The David Bain case

June 4th, 2009 at 5:45 pm by David Farrar

Okay the trial is over, and the jury has retired. I’ve checked and the jury is sequestered until they reach a verdict which means opinions here should be unable to sway the jurors.

I decided when the trial started to note down all the improbable things you have to believe for David to have done it, and for Robin to have done it. And while it is not a matter of who is guilty on the balance of probabilities, looking at such things can help determine if doubt is reasonable.

So what do you have to beleive, to think Robin was the killer. This list is not comprehensive, and is even a bit repetitive. But here goes:

  1. It was a lucky guess when told 111 ambulance officer they are all dead, despite later saying he only saw two bodies
  2. Again a lucky guess hen DB told police officer they are all dead
  3. The 25 minute gap between DB finding his family dead and calling 111 is in no way connected with trying to wash clothes and removed blood.
  4. The bruise on David’s head and scratches on his chest and graze on his knee – none of which he could explain, were just a coincidence
  5. The lens from his glasses found in Stephen’s room happened weeks ago and he never noticed OR someone else had borrowed the glasses
  6. The lack of fresh injuries on Robin despite the massive struggle with Stephen is just the product of healthy living
  7. David’s finger prints on gun are from a previous time
  8. David telling a friend he had premonition something bad was going to happen was a genuine psychic experience
  9. Stephen’s blood on David’s clothing was nothing to do with the struggle – OR someone else borrowed his clothes
  10. Robin managed to execute his family on a full bladder
  11. The lock and key to the rifle being found in David’s room is not relevant as they were obviously placed there
  12. Robin decided to wash David’s green jersey to remove blood and the fibres from jersey found under Steven’s finger nails
  13. David’s bloody palm print on the washing machine was from him checking the bodies
  14. The Ambulance officer was wrong when he said in his opinion Bain was pretending to have a fit
  15. Robin Bain would logically wear gloves to prevent fingerprints despite it being a murder-suicide
  16. That Robin Bain would type a message on a computer for David telling him he is the only one who deserves to live, instead of writing a note. A hand written note incidentally would have cleared David.
  17. Also that having just shot his family, and knowing David was due home, that Robin would wait 44 seconds for the computer to boot up to leave a message
  18. Robin would decide David deserved to live, but go out of his way to frame him for murder
  19. Robin Bain placed fibres from Davids jersey under Stephen’s finger nails
  20. Robin Bain would shoot himself with a gun in the most awkward way possible?
  21. That Robin Bain changed jerseys after he had killed his family and in particular Stephen Bain, washed the jersey, hung it on the line and then change into a brown jersey before killing himself?
  22. That there is a logical reason that David Bain can not account for the injuries on his face, the bruise or the scraped knee, yet knows he did not have them during his paper run.
  23. That Robin Bain put blood on the inside of David’s duvet and on his light switch
  24. That there is an innocent explanation for why David says he put on washing before he discovered the bodies, yet there is a blood print on the washing machine.
  25. That Laniet was being paranoid when she told friends she was scared of David
  26. That the “family meeting” David called the previous night and insisted everyone attended was not a way to make sure everyone would be at home to kill.
  27. That Robin Bain would wear a hat while shooting himself in the head.
  28. That even though David told a relative he hated his father, his father did not know this and deliberately decided David was the only one who deserved to live
  29. That David either imagined hearing Laniet gurgling or she gurgled 20 minutes after death
  30. That Laniet allegations of incent with Robin was true, as was her claims she had given birth three times by the age of 12 and a half.
  31. That Robin Bain managed to kill four family members without a single trace of his blood, skin, or DNA being left at the scene.
  32. That it is a coincidence that on the morning of the murders Bain took his dog onto a property, ensuring he would be noticed to give him an alibi.
  33. That the magazine found balanced on an edge next to Robin was not placed there by David but fell onto its edge from Robin’s arms.
  34. That a sickly Robin Bain managed to overpower his teendage son who put up a furious fight
  35. That Robin Bain went and got the newspaper from outside, despite planning to shoot himself

I remember during the first trial being convinced David was guilty and over the years you feel less certain as things get chipped away. I found the reports of the trial very useful at reminding me of the overwhelming foresnic evidence against Robin having done it.

Now the defence has been very cunning. They have challenged every piece of evidence and cast doubts on it. Some may say this is reasonable doubt.

I think it is important to look at the totality of the evidence, rather than individual aspects. While one can not define reasonable doubt, let us be stats geeks and say if you could it is doubt beyond 99.99%. And let us say that there are ten crucial forescnic items that point to David being the killer. But let us say that in each case the defence has introduced a 10% doubt.

But the defence have to knock out all ten items. And that 10% doubt, gets multipled and over the ten items is a 0.00000001% doubt.

Now before people howl at me, of course it is not a formula. But the point is you have to look at reasonable doubt over all the evidence, not just each individual aspect.

But before I say what I think the jury will do, let us look at what you need to beleive, to think David is the killer.

Well there isn’t a lot. Almost all the evidance fits in perfectly with the theory. The best I can come up with is:

  1. That he managed to finish his paper run quicker than normal
  2. That his foot at 300 mm couldn’t make a 280 mm luminol print
  3. That he was prepared to risk his father waking up early and finding the family dead

The defence summing up was very weak – trying to play on sympathy for poor David, and saying look at him – does he look like a psychopath.

So personally I have absolutely no doubt that David Bain killed his family. Regardless of what the jury finds, I just do not regard the Robin theory as having any serious credibility.

But I am not at all confident the jury will find him guilty? Why? Because the Police did stuff up a lot of the initial evidence gathering. Their failure to test everything and keep everything may have allowed the defence to plant reasonable doubt with the jury – or even get a hung jury that would be as good as an aquittal for Bain.

If Bain is found not guilty, or it is a hung jury, it will be interesting to see if he applies for compensation. You see the test for compensation is not reasonable doubt, but whether he is innocent on the balance of probabilities as assessed by an Independent QC on the evidence. People may debate reasonable doubt – but I do not think anyone would debate the balance of probabilities.

If Bain is found guilty again, then he will be resentenced. If he gets the same non parole period, I think he will be eligible for release in around three years.

As with everyone else, I await the verdict with great interest.

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141 Responses to “The David Bain case”

  1. Madeleine (230 comments) says:

    I share some of your thoughts David and lean the same way you have indicated, however, I still want to read the official court report first and of course hear the verdict. If anyone wants to know how to find a copy of the official court report which should be available fairly quickly after the case is over I posted links to the various NZ court reporting sites here – one of them you can subscribe to and be emailed when new judgements are online.

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  2. lilman (948 comments) says:

    Always thought that he was guilty.
    Then the order of a retrial and I thought there was obviously evidence that will show hes been unfairly treated.
    After hearing the defense and reading the availible scripts all I can say is on what bloody planet are the David Bain team living on.
    Unbelievable that that was all the defense had to offer.
    4 people died and this loser cost us unknown amounts of money and all they had was that.
    I was surprised that they missed that 2 aliens were supposed to be in town that night and they fathered the so called baby that wasnt.Where was the evidence and as for the lawyer suming up that he was “POOR David “look how nice he is, christ if thats evidence then I think we need all to look at how the right of retrial is given.

    Really ,Karam you need to take a long holiday.
    Send him back to jail.
    The police must be beside themselves with this shit going on.

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  3. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    “20. Robin Bain would shoot himself with a gun in the most awkward way possible?”

    DPF – you forgot that Robin could easily have removed the silencer on the rifle to make shooting himself far far less awkward

    [DPF: Good point]

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  4. tvb (4,307 comments) says:

    I agree with you David and you have picked up on the items of evidence that I thought give me the most concern. My concern started with the motive David placed on his father why would he kill the whole family and then kill himself if his “incest” was about to be exposed. Robin should simply shoot himself and spare the family further grief if such allegations are indeed true. To me is defies common sense to kill the whole family and spare David of all people over this concocted motive for the murder suicide. Indeed I regard the “incest” allegations are a possible motive for David to take out his whole family because of his disgust at that behavior and the connivance of the rest of family. Just a theory of course.

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  5. XavierG (76 comments) says:

    Kia ora David, that’s a very useful post. There is so much flying around I frankly had no idea what to believe and didn’t have an opinion one way or the other – I should have been on the Jury!

    Although that would mean I had to live in Christchurch, which is, frankly, a step too far…

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  6. Nigel (517 comments) says:

    I’m still not sure, my fundamental problem is if David came home to find the rest of his family dead, that trauma would be really horrific & I think explain alot of weird things. I still for the life of me cannot work out why they are so convinced it was not a 3rd party, maybe I just missed something obvious.
    What I am sure about is this, I am appalled that we had a 3 month trial in this case, which cost so much money, I find it hard to believe that a fair and balanced case had to be so extended & I most surely hope that the length of this trial is not repeated anytime soon.

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  7. Tom Mathews (6 comments) says:

    I’m not sure about the case, but a lot of your points seem pretty contrived just to make the list look really long. Eg.

    “That it is a coincidence that on the morning of the murders Bain took his dog onto a property, ensuring he would be noticed to give him an alibi.”

    So having an alibi should count against someone in a criminal trial? At the very least, walking the dog is hardly something wildly outlandish. I don’t want to go through point by point, but I feel that you do a disservice to your good argument by trying to make the case sound stronger than it is.

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  8. Monty (974 comments) says:

    If the Jury find him guilty then he definitely is guity, and if they find him not guilty then there is a possibility he did not murder his family but he may have literally got away with multiple-murder.

    I have no view because I have not spent the last three months listening to the court case.

    For me – well I have given up caring – and i really do not care that much about the result- more interesting that Bain could convince Joe Karem to waste his life fighting this cause.

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  9. Michaels (1,318 comments) says:

    So I’m picking you won’t be inviting David around for wine and nibbles David.

    Why would he have to go back to jail? Surely he has done his time??

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  10. Inventory2 (10,245 comments) says:

    As I have blogged tonight, I reckon he’s guilty, but I also reckon that the defence may have muddied the waters enough for him to get off. From what I’ve read of Justice Pankhurst’s summation today, he’s certainly given the jury a few pointers, including posing the question of why Robin would wear gloves when he was going to top himself anyway.

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  11. backster (2,135 comments) says:

    I also agree with the points you make and believe he is guilty.. I thought the defence was very skilful(and expensive). I don’t think that the reputation of the experts they produced however would be enhanced if they produced similar testimony in their home territories. Their assertions in respect to fingerprints, photos, and suggested suicide seemed to defy logic..The Media how-ever seem firmly on his side always referring to him as ‘David’, not BAIN, David BAIN, the accused or defendant or Mr Bain. ,,,The other point to note is that he did not take the stand, many unproven assertions were made concerning the character of his father and Laniet yet he was in a position to give direct evidence on these matters and didn’t.

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  12. MajorBloodnok (361 comments) says:

    I didn’t bother to follow all the news about the trial. So I appreciate all your interesting notes, DPF.

    Like Nigel, I’m concerned at the cost of the trial, and ask “was it really necessary”? As a taxpayer, would I have chosen to pay my money for that? Definitely not.

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  13. Inventory2 (10,245 comments) says:

    Michaels – not so, as I understand it. He would be resentenced. One thing’s for sure – a quintuple murderer would get a darned sight longer non-parole period these days.

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  14. Nigel (517 comments) says:

    To Tom’s point, If you assume DB is innocent, I figure you can discount 3/8/14/15/23/24/25/26/27/28/32, so for me the real crux is DB’s injuries, vs RB’s lack of, DB’s forensic items like the jersey fibres under SB’s fingers vs RB’s lack of forensic evidence ( I think the gun is 50/50 ).
    On that basis & if it can be 100% guaranteed no 3rd party it’s DB.

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  15. BlairM (2,310 comments) says:

    One cannot put a price on justice. It is absolutely necessary – we seek to do a terrible thing to this man and it costs money to ensure that we do not do so without good reason.

    I still for the life of me cannot work out why they are so convinced it was not a 3rd party, maybe I just missed something obvious.

    …which would be the bloodied clothes in the washing machine – murderers who don’t live at an address tend to take the evidence elsewhere.

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  16. boomtownprat (281 comments) says:

    Remember, the Privy Council advised that the incest evidence should have been admissible. That (I think ) was part of the basis for the mistrial.

    Now, how credible is the Laniet/Robin incest, Robin depressed evidence. Looked pretty hearsay, inconsistent and weak to me. Particularly with Cottle doing a runner (again).

    The magnitude of improbabilities and half truths that HAVE to line up for Robin to have killed them is inconceivable.

    Guilty.

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  17. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    The whole defense has been a farce. Whatever happened to Joe Karam telling us there was evidence which would show that David Bain didn’t do it and that there was no need for a retrial? When the defense claims to have evidence that David’s heart normally beat at 50 beats per minute at rest so a rate of 75 was elevated. When the defense introduces a character witness who turns out to only have spoken to David Bain once in his entire life. Not to mention the footprint evidence that used David Bain as a test case, apparently not realizing that David would have a motive to make his print in the test as large as possible? Or the print expert who wasn’t aware that the theory that the rifle print was in animal blood was a key defense claim. The increasingly contrived ways in which Robin Bain may have killed himself were too stupid for words. Not to mention the experts that said the nature of the wound was not inconsistent with suicide while sticking their head up their arse when it came to considering the weapon that caused it.

    And the summing up! What on earth were the defense smoking? If the incest allegations were untrue, then Robin Bain would have felt betrayed when he heard of them which gives them sufficient motive to wipe out his family? That the gurgling noise that David heard might have been the washing machine? The unprofessional plea for sympathy – if acquitted David will go home penniless with a large chunk of his life missing – that the Judge felt moved to crush it in his summing up.

    If Joe Karam wanted to entertain us, he’s succeeded but there were far less extravagant ways of doing so.

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  18. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    Remember, the Privy Council advised that the incest evidence should have been admissible. That (I think ) was part of the basis for the mistrial.

    The PC also said that certain crown allegations in the original trial should have been put to David Bain in cross examination in the interests of natural justice. Come the retrial and what does David do? He chooses not to take the stand in order to avoid answering those allegations!

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  19. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    If Bain is found guilty again, then he will be resentenced. If he gets the same non parole period, I think he will be eligible for release in around three years.

    He’ll probably receive the same sentence if the Judge doesn’t find any aggravating circumstances that were not apparent at the original trial. The only thing that the Judge could do was highlighted in the Rex King appeal – supposedly the time that David Bain has already spent in prison will not count for his new life sentence. But that would be an extreme move.

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  20. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    There is also the close contact of the weapon to Robin Bains head. The judge in his summing up said that the first pathologist who viewed the actual body was in the best position to make a determination of this. He found that it was a close contact wound.

    If the jury follow this line of reasoning, it will be fairly difficult for them to rule out suicide. Afterall, who would just sit there and let someone put a gun against their head to shoot them?

    I think the footprints are also telling. If it is correct that it was impossible for David Bain to have made the prints, as the evidence seems to suggest, then the only other alternative is for Robin Bain to be the killer, however farfetched it may seem.

    Given the mental state of Robin Bain, he does seem the most likely to be a nut-case. So, I think if the jury can find any plausible way for Robin Bain to have been the killer, they will find David Bain not guilty.

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  21. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    The bit I can’t get, regardless of the forensics, which can point both ways, is what David’s motive could possibly be.

    Robin, it appears, had plenty of motive. I haven’t seen any evidence that demonstrates a motive for David to have done it.

    If you kill without motive, then you are likely sufficiently mentally ill to be unable to form one, and no evidence would lend support to that.

    [DPF: David's motive was to escape the living hell which was his family. Read the book by James McNeish for full details of how dysfunctional they were]

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  22. Father Ted (85 comments) says:

    big bruv said he was “guilty as sin”.

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  23. fishe (150 comments) says:

    has there been much psychological testing of DB? (I haven’t been up with the case)

    would be interesting to see how highly he scores on measures of psychopathy.

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  24. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    The bit I can’t get, regardless of the forensics, which can point both ways, is what David’s motive could possibly be.

    The crown does not have to produce a motive in order to prove murder. There are numerous people convicted of murder for which no motive is known. Motive, like a dead body, makes prosecution easier but they are not and never have been essential for a murder conviction.

    If you kill without motive, then you are likely sufficiently mentally ill to be unable to form one,

    You have forgotten the possibility that David Bain has a motive that only he knows (and perhaps makes sense only to him). The only way anybody can dig it out of him would be torture or severe questioning, which nobody would want.

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  25. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    As I said I think it comes down to suicide and the footprints.

    The footprints are a biggie because even the prosecution witnesses have agreed that the killer made the footprints. The crown even called evidence to counter their own witnesses because they wanted to knock this one down. If the jury are reasonably convinced that the footprints cannot have come from David Bain then they will have to find him not guilty.

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  26. trout (932 comments) says:

    How about Robin killing the family and then having David execute him.

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  27. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    What I can’t get my head around is that the computer (especially the key board), would be awash with DNA forsenics belonging to the killer, and perhaps be the most important piece of evidence. eg. were attempts to lift the fingerprints from the key strokes? Was it swabbed for any body fluids and other DNA paraphanalia? Yet it seems to have not even rated a mention. What am I missing here???

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  28. lilman (948 comments) says:

    Much made of the footprints.When I was 17 I wore size 10 shoes,now at 40 I wear size 11.5.
    Remeber the gloves in the OJ trail,once every one remebered that things shrink over time it was to late.
    I still say guilty,HIS PRINTS ON GUN AND WASHING MACHINE.
    I mean really,think about it if you found your family shot ,would you wait 20 mins and do aload of washing, really people.

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  29. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    The footprints are a biggie because even the prosecution witnesses have agreed that the killer made the footprints.

    I don’t see how. All the defence had to do was say David took his shoes off when he entered the house and walked in a pile of blood while seeing the bodies. A simple explanation but why didn’t they make it? Could it be that the focus would shift to why David washed his own bloody clothes?

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  30. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    I still think Reasonable doubt.

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  31. metcalph (1,425 comments) says:

    What I can’t get my head around is that the computer (especially the key board), would be awash with DNA forsenics belonging to the killer, and perhaps be the most important piece of evidence. Yet it seems to have not even rated a mention. What am I missing here??????

    Everybody who used the computer would have their DNA and prints on the keyboard.

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  32. bharmer (686 comments) says:

    tknorriss (184) Vote: 3 2 Says:
    June 4th, 2009 at 6:57 pm
    “There is also the close contact of the weapon to Robin Bains head. The judge in his summing up said that the first pathologist who viewed the actual body was in the best position to make a determination of this. He found that it was a close contact wound.”

    Not being a lawyer, I still had some unease over the judge’s seemingly prescriptive directions “you have heard these witnesses, and you should believe this one rather than those ones” I rather thought that was precisely the role of the jury, to decide which of the presented evidence seemed most credible to them.

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  33. Simon (725 comments) says:

    I always wondered about the quality of ammunition used and even the weapon. It was supposed to a 22 rabbit gun but seem to have cleaned up 5 people pretty well even at close range.

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  34. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    metcalph (318) Vote: 0 0 Says:

    June 4th, 2009 at 7:43 pm
    What I can’t get my head around is that the computer (especially the key board), would be awash with DNA forsenics belonging to the killer, and perhaps be the most important piece of evidence. Yet it seems to have not even rated a mention. What am I missing here??????

    Everybody who used the computer would have their DNA and prints on the keyboard.

    Yes, I’m completely aware of that, but the forensic technology (at least nowadays) has the capability to distinguish. Cripes, did anybody even THINK of dusting the key strikes ?? Examine the frame and keyboards for sweat/blood etc??

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  35. Simon (725 comments) says:

    And no one would shoot themselves with a silencer it slows done the speed of the bullet.
    Well no one sane would shoot themselves with a 22 & silencer. I know of guys who shot themselves with army SLRs and lived.

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  36. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    ‘Not being a lawyer, I still had some unease over the judge’s seemingly prescriptive directions “you have heard these witnesses, and you should believe this one rather than those ones” I rather thought that was precisely the role of the jury, to decide which of the presented evidence seemed most credible to them.’

    I wasn’t impressed with his comments either. In fact, I thought he had done a reasonable job up until then.

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  37. thehawkreturns (162 comments) says:

    Guilty.
    This is still one of the most overwhelming forensic cases I have ever come across.
    The defence expert witnesses were surprisingly weak. The worst one was the Brit who said it was quite common
    for suicides to shoot themselves in unusual ways – wrong handed shot to the temple with a rifle in this case – a quick check
    (about 20 seconds) on the Utah Med School site reveals this would occur in less than 3% of suicides (in a study of
    nearly 1500 shooting suicides). Where was the cross examination to quote facts, not “expert” bollocks like that?
    Damn! Should have done law! Joe Karam and Co were laughable but a hung jury is my bet. The average IQ is
    only average after all.

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  38. MajorBloodnok (361 comments) says:

    The average IQ is only average after all.

    But even in a sample of 12, you’d expect to find some above average (and some below). I’d hope that the smarter ones would be able to convince the slower ones of the “relevant” evidence and the rational conclusion.

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  39. boomtownprat (281 comments) says:

    Well Dempster, the first pathologist suggests a close contact wound, but also basically rules out suicide?

    Simon, Laniet nor Stephen “was cleaned up pretty well”………David heard the gurgling of laniet after the cheek wound allowed blood to accumulate in her bronchi before he delivered the fatal head shot, and David had Stephens blood on him after the violent struggle.

    Robin had nothing on him and the defence contention that the police and pathologists ignored obvious blood on Robin is laughable.

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  40. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    The ‘gurgling’ is a red-herring. I’ve cut a number of dead bodies from car wrecks and it was not uncommon for them to be heard ‘gurgling’ (prior to extraction)

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  41. boomtownprat (281 comments) says:

    Paul,

    I suggest you write up and publish your experience in a forensic journal.

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  42. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    boomtownprat “Well Dempster, the first pathologist suggests a close contact wound, but also basically rules out suicide?”

    He ruled out suicide because of the angle of the shot. However, there were numerous ways shown that Robin Bain could have killed himself with that angle. As I said, its hard to think that someone would just sit there and let someone put a gun against their head.

    metcalph “Much made of the footprints.When I was 17 I wore size 10 shoes,now at 40 I wear size 11.5.”

    I don’t think his shoe-size had changed since the first trial though.

    Another point to consider is that the police had gone after David Bain from fairly early on. They weren’t looking for evidence for Robin Bain, as can be seen by the fact they didn’t bother testing the blood under Robin Bain’s finger-nails. Also, they destroyed a lot of evidence, and seem to have tampered with some. That cop admitted to shifting the lense, and viewed with suspicion even by his fellow officers. Given this sort of behaviour, it makes me wonder what other evidence they might have tampered with.

    That glass lense found in Stephens room was originally thought to have come from Davids glasses. However, at the trial the mother’s optometerist said the lense actually came from the mothers glasses.

    If they had spent the same amount of effort trying to prove Robin Bain was the killer, and had paid little attention to David Bain, then DPF might have put up a long list of reasons why Robin Bain had to be the killer.

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  43. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    tknorriss “As I said I think it comes down to suicide and the footprints. The footprints are a biggie because even the prosecution witnesses have agreed that the killer made the footprints”

    so if Robin Bain was the murderer then it a reasonable conclusion that he was still wearing very very bloodied socks?….. was he? ….or did he wash his own socks to remove that evidence as well before shooting himself?

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  44. Viking2 (11,334 comments) says:

    Nigel made a comment about a third person. Have always thought that possible and it has never been discussed but could well be the case.
    Insufficient concrete evidence to convict in my view. No single or multiple piece of evidence established beyond doubt any fact that any person was responsible for RB’s death other than himself. Thus doubt is cast and with doubt the evidence is not beyond reasonable doubt.
    Judges summing up posed leading questions with a slant. Grounds for an appeal?

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  45. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    Patrick Starr “so if Robin Bain was the murderer then it a reasonable conclusion that he was still wearing very very bloodied socks?….. was he? ….or did he wash his own socks to remove that evidence as well before shooting himself?”

    The defence case is that Robin Bain got changed and cleaned up to “prepare himself for meeting his maker”. Not a rational or logical thing to do, but neither is shooting your family. Interestingly, David Bain only had a few spots of blood on his socks, not enough to make the foot-prints.

    Let me ask you, if you knew for certain that Robin Bain had made the bloodied footprints and had shot himself, how would you view the rest of the evidence then?

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  46. radar (319 comments) says:

    Sonic said: “I still think Reasonable doubt.”

    Then I would say he’s done for. When in doubt, take the opposite of sonic’s position. Works every time.

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  47. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    I think I disagree with DPF.

    There is not as much forensic evidence for the defence case as the crown. However, what is there is pretty good. Also, the defence can point to motive, which is an important factor in convincing a jury.

    So far as the crown evidence is concerned, a lot of it is open to several interpretations. For instance, David Bains fingerprints would be expected on the gun since it belonged to him. The two key points I have raised for the defence actually had some of the prosecution witnesses effectively agreeing, at least in part, with the defence. So there was some conflict in the crown evidence on these points.

    The person who made the footprints MUST be the killer. IF Robin Bain killed himself then David Bain can’t be the killer. If those two factors point towards Robin Bain, then nothing else really matters.

    Don’t assume from all this that I necessarilly hold that David Bain is innocent. Just that I think it is enough to convince a jury of reasonable doubt.

    So far as compensation is concerned, I think the fact that even the crown witnesses can’t agree on these two key points might be enough to get him past the post.

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  48. olives99 (4 comments) says:

    I have always considered that David Bain is guilty of just one murder – that of his father.

    Namely that Robin murdered the other members of the household. David came home, discovered what had happenned, found his father and murdered him.

    It would be a pretty good explanation for much of the evidence. However at no stage has there ever been a suggestion that such an event could possibly have occurred.

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  49. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    Toad
    Motive……… his family was fucked up. The motive to kill your fucked up family to escape would surely lie on the sole -survivor.

    good analysis David
    not much to add really except two things no one seemsto eve mention
    The defense argued over and over again that Robin looked depressed, thin and sickly….. yet he overpowered Stephen???
    Also… Stephen was the youngest child and only 14. Maybe its the deprived middle child in me talking but the youngest sibling is the most spoilt. Why would he deserve to die and David deserve to live? If you shoot the 14 year old, you shoot them all.

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  50. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    I consider myself to be of at least average IQ. If I was on the jury, I’d have to find him not guilty. There’s just too many niggling doubts for me to decide otherwise. And I hope they rule quickly, for the longer they take, the more minds can change.

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  51. gerry (8 comments) says:

    Agree with tvb on David’s motive – seems pretty obvious to me. Ending such dysfunction would almost seem rational in a house of irrationality.

    DPF – maybe another point would have been the body temperatures – Robin a lot warmer – it must have been a long paper round for this to have occurred.

    And good point lilman –my foot size has increased since I was 17 (I’m now approx Bain’s age)

    However, my biggest question is how David managed to kill Robin when he was kneeling? Evidence suggests it wasn’t the first cartridge, so if he was praying with closed eyes?? Has there been any explanation of how this was possible? Surely, there would have been another struggle? I may have missed it?

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  52. Inventory2 (10,245 comments) says:

    tknorris said “The defence case is that Robin Bain got changed and cleaned up to “prepare himself for meeting his maker”.”

    Pure speculation surely tkn? There is absolutely no evidence to support that supposition.

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  53. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    Paul
    you had your mind made up before the retrial started – just as I did
    neither of us should be on that Jury
    I hope they analysis and analysis and analysis the evidence again

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  54. kiwirights (48 comments) says:

    For no particular reason, I think the father killed everyone but David, and then David killed the father and can’t remember (trauma does that). I think he doesn’t want to admit that because he would be guilty of a murder, but frankly I think everyone would respect it…

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  55. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    tknorriss
    “Let me ask you, if you knew for certain that Robin Bain had made the bloodied footprints and had shot himself, how would you view the rest of the evidence then?”

    Sorry if I didn’t make myself clear – I’m strongly suggesting Robin did not murder his family then commit suicide. It is simply not conceivable and I cannot see any evidence that suggests otherwise. Robin Bain was not a stupid man by all accounts – eccentric yes, but stupid no.
    There is no reason to leave the murder scene pointing at the only person “who deserves to live”

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  56. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    Inventory “Pure speculation surely tkn? There is absolutely no evidence to support that supposition.”

    Well, David Bain wasn’t wearing the clothes either. So, I guess its speculative both ways. I think there was evidence given that Robin often seen wearing a green jersey.

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  57. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (360) Vote: 0 0 Says:

    June 4th, 2009 at 9:34 pm
    Paul
    you had your mind made up before the retrial started – just as I did
    neither of us should be on that Jury
    I hope they analysis and analysis and analysis the evidence again”

    I’ve kept an open mind all the way through. The jury can analyis to the cows come home, it won’t change the fact that there are just too many unanswered questions that can’t ever be answered, and which would make a conviction beyond reasonable doubt, unsafe.

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  58. thehawkreturns (162 comments) says:

    Gurgling noises after death?

    Absolutely – I worked as a nurse assistant in geriatrics for three summers – lots of bodies do so. Pathologist friend
    commented last week as to the same.

    I thought this was the dumbest thing the prosecution should bring up but the defence were equally crap in not blasting it to
    smithereens.

    Lawyers aren’t that smart except when it comes to charging the rest of us.

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  59. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    thehawkreturnns: I couldn’t believe it either, but one thing I have learn’t through my many years of observing the courts, is NEVER trust an ‘expert’ opinion. I’ve seen some that are actually laughable.

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  60. clintheine (1,570 comments) says:

    Errr so you’re saying that he would be free in 3 years, having killed them in 1994? That works at around 3.6 years per murder.

    Fucking hell. NZ is *such* a light touch. That’s pretty embarrassing.

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  61. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,823 comments) says:

    Let’s not forget that it’s the New Zealand justice system on trial here as well. Time and again the New Zealand judiciary said “Nothing to see here, move along”. It required the intervention of the British Justice system to give their backward colonial hick cousins in New Zealand a boot up the backside and necessitate this re-trial.

    Margaret Wilson needs a damn good boot up the backside for scrapping New Zealand’s access to the Privy Council. Stripping her of any lame honours bestowed on her by the last corrupt government would be a desirable outcome as well.

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  62. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    haha
    damn i need some sleep
    Analyse, analyse, analyse not analysis

    Just read the thread dedicated to Sonic
    pretty weird DPF
    Calling Sonic for dumb shit is like playing one on one basketball with a retarded kid and calling travelling. You’ve got to let some shit slide. (Chris Rock)

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  63. TripeWryter (715 comments) says:

    Silly me:
    I must have imagined that I was listening to reports and reading newspaper stories about a trial of david Cullen Bain going on down in the High Court at Christchurch.

    Silly me:
    I must have imagined that the case was being heard by a judge and a properly empanelled jury.

    Silly me:
    I must have been mistaken that it was a jury’s job to weigh up the evidence — which Justice Panckhurst said it was their job to do — and decide whether Bain is guilty or innocent. But no, now we find that it’s a blogger’s and all the other blogfodder-eaters.

    Silly me.
    Why do we need courts at all?

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  64. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    OECD rank 22 kiwi (1956) Vote: 0 0 Says:

    June 4th, 2009 at 10:11 pm
    Let’s not forget that it’s the New Zealand justice system on trial here as well. Time and again the New Zealand judiciary said “Nothing to see here, move along”. It required the intervention of the British Justice system to give their backward colonial hick cousins in New Zealand a boot up the backside and necessitate this re-trial.

    Precisely OECD. Here’s a repeat of my post of June 1.

    Bain will be found not gulity (a hung jury at worst). This verdict will have significant implications for the NZ Judciary who refused to hear new evidence and I hope the verdict will be a catalyst for a major overhaul of how cases are presided over. Having had some interesting experiences over many years, observing the workings of the Courts and the competency of some who preside on the bench, I have been shocked at how such incompetence and personal predjuices, can often prevail. The system is skewed. There needs to be a complete revamp where say, cases with serious consequences are first heard before panels of judges and/or, of lay people, where the chances of a miscarriage of justice and/or, personal predjudices by a judge acting alone, are minimised. Once you’re in the ’system’, the damage is done, and there is a public perception that the old boy network protects their own when their decisions are flawed. A case in point would be Scott Watson, where the judge despised the man and felt the public pressure for a conviction . There would be not one judge in NZ whom would privately agree now, that Watson is the victim of a miscarriage of justice. Why then, dosen’t one publicly voice their opinion and speak-out? The reasons are of course. obvious.

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  65. toad (3,674 comments) says:

    clintheine said: Fucking hell. NZ is *such* a light touch. That’s pretty embarrassing.

    Guess if he is convicted then he should be garotted, eh Clint!

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  66. He-Man (270 comments) says:

    If anything the trial highlighted what a bunch of Keystone Cops we have in this country.

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  67. aladin (55 comments) says:

    Hi DPF, this is what you said in April 2 years ago: “As weird as that is, NZ has an even worse case. David Bain’s mother breast fed her kids until they were 13!!! No wonder they were so mucked up.”

    Have you got any evidence of this? Do you still believe it?
    I’m not saying Bain is guilty or not, that is not up to me, but why do you feel it necessary to post this sort of crap?

    aladin

    [DPF: It comes from the McNeish book, which interviewed scores of people who knew the family. And it is legitimate as it explains the motive]

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  68. tvb (4,307 comments) says:

    Robin was spotless and then committed suicide. David was covered in blood including washing his clothes and he did nothing. Where was Robin’s bloodied clothes. Robin cleaning up to meet his maker indeed. But hang on what about the mess left by the suicide. David deserved to live by his loving father. But then David hated his father. And just what was the motive to kill Steven except to cover up a witness to the crime, and concoct both an alibi and put the motive elsewhere. Why kill Steven??

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  69. RainbowGlobalWarming (295 comments) says:

    More commie handwringing bone carving wearing condemners of white male penis weilding oppressors of the true believers crawl out of the woodwork.

    Fuck orf commies.

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  70. Yvette (2,760 comments) says:

    Am I too influenced by CSI, CSI-New York,CSI – Miami, Bones and a whole host of other crime/science programmes to wonder if a fatal rifle shot wound trajectory and gunshot residue would not indicate a possible self-shooting or indicate more distance involved than one could physically achieve oneself to do the job, or were none of these tests available or taken at the time?

    And motive: not much is said here of David’s romance disasters and if another friendship was about to be destroyed by his family’s dysfunction, is that not more motive than Robin’s.
    Rumours of the family’s dysfunction and Robin’s incest were said to have been known already in the neighbourhood. If true this detracts more from Robin’s motive than David’s.

    Then there is David’s odd behaviour and reported comments when broke down with his friends in the St Kilda sandhills walk before his arrest.

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  71. KiwiGreg (3,246 comments) says:

    The most important information I took from the trial is one of the defence expert witnesses’ name was [Dr] Manlove.

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  72. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    I dont know if he is guilty or not – but I cant see how the jury could think he is guilty BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT.

    I will never forget the Thomas case where very similar evidence was presented (nothing absolutely critical – but lots of little bits) – and it wasnt until the third trial and some out side help that it was discovered that some of the evidence was wrong.
    In this Bain trial one has to wonder:
    1. Why the police didnt want to know anything about the incest.
    2. Why evidence wasnt tested at the time – and this happened lot of times – the finger print – blood or not?, human or animal?… etc
    3. Evidence was discarded after various trials (like in the thomas case)
    4. The house was burned down soooo quickly and bits if evidence (carpet etc) were not kept.
    5. If one wanted a motive, then look at the extended family
    6. The Bain family was obviously seriously disfunctional. The mother in lala land, the father living in a caravan and the ERO inspector refering to him as cadaver, the daughter on drugs, a ‘working’ girl and involved in incest and david having extra-body experiences !!! jesus normal logic cant be applied to this lot.

    No – He might have done it, but proven beyond reasonable doubt – I dont think so.

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  73. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    > It was a lucky guess when David Bain told 111 ambulance officer they are all dead, despite later saying he only saw two bodies.

    Hmmm, so you know what you would do and say if you came home to find your family murdered? Have you ever found yourself in this situation? No, and neither has anyone else speaking on this matter.

    > David’s finger prints on gun are from a previous time.

    So you’re an expert now? It was David’s gun for goodness sake – one expert testified that the fingerprints could’ve been left by David previously.

    Many of your other points suffer from the same illogic or are flawed. I sincerely hope you never make yourself availbale for jury duty if you cannot look at the issues calmly and logically.

    Personally, there are aspects to the Defence’s case that are difficult to accept, that Robin changed his clothes before killing himself and that he wrote the message on the computer. I simply don’t believe those things happened.

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  74. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    > If Bain is found not guilty, or it is a hung jury, it will be interesting to see if he applies for compensation.

    Yes, it will be. But he won’t get compensation. He will be required to speak with the person appointed to investigate any claim, and I suspect Bain will have difficulty answering various questions about the killings. But Joe Karam will undoubtedly recommend that a claim is made and he is therefore likely to be sorely disappointed with the outcome.

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  75. Scott (1,759 comments) says:

    A really good post David. One can only hope that the jury comes up with the right decision.

    To make a general point, what struck me about the coverage of the trial last night, was that we keep trying this case. It seems to me that if you refuse to admit guilt and steadfastly maintain your innocence then sooner or later you can gain a retrial. And we keep retrying the case and retrying the case until the person is found innocent. Like is no one guilty anymore?

    It just seems to me to be a good tactic. Arthur Allen Thomas, Scott Watson, David Bain etc etc — just keep maintaining your innocence and sooner or later one jury or another will believe you?

    I would be interested in the comments of others. Is this a possibility — maintain your innocence no matter what in the hope of someone finding you not guilty — or do you believe that all of the people are not guilty and are just being denied justice?

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  76. Sam (498 comments) says:

    My theory:

    1. Robin murders family (wearing green jersey)
    2. Robin tries to clean himself up so that he can get away with it.
    3. David arrives home and finds the scene, gets rifle, Robin pleads rather than attempts to overpower david (after all, David is pointing a gun at his head)
    4. David is unconvinced that Robin should be spared (even though Robin entreats that he spared David as he deserved to live – well, you’d say anything in that situation), and executes Robin by shooting him at close range in the head.
    5. David tries to cover his murder act by typing the suicide note.
    6. At this point David is pretty fucked up, in shock, etc – injuries to him (which are pretty superficial) could easily have occurred – especially if he was fitting (whether technically fitting, or just in a state of absolute frenzied shock)

    This doesn’t exactly explain everything, but it does account for a lot. I’d question why Robin waited until David was out unless he genuinely did want to spare him (I guess if the incest thing was the motive, David may have been considered outside of that), unless robin was intending to shoot David upon his return, but was ‘surprised’ by him.

    In any case, Robin may have been in a considerable hurry to clean up before David’s return, and not had a chance to relieve his bladder – I think it pretty tenuous to believe that you can’t murder people on a full bladder anyway…

    However this is just me making shit up…

    As for gurgling bodies – having spent much of my formative life on a farm, and can assure you that recently deceased carcasses do emit some rather surprising noises – I was rather taken aback about how this was handled by the lawyers/experts too…

    Oh, and if he only saw two bodies, both of which were dead, then – well, they WERE ALL DEAD!

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  77. flightless (2 comments) says:

    The bladder thing is a weak reed in the evidence. When you are focused on other things it is possible to “hold on” longer than normal. I imagine that shooting your family could distract you from the need to take a leak.

    In any event, I find the theory that Robin murdered the rest of the family and then David murders him somehow more plausible. After doing so, in a state of shock he wanders around the house before dialing 111.

    We’ll never know.

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  78. madalean (2 comments) says:

    hi can someone please help me out. why does this come out of taxpayers money and how??????

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  79. madalean (2 comments) says:

    hi cn someone please help me out. why does this come out of taxpayers money and how??????

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  80. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    A debate (such as this), with people here who obviously have life-experiences, and analytical and enquiring minds, to me underscores the deficiences in our court system. Could you imagine for one moment, the learned judges of the Appeal Court discussing the evidence in the Bain case (for example), in the way that is being discussed here? No, of course you can’t. So what qualifies them personally, to determine the validity of any evidence (new or otherwise), when considering grounds for an appeal, in any case? Nothing.

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  81. Kelvin (5 comments) says:

    I would find David Innocent!
    Having been suffered depression, and getting run-down, looking sickly – I have no problem imagining Robin still overcoming Steven.
    We heard from a prosecution witness that Robin wanted nothing to do with killing an animal, so it suggests he was squeamish about getting blood on him – hence the gloves and the removal of the bloody clothing.
    We also heard from a number of witnesses that he hated paper work, and that he enjoyed computers – hence the message on the computer.
    Even if the insest claim was false, the fact that it was being made could well be enough to drive a depressed Robin Bain over the edge.

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  82. Zarchoff (100 comments) says:

    I suspect that Robin did shoot the family but David shot Robin. Also, the Police have a past history of planting evidence (Arthur Allan Thomas) or arranging for secret witnesses to lie (David Tamihere). Fibres under finger nails, blood on duvets, gun cabinet keys, etc all very easy to plant.

    However, I find it hard to believe Robin shot himself with the rifle in the way demonstrated in court. Much more likely that David Bain came home and discovered what had happened, got in a struggle with his father which resulted in David shooting Robin. The only other alternative, I can see, is that David Bain shot them all.

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  83. nickle (29 comments) says:

    In reply to Scott: I think you are right. I was thinking the same thing a few years ago watching David Bain on the news (again) – all you have to do is plead your innocence forever and eventually more and more people will believe you, and in turn the court as well. Afterall, he must mean it if he’s been saying it this long.

    Although I believe the only people qualified to have a say here, are those who have heard ALL the evidence, I still can’t help having an opinion – and that is that David did it.

    This was a complete police fuck-up also. I remember thinking at the time it happened, that they burnt the house down far too early – surely they needed more time to gather forensic evidence? I also remember thinking that this wasn’t the dark ages, and they could gather enough forensic evidence to find out for sure – but they didn’t, and here we are all these years on, still debating the issue.

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  84. Portia (204 comments) says:

    It just seems to me to be a good tactic. Arthur Allen Thomas, Scott Watson, David Bain etc etc — just keep maintaining your innocence and sooner or later one jury or another will believe you?

    I would be interested in the comments of others. Is this a possibility — maintain your innocence no matter what in the hope of someone finding you not guilty — or do you believe that all of the people are not guilty and are just being denied justice?

    Possibly – provided that you’re a middle-class white boy with a fairly clean record.

    Two of the least sound convictions on record are those of David Tamihere for the two Swedish tourists in 1989. Once Urban Hoglin’s body was found, the prosecution’s theory of the case was greatly undermined (eg the body was found miles from where the Crown said it was and he was wearing the watch that the Crown alleged Tamihere had given to his son). And 20 years on, Tamihere continues to maintain his innocence, despite the fact that he could be eligible for parole if he showed remorse. Problem for him though, is that he was an itinerant Maori with previous convictions for serious violent offending (including rape and manslaugher), so very few people outside his immediate family care less whether he was fairly convicted or not.

    Think too, of Raymond Ratima who, like David, also killed multiple members of his family in the early 1990s. What if a retrial were ever ordered for him? Would there be any suggestion of bail for him while he awaited the retrial? And would the public tolerate his defence counsel clocking up millions of dollars on legal aid to, for example, engage a celebrity English pathologist?

    If we really believe in upholding the integrity of the criminal justice system, we’d subject all cases to the same, objective standard. And a fair outcome certainly wouldn’t depend on whether a person had cashed-up, media friendly crusaders to wage PR warfare on their behalf.

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  85. Portia (204 comments) says:

    I suspect that Robin did shoot the family but David shot Robin.

    Sorry, but there’s no real chance of that theory being upheld in this trial. The defence never ran this argument, and the trial Judge’s clear instruction to the jury was either 5 guilty verdicts or 5 acquittals.

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  86. Dazzaman (1,133 comments) says:

    Guilty as sin! Always thought so, this is even more of a slam dunk then the last trial!

    Can’t understand the cries from some lamenting the cost of the trial, etc.. I have no worries with what the state spend to jail this creep…..again. As for saying Robin did over the others?! Really? Over-powered Stephen Bain and left no DNA on his body nor had Stephen Bains DNA on his own body? C’mon.

    I have no pity for this guy, the only pity is, they couldn’t put him away for another 15 or so years.

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  87. backster (2,135 comments) says:

    Paul M…I’m not a fingerprint expert but I doubt prints could be lifted from the keyboard. The action of typing would tend to smudge the ridges. Even if their were a partial readable print admissibility requires a number of identical characteristics before they could be admissible. Most fingers would only leave small partial prints even if clear. As someone else pointed out there would also be cross contamination from others using the same keyboard.

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  88. Ratbiter (1,265 comments) says:

    “Am I too influenced by CSI, CSI-New York,CSI – Miami, Bones and a whole host of other crime/science programmes…”

    Don’t be. Those programmes are all complete, utter bollocks. Written in a join-the-dots style for children.

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  89. Robert Black (423 comments) says:

    David Bain will surely be acquitted though he is as guilty as sin.

    The question should be asked, why didn’t the previous defence team put up as good a defence in the first trial.

    I would sue them for negligence if I was him as well as whoever else he will sue.

    Oh goody another million dollar contribution from the taxpayers.

    :)

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  90. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    backster (71) Vote: 0 0 Says:

    June 5th, 2009 at 1:37 pm
    Paul M…I’m not a fingerprint expert but I doubt prints could be lifted from the keyboard. The action of typing would tend to smudge the ridges. Even if their were a partial readable print admissibility requires a number of identical characteristics before they could be admissible. Most fingers would only leave small partial prints even if clear. As someone else pointed out there would also be cross contamination from others using the same keyboard.

    Maybe, but what attempts were made to check? And how about prints (both finger and palm & other DNA) on mouse (in particluar) and/or, other parts of the frame? And what happened to the computer anyway?

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  91. Gravyman62 (37 comments) says:

    Cogent post. The proposition that “Robin did it because he was depressed” is in my opinion very weak. Family massacres by mentally ill individuals are almost exclusively secondary to the psychotic beliefs of the offender. Simply being “depressed” on the basis of the observations of lay persons is not sufficient to explain this kind of offending. No one suggested Robin was suffering from a psychotic depression (not something easily hidden) and the evidence that he had any mental illness was at best conjecture.

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  92. big bruv (13,655 comments) says:

    The jury is back!

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  93. Nookin (3,240 comments) says:

    So Robin spruced himself up to impress his maker. I think his maker may have tolerated a degree of scruffiness if only he hadn’t wiped out his family — allegedly.

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  94. Ryan Sproull (7,092 comments) says:

    Live updates here:
    http://twitter.com/baintrial

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  95. Jeff83 (771 comments) says:

    Jury are back with a verdict

    Drum roll please.

    AND THE VERDICT IS……

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  96. jarbury (464 comments) says:

    The jury have now entered the room to complete silence

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  97. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    Duh! Not guilty of course.

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  98. jarbury (464 comments) says:

    Not guilty!

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  99. big bruv (13,655 comments) says:

    Unbelievable

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  100. insider (1,035 comments) says:

    Proof that we are stupid. There was sooo much evidence of his guilt, that any murderer can now be confident of going free with a good lawyer.

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  101. dime (9,787 comments) says:

    struth!

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  102. Fisiani (1,021 comments) says:

    12 -0 as I called it!!!!!

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  103. Inventory2 (10,245 comments) says:

    Not guilty times five.

    What a pity that the country is broke, and there’s no compo money available!

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  104. Grizz (244 comments) says:

    He can thank his lucky stars that the police botched their investigation. Otherwise they would have more concrete evidence to prove his guilt.

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  105. KiwiGreg (3,246 comments) says:

    Must have been that guy on the grassy knoll that did it.

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  106. big bruv (13,655 comments) says:

    It’s official, we can now call him OJ Bain

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  107. Jeff83 (771 comments) says:

    Fail.

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  108. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    Scott and Nickle, you are both wrong.

    A retrial is extremely rare in this country. How many retrials have there been? Very few.

    Peter Ellis, though he presents as a strong case of a wrongful conviction, has had only one trial. (Ironically, Arthur Thomas had two trials and was found guilty both times, though he was almost certainly innocent.) However, I suspect Ellis will continue to proclaim his innocence for the rest of his life and one day his conviction will be quashed.

    Miscarriages of justice do occasionally occur. It is unrealistic to think that the justice system convicts the right person every time. The trouble is that the appeal system is not thorough and typically requires new evidence before overturning a conviction.

    If you were wrongly convicted, would you keep appealing until you got the correct verdict or would you accept your fate?

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  109. Alan Wilkinson (1,864 comments) says:

    Lack of motive plus bad police work, IMHO, left too many holes for “beyond reasonable doubt”.

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  110. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    meanwhile the Greens will be signing up 12 new members

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  111. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    yep Alans right
    I was still hoping for a hung jury though

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  112. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    oh and TV3….. I want my 50c back…. your text just arrived now!

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  113. tknorriss (327 comments) says:

    The judge directed the jury that the first pathologist (a crown witness) was in the best position to judge whether Robin Bain was killed by a contact shot or not. Even though he ruled out suicide due to the angle of the delivery, his opinion was a close contact shot. All that was needed then was for the defence to show that suicide in this position was possible. The defence demonstrated this. It is inconceivable that someone would just stand there while a gun was put against their head by another person. Thus, a close contact wound was very strong evidence for suicide.

    Therefore, the judge virtually directed the jury to find Bain not guilty as the evidence above was strong evidence for murder-suicide, especially since the crowns own, and most critical pathologist witness seemed to support the close contact theory.

    Once the suicide theory is accepted, then the jury would be virtually obliged to accept the defence explanation for the other evidence.

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  114. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    > He can thank his lucky stars that the police botched their investigation. Otherwise they would have more concrete evidence to prove his guilt.

    Grizz, I tend to think you’re correct. But that begs the question: why didn’t the police carry out a thorough investigation? Why did they destroy evidence and not test crucial evidence? It appears from an early stage that they had their man. Given that the killer was either Robin or David, police could have carried out two parallel investigations, one investigating the possibility that Robin was the killer and the other that David was the killer. That didn’t happen. The investigation appears to have suffered from tunnel vision, a major cause of miscarriages of justice both here and overseas.

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  115. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,823 comments) says:

    I’m guessing the New Zealand establishing is feeling pretty silly right now.

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  116. Kimble (4,443 comments) says:

    So Bain didnt do it. But there is no way Robin could have. So. Who do the jury think could have done it?

    Chewbacca defense strikes again.

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  117. NOt1tocommentoften (436 comments) says:

    Why OECD? I don’t think it should at all. I doubt he will get compo if he applies – not enough evidence.

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  118. Portia (204 comments) says:

    Looking forward to finding out what evidence was suppressed by the Supreme Court…

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  119. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    As I’ve said many times before, there is something systemically wrong with our judicial system (and those that sit on it), when it takes a layman to expose them when they get it wrong. Absolutely appalling.

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  120. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,823 comments) says:

    Should make a great movie.

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  121. Short Shriveled and Slightly to the Left (783 comments) says:

    So David is penniless
    he could release a book called “If I did it”

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  122. Razork (375 comments) says:

    Not Guilty doesn’t mean Innocent.

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  123. straya (71 comments) says:

    Wow, a verdict in less than 6 hours after a 3 month trial. Damn quick.

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  124. Razork (375 comments) says:

    I still think he did it, but hats off to Joe Karam!

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  125. Ratbiter (1,265 comments) says:

    Pardon me, but a criminal trial is not about govt law & order policy in general, or about sending political messages to “the criminal fraternity”. It is about one man, and about whether or not there is enough evidence of his guilt that 12 supposedly ordinary people can feel justified in taking his freedom away.

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  126. Ratbiter (1,265 comments) says:

    Those in the “I still think he did it’ camp (and I include myself in that, largely thanks to DPF’s summary yesterday as I haven’t been following the trial) can at least console ourselves that he served most of his original sentence, and perhaps that is near enough to paying your dues for killing your whole family, by the same standards as we hold any other convicted killer to.

    IMHO if he didn’t do it, then he’s a hell of a guy. If he did do it, then hopefully he has a few demons following him around…

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  127. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    Many people I know believe Davd Bain was guilty, but not one of those people think Scott Watson is.

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  128. Inventory2 (10,245 comments) says:

    Ah well Paul – Karam will be looking for a new cause now won’t he? What will it be – Ellis? Tamihere? Watson? Barlow?

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  129. Patrick Starr (3,675 comments) says:

    Nai Yin Xue didnt do it either – it was Pumpkin !!

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  130. lilman (948 comments) says:

    for f#**+ sake some one shoot me,if thats justice,hellen clarke fathered my kids.

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  131. chiz (1,132 comments) says:

    DPF:21. That Robin Bain changed jerseys after he had killed his family and in particular Stephen Bain, washed the jersey, hung it on the line and then change into a brown jersey before killing himself?

    And not only that, but he didn’t go the toilet once during the washing etc.

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  132. capigloo (1 comment) says:

    Does someone who believes DB is innocent really have to believe all 35 statements in the original post are true?

    1. No – There are other possibilities eg he saw all the bodies but had a memory black out later (understandable in the circumstances)
    2. No – memory black out
    3. Yes
    4. No – not coincidence, the injuries could have happened when he was running around the house freaking out (or maybe when having a fit?)
    5. No – the lens was from his mother’s spare glasses from memory
    6. No – the struggle produced no injuries regardless of Robin’s lifestyle
    7. No – another possibility, DB picked up the gun when he got home
    8. No – other possibilities eg he didn’t tell the friend that or coincidence
    9. Yes (first part, not sure what you mean by the second bit)
    10. Yes – but the word “managed” is inappropriate here since a full bladder doesn’t prevent you from firing a gun or struggling with someone.
    11. Not sure what you mean, didn’t DB keep the key in his room? If so, the killer could be expected to leave the lock + key there
    12. No – defence case is that Robin put the jersey in the machine to be later washed by David; no evidence that fibres under Steven’s were washed??
    13. No – this evidence has been disputed by experts
    14. Yes – although the same ambulance officer wrote in his notebook that DB was having a fit and only changed his mind later when DB was charged
    15. No – other possibilities eg cold morning, maybe he wasn’t planning suicide
    16. Yes. But a hand written wouldn’t have cleared David because crown could have argued that RB wrote the note at gun-point or DB forged note.
    17. Yes
    18. No – what evidence specifically suggests that RB framed DB if we assume DB is innocent?
    19. No – another possibility, RB was wearing jersey. This one is ridiculous DPF.
    20. No – I can think of more awkward ways
    21. No – not in evidence, wasn’t the jersey found in the machine?
    22. No – memory black out
    23. No – blood got there when David was moving around the house after he got home
    24. No – same as 13
    25. No – other possibilities eg Laniet didn’t tell friends that or she had good reason to be scared of David
    26. No – didn’t the defence present evidence that Robin called the family meeting?
    27. Yes
    28. No – other possibilities eg David didn’t say that
    29. Yes
    30. No – other possibilities eg incest didn’t happen and Robin had some other motive or incest allegations were true but other claims not true.
    31. No – his entire body was at the scene
    32. Yes (coincidence)
    33. No – other possibility ie Robin placed the magazine like that after bullet jammed
    34. Yes
    35. I don’t remember ever hearing this but I’ll take your word for it, Yes.

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  133. clintheine (1,570 comments) says:

    Now that Bain is free I volunteer that he go and spend some quality time with Sonic, Toad, Robinsod, the Labour caucus, The Standard, EPMU (might be a lot of interlapping going on here), The UN, The Green Party, Climate Change nutters, hippies, communists, socialists, NZUSA…..

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  134. ZestySea (10 comments) says:

    We thought (as others have said here) that there was strong possibilty David came home & surprised his father (after Robin had murdered all the others) and killed him in the struggle and were surprised that no one else had mooted the idea – personally I just couldn’t make a judgement as to who did the murders – it’s complex and difficult, although there IS a motive for David – first he puts an end to his highly dysfunctional family, secondly the family are quite wealthy in assests, David chose not to work and was caught up in his mother’s dreams of rebuilding either a sanctury or at least a substantial home on the property (Robin was against this idea). With the family dead he would be the sole beneficiary of the family’s assets and free to act as he pleased. – We do need to look atthe way the police collect evidence in some of the high profile cases, they do appear to make a decision and then pin evidence on a suspect disregarding evidence that does not help their case. The Mark Lundy case will be the next one that raises serious concerns.

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  135. Raskolnikov (8 comments) says:

    “DPF:21. That Robin Bain changed jerseys after he had killed his family and in particular Stephen Bain, washed the jersey, hung it on the line and then change into a brown jersey before killing himself?”

    I believe the coppers hung some of the washing machine stuff on the line prior to bagging it. Jersey in particular. All part of the conspiracy to frame David ;)

    Simple fact of the matter is Robin’s hands had not been washed that morning – the police report shows they were dirty, with a smear of blood below the left thumb and a drop of blood on the little finger. The photos in Karam’s book show Robin’s hands quite clearly, and there is no visible blood. Somehow we are supposed to believe that during the struggle with Stephen, Robin lost David’s gloves, got blood all over the gun and his jersey (but not his pants or anywhere else), then finished off the rest of the family, removed his bloody clothing in the laundry, and cleaned up to meet his maker, all without getting blood on or washing his hands. Finally he shot himself with the bloodied murder weapon without leaving any fingerprints. Shit’s ridiculous and 100% impossible.

    Karam will tell you Robin’s hands were covered in blood, but in my honest opinion, he’s full of shit (or hasn’t looked at his own book recently).

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  136. Jessie (1 comment) says:

    This is so so sooo annoying.
    He is SO blatantly GUILTY. His family (extended) must be sooo gutted. Because they know it was him too.
    I don’t necessarily want him back in jail. But just the fact his name is cleared.
    Gutted for Karam, he has wasted so much of his life on a lie…
    The whole of Dunedin KNOWS he is guilty. And the Police must be gutted-as.

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  137. IcedPaladin (1 comment) says:

    What was needed was a jury made up of people who had no prior knowledge of the case.
    Would it have been possibe to have jurors from overseas?

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  138. Gavin James (180 comments) says:

    Patrick Starr: The weapon was found with the silencer in place. Now you’re going to tell me that Robin shot himself and then replaced it. Please pay attention.

    On points surrounding the computer evidence. I am a computer consultant, in case you were wondering, of some years, back to the days before the murder in fact. It is my contention that, if Robin were the killer, then the events happen as follows:
    6.39 (the earliest the computer could have been started, as agreed by the defense.) It takes a least a minute to boot and probably more, from my experience of such computers, and then loads MS Word. So, at least two minutes. Then think of a message and type it in. Remember, Robin isn’t in any hurry, he is going to kill himself, so what if David arrives home, he has the gun right? Then he is probably a two finger typist. Why do I deduce this? Because most men of Robin’s age at the time used to get people to do their typing for them, as they hadn’t learnt to type. So, hunt and peck out a message. Then walk to the middle of the room. Then place the gun at his head. Remember, he’s not in any hurry here, as he is going to kill himself, and then shoot himself. And conveniently fall and release the weapon so that it neatly lies beside him.

    6.45am David seen entering his house. This is the latest that David could conceivably have entered the house, as David was seen the the passing motorist according to her clock to have been 6.50am. So, all the above in six minutes or less.
    Regarding the weapon falling neatly beside him, try this. Get something resembling a rifle. Hold it to your head, and then release it several times and record each time where it falls. How many times does it fall neatly beside you as you collapse to the floor.

    By the way, I can also hit the targets almost without fail at the fairground sideshows. For David, reasonably experienced with weapons (remember, he used to shoot possums from the trees adjacent to the property). For him, shooting something at close range would be relatively easy.

    Now, combine this with the fact that David himself testified the that he loaded the washing machine and put it on near to the Superwash cycle and that this takes, as by his own testimony and that of the washing machine repairman called to test this, it would have taken between 45 minutes to an hour to run, and the police turned up at precisely 7.28am. So, for that to have happened, David would have had to arrive home earlier, not later.
    Ipso facto. You work it out. All this is in the Privy Council decision overturning the conviction and the Court of Appeal 3 (Tipping et al).

    Regarding the lens and the glasses. David was seen wearing glasses on Sunday (evidence presented at the first trial), but they couldn’t have been his own, as they were being repaired. The only other glasses he had access to were his mother’s ones, the ones found damaged in his own room. He had no explanation as to how they could have been broken.

    So, either David was lying about things, or suffering delusions, or what?

    So, for the Crown, the possibility exists that they could appeal based on the evidence that was excluded, not the 111 call, as that would be shredded, but on the basis of the two friends who could testify that David had at least entertained the idea of committing a crime in the past by using his paper run as an alibi. Much more credible.

    Paul Marsden: The police and experts didn’t test the keyboard, as they found no distinguishable fingerprint evidence on it. As well, at this stage, DNA testing was not as reliable as it is now. It was a relatively new science at the time.

    Defence witness cockups in favour of the Crown.
    1. Philip Boyce claimed that he could have shot himself from as far away as 24cm. When asked to demonstrate this, he had to revise this claim down to something of the order of 10cm.
    2. The defense witness whose chief claim to fame was that he the Pathologist who had examined Princess Diana and had performed 20,000 post mortems, stated that the person in the best position to make a judgement on whether Robin had committed suicide or not was the original examining pathologist, in this case, the Crown pathologist, who stated that in his opinion, Robin had not committed suicide. Ipso facto. Also the Crown pathologist had examined over 1400 gunshot wounds, and thus is easily as capable as the defense witness as making a judgement as the defense witness, who had to rely on photos that the defense were discrediting in any case.

    It is my view that there are several reasons why David was found not guilty:

    1. Many witnesses were missing – dead or otherwise unavailable.
    2. Key evidence had been disposed of in the meantime. After all, the Crown had won many appeals against the case, and even an earlier one to the Privy Council.
    3. Michael Reed QC is the best available QC in the country and made mince meat of many of the Crown witnesses, and was clearly superiour in arguing the case compared with Kieran Raftery.
    4. The defence very cunningly took the argument away from the facts in the case and placed it on the mental state of Robin.
    5. They also painted David as a person who was unlikely to commit such a crime.
    6. They also made Laniet look as if the statements that she made to witnesses could have been reliable.
    So, the Defence made it about the credibility of Robin and not about David.

    So, they won the case, despite all the evidence to the contrary.

    Something that I would have hammered if I were the Prosecution in the case was the David has been a stage actor and was apparently quite good at it. I would have to question the supposed hysteria in his voice. It reminds me of someone from Monty Python putting on a voice, albeit a pretty good one.

    Other items of interest are that he stated initially that he hadn’t been into any rooms except the laundry, his mother’s room and the lounge. By the time of the trial, he then stated that he had been into Stephen and Laniet’s rooms, which explained the blood on his clothes. But then, having seen them, and got blood on him, he washed his clothes, including the green jersey.

    As to the possibility of the Robin having murdered the other four and David then murdering Robin, that has not been entertained as a possibility by either the Crown or the Defense.

    So, I could go on. What I would say, without wanting to cast aspersions on them is that the Jury made up their minds based on the facts that were presented to them and the way the case was argued. They are the only ones entitled by our justice system to decide the verdict. However, we are all entitled to our opinion, so long was we don’t say they were wrong in their decision.

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  139. hiphip (92 comments) says:

    Excellent article in the Chch Press. Words of wisdom. Recommend everyone read it as it sums things up nicely. http://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/opinion/2518912/Plenty-of-doubt-in-Bain-jurys-verdict

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  140. Pooh (3 comments) says:

    I have watched Bryan Bruce’s doco several times. The original screening on TV and several times with a copy recorded by the video llbrary at the university of Otago.

    Bryan makes a great issue that seems to discredit the evidence from a salesman regarding Robin’s mental state by showing the rear doors of his van could not have been opened because of the built in furniture. Neglecting of course that the saleman may in fact have meant the side door which all vans have.

    When you slow the section of the video down which shows Robin’s hands, traces of what looks very much like blood are visible around the nails. Photographs in Karam’s latest book shows this very clearly including a significant bruise.

    The retrial and even the admissions by crown witnesses including police at that retrial show the prosecution case was a complete parody. The decision by the Privy reinforces this impression. If the Privy council cant spot a crock who can?

    Dr Don Mathias’, a legal expert has nothing but praise for Karam’s meticulous and remorseless demolition of the Crown case and police investigation. Google his blog. Don Mathias’s Criminal Law Blog/Karam’s book.
    Better still read Karam’s book “Trial by Ambush”

    Bruce’s documentary seems very selective in what it reveals and does not reveal.

    Truly the arm of the law is long!

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  141. hiphip (92 comments) says:

    There is no need to spend a cent given all the information on the Bain case is freely available online http://davidbain.counterspin.co.nz/ . The book has been described by Paul Holmes as unreadable and the recommendation is down the dunny with it. http://davidbain.counterspin.co.nz/blog/down-the-dunny . The Dunedin trial got the correct answer. David Bain had his brothers blood on his clothing, and left blood elsewhere in the house before he showered and washed his hands. Robin Bain was no killer. David Bain cannot say the same in all honesty.

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