Author Topic: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?  (Read 546 times)

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Offline Steve_uk

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Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« on: March 13, 2020, 10:40:PM »
If losing one child is a tragedy, two is suspicious and three is murder, how about four..https://youtu.be/fAcEQpGiV5w

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2021, 06:38:PM »
I do despair sometimes of so-called professionals who get a bee in their bonnet about one aspect of a case to the detriment of all others..https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/dna-proves-convicted-serial-child-killer-is-innocent-say-scientists/ar-BB1edkgD?ocid=msedgntp

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2021, 03:18:PM »
All 4 of these babies died from sudden cardiac deaths caused by a genetic mutation. After the second baby had died, I would have thought that the mother would have been tested also for carrying that gene to prevent any more deaths.
Obviously I'm not conversant with this type of arrhythmia in small children/babies but I do know it kills school-age children who appear fit and healthy, then also older people, unexpectedly, usually. Sadly we've read about young boys playing football at school who for no reason have collapsed then died, young men as well. It can and does happen.

This type of genetic defect can be there from birth and might not show itself until later in life, or in this case as a baby starts to grow. Depending on the type of mutation, in this case it was the CALM2 mutation, it's hard to tell whether it can continue until school age or whether it's just peculiar to babies---I wouldn't know. What I do know is that any sort of arrhythmia, especially in those so young, can be a killer.

In Sudden Infant Deaths, a baby literally forgets to breathe so if asleep and they happen to suffer a cardiac episode ( arrhythmia ) chances are that they won't wake up. 

I hope that everyone concerned will be thorough with their investigations and give this woman the benefit of the doubt. 

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2021, 09:27:AM »
All 4 of these babies died from sudden cardiac deaths caused by a genetic mutation. After the second baby had died, I would have thought that the mother would have been tested also for carrying that gene to prevent any more deaths.
Obviously I'm not conversant with this type of arrhythmia in small children/babies but I do know it kills school-age children who appear fit and healthy, then also older people, unexpectedly, usually. Sadly we've read about young boys playing football at school who for no reason have collapsed then died, young men as well. It can and does happen.

This type of genetic defect can be there from birth and might not show itself until later in life, or in this case as a baby starts to grow. Depending on the type of mutation, in this case it was the CALM2 mutation, it's hard to tell whether it can continue until school age or whether it's just peculiar to babies---I wouldn't know. What I do know is that any sort of arrhythmia, especially in those so young, can be a killer.

In Sudden Infant Deaths, a baby literally forgets to breathe so if asleep and they happen to suffer a cardiac episode ( arrhythmia ) chances are that they won't wake up. 

I hope that everyone concerned will be thorough with their investigations and give this woman the benefit of the doubt.
She's a cool customer if innocent, her behaviour in court at odds with her time in the house with her babies, where she described "snapping my cog".  Some of her diaries went missing. If she was concealing murder she forgot one entry in a diary concerning Sarah, born on 14 October 1992, which read: “With Sarah all I wanted was her to shut up, and one day she did,” Folbigg wrote in November 1997, adding in a January 1998 entry that Sarah “left, with a bit of help”

Why write this four years after the baby had died?

The firstborn Caleb suffered from laryngomalacia, which I assume is why Kathleen was convicted only of his manslaughter and not murder.  https://www.sbs.com.au/news/diary-entries-came-back-to-bite-four-time-baby-killer-kathleen-folbigg
« Last Edit: March 06, 2021, 09:30:AM by Steve_uk »

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2021, 12:04:PM »
Steve I tend to think about Sally Clark/e and Angela Cannings when cases like this crop up.
 Sally lost two babies and Angela 3. Both went to prison.  Of the two women, Angela's life wasn't too rosy so it was easy to point a finger, as did Sir Roy Meadow during what was to be his downfall as a top paedriatrician for sending quite a few mothers to prison only to be found not guilty of their babies deaths.

Nobody has to " look " like a murderer, nor  should their chaotic backgrounds always be taken into consideration to fit in with a crime or used in making a swift decision. 

Loise Woodward also springs to mind as I remember being adamant that she hadn't killed the baby and I even wrote my support to Louise's mother in Chester at the time. Both parents of the baby were doctors-----so it couldn't be them, could it ?? No, of course not, it had to be the au-pair.

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2021, 08:29:PM »
Steve I tend to think about Sally Clark/e and Angela Cannings when cases like this crop up.
 Sally lost two babies and Angela 3. Both went to prison.  Of the two women, Angela's life wasn't too rosy so it was easy to point a finger, as did Sir Roy Meadow during what was to be his downfall as a top paedriatrician for sending quite a few mothers to prison only to be found not guilty of their babies deaths.

Nobody has to " look " like a murderer, nor  should their chaotic backgrounds always be taken into consideration to fit in with a crime or used in making a swift decision. 

Loise Woodward also springs to mind as I remember being adamant that she hadn't killed the baby and I even wrote my support to Louise's mother in Chester at the time. Both parents of the baby were doctors-----so it couldn't be them, could it ?? No, of course not, it had to be the au-pair.
I've just watched this programme about the latter case. It's not complimentary at all about Louise Woodward, though of course it is an American podcast presented from Americans' point of view. https://youtu.be/3hLerJmeZGE

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2021, 12:54:PM »
I've just watched this programme about the latter case. It's not complimentary at all about Louise Woodward, though of course it is an American podcast presented from Americans' point of view. https://youtu.be/3hLerJmeZGE




I remember all the drama in court about Louise's case as I was seething at what was being fed into the audience. What they didn't dwell on was the fact that the doctors ( baby's parents ) had another child who by all accounts sounded like your typical brat, throwing toys etc. I think Louise was the 3rd nanny/ au-pair who'd been employed since the other two had left and the child had refused to acknowledge her by throwing a hissy fit. I can't remember whether the other two au-pairs gave a reason for leaving.

When a new baby comes onto the scene, it's not unusual for the other child to display jealousy and I swear to this day that there was pinching of the baby going on when backs were turned and toys being thrown etc. This having occurred before Louise took over. Many parents are blinded by any bad behaviour and would have been completely oblivious to it because both parents had demanding jobs away from the household. I've witnessed such behaviour from toddlers and unless it's checked it continues and sadly it didn't appear that the mother spent very much time at home and possibly only saw the children at night time. 

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2021, 07:17:PM »



I remember all the drama in court about Louise's case as I was seething at what was being fed into the audience. What they didn't dwell on was the fact that the doctors ( baby's parents ) had another child who by all accounts sounded like your typical brat, throwing toys etc. I think Louise was the 3rd nanny/ au-pair who'd been employed since the other two had left and the child had refused to acknowledge her by throwing a hissy fit. I can't remember whether the other two au-pairs gave a reason for leaving.

When a new baby comes onto the scene, it's not unusual for the other child to display jealousy and I swear to this day that there was pinching of the baby going on when backs were turned and toys being thrown etc. This having occurred before Louise took over. Many parents are blinded by any bad behaviour and would have been completely oblivious to it because both parents had demanding jobs away from the household. I've witnessed such behaviour from toddlers and unless it's checked it continues and sadly it didn't appear that the mother spent very much time at home and possibly only saw the children at night time.
In Louise's defence I've no doubt the mother wanted a skivvy not a nanny. She also passed a lie detector test, which makes me think in her own mind she had done nothing wrong. However I don't think she was particularly cut out for the role, and seemed to be more interested in socializing than rendering a good account of herself to the agency and her employers.

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2021, 12:26:PM »
In Louise's defence I've no doubt the mother wanted a skivvy not a nanny. She also passed a lie detector test, which makes me think in her own mind she had done nothing wrong. However I don't think she was particularly cut out for the role, and seemed to be more interested in socializing than rendering a good account of herself to the agency and her employers.




Louise was only 18 at the time and as most 18 year olds would only have been interested in what the night life had to offer. However I don't think she'd been there long before she was arrested and bailed for nigh on a year. The last I heard was that she'd married and had a child/ children and had been a dance teacher. In the end she'd been found not guilty for the death of the baby as there was enough reasonable doubt attached to the actual injury which killed him.

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2021, 05:58:PM »



Louise was only 18 at the time and as most 18 year olds would only have been interested in what the night life had to offer. However I don't think she'd been there long before she was arrested and bailed for nigh on a year. The last I heard was that she'd married and had a child/ children and had been a dance teacher. In the end she'd been found not guilty for the death of the baby as there was enough reasonable doubt attached to the actual injury which killed him.
I take the point that youngsters have more of an eye on their leisure time than any work-related activities. Didn't she end up with a conviction for invountary manslaughter and spent almost a year in prison?

I suppose the Press with this unnecessary article were trying to rake up feelings by the public that she couldn't be trusted with her own children. I never felt that. But the parents' behaviour over expenses was a disgrace. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5002468/Louise-Woodward-walks-three-year-old-daughter-nursery.html

I see we're to be treated to a film on the case: https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/crime/film-commissioned-us-nanny-murder-trial-british-au-pair-louise-woodward-3139626

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2021, 07:50:PM »
The baby's parents still believe that Louise killed him. I suppose they would do really.
I still maintain that the other child threw a toy at that baby to cause a hairline fracture of his skull as the fracture wasn't consistent with the baby having been shaken because of lack of bruising where it would have been held around the tops of the arms. 

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #11 on: March 16, 2021, 11:28:PM »
Doctor Todd Grande discusses the Kathleen Folbigg case: https://youtu.be/ZJMXPHHovKk

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2021, 12:48:AM »
Doctor Todd Grande discusses the Sally Clarke case: https://youtu.be/XxCEso0YvJQ

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Re: Kathleen Folbigg: innocent or guilty?
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2021, 12:50:AM »
The conclusion of the 2000 appeal of the above case:

The strength of the case at trial
We have considered with care the extensive evidence placed before the jury at trial, and we have concluded that there was overwhelming evidence of the guilt of the appellant on each count.
No expert evidence, whether called by the prosecution or by the defence, supported the contention that either death was a SIDS. Only the appellant relied on that contention, because she had no explanation nor credible account in respect of the previous injuries sustained by each baby. Young, immobile infants do not sustain injury without the carer having a credible history as to how the injury was caused. There was no such history from the appellant.
Medical evidence in respect of Christopher demonstrated that provided the jury accepted Dr Williams's evidence of the bruising and torn frenulum, there was an overwhelming inference that Christopher had been subjected to physical abuse shortly before death, and consistent with smothering. The findings of fresh blood and old blood in the lungs were independently consistent with smothering causing death and previous attempted smothering. The extent of the old blood in the lungs was inconsistent with a natural nosebleed because such an event would have required hospital admission for a seriously ill baby, whereas Christopher spontaneously and rapidly recovered from a nosebleed which was insufficient to stain clothing.
The recurrent features of infant killing originally thought to be natural death, and identified by Professor Meadow, were present: the previous unusual nosebleed unsatisfactorily explained; the time of evening when Christopher died; the fact that prior to death he had been well and had taken a feed; the inconsistent history recounted by the appellant as to whether Christopher was in a Moses basket or a bouncy chair.
The behaviour of the appellant at hospital when told her baby was dead impressed Dr Douglas as "... very dramatic and almost hysterical ..." and was described by her as "... such an over-reaction."
Medical evidence in respect of Harry identified:
a) extensive fresh bleeding around the spine; and, if Dr Williams's observations were accurate, swollen spinal cord;
b) hypoxic damage to the brain which occurred at least three hours before death;
c) haemorrhaging to the surface of the brain consistent with smothering;
d) petechial haemorrhages to the eyelid consistent with smothering;
e) unexplained haemorrhaging to the outer surface of the backs of both eyes;
f) fracture of the second rib which was some four weeks old for which there was no natural explanation;
g) dislocation of the first rib.

Professor Berry and Dr Rushton who gave evidence for the defence agreed that if Dr Williams's observation of a swollen spinal cord was accurate and the bleeding in the spine was from trauma, they would conclude a traumatic non-natural death and the fracture of the second rib and the petechiae in the eyelids would cause even more concern of a history of abuse.
All the experts agreed that in order to assess whether the spinal cord was swollen, the naked eye was best placed to identify it and the pathologist can feel the spinal cord at post-mortem. Although none of the experts could identify a precise mechanism of injury to give rise to a swollen cord, it was agreed that some form of flexion, extension or rotation injury was the most likely.
The consultant neuropathologists called - for the Crown Dr Smith, and for the defence Dr Whitwell - agreed that there was hypoxic damage some hours before death and if Harry died shortly before 9.37 p.m. when the 999 call was made, the hypoxic damage could have been caused from 5.30 p.m. onwards, because a least two hours had to elapse before death to account for the presentation of the nerve cells. At all relevant times the appellant was alone with Harry.
All the experts agreed that the haemorrhages on the surface of the brain were a non-specific indicator of smothering, but were entirely consistent with smothering and could have occurred immediately after smothering. The petechial haemorrhages in the eyelid were agreed to be consistent with smothering by Professor Berry, Dr Whitwell, Dr Rushton, Dr Williams, Professor Meadow and Dr Keeling. No other condition was found in Harry to account for the presence of the petechiae, and the experts regarded them as worrying features which, as Dr Rushton stated, raised the spectre of asphyxia.
In respect of the dislocation of the first rib, although there was an issue as to whether it was the result of injury before death, or whether it might have been a resuscitation injury, all the experts agreed that it would be very unusual to see a fracture dislocation of ribs from resuscitation, and particularly an isolated fracture not matched on the other side.
The strength of this medical evidence in respect of Harry was that, if the jury accepted Dr Williams's evidence about the spinal cord, there was an overwhelming inference that Harry had been subject to trauma shortly before death, and had hypoxic damage consistent with suffocation earlier in the evening.
The appellant never at any time gave a history to account for the fracture of the second rib, for which no natural explanation was available, and which occurred to a four week old, immobile baby. Such injury called for a credible account to account for it, but none was given.
The appellant's description of Harry slumped forward in his bouncy chair was demonstrably untrue.
Professor Meadow identified recurrent features in killings [initially] thought to be natural: the time of day, the fact that Harry had been well and had taken a feed; the inconsistency between the appellant's account and her husband's as to what he was doing downstairs; smothering is often combined with other abuse.
The untrue evidence given by Mr Clark about the time of his homecoming, which necessitated his recall at trial, was of the greatest significance in our judgment because had he arrived home at 5.30 p.m., it would have undermined the prosecution case. Mr Clark and the appellant gave evidence which initially vouched for the contention that the appellant was not alone with Harry, and did nothing to him during the evening. The fact that he had to be recalled to admit that he arrived home some 2½ hours later signified that the appellant had been alone with Harry, and that her husband could in not way vouch for her. It is further highly significant in our judgment that upon recall, he denied knowing that there was a prosecution allegation that Harry had sustained hypoxic damage earlier that evening when the appellant was alone with Harry, although he had been questioned by the police on that basis in April and July 1998, and the defence formally admitted service of the medical reports which contained this allegation. The credibility of Mr Clark had relevance not only to the circumstances of Harry's death, but also to his account of Christopher's nosebleed.
The reaction by the appellant to Harry's death in a conversation with the coroner's officer, Mrs Hurst, when she told the officer that she and her husband would try for another baby, struck Mrs Hurst as most unusual.
Taken separately there was a very strong case on each count. Take together we conclude that the evidence was overwhelming having regard to the identified similarities:
a) the babies died at the same age;
b) they were both found by the appellant and both, according to one version of the appellant, in a bouncy chair;
c) they were found dead at almost exactly the same time of evening, having been well, having taken a feed successfully, and at a time when the appellant admitted tiredness in coping;
d) on each occasion the appellant was alone with the baby when it was found lifeless;
e) on each occasion the appellant's husband was away from home, or about to go away from home;
f) in each case there was evidence of previous abuse: for Christopher an attempted smothering; for Harry an old rib fracture;
g) in each case there was evidence of deliberate injury recently inflicted: for Christopher bruising and a torn frenulum; for Harry hypoxic damage, petechial haemorrhages in the eyelid and fresh bleedings of the spine and swelling of the spinal cord;
h) the rarity of two natural deaths in one family with the first five features above present, and the extraordinary coincidence, if both deaths were natural, of finding evidence of old and recent abuse.
For all those reasons, we consider that there was an overwhelming case against the appellant at trial. If there had been no error in relation to statistics at the trial, we are satisfied that the jury would still have convicted on each count. In the context of the trial as a whole, the point on statistics was of minimal significance and there is no possibility of the jury having been misled so as to reach verdicts that they might not otherwise have reached. Had the trial been free from legal error, the only reasonable and proper verdict would have been one of guilty.
It follows that in our judgment the error of approach towards the statistical evidence at trial identified at paragraph 181 (Ground 3(c)) did not render the convictions unsafe. The appeal against conviction on each count is therefore dismissed.

Offline Steve_uk

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