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  • moste
    replied
    Originally posted by Sherlock Houses View Post

    But Acott didn't give the court Michael Clark's full description. Not only did he avoid mentioning Clark's pale complexion, long round face and square chin he also was careful to omit his most important and significant feature, Michael Clark's 'dark eyes' which he had perceptively underlined in his notebook.

    For the record Michael Clark sadly passed away in a Southgate care home on April 27th 2018. Apparently he had told the carers that he had no family but had not spoken with them at all about his life.
    Hi Sherlock, I too would like to know the origins of the full identification of Mr. Clark. That, plus the handling of the line of questioning presented by Sherrard ‘Is Mr. Clark available now? , and after Acotts answer, Well ,he was a while ago but not sure about right now.
    or words to that effect. Then the attitude taken of the defence ,’oh well anyway, moving on . Smacks of someone going through the motions.Any clear thinking ,reasonable person has to see there is something seriously wrong here .

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  • OneRound
    replied
    Originally posted by Sherlock Houses View Post

    But Acott didn't give the court Michael Clark's full description. Not only did he avoid mentioning Clark's pale complexion, long round face and square chin he also was careful to omit his most important and significant feature, Michael Clark's 'dark eyes' which he had perceptively underlined in his notebook.

    For the record Michael Clark sadly passed away in a Southgate care home on April 27th 2018. Apparently he had told the carers that he had no family but had not spoken with them at all about his life.
    Hi Sherlock and all - apologies if I've been asleep behind the wheel on the A6 but I didn't know that. Where does this info come from please?

    Thanks,
    OneRound

    Leave a comment:


  • Sherlock Houses
    replied
    Originally posted by moste View Post
    .

    Sherrard: Would you tell me whether he was ,as Dr. Rennie has told us, a fair- haired man?

    Acott : No, he was not.I have his full description.I have had this man physically examined I can tell you this from my own knowledge:

    5 feet nine inches tall, dark short cropped hair,about 27 years of age, and heavily built
    But Acott didn't give the court Michael Clark's full description. Not only did he avoid mentioning Clark's pale complexion, long round face and square chin he also was careful to omit his most important and significant feature, Michael Clark's 'dark eyes' which he had perceptively underlined in his notebook.

    For the record Michael Clark sadly passed away in a Southgate care home on April 27th 2018. Apparently he had told the carers that he had no family but had not spoken with them at all about his life.

    Leave a comment:


  • NickB
    replied
    Originally posted by moste View Post
    I did locate his closest surviving relative, an aunt living on the Welsh borders. She recollected his hair as being of a general mousey colour, which appears to corroborate Dr. Rennies description and not Acotts.
    A more pertinent difference between the two descriptions of Clark was that Rennie said he had 'blueish eyes'. So the first question I would have expected Woffinden to ask was about the eye colour.

    Leave a comment:


  • moste
    replied
    Interesting story. My only experience in court was as a witness to a burglary, but yeah ,that’s cool.

    Acott for me is something of a mystery man . He clearly uses a method of evasion,which naturally tends to thwart Sherrards attempts to make progress for his client ( something I think that would not work had a more senior Barrister been locking horns ) and yet ,rather than say ‘I’m sorry I don’t have information on Mr. Clark.’He goes ahead and gives the reasonably accurate description of someone that could hardly have been Hanratty! And the jury made nothing of this.

    Leave a comment:


  • cobalt
    replied
    I was a volunteer in an ID parade when I was sixteen, a minor housebreaking charge. To my alarm it turned out, by ludicrous coincidence, that the offence had taken place in my street. I was nervous in case the neighbours vaguely recognised me and put me in the frame! A local ne’er do well, known to us and with a nasty reputation, was the collared candidate but pretty cocky since I think he was probably innocent this time. There were 6 of us standing in front of numbered police lockers and we had left the middle spot vacant which didn’t seem to bother him one bit. Twice the police asked if he wanted to change position and twice he refused. No witnesses picked anyone out. I have to say it seemed a pretty fair process, especially as we got around 6/- for our troubles.

    But they did take our names, ages and addresses. I suppose now they could take a photo of the line up to show it was a balanced band of teenagers. I rather suspect the term ‘medically examined’ is pompous nonsense. Give the seriousness of the crime I assume Acott wrote down a brief description of the volunteers’ appearance in the event of the ID parade being questioned.


    What I don’t quite understand is any advantage in Acott’s description of Clark. He seems to be describing someone rather like Alphon rather than Hanratty.

    Leave a comment:


  • moste
    replied
    I know some posters have been involved in volunteer ID. Line ups . Could anyone explained Acott having Michael Clark medically examined?
    Also, even Judge Gorman must have seen the importance of Sherrards question . Why did he not instruct Acott to have Clark tracked down.
    Last edited by moste; 11-29-2021, 11:18 PM. Reason: Adding sentence

    Leave a comment:


  • moste
    replied
    Just to make reference to the courtroom action ,re, questioning of Acott by Sherrard. when asked what Michael Clark looked like.

    Acott: I can give a full description of the man picked out on that parade.

    Sherrard: Would you tell me whether he was ,as Dr. Rennie has told us, a fair- haired man?

    Acott : No, he was not.I have his full description.I have had this man physically examined… I can tell you this from my own knowledge:

    5 feet nine inches tall, dark short cropped hair,about 27 years of age, and heavily built

    Sherrard: Is the man available by any chance?

    Acott: He was some time ago, but I cannot say off-hand.

    Above, as per Bob Woffinden ‘The final verdict’ page 247.

    This line of questioning by Sherrard petered out frustratingly inadequate. In fact if Sherrard wasn’t going to take any issue with Acotts final words on the matter , it’s amazing that Hanratty’s solicitor didn’t jump into the fray. In fact ,if Hanratty himself had been a little more intelligent , he would have insisted on continuing the line of enquiry to have Michael Clark produced in court ,as an exhibit.
    This farce has been discussed on these boards before I know, but then reading further on the next page of the book
    ‘Thirty years later ,Clark proved infuriatingly impossible to trace.He left the country in 1965 and emigrated.However,I did locate his closest Surviving relative,an aunt living on the Welsh borders. She recollected his hair as being of a general mousey colour, which appears to corroborate Dr.Rennies description and not Acotts.’




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  • NickB
    replied
    Acott did make a special visit to Valerie after putting out an appeal for Alphon and I think it is reasonable to presume that he said to her what you suggest. However I would think 'once bitten twice shy' would apply to the Hanratty parade and she would be less inclined to accept the same assurance from him again.

    Originally posted by moste View Post
    I guess in this regard we (including Sherrard) would seriously need to see Michael the RAF man photo.
    Colour photos of him must exist and this is one piece of 'new' evidence in this case which I still expect to come to light. Surely any professional investigator would be able to obtain a photo from a relation or the RAF.

    Leave a comment:


  • ansonman
    replied
    Just thinking about the photofits and the ID parades. We know that Acott was certain that in Alphon, he had his man. Is it conceivable that Storie, prior to the ID parade in which Alphon took part, did not ask Acott why he was so certain that he had his man? Is it not highly likely that Acott said to Storie words to the effect that "the man who did this to you and murdered Michael is in the ID parade which you are about to see?" Is it conceivable that Acott advised Storie that all she had to do was have another look at her photofits and pick out the man who most resembled same. We don't know what the RAF guy she did pick out looked like. One would imagine that he didn't look more like the photofit than Alphon but who knows? What we do know is that she chose the wrong man and the case against Alphon collapsed.

    So we now move to the ID parade in which Hanratty took part. Let's assume that Acott has said to Valerie that he got it wrong. Alphon was not the man that did for her. He had an alibi and we all make mistakes. However, this time we definately do have our man. Once again she asks Acott how he can be so sure and once again he tells her why. Only this time, he goes a bit further. He knows only too well that he cannot suffer another ID balls up. Joe Public is getting highly impatient for a conviction and neither Acott nor Valerie can risk getting things wrong for a second time. Would it be surprising if Acott didn't say as much to Storie? So he tells her that one of the men behind the screen is absolutely the murderer and all she has to do is identify him. Would he go so far as to tell her that Hanratty was number 6 in the line? Probably not but let's not forget just how much was resting on the outcome of her identification. Did any of the other men have a cockney accent? My guess is that Acott went as far as he could to spell out to storey who was the guilty man, short of actually pointing to him. We know that Hanratty was the only one in the line wearing flannel trousers and suede shoes.

    If Acott was able to convince Storie that this time the guilty man was without a doubt in the line up, she might have been able to convince herself that whoever sounded most like the murderer was the murderer. After all, she barely saw his face at all on the murder night.

    Leave a comment:


  • cobalt
    replied
    Hi Moste,

    I retain my position that Hanratty was probably not guilty of the A6 crime but I am not sure we can read much into photofits. The so called ‘Bible John’ killings in Glasgow in the late 1960s led to what has become an iconic image in Scottish culture: a photofit created via a witness who was in the company of the killer in a dance hall for at least an hour and shared a taxi with him for a short period. The woman was reportedly very satisfied with the photofit which was later developed by an artist into a colour portrait yet the case remains unsolved. She attended many ID parades, was confident she could pick out the man, but never did. I think she died last year, still unable to help solve her sister’s death.

    The Peter Sutcliffe photofits tell a similar story. Some of the survivors of his attacks helped create what seem to us, in hindsight, very good likenesses; yet these did little to help the inquiry until he was caught by chance. Perhaps police photofits were often the equivalent of fools’ gold.

    Like you I think the most productive avenue for opening up the A6 Case lies not in Rhyl/Liverpool, not in North London but in Taplow where the saga began.

    Leave a comment:


  • moste
    replied
    Originally posted by caz View Post

    Thank you, cobalt, on behalf of Valerie, as she no longer has a voice.

    If Alphon had looked to her like the gunman, as in the photofit she had approved, her motivation for picking him out and getting justice would have been through the roof.

    Love,

    Caz
    X
    I guess in this regard we ( including Sherrard) would seriously need to see Michael the RAF man photo.
    Last edited by moste; 11-26-2021, 09:27 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • moste
    replied
    Originally posted by caz View Post

    Do you think all women are stupid, or just me and Valerie?
    Not at all. Not stupid, perish the thought. Just misguided is all.With just a hint of bias

    Those identikit pictures are far from perfect copies of an actual photo, but they are painstakingly created stage by stage by a trained

    individual ,who , at completion satisfies the witness and him/herself that no further adjustments are required, even down to the eye

    colour where the witness can adjust shading to varying degrees for grey, green, blue, or brown .I said your statement was laughable, only

    because ,anyone having even so much as half a lean towards that identikit picture resembling Alphon, could never in a million years point

    to Hanratty and say ,‘that’s the man’.

    oh , and just for the record , My better half and I , have raised four beautiful daughters each in our opinion more sagacious that their

    respective husbands(shht!) And to go one step further , I have felt for many years ,the world would be a far better place if ran by

    women.

    Well done incidentally in winning Cobalt over with regards to this identikit point.

    I can only think with regards to Valerie Picking out Hanratty , She was somehow influenced unfairly by the overbearing( ‘I knew you’d help

    me settle my score ‘) Acott.

    Never forgetting we were in a period of major police corruption.

    Leave a comment:


  • caz
    replied
    Originally posted by cobalt View Post
    ‘Valerie's picture may have looked like Alphon to others, but what good was it if it didn't look like Alphon to her?’

    I think that’s one of the best points Caz has ever made on this site. Since Valerie Storie was the guiding hand behind the photofit then it is pretty presumptuous of anyone else to tell her who she was actually describing. She was doubtless under pressure at the first ID parade but the police had no motive whatsoever for steering her away from their suspect. For whatever reason, she failed to identify Alphon.
    Thank you, cobalt, on behalf of Valerie, as she no longer has a voice.

    If Alphon had looked to her like the gunman, as in the photofit she had approved, her motivation for picking him out and getting justice would have been through the roof.

    Love,

    Caz
    X

    Leave a comment:


  • caz
    replied
    Originally posted by moste View Post
    Valerie's picture may have looked like Alphon to others, but what good was it if it didn't look like Alphon to her?

    Ha Ha Ha. CaZ. Can you hear yourself?
    Do you think all women are stupid, or just me and Valerie?

    Leave a comment:

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