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Thread: Cinderella Effect - step parent murders

  1. #1 Cinderella Effect - step parent murders 
    Forum Radioactive Isotope skeptic's Avatar
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    I looked this up due to a little background check on a current murder trial here in NZ. The guy had served 12 years for killing his wife and daughter, but there were a few funny inconsistencies in the prosecution story, and it has been ordered to retrial. I have long believed that a biological parent is unlikely to kill his/her son or daughter. Kill a spouse, yes. But not a biological child.

    In my checking, I found the Wiki entry under "Cinderella Effect." It turns out that I seem to be correct. The Wiki entry says that studies show that, on a person for person basis, a step parent is 100 times more likely to murder stepchild than a biological parent is to murder his/her biological child. This makes it less likely that the guy up for trial is guilty, since the girl murdered was his biological daughter.

    The evolutionary reasons for the Cinderalla Effect seem clear. Do you guys think my logic in relation to the murder re-trial has merit?


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    Do you guys think my logic in relation to the murder re-trial has merit?
    Not on this basis.

    Far too many family killings of spouse, parents, all the children, involve purely biological and marital groupings. So, if he killed his wife as well, all bets are off.


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    There is one exception where biological, loving parents, are more likely to murder their children: mercy killing.

    Take the case of Robert Latimer, who ended his 12-year-old daughter Tracy's life by pumping exhaust fumes into the family car. Tracy was born brain damaged with a severe form of cerebral palsy; her frequent seizures literally tearing her own body apart and contorting her growth. She'd had numerous operations to snip unrelaxed muscles and add metal splints... all the more torturous because pain killers would conflict with her anti-seizure medication. So Tracy was in constant pain, and could never express herself except to wail when the pain was unbearable. In his confession Robert Latimer stated that his priority was to "put her out of her pain".

    For the New Zealand case, the prosecution wants to show motive for killing one's biological child. They might find he did it out of misguided compassion, if they review the original evidence from that angle. His motives toward the victims needn't be identical. I can imagine if his priority was to end the child's life, this would be the first murder. Then a (likely) violent fight with the mother explains the second murder. I'm not suggesting this gets him off the hook - on the contrary.
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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    I have long believed that a biological parent is unlikely to kill his/her son or daughter.
    My understanding (and I haven't looked for data to support this) is that all homicides, including children, are far more likely to be carried out by a close relative, including parent, than a stranger. (And a step-parent, as you say, is even more likely.)
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    I don't know the case... can you tell in short what happened? what kind of murder was it?
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    Yes, we hear stories like that all the time, most recently running back Adrian Peterson's son was killed by the mother's boyfriend.
    Suspect in alleged beating death of Adrian Peterson's son reportedly has history of domestic violence | Fox News
    So I think it's a reason to look closer, if there's other reasons to question the verdict.

    Sometimes a parent will kill their own children, but then it's usually a murder-suicide.
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    what I have understood is that mother often kill their own children...
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    This says biological mothers and/or biological fathers cause 65% of child deaths.

    According to a 2009 report from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, that year 27.3 percent of child deaths resulting from abuse were perpetrated by the mother, compared to only 14.8 percent of fathers. Mothers and fathers acting together accounted for 22.5 percent of child deaths. According to these same statistics only 2.3 percent of fatalities were committed by a parent’s male partner.
    source

    Unfortunately, The Bureau of Justice Statistics website is down due to the government shutdown.
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    The murder I am talking about is the Lundy murder. Wife and daughter killed by axe. Bloody and brutal. The husband was away on a business trip at the time, and was staying in a motel 2 hours drive from the murder site. The police determined that the husband's alibi had a 3 hour gap. They claimed he drove at speed, and did the 4 hour journey in less than 3 hours, did the killings, returned to his business and his alibi. I had my doubts. I have also driven that road, and it is busy. To do it in 3 hours or less would be IMHO nearly impossible.

    The other thing that left me dubious was the fact that he supposedly killed his biological daughter. Marriages go on the rocks from time to time, and sometimes that results in a spouse murder. But for a parent to kill a biological child normally requires exceptional circumstances, such as the disabled child previously mentioned, or a parent totally insane. Lundy was very emotional over the whole thing, but apparently quite sane.

    In spite of my doubts, I accepted the verdict at the time, since the prime bit of evidence was a stain on a shirt in Lundy's car, which the prosecution alleged was brain tissue. Now it appears that this evidence was shakey to say the least. Possibly a fiction.

    We often see in the news something about a young kid being seriously harmed or murdered by a stepfather, or by the boyfriend of the child's mother. This is predictable from the Cinderella Effect. However, when a parent is accused of killing his/her own biological child, my bullshit detector goes off.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    The murder I am talking about is the Lundy murder. Wife and daughter killed by axe. Bloody and brutal. The husband was away on a business trip at the time, and was staying in a motel 2 hours drive from the murder site. The police determined that the husband's alibi had a 3 hour gap. They claimed he drove at speed, and did the 4 hour journey in less than 3 hours, did the killings, returned to his business and his alibi. I had my doubts. I have also driven that road, and it is busy. To do it in 3 hours or less would be IMHO nearly impossible.

    The other thing that left me dubious was the fact that he supposedly killed his biological daughter. Marriages go on the rocks from time to time, and sometimes that results in a spouse murder. But for a parent to kill a biological child normally requires exceptional circumstances, such as the disabled child previously mentioned, or a parent totally insane. Lundy was very emotional over the whole thing, but apparently quite sane.

    In spite of my doubts, I accepted the verdict at the time, since the prime bit of evidence was a stain on a shirt in Lundy's car, which the prosecution alleged was brain tissue. Now it appears that this evidence was shakey to say the least. Possibly a fiction.

    We often see in the news something about a young kid being seriously harmed or murdered by a stepfather, or by the boyfriend of the child's mother. This is predictable from the Cinderella Effect. However, when a parent is accused of killing his/her own biological child, my bullshit detector goes off.
    I cant answer because I don't know further nothing about them...
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    There is a reasonably good overview of the Lundy murders at the following link.

    crime.co.nz

    Mark Lundy's conduct at the funeral made some people uncomfortable and has been questioned.

    Mark Lundy - (Possible?) Double Murderer (New Zealand, 2010) - YouTube






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    Scheherazade

    That is quite correct. But I do not judge a person's guilt or innocence on how emotional and weird they get at a funeral.

    I did not ask the question, however, to get an opinion on guilt or innocence. That will be up to the courts. I am interested in the difference between a step parent and a biological parent. My view is that a biological parent is seriously unlikely to murder his/her own child unless insane or there is some other clear cut factor driving such drastic action.

    What do you guys think about the odds for and against biological parents committing murder of own child?
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  14. #13  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    We often see in the news something about a young kid being seriously harmed or murdered by a stepfather, or by the boyfriend of the child's mother. This is predictable from the Cinderella Effect. However, when a parent is accused of killing his/her own biological child, my bullshit detector goes off.
    Likewise. Yet we also know children are most often abused or even killed by people close to them, in a position of care. So my bullshit detector goes off at mention of "stranger danger".

    Well maybe a friend/relative of the wife or child did this. Also possible the accused won't reveal some key information, like if that would expose him for other crimes.
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    Biological parents are quite capable of killing their own children, although the majority of cases involve duress.

    Murder cases in which people kill their spouse and children are relatively rare, but a British study that analyzed incidents of so-called family annihilation over a 30-year period suggests the rate of these unthinkably tragic acts may be increasing, and the perpetrators may have some shared characteristics.

    Researchers at Birmingham City University in the United Kingdom combed through newspaper archives spanning three decades, from 1980 to 2012, and identified 71 cases of family annihilation. Of these incidents, the majority (59 of the 71 cases) were committed by fathers, and 55 percent of these males were in their 30s, said study co-author Elizabeth Yardley, deputy director of the Center for Applied Criminology at Birmingham City University.
    Murderers Who Kill Their Families May Share Some Traits, Study Suggests | LiveScience

    It has been suggested that there was financial duress involved in the Lundy murders.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    We often see in the news something about a young kid being seriously harmed or murdered by a stepfather, or by the boyfriend of the child's mother. This is predictable from the Cinderella Effect.
    My stats source in post #8 says 2.3% of child killings done by parent's male partner.

    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Mark Lundy's conduct at the funeral made some people uncomfortable and has been questioned.
    People say it's the nice ones you must watch out for, and thus, men are suspected one way or another. If he doesn't cry or get upset, he did it. If he slobbers all over the place, he did it. A no-win situation.
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  17. #16  
    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    The murder I am talking about is the Lundy murder. Wife and daughter killed by axe. Bloody and brutal. The husband was away on a business trip at the time, and was staying in a motel 2 hours drive from the murder site. The police determined that the husband's alibi had a 3 hour gap. They claimed he drove at speed, and did the 4 hour journey in less than 3 hours, did the killings, returned to his business and his alibi. I had my doubts. I have also driven that road, and it is busy. To do it in 3 hours or less would be IMHO nearly impossible.

    The other thing that left me dubious was the fact that he supposedly killed his biological daughter. Marriages go on the rocks from time to time, and sometimes that results in a spouse murder. But for a parent to kill a biological child normally requires exceptional circumstances, such as the disabled child previously mentioned, or a parent totally insane. Lundy was very emotional over the whole thing, but apparently quite sane.

    In spite of my doubts, I accepted the verdict at the time, since the prime bit of evidence was a stain on a shirt in Lundy's car, which the prosecution alleged was brain tissue. Now it appears that this evidence was shakey to say the least. Possibly a fiction.

    We often see in the news something about a young kid being seriously harmed or murdered by a stepfather, or by the boyfriend of the child's mother. This is predictable from the Cinderella Effect. However, when a parent is accused of killing his/her own biological child, my bullshit detector goes off.
    Is there a stepparent or lover to the wife to suspect? If there is no stepparent in the family to suspect why question the verdict on the grounds that stepparents are more likely to kill step children?

    Killing with an ax takes quite a bit of insanity, even if temporary. You have to be in a full rage to kill with an ax. Because it is slow and messy. You would be partially bludgeoning your victim as well as cutting them. It is a particularly cruel and vicious way to kill someone. For all we know he was just told the daughter may not be his own, and he lost it. I have known women who lie to their spouses out of spite and tell them the children they have fathered are not their own.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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  18. #17  
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    Conduct at funerals?

    Anyone who remembers the furore over Lindy Chamberlain's demeanour when her baby went missing and during the subsequent trials should pull their woolly heads in on this topic. The doctors bombed her out on tranquilisers when the search for the baby was in course. And her lawyers advised her to show no emotion at all during the trial. And people called for the death penalty for her because "she didn't show motherly feelings" and other such rubbish. She'd done nothing wrong at all.

    I expect I'd want some pharmaceutical assistance to get me through the funerals of my murdered spouse and child. Both if I had and if I hadn't done it myself.
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    For all we know he was just told the daughter may not be his own, and he lost it.
    Maybe. The most common antecedent for spouse murder is that the wife has threatened to leave.

    (Speaking personally I only know two blokes who murdered their wives. One I'd really only met once but he was a relative of people I knew very well so I'd "kept up with" him without ever dealing directly with him. Wife told him she intended to leave. He killed her a couple of days later. The other one I saw quite regularly for a few years and I thought he was already divorced/ widowed. But he went and shot his wife the day after the divorce papers were served.)
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    For all we know he was just told the daughter may not be his own, and he lost it.
    Maybe. The most common antecedent for spouse murder is that the wife has threatened to leave.

    (Speaking personally I only know two blokes who murdered their wives. One I'd really only met once but he was a relative of people I knew very well so I'd "kept up with" him without ever dealing directly with him. Wife told him she intended to leave. He killed her a couple of days later. The other one I saw quite regularly for a few years and I thought he was already divorced/ widowed. But he went and shot his wife the day after the divorce papers were served.)
    My first husband threatened to kill me and our children many times and made an attempt on my life before leaving me for dead with 3 toddlers in the house.

    He promised me on several occasions that if I ever left him that one day he would find us and kill us all. I don't think statistical rarity is enough to disregard any actual evidence they have. Now if the evidence is shoddy or even invented then perhaps they didn't investigate the murder well enough.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    The police case against Lundy included him driving for 1.5 hours at high speed to carry out the deed. Not quite an impulse killing. He would have had plenty of time to think.
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    He would have had plenty of time to think.
    Speaking from personal experience here. That could just as easily read as ... plenty of time to work himself into a frothing rage.

    It all depends on whether you want to talk (or think) yourself down from your anger.
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    If he killed on impulse one expects a series of events that snapped him. Driving 1.5 hours at high speed, for a completely different purpose, could be one of those events.
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  24. #23  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    The police case against Lundy included him driving for 1.5 hours at high speed to carry out the deed. Not quite an impulse killing. He would have had plenty of time to think.
    You still haven't answered whether or not there was even any stepparent available to suspect of the crime.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    No step parent.
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    No step parent.
    Ok... then why would you suspect a stepparent is more likely to have killed them than the guy who was convicted?
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    Sea gypsy

    I have not said that a step parent was involved in the Lundy case. I was merely saying that, IMHO, it seems unlikely that Lundy, being the biological father, would murder his own daughter. Such murders are not common. Killing a wife, yes. That is not uncommon. Killing a biological child - much less common, and usually related to some strangeness such as insanity.

    I have a strong feeling that, at his re-trial, Lundy will be found not guilty. With the 'brain tissue on shirt' evidence discredited, the case becomes very weak. Lundy has spent 12 years in prison for the murder of his wife and daughter. The outcome will be interesting. I sniff a law suit coming up.
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    Killing a biological child - much less common, and usually related to some strangeness such as insanity.
    But they're often related to marriage break ups - usually for some kind of revenge against a wife, though sometimes the wives are murdered (or attempted murder) on the same day/ same incident.

    Trigger Warning - for people who find this sort of thing depressing or alarming.

    A depressing list of fathers killing their own children. By drowning. Couldn't face any other searches.

    Found one where the child didn't die. Dad Throws Baby Off 40-Foot Bridge But Baby Miraculously Survives! | The Stir

    Cindy Gambino seeks to keep Robert Farquharson away from children after death
    Castillo pleads guilty in killings of his 3 children - baltimoresun.com
    Cookies must be enabled. | The Australian

    http://crimeblog.dallasnews.com/2013...nclick_check=1

    Sun Journal - Google News Archive Search
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    Sea gypsy

    I have not said that a step parent was involved in the Lundy case. I was merely saying that, IMHO, it seems unlikely that Lundy, being the biological father, would murder his own daughter. Such murders are not common. Killing a wife, yes. That is not uncommon. Killing a biological child - much less common, and usually related to some strangeness such as insanity.

    I have a strong feeling that, at his re-trial, Lundy will be found not guilty. With the 'brain tissue on shirt' evidence discredited, the case becomes very weak. Lundy has spent 12 years in prison for the murder of his wife and daughter. The outcome will be interesting. I sniff a law suit coming up.
    Ok, I just don't think being uncommon is reason enough to doubt a case. If the brain matter really is discredited and it is the only evidence they had then I can see why reasonable doubt would be there. But I wouldn't base reasonable doubt merely on the commonality of such a crime. Family ax murders aren't that unheard of in the USA. Killing by ax is usually a crime of passion. A crime of passion is usually perpetrated against people whom the killer is very emotionally enthralled with. This can be the killer's spouse, siblings, parents, or even their own children. And if this is a country where guns are banned then an ax would be an easy to access weapon that would give the killer not only the ability to kill but to also express the rage he/she may have been feeling.

    Biological parents, especially fathers, who are control freaks are more likely to kill a daughter if she is perhaps beginning to date or if he was molesting her and she told someone. The wife may have been killed because she tried to protect the daughter. Or perhaps he was intending to kill just the wife and the daughter tried to help her and got in the way. Any number of scenarios can lead to a biological parent killing their own child in a fit of rage, which I think would almost be necessary to follow through with killing with an ax. They take more time, more energy and are graphically gruesome.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    To sea gypsy

    I understand your point, and of course commonality is not sufficient cause to prove or disprove guilt or innocence. However, the police do use commonality often to determine who is their major suspect, and therefore where their efforts are put. When a woman is killed, the husband automatically becomes number one suspect, and he will be strongly investigated.

    To Adelady

    Of course there are cases where a parent kills his/her biological child. According to my Wiki source, this is most common with women who kill toddlers. It appears that the stresses of early motherhood are sometimes sufficient. Fathers killing their children is less common.

    However, my suggestion is that fathers killing their biological children is rare enough to cast doubt, though not proof, against the man's guilt.
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    I find it very interesting that Lundy's sister is convinced of his innocence while the brother is equally certain that Lundy committed the crimes.

    More than a decade on, Lundy's sister, Caryl, has remained loyal, traveling all the way to London for the Privy Council hearing in June.

    "He's my brother and I love him," she says.


    But Christine's brother, Glenn Weggery, who found the bodies 13 years ago, remains angry that Lundy continues to deny killing his sister and niece.

    "We're all pretty upset," he says. "We're trying to move on, let Christine and Amber rest in peace."
    Read more: Lundy appeal decision due tonight - Story - NZ News - 3 News

    No solidarity even among blood relatives.

    I do agree with the premise of this thread that biological fathers are less often the killers of their own children, although I posted a study earlier in the thread that seems to show an increase in men killing their biological offspring. Given the increase in societal stress factors and the decline in the nuclear family, this seems quite logical and possible to me.

    Fascinating. It will be very interesting to see which way this goes.

    Was the insurance money ever awarded? If so, to whom?
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    So from that article they are insinuating that they aren't certain that the blood or brain tissue belonged to his wife. If they don't belong to her, who then? And who walks around with human brain tissue and blood on their shirt if they did not just kill someone?
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    So from that article they are insinuating that they aren't certain that the blood or brain tissue belonged to his wife. If they don't belong to her, who then? And who walks around with human brain tissue and blood on their shirt if they did not just kill someone?
    The challenge is that the material on the shirt was in too poor a condition to analyze.

    Led by expat Kiwi lawyer David Hislop, QC, the appeal was based on doubts about material said to be brain tissue found on Lundy’s shirt that linked him to the crime scene.

    Hislop produced expert evidence saying the specks of human tissue were in too poor a condition to be properly analysed.
    Crown expert Rodney Miller, from Texas, used a technique called immunohistochemistry, or IHC, which he had previously tested on a chicken, to identify the tissue.
    One significant revelation at the appeal was a report obtained by police before the 2002 trial, from Dr Heng Teoh, in which he said the material had degenerated so much that Lundy should not be convicted on the strength of tissue evidence alone. The report was never given to Lundy’s trial lawyers and was only handed to Hislop shortly before the Privy Council hearing.
    There is also debate about the accuracy of how the time of death was arrived at and lights seen in the home at a later time of night that were not on when the bodies were found.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crim...ctions-quashed

    Husbands apparently are always among the chief 'suspects' when a spouse or child is murdered. It seems a societal thing that they are guilty until proven innocent.
    Last edited by scheherazade; October 16th, 2013 at 08:24 AM.
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  34. #33  
    has lost interest seagypsy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scheherazade View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by seagypsy View Post
    So from that article they are insinuating that they aren't certain that the blood or brain tissue belonged to his wife. If they don't belong to her, who then? And who walks around with human brain tissue and blood on their shirt if they did not just kill someone?
    The challenge is that the material on the shirt was in too poor a condition to analyze.

    Led by expat Kiwi lawyer David Hislop, QC, the appeal was based on doubts about material said to be brain tissue found on Lundy’s shirt that linked him to the crime scene.

    Hislop produced expert evidence saying the specks of human tissue were in too poor a condition to be properly analysed.
    Crown expert Rodney Miller, from Texas, used a technique called immunohistochemistry, or IHC, which he had previously tested on a chicken, to identify the tissue.
    One significant revelation at the appeal was a report obtained by police before the 2002 trial, from Dr Heng Teoh, in which he said the material had degenerated so much that Lundy should not be convicted on the strength of tissue evidence alone. The report was never given to Lundy’s trial lawyers and was only handed to Hislop shortly before the Privy Council hearing.
    There is also debate about the accuracy of how the time of death was arrived at and lights seen in the home at a later time of night that were not on when the bodies were found.

    Lundy appeal decision due tonight - Story - NZ News - 3 News

    Husbands apparently are always among the chief 'suspects' when a spouse or child is murdered. It seems a societal thing that they are guilty until proven innocent.
    Where did you get that quote from? The link you are posting says this:

    But there's one tiny piece of evidence that his appeal hinges on – the shirt he wore in Wellington, which has blood and brain tissue on it from Christine.

    American tissue pathologist Dr Rodney Miller testified it was 450 billion times more likely to belong to Christine than anyone else. But inside the Privy Council, David Hislop QC said Dr Miller didn't have the skills to analyse the tissue

    Read more: Lundy appeal decision due tonight - Story - NZ News - 3 News
    No hint that it's not brain tissue or blood, just insinuation that they don't know who it belongs to.

    I'm also curious about the dating of these articles. They are dated Oct 7, 2013. It is currently Oct 16th. So if the verdict was due the evening of the 7th why do we still not know the answer to the question?

    Edit:
    Ok sorry, playing catch up here. Found a more recent article stating that the appeal was granted.
    http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/priv...ctions-5601308
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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  35. #34  
    Northern Horse Whisperer scheherazade's Avatar
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    @seagypsy

    I have edited the link in my post. Sometimes the click and capture does not 'take' and the previous item I have on the clipboard gets posted. Usually I double check my links but sometimes I get in a hurry. Thank you for pointing out that detail.

    I find some of the articles provide different details than others, in response to your question about dates.
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  36. #35  
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    The appeal to the supreme court resulted in a requirement for a re-trial. That re-trial is yet to come. The reason the supreme court tossed out the earlier verdict is because the so-called brain tissue on the shirt was in doubt. Hopefully, this will be settled in the new trial.

    Certainly, if that shirt had the victims brain tissue spattered on it, the case is solid. But, that seems to be in doubt. We shall see.
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    No one has mentioned that the authorities in general have a huge professional stake in obtaining convictions, and individuals in authoritative positions have a huge personal stake in it too. Authorities could have planted the "blood and brain tissue" on the shirt.

    I investigated a similar case where an alleged drop of blood was supposedly found on one of the suspect's sneakers, which was next to impossible that it came from the crime because the events that transpired were virtually bloodless. The decedent suffered a few abrasions that did not bleed. There was absolutely no other blood found at the crime scene, so one must suppose that one drop of blood fell and that it supposedly landed on the suspect's sneaker. The report didn't say which sneaker had it (right or left) or where on the sneaker it was supposedly found. The was no photograph of the blood on the sneaker before testing. It was all very sleazy, but it made for great media fodder "Blood found on suspect's clothing!". The amount supposedly was only enough to test (a destructive test, of course) whether or not it was blood, and it supposedly tested as blood. How convenient. This left open the question of whose blood it was (including an official's blood) or even if it was human blood at all.

    Authorities and as we now know in Massachusetts, this includes state crime lab personnel have a huge professional and personal stake in obtaining convictions. And they can lie, lie, lie, lie just like any other person can lie. Don't think that lying by authorities only happens in only the high-profile cases. It happens all the time, and the general public is completely gullible to it.
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    Certainly, if that shirt had the victims brain tissue spattered on it, the case is solid. But, that seems to be in doubt. We shall see.
    I'd look sideways at anyone with any brain tissue on their clothes.

    Unless they're a surgeon, abattoir worker, butcher, chef or a pathologist ... still wearing their working gear. Brain tissue on an ordinary shirt? Explanation most definitely needed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by adelady View Post
    Certainly, if that shirt had the victims brain tissue spattered on it, the case is solid. But, that seems to be in doubt. We shall see.
    I'd look sideways at anyone with any brain tissue on their clothes.

    Unless they're a surgeon, abattoir worker, butcher, chef or a pathologist ... still wearing their working gear. Brain tissue on an ordinary shirt? Explanation most definitely needed.
    I think what they were leaning towards is that the type of test used to determine what the matter was on the shirt was not a reliable test to even determine that it was brain tissue at all. I could be misunderstanding it, but if that is what the discrepancy is then i can understand why a retrial would be called.

    However, if they have no doubt that it was human brain tissue then I am in the same boat with you.
    Speaking badly about people after they are gone and jumping on the bash the band wagon must do very well for a low self-esteem.
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    Sea gypsy got it.
    There is doubt the stain was any kind of human tissue.
    However, this will, no doubt, be covered at the re-trial.
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    I have just watched a TV doco on this case, presented from the point of view of those wanting Lundy to be found not guilty. This, of course, may be biased, but is probably worth mentioning anyway.

    Mark Lundy, who was on a business trip, staying several nights away from home in a motel, was suposed to have got into his car, driven at speed, killed his wife and daughter, and returned to his motel, also at speed. The times involved were critical to the prosecution.

    Lundy took two cell phone calls, which were nailed down as passing through a local cell phone tower at a point two hours from where the murders happened. One cell phone before the supposed time of murder, and one after. The intervening period was less than 3 hours, and any normal driver would take at least 4 hours to do that trip, much less commit a murder half way through. I have driven that route myself, many times, and never in less than 2 hours each way. Usually longer. I am not a slow driver.

    The time of murder was 'nailed' by a pathologist, at 7 pm, based on the state of stomach contents of the victim. The problem with that is that other, and more senior pathologists have said clearly that stomach contents is not a reliable method. So the real time of the murder is not actually established.

    The wife was naked in bed, and the daughter was in her own bed. The wife was a devotee of a local soap opera and would not have gone to bed so early, nor would have put the daughter to bed so early. The police theory was that Lundy phoned his wife to tell her to be ready for him to have sex. However, the obvious better explanation is that she was murdered at an hour much later than 7 pm, and she and her daughter had retired for the night.

    A complication is that the Lundy home computer was switched off and recorded the time of being switched off as after 11 pm. The police claimed that Lundy tampered with the time setting.

    Lastly, the brain tissue on the shirt. The analysis was not done till months after the murder, and an independent expert checked the microscope slide that identified the stain as brain tissue. This expert said that the tissue had degenerated to the point where it was not identifiable. The police used an 'expert' in Texas who used a method of identification that had not been used before then for forensic purposes, and according to experts now has still not been shown empirically to be reliable.
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    The question of a parent murdering their biological child immediately brought to mind the case of Judy Buenoano. For details see Judy Buenoano - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

    Buenoano was sentenced to death and executed for murdering her husband James Goodyear, she also was convicted of killing her son Michael Goodyear. The motive in both cases was payment from life insurance policies. She was also implicated in several other murders or attempted murders but once she was sentenced to death the state did not pursue further prosecutions.

    The case was a media sensation in Florida at the time, I well remember the numerous stories about "The Black Widow", as the press dubbed Buenoano.

    Judy took her son Michael, a paraplegic who could barely walk with crutches and leg braces, out canoeing. The canoe overturned and he drowned. At trial a jury ruled Judy had deliberately arranged his drowning.

    I don't know how to explain Buenoano except to say some people are monsters walking around in human skin.
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  43. #42  
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    Quote Originally Posted by skeptic View Post
    Sea gypsy

    I have not said that a step parent was involved in the Lundy case. I was merely saying that, IMHO, it seems unlikely that Lundy, being the biological father, would murder his own daughter. Such murders are not common. Killing a wife, yes. That is not uncommon. Killing a biological child - much less common, and usually related to some strangeness such as insanity.

    I have a strong feeling that, at his re-trial, Lundy will be found not guilty. With the 'brain tissue on shirt' evidence discredited, the case becomes very weak. Lundy has spent 12 years in prison for the murder of his wife and daughter. The outcome will be interesting. I sniff a law suit coming up.
    People kill their own children using a variety of ways all the time

    There was the case in Victoria (Australia) where a guy drove into a dam and killed his 3 young children and tried to pretend it was an accident.

    Or the case in Sydney (again, Australia) where a woman murdered her daughter, stuffed her in a suitcase, set it on fire and then she and her boyfriend buried it and tried to pretend someone kidnapped the girl. After a year of searching for the little girl, the police arrested the pair and she admitted to doing it.

    Or the numerous cases of parents (both biological) starving and abusing their kids to death or even simply just planning the murder's of their kids.

    I think blaming it on a form of insanity, because we can't understand how someone could do that to their own children, is a cop out for the people who commit such crimes. There are some awful people in this world and sadly, they have children and they don't care about them enough to want to kill them.
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