Gerald Hope writes:
Watson was elusive about what he did on 1 January 1998. I concluded he had rehearsed his responses to much of the evidence we discussed. His response was absolute silence on some of the more circumstantial elements of the prosecution case such as the disposal of the bodies in a sleeping bag. When confronted with this he was mute, unemotional, disconnected – Watson definitely did not convince me that he is innocent on this point.
He failed to convince me that what he said he did on the 1st of January 1998 actually took place. Our conversation left me with four specific points where I was not convinced of his innocence:
· Sighting at Marine Head – his response was that he never stopped. The evidence was that a boat was seen there and that it was confirmed as Blade and Watson.
· The squabs from the main cabin with large sections cut out and then carefully picked out are crucial to the case. I was not convinced that they were caused by paint spillage or accidental burning from a cigarette.
· His arrival time at Erie Bay. He said he was there by lunchtime – whereas [name suppressed] and [name suppressed] confirmed his arrival around 5pm. This is crucial to the conviction and leaves many hours in the day unaccounted for. What was Watson doing?
· Finally, the art work – supposedly a personal statement, a visual expression by Watson not long after he was arrested. When I look at the drawing I see a disturbed person, evil depictions and undertones of death and retribution. This draws me to the conclusion that at that time in his life Watson had no respect for women and was living a dark fantasy where death was the currency of the day.
There has been so much said, written, filmed and speculated since 1998 that I now request that no further interviews be requested.
So Hope got to actually ask some inconvenient questions of Watson (he never testified at trial) and found the answers implausible.
For this he gets attacked by Watson’s father reports the Herald:
That has prompted Scott Watson’s father, Chris Watson’s response tonight.
He said he read Hope’s views with “some surprise”.
“After the trouble and expense that Scott, his legal rep, and I went to, to fulfil his wish to meet with Scott, his uninformed views can only be regarded as a slap in the face.”
You’re calling the father of one of the murder victims uninformed. Shame on you.
He said he would have reminded Hope – if he had been present – that his son was “nearly as uninformed as himself as to the finer points of this case”.
But not uninformed as to what he did and when. He is the only person who knows that – well the only person living.