Author Topic: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.  (Read 244 times)

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Offline sandra L

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How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« on: September 28, 2019, 09:28:AM »
It's not difficult to see why the police were instantly suspicious of Luke.

In Judith's first statement, she told police Luke had told her he was "coming up the path on his bike" and that statement wasn't corrected until almost a month later when Judith told police she'd made a mistake - Luke hadn't said that at all, he'd said he was coming up the path "with his dog."

One police officer noted, after taking the missing person details, that Jodi had left her home at tea time "with her boyfriend."

Both officers on the ground and the 999 operator were of the impression that Luke, and Luke alone, was (a) out looking for Jodi and (b) somewhere behind Newbattle High School on a path.

Then the officers on the ground get a shout - the boyfriend's found a body.

So think about it from their perspective - Jodi left home with her boyfriend at teatime, but now he's saying he hasn't seen her all evening. He's going up a path in darkness on a bike and randomly stops to climb over a wall where he "finds" a body. Suspicious, yes?

So much so that they jumped to the conclusion that the other three searchers had arrived after Luke found the body, hence not taking their statements, not asking any of them to go over the wall again to show them where the body was and separating Luke from the others almost immediately. They hadn't a clue that Kelly and Alice had been over the wall, or that Alice had touched the body, or that all four of them had gone down Roan's Dyke path together.

Even the conclusion that "the boyfriend's found a body" was wrong (in terms of the information being passed to them from control.) Luke told the operator they'd found something - she told the officers on the ground, "He won't say what." It was Kelly who dialled 999 a few minutes later and screamed down the phone, "It's a f*cking body."

But the operator(s) appeared to think the calls they were receiving were from the same person - Luke. The operator who took Kelly's call reported he found the caller's attitude odd - he wasn't reacting the way he'd have expected someone who'd just found a body to act - he seemed more annoyed that the police were taking so long to get there.

So, the police were acting on wrong information and then drawing erroneous conclusions from that wrong information, the assumption, from the off, being that there was something definitely not right about "the boyfriend." Had they not believed Jodi left home "with her boyfriend" at tea-time, had they known he wasn't coming up the path on his bike and he wasn't alone - there were four searchers on the path, all of whom were present when Jodi's body was found - and had they taken statements immediately from all four searchers and discovered the double check of the path was suggested by Alice, would they have jumped to the immediate conclusion that Luke was the killer?

I think it would have been less likely.

If they'd received the call "the search party have found a body," might they have been suspicious about Kelly's comment, "I suppose you've been to my house first?" If they'd been told Jodi was supposed to be hanging out in Easthouses/Mayfield and the family search trio were leaving from Mayfield to look for her, might they have thought it odd that they didn't look for her in Easthouses/Mayfield but headed straight for the path? Might they have thought it strange that, although there were four searchers out in two different areas, they were given only one contact number, for the lone searcher coming from Newbattle, and no contact details for the three searchers coming from Mayfield?

Of course, we'll never know, but I do think it helps to understand why they believed what they did in that critical first hour, because it set the direction of the entire investigation.

Offline David1819

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2019, 11:08:AM »
The investigation resulted in the killer going on trial and being found guilty.

Anyone else leading the investigation would have got the same result.

Offline Davie

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2019, 12:57:PM »
Ah Lean trying to once again re-write the case.

Did you go to the trial Lean? Was you there in the flesh & blood?

Online ngb1066

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2019, 01:17:PM »
Ah Lean trying to once again re-write the case.

Did you go to the trial Lean? Was you there in the flesh & blood?

Please try to be polite in your posts.  Addressing Sandra Lean as Lean is not respectful.  You should address her or refer to her as Sandra, Sandra Lean or Dr Lean.

 

Offline Lithium

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2019, 01:40:PM »
Totally irrelevant. What has any of this got to do with Luke's fair trial and conviction. These officers didn't convict Luke.

This is where the SCCRC submission failed.

Offline Davie

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2019, 06:23:PM »
Please try to be polite in your posts.  Addressing Sandra Lean as Lean is not respectful.  You should address her or refer to her as Sandra, Sandra Lean or Dr Lean.

What I'm supposed to call you? A Star wars character?

Offline Steve_uk

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2019, 08:08:PM »
The investigation resulted in the killer going on trial and being found guilty.

Anyone else leading the investigation would have got the same result.
Funny I was just thinking the same about Jeremy Bamber. Now instead of jumping down my throat do you have the full 2008 appeal or am I to surmise that Luke Mitchell was convicted on an eyewitness spotting him near the path, his uncorroborated alibi, an infernal tattoo and urine bottles in the bedroom?

Online ngb1066

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2019, 09:58:PM »
What I'm supposed to call you? A Star wars character?

Which character?


Offline David1819

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #8 on: September 28, 2019, 10:24:PM »
Which character?

You appear to lack a sense of humour. ???????? NGB

Online ngb1066

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #9 on: September 29, 2019, 10:30:AM »
You appear to lack a sense of humour. ???????? NGB

No, I just don't get the joke.


Offline Caroline

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #10 on: September 29, 2019, 12:55:PM »
No, I just don't get the joke.

I didn't either!

Offline David1819

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #11 on: September 29, 2019, 01:02:PM »
No, I just don't get the joke.

Fair enough

Offline nugnug

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2019, 06:25:PM »
It's not difficult to see why the police were instantly suspicious of Luke.

In Judith's first statement, she told police Luke had told her he was "coming up the path on his bike" and that statement wasn't corrected until almost a month later when Judith told police she'd made a mistake - Luke hadn't said that at all, he'd said he was coming up the path "with his dog."

One police officer noted, after taking the missing person details, that Jodi had left her home at tea time "with her boyfriend."

Both officers on the ground and the 999 operator were of the impression that Luke, and Luke alone, was (a) out looking for Jodi and (b) somewhere behind Newbattle High School on a path.

Then the officers on the ground get a shout - the boyfriend's found a body.

So think about it from their perspective - Jodi left home with her boyfriend at teatime, but now he's saying he hasn't seen her all evening. He's going up a path in darkness on a bike and randomly stops to climb over a wall where he "finds" a body. Suspicious, yes?

So much so that they jumped to the conclusion that the other three searchers had arrived after Luke found the body, hence not taking their statements, not asking any of them to go over the wall again to show them where the body was and separating Luke from the others almost immediately. They hadn't a clue that Kelly and Alice had been over the wall, or that Alice had touched the body, or that all four of them had gone down Roan's Dyke path together.

Even the conclusion that "the boyfriend's found a body" was wrong (in terms of the information being passed to them from control.) Luke told the operator they'd found something - she told the officers on the ground, "He won't say what." It was Kelly who dialled 999 a few minutes later and screamed down the phone, "It's a f*cking body."

But the operator(s) appeared to think the calls they were receiving were from the same person - Luke. The operator who took Kelly's call reported he found the caller's attitude odd - he wasn't reacting the way he'd have expected someone who'd just found a body to act - he seemed more annoyed that the police were taking so long to get there.

So, the police were acting on wrong information and then drawing erroneous conclusions from that wrong information, the assumption, from the off, being that there was something definitely not right about "the boyfriend." Had they not believed Jodi left home "with her boyfriend" at tea-time, had they known he wasn't coming up the path on his bike and he wasn't alone - there were four searchers on the path, all of whom were present when Jodi's body was found - and had they taken statements immediately from all four searchers and discovered the double check of the path was suggested by Alice, would they have jumped to the immediate conclusion that Luke was the killer?

I think it would have been less likely.

If they'd received the call "the search party have found a body," might they have been suspicious about Kelly's comment, "I suppose you've been to my house first?" If they'd been told Jodi was supposed to be hanging out in Easthouses/Mayfield and the family search trio were leaving from Mayfield to look for her, might they have thought it odd that they didn't look for her in Easthouses/Mayfield but headed straight for the path? Might they have thought it strange that, although there were four searchers out in two different areas, they were given only one contact number, for the lone searcher coming from Newbattle, and no contact details for the three searchers coming from Mayfield?

Of course, we'll never know, but I do think it helps to understand why they believed what they did in that critical first hour, because it set the direction of the entire investigation.


ithink jodis aunts had a lot  to do with it.

Offline sandra L

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2019, 07:32:PM »
I don't know if the aunts had a lot to do with it, but I've never been able to figure out how they knew to go to the school car park,or, indeed, why they went there.

The only way they could have been there before the search party was taken to the back of the school from the V point is if they were called at around 11.45pm (around the same time as Kelly was calling 999).

But how would anyone have known, then, that the police would take the search party to the back of the school? They could just as easily have parked in the lay-by at the Newbattle end and taken everyone there - the search party couldn't have known where the police parked their car.

Then there's the strange claim by Alice that she handed her phone to one of the aunts to answer Judith's call and break the news that a body had been found. Why, knowing that Alice, Janine and Steven Kelly were all out looking, did the aunts drive into the school grounds and park up? They didn't start searching, which suggests they already knew a body had been found, but if that was the case, why didn't they go to Judith's house to be there when the news was broken to Judith? Instead, Judith was told over the phone and ran, alone,  from her house to the entrance to the path.

I say the "strange claim by Alice" because Judith was initially quite sure it was Alice who told her a body had been found and that Luke and Steven had been "searching in the woods." Obviously, in such horrific circumstances, I wouldn't expect Judith to remember exactly who said what or when, but the accounts just don't tally.

Was it Alice or her other daughter who broke the news to Judith? Why, after having put Luke in the back of a police car, were the police allowing other members of the search party to pass their phones to people who were not present when Jodi's body was found? Why did Alice call the aunts (or at least one of them) before the police had arrived and why did the aunts then go to the school car park rather than Judith's house?

Offline nugnug

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Re: How the investigation got off on the wrong foot.
« Reply #14 on: October 13, 2019, 07:38:PM »
well ive allways wondered what they were doing there they were not searching so why were they there.