian Harry View Post

                      I can appreciate your suggestion of two killers. It ties in with what is reported by Schwartz at the site of the Stride killing. For instance could pipeman and Long's witness be the same person?
                      The one thing that I would suggest goes against Pipeman being the accomplice, was his alleged height at around 5ft 11"

                      Based on witness accounts I would suggest that IF there were 2 killers, then neither would have been that tall.

                      The double killer idea is interesting though because we see this probability with...

                      Tabram
                      Stride
                      MJK

                      But imagine IF there were also 2 killers for Chapman, Eddowes and Nichols?


                      There's no evidence of that though and so it's all just conjecture.


                      RD
                      "Great minds, don't think alike"

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by FISHY1118 View Post

                        No Herlock, again your theory relies on the door to be recessed ,so show evidence this is the case . Not maybe or could haves ,or probablies . This is the 3rd time I've had to ask for for your evidence that proves the door was in fact recessed .
                        I don’t know how I forgot to make this point, but i did. I’ll try to make this as clear as possible.

                        If the cellar door was recessed (and yes, I can’t prove it but the photos suggest at least the possibility) it would have made it more difficult (if not impossible) for Richardson to have seen it from a normal standing position on the top step. But, this difficulty would also apply if the door to the house was itself recessed.

                        Now look at the photograph in post #2 of this thread by Wick. The back door is very clearly recessed. Not by much of course, maybe a couple of inches. So anyone standing with their feet entirely on the top step would have their eye-level a couple of inches back fro the level of the wall. Add the recess in the door and we have the persons face 3 or 4 inches back from the level of the back wall.

                        So without considering the canopy and without considering the cellar door being recessed we’re still faced with Richardson having to stand with his feet over the edge of the step and leaning out to some extent- just to avoid taking two steps down into the yard. How lazy was this guy?

                        Now add the canopy. Even if it went to the bottom of the window or slightly higher this would have meant Richardson having to stand with his feet over the edge of the steps and bending virtually double (consider how close the edge of the canopy had to have been to the door) probably having to hold onto the doorframe to keep his balance to see under the canopy! All to avoid taking a mere 2 steps into the yard! How can this be a realistic proposition? And why would we want to try and promote this unlikelihood when we don’t have a single piece of evidence to back it up. All that’s being used is ‘well Phillips was probably right therefore Richardson must have been wrong in some way.’

                        I’d say it’s a case of reading between the lines but ignoring the actual lines themselves. Even Chandler didn’t say that Richardson had said that he’d stood on the step. So where does the suggestion come from? It comes from nowhere. Richardson said that he sat on the step. He said this in a newspaper on the 10th and he repeated it at the inquest on the 12th. The whole ‘stood on the step’ thing is an invention to try and denigrate Richardson.

                        A final point….

                        Witnesses can be recalled if important further testimony/evidence is requested or is important. Witnesses were recalled at this inquest of course. So….

                        If Richardson lied at the inquest why didn’t Chandler ask to take the stand again? I’m sure that Baxter would have been very interested to have a lying witness exposed. Clearly Chandler heard Richardson’s testimony and saw no issues.
                        Regards

                        Sir Herlock Sholmes.

                        “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Trevor Marriott View Post

                          Well, your interpretation of conflict is cleary different to mine.

                          Chandler stated one thing in his testimony, Richardson stated something different conflicting testimony under oath about a recent event.

                          Richardson was never challenged about the change in his story. If Chandler is correct about what Richardson told him then Richardson could not have seen the body.

                          www.trevormarriott.co,uk
                          No he didn’t. Read it properly Trevor. All that Chandler claimed is that Richardson didn’t mention the reason for his sitting on the step at the time. Not that he hadn’t mentioned sitting on the step. You are assuming something sinister with no evidence.

                          If Richardson had been asked if he hadn’t mentioned the boot repair to Chandler he might have said “I had no reason to, the Inspector never asked me why I sat on the step. He only wanted to know where I was and if I could have missed seeing a body.”
                          Regards

                          Sir Herlock Sholmes.

                          “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by A P Tomlinson View Post

                            "Could not"? Not sure how you come to that degree of certainty. The Detective who was in the back yard and saw the scene had no issue with his claim from the first time he said he would have seen the body had it been there.
                            I imagine Chandlers understanding of the geography of the crime scene was pretty good. (I've missed a few memos... at this point I have no idea if Chandler is one of the coppers we are supposed to trust or ignore... or possibly consider a suspect.) It's not like it would take much effort to verify, either way.
                            He stands at the top of the stair... and looks. He can either see the body, or thinks "Hold on, he would have to have come all the way into the yard to see this..."
                            It's just that that yard isn't big. The door isn't that wide, and while the very top of the body may have been obscured by the corner of the door, the parts that had been discarded over her Right shoulder would have almost been at the foot of the step. And the lower part of the body would be visible.

                            (If only James Mason's production crew had done a better job of research, and told him the ACTUAL location of the body, we might have had a much clearer, colour, view of it from the 1967 film... instead of the weird view of a dog's nose from the cellar. I've only seen the one minute clip, if anyone has seen the rest and can say whether it gives any more views I'd love to know.)

                            I'm still waiting for someone to give me a more credible reason for him conspiring to pervert the course of justice than "five minutes of fame".
                            IF he's lying about his capacity to see a body, then if anyone at all is able to put the body there before him... he's doing time. I don't reckon he's winning many pub quizzes at the best of times, but if he then compunds that lie by not merely emphasising his capacity to have seen a body had one been there, but putting HIMSELF there potentially with a body someone else saw... with a bloody KNIFE (you know what I mean...)... he's outright dumber than a post and I would doubt his ability to tie his boot laces.

                            And there's neither evidence nor a serious motive for him to have done so. His name is in the paper, it's going to be in the paper again... he can dine out on the story for years. It makes no sense to lie unless he has a better reason than attention seeking.

                            I could probably buy it being a lie if it had gone the other way. If he'd made a big thing about going into the yard and sitting down for a few minutes with his unbooted foot, inches from potential viscera, and not seeing it. Then deciding he HADN'T done that when it came to delivering his inquest testimony, and it was just a quick lean out of the doorway... glance at the lock and back in. Basically covering his ass like Philips did with the ToD...
                            That would be more suspicious. But doubling down on a lie at the inquest when he has no idea who is up next and what THEY might have to say?
                            I don't buy it. It makes no sense.
                            It doesn’t make an ounce of sense AP. Only if you begin from a position of ‘Richardson must have lied in some way so….’

                            Another point worth making (I think) is that murderers do get caught…..some even confess. What if they caught the killer the next day and he said “ok, it was me. I killed her at around 2.45.” Richardson is instantly exposed as a liar. Probably in the Press too. Not the kind of ‘15 minutes of fame’ that anyone would have been keen on.

                            That James Mason clip is all there is btw. The documentary is good though if you haven’t seen it?
                            Regards

                            Sir Herlock Sholmes.

                            “A house of delusions is cheap to build but draughty to live in.”

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by Herlock Sholmes View Post

                              It doesn’t make an ounce of sense AP. Only if you begin from a position of ‘Richardson must have lied in some way so….’

                              Another point worth making (I think) is that murderers do get caught…..some even confess. What if they caught the killer the next day and he said “ok, it was me. I killed her at around 2.45.” Richardson is instantly exposed as a liar. Probably in the Press too. Not the kind of ‘15 minutes of fame’ that anyone would have been keen on.

                              That James Mason clip is all there is btw. The documentary is good though if you haven’t seen it?
                              No I've found it on Amazon though, so I'll give it a look this week.
                              James Mason and a Historical Documentary... I'm in the middle of that Venn diagram!

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by A P Tomlinson View Post


                                I don't reckon he's winning many pub quizzes at the best of times, but if he then compunds that lie by not merely emphasising his capacity to have seen a body had one been there, but putting HIMSELF there potentially with a body someone else saw... with a bloody KNIFE (you know what I mean...)... he's outright dumber than a post and I would doubt his ability to tie his boot laces.

                                I think it's possible that Richardson felt compelled to put himself sitting on the step after the spring from his legging was found in the yard. Working on his boot provides a nice tidy explanation for this while also strengthening his claim that he couldn't possibly have missed the body had it been there.

                                Incidentally the Saturday 15th edition of the East London Observer describes John Richardson's appearance.

                                John Richardson, a tall, stout man, with a very pale face - the result, doubtless, of the early hours he keeps as a market Porter - a brown moustache, and dark brown hair. He was shabbily dressed in a ragged coat, and dark brown trousers.

                                From what I recall this appearance tallies well with some of the witness statements except maybe the height.


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