Discussion:
paediatrician and child protection
(too old to reply)
Derek Hornby
2006-01-05 16:55:33 UTC
Permalink
From The Guardian 5 January 2006
Doctors accuse regulatory body of increasing risk of child abuse:
Experts afraid to speak out after two were struck off
GMC 'pays more attention to parents than children'
Sarah Boseley Health editor

children are being left at risk of abuse because doctors are afraid to speak
out following the pillorying of paediatricians in the media and by the General
Medical Council, senior doctors warn today.

In a strongly worded article for a leading medical journal, a former president
of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health criticises the GMC, the
doctors' regulatory body, for the disciplinary action it took against the
child protection experts Roy Meadow and David Southall.

Many in the profession no longer have confidence in the GMC, says Sir David
Hall, implicitly accusing it of paying more attention to parents who complain
than to the welfare of the child.
"Changes in the way complaints are managed are urgently needed,"
he writes in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine.

Professor Meadow was struck off the medical register by the GMC for wrongly
asserting that the chances of a second cot death happening in a family were
one in 73 million. His expert evidence was given during the trial of Sally
Clark, who was convicted of killing her second child but later freed on appeal.

Professor Southall was suspended from child protection work for contacting
police to accuse Mrs Clark's husband of killing two of their babies after
watching him on a television programme. Both paediatricians have been the
target of vociferous campaigns by groups defending parents accused of abusing
their children. But Sir David writes that a paediatrician fundamentally owes
a duty of care to the child, not the parent. Guidance from the judiciary
and the Children's Act make it clear that the child's interests must be
paramount.

"With regret, it must be recorded on behalf of many UK doctors that they
currently have no confidence in the competence of the regulatory authorities
to apply this guidance when making judgements about the expertise or
professional behaviour of those working in child protection," he says.
"Nor do they believe that the authorities are able to withstand public,
political and media pressures in high-profile cases."

The evidence base in child protection cases is still weak, he says.
Insufficient research has been done on forensic questions, such as the
ageing or pattern of bruises or the significance of human bite marks.
"It is a bitter irony that among the doctors who have been called before the
General Medical Council are several who have contributed so much to our
knowledge of child abuse."

---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give way to such
pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of them can be
wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must be challenged.

But what of Sir David Hall's opinion he feels that the GMC
pays more attention to parents who complain than to the welfare of the child.

Derek
Steve Walker
2006-01-05 20:19:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give
way to such pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of
them can be wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must
be challenged.
I am reliably advised that Police now sometimes find it very difficult to
secure a forensic medical exam of an injured child in some areas, beause the
doctors take the view that they'll just be pilloried and sued for years
afterwards (they'll happily treat the child as usual, they just won't put
their name to any report).

Does "public and political opinion" want child abusers to escape for the
lack of evidence against them? Do we want the (alleged) rapists of that 3yr
old girl in Wales to walk free? There's two sides to every story.....
PeteM
2006-01-06 10:28:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by Steve Walker
Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give
way to such pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of
them can be wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must
be challenged.
I am reliably advised that Police now sometimes find it very difficult to
secure a forensic medical exam of an injured child in some areas, beause the
doctors take the view that they'll just be pilloried and sued for years
afterwards (they'll happily treat the child as usual, they just won't put
their name to any report).
If they are looking for someone to blame for this, they might consider
people like Dr Camille de San Lazaro in Newcastle, who repeatedly
misdiagnosed child abuse at the Shieldfield nursery in Newcastle. She
later admitted that she had 'overstated and exaggerated' the evidence in
order to help parents get financial compensation.

The lives of two innocent nursery assistants were utterly wrecked by her
behaviour. However the General Medical Council, although it decided that
her reports were 'inappropriate', 'irresponsible' and 'unprofessional',
decided not to punish her for this.
Post by Steve Walker
Does "public and political opinion" want child abusers to escape for the
lack of evidence against them? Do we want the (alleged) rapists of that 3yr
old girl in Wales to walk free? There's two sides to every story.....
It is an example of a very common trend in human affairs. A group of
people are given power without accountability in the hope they will use
it responsibly. Inevitably some of them, drunk with arrogance and power,
choose to abuse their influence, knowing that they can get away with it.
When this pattern of abuse is finally discovered, a reaction sets in
that damages the whole profession as well as innocent third parties.

Ultimately, one hopes, a balance will be found. It shouldn't be far to
seek. Surely paediatricians can write their forensic reports in a way
that will both protect themselves from litigation and - more important -
avoid the pillorying of possibly innocent people for crimes against
children when the medical evidence against them is minimal or ambiguous.
--
PeteM
Periander
2006-01-06 12:24:48 UTC
Permalink
...
Post by PeteM
If they are looking for someone to blame for this, they might consider
people like Dr Camille de San Lazaro in Newcastle, who repeatedly
misdiagnosed child abuse at the Shieldfield nursery in Newcastle. She
later admitted that she had 'overstated and exaggerated' the evidence
in order to help parents get financial compensation.
However the problem arises is that in her own words she was intentionally
dishonest in her dealings with police, the families, CICB and so forth, she
also had (at the time) very poor clinical skills. IOW she really didn't
know what she was doing and intentionally lied about her findings.
Something I've highlighted myself on this group in times passim.

Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake that in the context of
the wider evidence made very little difference to the outcome of the trail
see the COA judgements on BAILI for details, again something that I and
others have highlighted before. On the other hand he was never once
dishonest and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.

San Lazaro got a bollocking, Prof Meadow was stripped on the right to work.
San Lazaro got a page or two in the press over the course of a couple of
days, Meadow has been systematically pilloried.

Under such circumstances it is hardly surprising that skilled, competent
and ethical doctors working in the field of paediatrics are becoming to
frightened to offer opinions.

The GMC should be ashamed of itself.

And yes as another poster has pointed out it is becoming more difficult for
police to engage skilled, ethical, professional doctors to offer opinions
in child abuse cases. It's a situation by which no-one wins. Abused
children are being sent back to abusers and on the other hand suspision is
resting on innocent, wrongly suspected caring parents for far to long.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
The Todal
2006-01-06 13:20:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
If they are looking for someone to blame for this, they might consider
people like Dr Camille de San Lazaro in Newcastle, who repeatedly
misdiagnosed child abuse at the Shieldfield nursery in Newcastle. She
later admitted that she had 'overstated and exaggerated' the evidence
in order to help parents get financial compensation.
However the problem arises is that in her own words she was intentionally
dishonest in her dealings with police, the families, CICB and so forth, she
also had (at the time) very poor clinical skills. IOW she really didn't
know what she was doing and intentionally lied about her findings.
Something I've highlighted myself on this group in times passim.
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake that in the context of
the wider evidence made very little difference to the outcome of the trail
see the COA judgements on BAILI for details, again something that I and
others have highlighted before. On the other hand he was never once
dishonest and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.
San Lazaro got a bollocking, Prof Meadow was stripped on the right to work.
San Lazaro got a page or two in the press over the course of a couple of
days, Meadow has been systematically pilloried.
Under such circumstances it is hardly surprising that skilled, competent
and ethical doctors working in the field of paediatrics are becoming to
frightened to offer opinions.
The GMC should be ashamed of itself.
And yes as another poster has pointed out it is becoming more difficult for
police to engage skilled, ethical, professional doctors to offer opinions
in child abuse cases. It's a situation by which no-one wins. Abused
children are being sent back to abusers and on the other hand suspision is
resting on innocent, wrongly suspected caring parents for far to long.
Agreed. I don't want to repeat myself from weeks ago, but it seems clear
that Meadow has been scapegoated for failures committed by the barristers
and the judge. The GMC is widely perceived by doctors (rightly I think) as
an organisation that prefers to sell its members down the river if it will
result in Press approval, rather than defend doctors who make controversial
decisions. I hope that Meadow's appeal succeeds and that the GMC gets a
bollocking from the courts.
Paul Robson
2006-01-06 18:56:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
However the problem arises is that in her own words she was intentionally
dishonest in her dealings with police, the families, CICB and so forth, she
also had (at the time) very poor clinical skills. IOW she really didn't
know what she was doing and intentionally lied about her findings.
Something I've highlighted myself on this group in times passim.
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake that in the context of
the wider evidence made very little difference to the outcome of the trail
see the COA judgements on BAILI for details, again something that I and
others have highlighted before. On the other hand he was never once
dishonest and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.
San Lazaro got a bollocking, Prof Meadow was stripped on the right to work.
San Lazaro got a page or two in the press over the course of a couple of
days, Meadow has been systematically pilloried.
And quite right too. San Lazaro should be in jail IMO. I think you
underestimate the effect of these fabricated statistics (see the way the
Police abuse DNA for example).

You have an interesting definition of "dishonest".
Periander
2006-01-06 19:05:50 UTC
Permalink
Paul Robson <***@autismuk.muralichucks.freeserve.co.uk> wrote in news:***@autismuk.muralichucks.freeserve.co.uk
:

...
Post by Paul Robson
And quite right too. San Lazaro should be in jail IMO. I think you
underestimate the effect of these fabricated statistics (see the way
the Police abuse DNA for example).
You have an interesting definition of "dishonest".
The problem with xnews is that unless you tell it otherwise it "expires"
members of a killfile after a default period, hence I've begun to see your
posts again. Heck I believe I even replied to one today, but permit me to
be frank, I don't give a flying fuck about your little crusade and apparent
monomania, in fact I don't give a flying one about anything you say.

Have a nice day.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Paul Robson
2006-01-06 20:24:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Post by Paul Robson
And quite right too. San Lazaro should be in jail IMO. I think you
underestimate the effect of these fabricated statistics (see the way
the Police abuse DNA for example).
You have an interesting definition of "dishonest".
The problem with xnews is that unless you tell it otherwise it "expires"
members of a killfile after a default period, hence I've begun to see your
posts again. Heck I believe I even replied to one today, but permit me to
be frank, I don't give a flying fuck about your little crusade and apparent
monomania, in fact I don't give a flying one about anything you say.
Temper temper.

As a cop, I'm sure you are okay with faking evidence to jail people, but
most people think it's a crime.
Derek Hornby
2006-01-06 22:18:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake
I thought he made few mistakes!
Post by Periander
that in the context of the wider evidence made very little difference to
the outcome of the trail
How do you know?
If the jury believed what he said was 100% true then it may well have made
big difference to their judgement.
Post by Periander
see the COA judgements on BAILI for details, again something that I and
others have highlighted before. On the other hand he was never once
dishonest
Well that depends how one defines term "dishonest"
Was he telling the truth at all times?
Did he mislead the court?
Post by Periander
and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.
So why then did GMC take action?
Post by Periander
San Lazaro got a bollocking, Prof Meadow was stripped on the right to work.
Given his age, it's really no big deal. He will still have his pension
rights!

Now far better you explain how it can be right for a mother to be
jailed for murder, or manslaughter, if she didn't commit such crime.
Far better you explain why the women were arrested for a crime they
did not commit? The police should take some responsibility for lack of
care to investigate and come up with the truth.
Derek
Periander
2006-01-07 00:19:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?

He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
that in the context of the wider evidence made very little
difference to the outcome of the trail
How do you know?
Because that's what the court of appeal said - twice.
Post by Derek Hornby
If the jury believed what he said was 100% true then it may well have
made big difference to their judgement.
Post by Periander
see the COA judgements on BAILI for details, again something that I
and others have highlighted before. On the other hand he was never
once dishonest
Well that depends how one defines term "dishonest"
Intent to deceive usually comes in to the equation, making a mistake is not
dishonest. See the first line of this reply.
Post by Derek Hornby
Was he telling the truth at all times?
I'm sure he believed that he was.
Post by Derek Hornby
Did he mislead the court?
Post by Periander
and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.
So why then did GMC take action?
The generally accepted answer is that it was pandering to adverse publicity
in order that it should itself be shown in a good light. Hanging Prof
Meadow out to dry rather than make a stand for professional honesty and
integrity was simply the easy way out.
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
San Lazaro got a bollocking, Prof Meadow was stripped on the right to work.
Given his age, it's really no big deal. He will still have his
pension rights!
However his reputation has been dragged through the mud simply to cater for
...
Post by Derek Hornby
Now far better you explain how it can be right for a mother to be
jailed for murder, or manslaughter, if she didn't commit such crime.
Far better you explain why the women were arrested for a crime they
did not commit? The police should take some responsibility for lack
of care to investigate and come up with the truth.
Now before you go any further with the above may I suggest that your read
the thread on legal moderated on precisely the above subject, it was about
six months ago.

http://groups.google.co.uk/group/uk.legal.moderated/browse_frm/thread/70a10
aee3da3f588/bff8d3e7530e115a

In it you'll find that the foolish errors were made by the pathologist and
that it was ultimately his failure and no-one else's that rendered the
conviction unsafe. You will also read of a catalogue of injuries that the
two dead children suffered *on repeated occasions* before their death. You
will also read that had police/social services been informed on any of the
previous occasions the children had been injured the likelihood would have
been that they would have been removed from the home, initially under
police protection and ultimately by a (emergency) care order.

From that thread by that most distinguished writer - moi in a superb piece
of writing that avoided the moderaters sence of slander

http://groups.google.co.uk/group/uk.legal.moderated/tree/browse_frm/thread/
70a10aee3da3f588/fadfd7a54bb2c520?rnum=71&_done=%2Fgroup%2Fuk.legal.moderat
ed%2Fbrowse_frm%2Fthread%2F70a10aee3da3f588%2Fbff8d3e7530e115a%3F#doc_7bd44
277326a5355

The pathologist, Dr Williams does indeed have a lot to answer for, however
as it's all already been said I'm not going through it again. You can read
my views from the links above.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Paul Robson
2006-01-07 07:26:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
..... so why not respond with "I'm not qualified to answer that, I'm not a
statistician" rather than make flat "Laws" about how such a coincidence is
statistically - almost - impossible.

It strikes me that in this sort of prosecution the question "how likely is
it that two children from the same family would die this way" is a
perfectly reasonable sort of question to ask.
incubus
2006-01-07 07:58:39 UTC
Permalink
On 7 Jan 2006 00:19:08 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
Here are just a few of the quacks "mistakes" and the lives he ruined
in return for his "professional witness" fee.

Margaret Smith:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/newspaper/0,,2730-1352134,00.html


Sally Clark, five years of her life taken away by that quacks
evidence:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/2707153.stm

Do a search on Trupti Patel and Angela Cannings all had lives ripped
apart from the quacks lies. There are more.

Are these also mistakes or did the quack deliberatly brow beat the
jury to get the convictions and secure more lucrative fees? Maybe hes
just a sociopath?
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
and his clinical skills were unsurpassed.
This is the kind of deference to the medical profession that gave
Shipman a free hand. You know nothing about medicine so your opinion
on his medical skills are worthless.
Paul Robson
2006-01-07 09:09:01 UTC
Permalink
Post by incubus
Here are just a few of the quacks "mistakes" and the lives he ruined
in return for his "professional witness" fee.
Probably the basic problem. If the 'expert' doesn't slant the evidence the
way the Police want (towards a conviction) he won't get called again.
incubus
2006-01-07 10:25:47 UTC
Permalink
On Sat, 07 Jan 2006 09:09:01 +0000, Paul Robson
Post by Paul Robson
Post by incubus
Here are just a few of the quacks "mistakes" and the lives he ruined
in return for his "professional witness" fee.
Probably the basic problem. If the 'expert' doesn't slant the evidence the
way the Police want (towards a conviction) he won't get called again.
Bet his fee was in QC territory, so say > 1k / hr. Nice little earner
with plenty of repeat work, so long as he gets convictions of course.
PeteM
2006-01-07 17:10:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
Prof Meadow however made a mistake, a silly mistake
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
It was almost certainly Meadow who prompted the prosecution to ask it in
the first place. His prepared answer must have had a very powerful
influence on the jury.
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
that in the context of the wider evidence made very little
difference to the outcome of the trail
How do you know?
Because that's what the court of appeal said - twice.
They are not an authority on what convinced the jury to convict and we
are not obliged to accept what they say, especially as they have their
own interests to look after. This particular CoA are a right bunch
anyway.
--
PeteM
Paul Robson
2006-01-08 08:19:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
They are not an authority on what convinced the jury to convict and we
are not obliged to accept what they say, especially as they have their
own interests to look after. This particular CoA are a right bunch
anyway.
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
PeteM
2006-01-08 11:47:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Robson
Post by PeteM
They are not an authority on what convinced the jury to convict and we
are not obliged to accept what they say, especially as they have their
own interests to look after. This particular CoA are a right bunch
anyway.
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't. But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence, and
the CoA has a vested interest in diverting the blame for any judicial
failures safely away from the legal system. Whereas Williams' phoney
evidence was entirely his own responsibility.

I'm not trying to exonerate Williams - I think he should be in jail. I'm
just pointing out that his culpability doesn't excuse either Meadow or
the prosecution.
--
PeteM
Periander
2006-01-08 12:11:49 UTC
Permalink
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong statistic
he provided in response to a question, baring in mind that it was not in
his evidence in chief.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
PeteM
2006-01-08 18:11:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Granted, but they cannot *know* what convinced the jury without knowing
how their deliberations went. Moreover (as I said earlier) they may not
be able to assess the question objectively, because of their interest in
exonerating the judicial system.
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong statistic
he provided
Just that, AFAIK.
Post by Periander
in response to a question,
It was almost certainly Meadow who briefed the prosecution to ask that
question in the first place. The statistic he cited had emerged from a
hitherto unpublished piece of research and was known to very few people
in the UK besides himself. I can't see how the prosecution could have
known about it unless he had told them while the case was being
prepared.
Post by Periander
baring in mind that it was not in
his evidence in chief.
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to a
question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
--
PeteM
Periander
2006-01-08 19:10:34 UTC
Permalink
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to a
question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the above
may have happened in real life?
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
PeteM
2006-01-09 09:52:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to a
question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the above
may have happened in real life?
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and was
known to very few people in the UK besides himself. I can't see how the
prosecution could have known about it unless he had told them while the
case was being prepared." (I am referring to the CESDI report, to which
at the time AIUI Meadow was busy writing the preface.)

Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's." (Batt, "Stolen Innocence", Ebury
Press 2004, p.99 of the hardback edition).

Does that sound as if the figure was dragged out of a surprised and
reluctant Meadow? Or does it suggest he knew perfectly well it was
coming and had carefully prepared the answer he gave?
--
PeteM
Periander
2006-01-09 17:03:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to
a question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and
was known to very few people in the UK besides himself...
See my reply to Turtill, he was in the process of writing a preface to it
(nothing more), however one of the defence experts was an actual
contributor to teh report.
Post by PeteM
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's."
However he did not give this in his evidence in chief, he did so in
response to questioning. Tha is a very important distinction. Now I haven't
read Batt's book so perhaps you might put the above in to context. Who sent
the fax and under what circumsatnces. Baring in mind that one of the
defence experts was actually an author of that report (unlike Meadow)
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-10 00:18:31 UTC
Permalink
On 9 Jan 2006 17:03:36 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to
a question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Do you really expect anyone to take you seriously when such
unwarranted sneers jump from you all the time when somebody states
something you cannot answer.
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and
was known to very few people in the UK besides himself...
See my reply to Turtill, he was in the process of writing a preface to it
(nothing more), however one of the defence experts was an actual
contributor to teh report.
Ahh now we have a new idea out of you and I must say it is somewhat
original coming from you. The defence experts got their client off.
How novel.
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's."
However he did not give this in his evidence in chief, he did so in
response to questioning. Tha is a very important distinction. Now I haven't
read Batt's book so perhaps you might put the above in to context. Who sent
the fax and under what circumsatnces. Baring in mind that one of the
defence experts was actually an author of that report (unlike Meadow)
And of course Meadows pointed this all out too I take it. I think you
better go back to playing with train sets and collecting match boxes.
pete
--
Due to privacy considerations, I will not respond to mail from gmail.com.
For more information, please visit www.google-watch.org/gmail.html
Periander
2006-01-10 22:44:59 UTC
Permalink
***@hotmail.com wrote in news:***@4ax.com:

...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
Post by Periander
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Do you really expect anyone to take you seriously when such
unwarranted sneers jump from you all the time when somebody states
something you cannot answer.
It was answered (with the contempt it deserved), I can't be expected to
think for all of you all the time. I do my best and slowly some of you are
expanding your horizons a little but nevertheless paucity of thought
sometimes requires an abrupt answer. Think of it as teacher rapping the
desk with a ruler to waken a dozing schoolboy.
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
See my reply to Turtill, he was in the process of writing a preface to
it (nothing more), however one of the defence experts was an actual
contributor to teh report.
Ahh now we have a new idea out of you and I must say it is somewhat
original coming from you. The defence experts got their client off.
How novel.
Not quite, however you have to understand how experts work and what they do
prior to submitting their reports/evidence to the court. Todal explains it
for those unaware of the process. If I was a suspicious chap I might think
that the evidence was admitted in the full knowledge f the defence simply
in order that they may play an ambush defence at the inevitable appeal. But
that would be cynical ...

...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
And of course Meadows pointed this all out too I take it. I think you
better go back to playing with train sets and collecting match boxes.
Oh I don't do matchboxes, trains yes, you want to get yourself a hobby,
might help your blood pressure.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-11 01:18:41 UTC
Permalink
On 10 Jan 2006 22:44:59 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Do you really expect anyone to take you seriously when such
unwarranted sneers jump from you all the time when somebody states
something you cannot answer.
It was answered (with the contempt it deserved), I can't be expected to
think for all of you all the time. I do my best and slowly some of you are
expanding your horizons a little but nevertheless paucity of thought
sometimes requires an abrupt answer. Think of it as teacher rapping the
desk with a ruler to waken a dozing schoolboy.
That does explain much about you and your posts.
pete
--
Due to privacy considerations, I will not respond to mail from gmail.com.
For more information, please visit www.google-watch.org/gmail.html
Cynic
2006-01-13 14:56:22 UTC
Permalink
On 10 Jan 2006 22:44:59 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
If I was a suspicious chap I might think
that the evidence was admitted in the full knowledge f the defence simply
in order that they may play an ambush defence at the inevitable appeal.
That sounds like the product of a fevered imagination.
--
Cynic
Periander
2006-01-13 21:10:59 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 10 Jan 2006 22:44:59 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
If I was a suspicious chap I might think
that the evidence was admitted in the full knowledge f the defence
simply in order that they may play an ambush defence at the inevitable
appeal.
That sounds like the product of a fevered imagination.
And yet it fits the known facts far more easily than many of the more
assumed beliefs as expressed by some folks hereabouts. But for the record I
do not allege the above.
--
Regards,

Periander
PeteM
2006-01-10 08:58:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to
a question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and
was known to very few people in the UK besides himself...
See my reply to Turtill, he was in the process of writing a preface to it
(nothing more), however one of the defence experts was an actual
contributor to teh report.
It seems unlikely that a *defence* expert would have briefed the
prosecution about this study and suggested they ask this question of
Meadow.

Which expert, by the way?
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's."
However he did not give this in his evidence in chief, he did so in
response to questioning.
According to Batt's account, the questioning on CESDI takes place during
the examination in chief, before the cross examination. Of course Batt
may be mistaken; what is your source?

[Not that it matters much. The prosecution asked the question and Meadow
answered it, just as they said they were going to do beforehand.]
Post by Periander
Tha is a very important distinction. Now I haven't
read Batt's book
Not a good position from which to be accusing people of "fevered
imaginings" then. Do try not to be so arrogant.
Post by Periander
so perhaps you might put the above in to context. Who sent
the fax and under what circumsatnces.
Batt only says "the prosecution", under the circumstance I quoted. I
guess I can ask him if it's important.
--
PeteM
The Todal
2006-01-10 09:56:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to
a question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the
above may have happened in real life?
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and
was known to very few people in the UK besides himself...
See my reply to Turtill, he was in the process of writing a preface to it
(nothing more), however one of the defence experts was an actual
contributor to teh report.
It seems unlikely that a *defence* expert would have briefed the
prosecution about this study and suggested they ask this question of
Meadow.
You've misunderstood. The experts tell their legal teams about all the
background material, and the lawyers decide what questions are relevant.
Post by PeteM
Which expert, by the way?
Surely you have perused the transcripts of the Court of Appeal judgments?
The defence expert most relevant to the issue was Professor Berry.
http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Crim/2000/54.html

"In 1992 the National Advisory Body set up CESDI (the Confidential Enquiry
into Stillbirths and Deaths in Infancy - here the first year of life). In
1992 there had been a fall in the incidence of SIDS following the Back to
Sleep campaign where parents were advised and encouraged to put their babies
to sleep on their backs or sides, rather than prone. But SUDI remained the
largest single group of deaths in the neo-natal range. Between 1993 and 1996
the CESDI SUDI Study was set up to identify possible risk factors and
associations for such sudden unexpected infant deaths. The SUDI Study
extended beyond SIDS. The classic definition for SIDS (from the American
pathologist Beckwith) is:
"... the sudden death of a baby that is unexpected by history and in whom a
thorough necropsy examination fails to demonstrate an adequate cause of
death."
103. Clearly the accuracy of that definition depends on the pathologists'
thoroughness in autopsy, and on his or her interpretation of the findings.
The definition of SUDI is wider, and includes:
"* deaths that were unexpected, and unexplained at autopsy (ie those meeting
the criteria for SIDS);
* deaths occurring in the course of an acute illness that was not recognised
by carers and/or by health professionals as potentially life threatening;
* deaths occurring in the course of a sudden acute illness of less than 24
hours duration in a previously healthy infant, or a death that occurred
after this if intensive care had been instituted within 24 hours of the
onset of illness;
* deaths arising from a pre-existing condition that had not been previously
recognised by health professionals;
* deaths resulting from any form of accident, trauma or poisoning."
It will be seen that all SUDI are potential SIDS, but further investigation
may show it is not a true SIDS, which are unexplained and unsuspicious
natural deaths."

"The Crown took the view that neither Christopher's nor Harry's death was a
SIDS death because both were attended by unusual/suspicious circumstances
suggesting death caused by a parent because of (inter alia) the existence in
the case of each boy of unexplained recent and old injuries found after
death. But until cross-examination of the defence medical witnesses, the
Crown believed that the defence experts at trial would be mounting a case
that the deaths were SIDS deaths, ie unexplained natural deaths.
109. The trial started on Monday 12th October 1999, there were 13 days of
evidence in all, and it was not until the defence expert medical evidence
was called (ninth to twelfth days of evidence - 26th to 28th October) that
it became clear that the medical experts called by the defence accepted that
neither death was a true SIDS death. But though the precise measure of
rarity was not a significant issue by the end of the trial, the principle of
rarity was. The appellant and her husband had not abandoned her defence that
both the deaths were natural and true SIDS.
110. The Crown had sought to meet the issue - true SIDS or not - by evidence
of the rarity of true SIDS deaths - death by unexplained natural causes. On
5th June 1998 a witness statement by Professor Sir Roy Meadow was served. In
paragraph 7 he stated:
"Two infants' deaths in one family
Even when an infant dies suddenly and unexpectedly in early life and no
cause is found at autopsy, and the reason for death is thought to be an
unidentified natural cause (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - SIDS), it is
extremely rare for that to happen again within a family. For example, such a
happening may occur 1:1,000 infants therefore the chance of it happening
within a family is 1:1,000,000. Neither of these two deaths can be classed
as SIDS. Each of the deaths was unusual and had the characteristics of a
death caused by a parent."
111. From what we know now, it is clear that Professor Meadow was stating
the approximate ratio of SIDS deaths to births (1:1,000) and squaring that
to reflect the chance of a second SIDS death in a family that has already
suffered one. That statistical practice makes the assumption that the chance
of a second SIDS death in a family that has already suffered one is the same
as the chance of the first SIDS death in a family that has not already
experienced a SIDS death, an assumption that the defence challenge.
112. In arriving at those figures, Professor Meadow (who does not claim to
be a statistician) was using the calculation above described on the global
figures (see his evidence in chief, p 36 - 37). He was not (he did not have
the material) relying on the effect on those figures of taking account of
the "... three prenatal factors with the highest predictive value ... of an
increased risk of SIDS" (see the second quoted sub-paragraph of paragraph
122 hereof) - factors which the CESDI Study showed affected the risk. It was
this Study on which the ratio of 1:73 million was based, as will be seen."
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's."
However he did not give this in his evidence in chief, he did so in
response to questioning.
According to Batt's account, the questioning on CESDI takes place during
the examination in chief, before the cross examination. Of course Batt
may be mistaken; what is your source?
[Not that it matters much. The prosecution asked the question and Meadow
answered it, just as they said they were going to do beforehand.]
The statement from Meadow setting out what his evidence would be, was served
in June (as per above) and the trial began in October. There was ample time
to assess whether the evidence was likely to mislead a jury, and that was an
assessment that only the lawyers were qualified to make. If you take the
trouble to read the judgments, you can see that Meadow didn't mislead the
judge or the lawyers. They knew exactly how irrelevant those statistics
were - it had been fully discussed by the defence expert who had given
evidence about it (The judge said of Professor Berry's evidence (Day 2, p
73):
"He said that he would not classify either of these deaths at SIDS deaths
because they have features which are not typical of SIDS deaths. Both
deaths, he said, gave him considerable concern. He thought the timing of the
deaths was unusual but not very unusual for a SIDS death. So far as the
statistics are concerned relating to the likelihood of there being two SIDS
deaths in one family, that figure of 1 in 73 million, he thought it was
wrong to multiply the two figures of 1 in 8,543 together because if there
was one SIDS in the family, then there maybe other factors present in the
family which might make it more likely that another death would occur."). It
was their decision to let that evidence go before a jury, and it was
obviously the wrong decision. Blaming Meadow for this amounts to
scapegoating him for the failures of others.
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
Tha is a very important distinction. Now I haven't
read Batt's book
Not a good position from which to be accusing people of "fevered
imaginings" then. Do try not to be so arrogant.
I don't see that Batt's book is as valuable (by way of source material) as
the CA judgments.
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
so perhaps you might put the above in to context. Who sent
the fax and under what circumsatnces.
Batt only says "the prosecution", under the circumstance I quoted. I
guess I can ask him if it's important.
Whether it was by fax or post, it was a long time before the trial began.
PeteM
2006-01-10 11:01:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
It seems unlikely that a *defence* expert would have briefed the
prosecution about this study and suggested they ask this question of
Meadow.
You've misunderstood. The experts tell their legal teams about all the
background material, and the lawyers decide what questions are relevant.
Are you then saying that it was the defence experts who produced this
statistic and communicated it to the prosecution? If not, what?
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
Which expert, by the way?
Surely you have perused the transcripts of the Court of Appeal judgments?
Yes, but I did not commit them to memory. What are you saying, that I
should remember everything ever posted and never ask anybody any
questions?
Post by The Todal
The defence expert most relevant to the issue was Professor Berry.
http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Crim/2000/54.html
OK - snip
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
Post by PeteM
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's."
However he did not give this in his evidence in chief, he did so in
response to questioning.
According to Batt's account, the questioning on CESDI takes place during
the examination in chief, before the cross examination. Of course Batt
may be mistaken; what is your source?
[Not that it matters much. The prosecution asked the question and Meadow
answered it, just as they said they were going to do beforehand.]
The statement from Meadow setting out what his evidence would be, was served
in June (as per above) and the trial began in October. There was ample time
to assess whether the evidence was likely to mislead a jury, and that was an
assessment that only the lawyers were qualified to make. If you take the
trouble to read the judgments, you can see that Meadow didn't mislead the
judge or the lawyers.
The GMC says otherwise:
"You stated that the risk of two infants dying of SIDS in a household
such as Mrs Clark’s was 1 in 73 million, derived from squaring 1 in
8543. To compound this erroneous and misleading evidence you stated that
the chance of two SIDS deaths in one family (such as Mrs Clark’s) arose
once in every hundred years".
"The incidence of two SIDS deaths in a family was far greater than you
had stated and the Panel found that you gave misleading and erroneous
evidence ..."
"It is because of your eminence and authority that this misleading
evidence carried such great weight."
"The Panel is clear that you abused your position as a doctor by giving
evidence that was misleading ..."
"Found proved ... because your evidence was misleading"


It is true that the GMC did not state that Meadow had *deliberately*
misled the court. But that's only because it is very hard to prove
intent in such a case. In reality no statistician would ever believe
that a fellow scientist had made such a mistake accidentally. He would
certainly infer an intent to mislead.

As you say, we have been over this.

snip
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
Tha is a very important distinction. Now I haven't
read Batt's book
Not a good position from which to be accusing people of "fevered
imaginings" then. Do try not to be so arrogant.
I don't see that Batt's book is as valuable (by way of source material) as
the CA judgments.
It isn't a competition. Both sources are useful. Batt told us something
important that we coulddn't have known from the CoA judgements. That
strikes me as valuable.
--
PeteM
The Todal
2006-01-10 12:24:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
It seems unlikely that a *defence* expert would have briefed the
prosecution about this study and suggested they ask this question of
Meadow.
You've misunderstood. The experts tell their legal teams about all the
background material, and the lawyers decide what questions are relevant.
Are you then saying that it was the defence experts who produced this
statistic and communicated it to the prosecution? If not, what?
I am saying that the experts on both sides were (or must have been) fully
aware of all the published literature including the statistics. Their job as
experts is not to certify that the statistics are accurate and they should
not be responsible for any spin given to the figures by lawyers who are
trying to sway a jury.
Post by PeteM
Post by The Todal
The statement from Meadow setting out what his evidence would be, was served
in June (as per above) and the trial began in October. There was ample time
to assess whether the evidence was likely to mislead a jury, and that was an
assessment that only the lawyers were qualified to make. If you take the
trouble to read the judgments, you can see that Meadow didn't mislead the
judge or the lawyers.
They lacked the intellect to understand the issues. I would expect their
judgment to be overturned in due course.
Post by PeteM
"You stated that the risk of two infants dying of SIDS in a household
such as Mrs Clark's was 1 in 73 million, derived from squaring 1 in
8543. To compound this erroneous and misleading evidence you stated that
the chance of two SIDS deaths in one family (such as Mrs Clark's) arose
once in every hundred years".
"The incidence of two SIDS deaths in a family was far greater than you
had stated and the Panel found that you gave misleading and erroneous
evidence ..."
"It is because of your eminence and authority that this misleading
evidence carried such great weight."
An oversimplification. It puts an intolerable burden on all experts, to
exercise control over the way their evidence is used and to check each
statistic that has been prepared by other experts. It is not a burden that
any expert should be expected to shoulder.
Post by PeteM
"The Panel is clear that you abused your position as a doctor by giving
evidence that was misleading ..."
"Found proved ... because your evidence was misleading"
It is true that the GMC did not state that Meadow had *deliberately*
misled the court. But that's only because it is very hard to prove
intent in such a case.
No, it's because in the context in which the evidence was given it is pretty
well inconceivable that there was an intention to mislead the court. It is a
very serious accusation to make, and you could with equal justification say
that the barristers intentionally misled the court. The fact of the matter
is that Meadow and the barristers thought at the time that they were making
fair use of accurate statistics.
Post by PeteM
In reality no statistician would ever believe
that a fellow scientist had made such a mistake accidentally. He would
certainly infer an intent to mislead.
So you are saying that statisticians are unscientific, judgmental and swayed
by prejudice? Have you any statistics to support such an unlikely
hypothesis?
PeteM
2006-01-10 22:04:33 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
It seems unlikely that a *defence* expert would have briefed the
prosecution about this study and suggested they ask this question of
Meadow.
You've misunderstood. The experts tell their legal teams about all the
background material, and the lawyers decide what questions are relevant.
Are you then saying that it was the defence experts who produced this
statistic and communicated it to the prosecution? If not, what?
I am saying that the experts on both sides were (or must have been) fully
aware of all the published literature including the statistics.
Well, I'm not arguing with that, it's what I've been saying: Meadow as
the prosecution expert would have drawn this study to the attention of
the prosecution.
Post by The Todal
Their job as
experts is not to certify that the statistics are accurate and they should
not be responsible for any spin given to the figures by lawyers who are
trying to sway a jury.
Post by PeteM
Post by The Todal
The statement from Meadow setting out what his evidence would be, was served
in June (as per above) and the trial began in October. There was ample time
to assess whether the evidence was likely to mislead a jury, and that was an
assessment that only the lawyers were qualified to make. If you take the
trouble to read the judgments, you can see that Meadow didn't mislead the
judge or the lawyers.
They lacked the intellect to understand the issues.
I would expect their
judgment to be overturned in due course.
By whom and on what specific grounds? What is wrong with their comments
below?
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
"You stated that the risk of two infants dying of SIDS in a household
such as Mrs Clark's was 1 in 73 million, derived from squaring 1 in
8543. To compound this erroneous and misleading evidence you stated that
the chance of two SIDS deaths in one family (such as Mrs Clark's) arose
once in every hundred years".
"The incidence of two SIDS deaths in a family was far greater than you
had stated and the Panel found that you gave misleading and erroneous
evidence ..."
"It is because of your eminence and authority that this misleading
evidence carried such great weight."
An oversimplification. It puts an intolerable burden on all experts, to
exercise control over the way their evidence is used and to check each
statistic that has been prepared by other experts. It is not a burden that
any expert should be expected to shoulder.
You paint a picture of a startled Meadow ambushed in the witness box and
stammering out an impromptu answer under heavy pressure. In fact he
knew all about the report beforehand, and had rehearsed both the
question and his answer. We know this from Batt's account of the fax
sent to the defence.
Post by The Todal
Post by PeteM
"The Panel is clear that you abused your position as a doctor by giving
evidence that was misleading ..."
"Found proved ... because your evidence was misleading"
It is true that the GMC did not state that Meadow had *deliberately*
misled the court. But that's only because it is very hard to prove
intent in such a case.
No, it's because in the context in which the evidence was given it is pretty
well inconceivable that there was an intention to mislead the court.
Why?
Post by The Todal
It is a
very serious accusation to make,
Nothing like the mere trivia of accusing several mothers of murdering
their babies, then.

If paediatricians are prepared to infer murderous intent from minor
physical injury I do not see that they can complain if others make
inferences of *their* intent from their behaviour.
Post by The Todal
and you could with equal justification say
that the barristers intentionally misled the court. The fact of the matter
is that Meadow and the barristers thought at the time that they were making
fair use of accurate statistics.
Post by PeteM
In reality no statistician would ever believe
that a fellow scientist had made such a mistake accidentally. He would
certainly infer an intent to mislead.
So you are saying that statisticians are unscientific, judgmental and swayed
by prejudice?
The inference I describe above is neither unscientific nor prejudiced.
Meadow's evidence was akin to a ballistics expert claiming that a
certain 9mm bullet must have come from a Glock 17 because Glock 17s are
known to fire 9mm rounds. No expert could make such a statement by
mistake. The conclusion is inescapable.
--
PeteM
The Todal
2006-01-09 18:00:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
I don't see your point. It was evidence that he gave in response to a
question that he and the prosecuting counsel had already prepared.
Outside of your fevered imaginings is there anything to suggest the above
may have happened in real life?
Two things. First, what I said in my earlier post: "The statistic he
cited had emerged from a hitherto unpublished piece of research and was
known to very few people in the UK besides himself. I can't see how the
prosecution could have known about it unless he had told them while the
case was being prepared." (I am referring to the CESDI report, to which
at the time AIUI Meadow was busy writing the preface.)
Second, a communication from the prosecution to the defence before the
trial, recounted by John Batt in his book: "Sally and Steve were at a
conference, discussing her case with [defence counsel] Kelsey Fry, the
previous Wednesday, when a prosecution fax came through saying Meadow
would be giving statistics of 1:73 million as the chance of two cot
deaths in a family like Sally's." (Batt, "Stolen Innocence", Ebury
Press 2004, p.99 of the hardback edition).
Does that sound as if the figure was dragged out of a surprised and
reluctant Meadow? Or does it suggest he knew perfectly well it was
coming and had carefully prepared the answer he gave?
Your question suggests you don't know how the system works.

When a trial is approaching, the barristers co-operate with each other in
exchanging information about how they will prepare their case and what
evidence their witnesses will give. It means that valuable time can be saved
at trial. So the "prosecution fax" would probably have been a response to a
question from the defence team, and/or would have been an opportunity for
the defence team to say "hold on a minute, that evidence is irrelevant and
prejudicial. Please don't put it before the jury without giving us an
opportunity to object". But no objection was raised. The defence lawyers
didn't think the evidence was relevant. Perhaps they accepted the statistic
as accurate in the sense that it referred to the likelihood of two "cot
deaths" (these weren't cot deaths) occurring completely by chance without
any predisposing factors such as underlying familial vulnerability.

On appeal, the defence barristers employed a scattergun approach using every
argument they could, including the possibility that the jury had been misled
by the statistics. But they let the statistics in, and they failed to
challenge Meadow on his figures even though their own expert had given them
all the ammunition they needed. It was enough for their purposes to win on
appeal, and I don't think they particularly blamed Meadow for the mistake.
The decision to blame Meadow (when the Court of Appeal's criticism of him
was mild and plainly most of the mistakes were attributable to the lawyers)
was made by journalists and pressure groups.
PeteM
2006-01-10 09:04:40 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Your question suggests you don't know how the system works.
When a trial is approaching, the barristers co-operate with each other in
exchanging information about how they will prepare their case and what
evidence their witnesses will give. It means that valuable time can be saved
at trial. So the "prosecution fax" would probably have been a response to a
question from the defence team,
Perhaps, but it's just speculation. There is no hint of that in Batt. I
don't see that it makes any difference anyway.
Post by The Todal
and/or would have been an opportunity for
the defence team to say "hold on a minute, that evidence is irrelevant and
prejudicial. Please don't put it before the jury without giving us an
opportunity to object". But no objection was raised. The defence lawyers
didn't think the evidence was relevant.
We have discussed this before. Just because defence lawyers make
mistakes doesn't mean that Meadow can be exonerated for lying to them.
Post by The Todal
Perhaps they accepted the statistic
as accurate in the sense that it referred to the likelihood of two "cot
deaths" (these weren't cot deaths) occurring completely by chance without
any predisposing factors such as underlying familial vulnerability.
On appeal, the defence barristers employed a scattergun approach using every
argument they could, including the possibility that the jury had been misled
by the statistics. But they let the statistics in, and they failed to
challenge Meadow on his figures even though their own expert had given them
all the ammunition they needed. It was enough for their purposes to win on
appeal, and I don't think they particularly blamed Meadow for the mistake.
The decision to blame Meadow (when the Court of Appeal's criticism of him
was mild and plainly most of the mistakes were attributable to the lawyers)
was made by journalists and pressure groups.
And, of course, by those ill-informed dilettantes at the Royal
Statistical Society in their extremely scathing criticism of Meadow's
behaviour following the trial (and well before the CoA hearing). However
such wild-eyed and radical enemies of the State surely must be dismissed
as prejudiced and unreliable witnesses.
--
PeteM
The Todal
2006-01-10 10:10:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by The Todal
Your question suggests you don't know how the system works.
When a trial is approaching, the barristers co-operate with each other in
exchanging information about how they will prepare their case and what
evidence their witnesses will give. It means that valuable time can be saved
at trial. So the "prosecution fax" would probably have been a response to a
question from the defence team,
Perhaps, but it's just speculation. There is no hint of that in Batt. I
don't see that it makes any difference anyway.
Post by The Todal
and/or would have been an opportunity for
the defence team to say "hold on a minute, that evidence is irrelevant and
prejudicial. Please don't put it before the jury without giving us an
opportunity to object". But no objection was raised. The defence lawyers
didn't think the evidence was relevant.
We have discussed this before. Just because defence lawyers make
mistakes doesn't mean that Meadow can be exonerated for lying to them.
Wrong. He didn't lie at all. He told the truth. You haven't read the source
material. The defence expert told the defence lawyers that the statistics
were misleading and they all knew that if the evidence went before the jury
it would be necessary to point out to the jury that they must not be misled.

I can see we're going round in circles.

If a witness says "this is a report. These are some statistics quoted in the
report. Do you want me to refer to them?" and the lawyers say "yes" and the
opposing lawyers don't make any objection, then it is idiotic to blame the
witness afterwards. The ramifications turned out to be far wider than either
the witness or the lawyers realised at the time. But at no time did Meadow
lie, and the statistics were valid, even if misleading. If you would care to
study these comments from the Court of Appeal:

" it is stating the obvious to say that the statement "In families with two
infants, the chance that both will suffer true SIDS deaths is 1 in 73
million" is not the same as saying "If in a family there have been two
infant deaths, then the chance that they were both unexplained deaths with
no suspicious circumstances is 1 in 73 million". You do not need the label
"the prosecutor's fallacy" for that to be clear. It is clear that the second
statement does not follow from the first, nor does it tell you anything
about the children or their parents other than there were no smokers in the
household, there was one waged income, and the mother was 27 or over - all
being factors which put the Clarks in the lowest of all risk categories."

"We conclude that at no time in the evidence was the case put that the odds
against innocence were 73 million to 1." [Note: in the evidence from the
doctors. Summing up from the lawyers is not the same as giving evidence]

"In our judgment, counsel for the Crown should not have said that the
existing injuries led to "... even longer odds ..." than the 73 million to
one. The existing injuries to the infants went to guilt, the odds went to
rarity, and it was a mistake to add them together. Mr Spencer QC explained
this on the basis of an "advocate's flourish", which does not impress us,
but we are not persuaded that counsel for the appellant or the judge then
understood the Crown to have submitted to the jury that the odds against the
appellant being innocent were (because of the statistics in Table 3.58) 73
million to one against. That submission would in our judgment have been
obviously fallacious, and had it been made, we would have expected Mr Bevan
for the defence to have objected, the judge to have upheld the objection,
and the 1 in 73 million figure would have gone as an unnecessary
distraction. That there was no such application suggests the lack of impact
of "... 1 in 73 million and even longer odds ..." on the third day of the
summing-up of this long trial. But we must and do assume that counsel said
what the judge reported him as having said. Might the jury have focused on
that to the exclusion of the real and compelling evidence in this case?"
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-08 21:04:43 UTC
Permalink
On 8 Jan 2006 12:11:49 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong statistic
he provided in response to a question, baring in mind that it was not in
his evidence in chief.
If a man is presented to the court as being the worlds leading expert
on the subject of child harm and he stands in front of a jury as said
words to the affect the accused is guilty beyond any doubt and the
odds against him not being guilty are 97 million to one in affect I
would be more surprised if the accused wasn't found guilty. It used to
be the same if a cop said he saw something or he heard something said.
Fortunately we have progressed from that particular hazard.
pete
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Periander
2006-01-08 21:35:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 12:11:49 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong
statistic he provided in response to a question, baring in mind that
it was not in his evidence in chief.
If a man is presented to the court as being the worlds leading expert
on the subject of child harm and he stands in front of a jury as said
words to the affect the accused is guilty beyond any doubt and the
odds against him not being guilty are 97 million to one in
And prey tell when did he say that? You simply have not read his evidence,
he did not say that nor did he say anything remotely like that. He gave
clinical explanations for the observed injuries. He sated (in response to
questioning) that the odds of two SUDIs in a sinlge family were some silly
figure that you quoted. He did not say that this was evidence in itself of
the guilt of the mother.

I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-08 21:39:42 UTC
Permalink
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 12:11:49 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong
statistic he provided in response to a question, baring in mind that
it was not in his evidence in chief.
If a man is presented to the court as being the worlds leading expert
on the subject of child harm and he stands in front of a jury as said
words to the affect the accused is guilty beyond any doubt and the
odds against him not being guilty are 97 million to one in
And prey tell when did he say that? You simply have not read his evidence,
he did not say that nor did he say anything remotely like that. He gave
clinical explanations for the observed injuries. He sated (in response to
questioning) that the odds of two SUDIs in a sinlge family were some silly
figure that you quoted. He did not say that this was evidence in itself of
the guilt of the mother.
Maybe not in those exact words but that is the impression he
intentionally gave the jury who were lead to believe he was
infallible.
Post by Periander
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I believe the appeal court did.
pete
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Periander
2006-01-08 22:42:39 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I believe the appeal court did.
And you read what the COA said about the injuries?
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-08 23:26:36 UTC
Permalink
On 8 Jan 2006 22:42:39 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I believe the appeal court did.
And you read what the COA said about the injuries?
It is not relevant. The court of appeal overturned the conviction. If
Meadows had not been used as an expert they might have been convicted
and still be in jail. Surely that is the point here. Using egotistical
people to convict people is stupid as the guilty could get away. That
is the point surely?
pete
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Periander
2006-01-09 16:57:03 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 22:42:39 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I believe the appeal court did.
And you read what the COA said about the injuries?
It is not relevant. The court of appeal overturned the conviction. If
Meadows had not been used as an expert they might have been convicted
and still be in jail. Surely that is the point here. Using egotistical
people to convict people is stupid as the guilty could get away. That
is the point surely?
No because you clearly misunderstand the nature of the evidence he gave
(other than the statistical error), his evidence was not different in
essence from any of the other experts defence and prosecution. Oh and as
for the statistics taken from that report, although he was in the process
of writing a preface for it - note in the process, one of teh defence
experts was an actual contributor.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-10 00:09:46 UTC
Permalink
On 9 Jan 2006 16:57:03 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 22:42:39 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Post by Periander
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I believe the appeal court did.
And you read what the COA said about the injuries?
It is not relevant. The court of appeal overturned the conviction. If
Meadows had not been used as an expert they might have been convicted
and still be in jail. Surely that is the point here. Using egotistical
people to convict people is stupid as the guilty could get away. That
is the point surely?
No because you clearly misunderstand the nature of the evidence he gave
(other than the statistical error), his evidence was not different in
essence from any of the other experts defence and prosecution. Oh and as
for the statistics taken from that report, although he was in the process
of writing a preface for it - note in the process, one of teh defence
experts was an actual contributor.
As I understand it you are now saying the appeal court was wrong too
then. In fact everybody was wrong if I follow your drift although that
is rather difficult at times. So lets get this right then. The only
people who come out of this smelling of roses are the police who knew
all along that Meadows and the others were going to screw up their
hard work but never prevented them doing so for..............you have
lost me again. Probably lost yourself in the process too I reckon.
pete
--
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Periander
2006-01-10 22:36:43 UTC
Permalink
***@hotmail.com wrote in news:***@4ax.com:

...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
As I understand it you are now saying the appeal court was wrong too
then.
NO (sorry to shout) far from it, I believe you may have read my posts to
moderated about this issue, it's a suggestion I've never made. Not that I
would want to second guess the COA in any case but the failure in
disclosure by Dr Williams screwed the entire job and as the COA made clear
that although based on the new (previously hidden) evidence the jury may
well have come to a different verdict. That made the conviction unsafe
hence her release. If you read on you'll note that the experts who
commented on the new evidence (the indicators of possible SC infection) one
said it definately indicated a death by natural causes, one said it didn't.
The COA said that it couldn't decide between the two - however that's not
the COAs job (at least under these circumstances). And while the COA no
doubt wouldn't give a monkey's toss with regards to any opinion I may offer
I believe that they were entirely correct to act as they did.

There was no possibility of a re-trial, far to much publicity and no chance
of a fair trial.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Mike Siddall
2006-01-08 23:43:15 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 12:11:49 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
How do they "know" what convinced the jury to convict ?
Clearly they don't.
But they can sit back and examine *all* the evidence in detail.
Post by PeteM
But they would rather place the entire blame for the
Clark fiasco on Williams than on Meadow. That's because the legal
establishment was complicit in presenting Meadow's false evidence,
Go on then what was Meadow's false evidence other than the wrong
statistic he provided in response to a question, baring in mind that
it was not in his evidence in chief.
If a man is presented to the court as being the worlds leading expert
on the subject of child harm and he stands in front of a jury as said
words to the affect the accused is guilty beyond any doubt and the
odds against him not being guilty are 97 million to one in
And prey tell when did he say that? You simply have not read his evidence,
he did not say that nor did he say anything remotely like that. He gave
clinical explanations for the observed injuries. He sated (in response to
questioning) that the odds of two SUDIs in a sinlge family were some silly
figure that you quoted. He did not say that this was evidence in itself of
the guilt of the mother.
I also recomend that you read the catalogue of injuries those children
suffered ...
I see you're just repeating the stuff you posted last time this was
raised including, as others have noted, inflating the COA's *opinion*
that the jury were uninfluenced to a fact.

As for this "catalogue" of injuries... I know ( I have elder brothers
who confirm this ) that I sustained far worse in the course of a normal
childhood. Williams claimed to see all sorts that others did not, given
the subsequent revelations why should anyone accept his constantly
changing evaluations ?
--
Mike Siddall
Periander
2006-01-09 17:08:03 UTC
Permalink
Mike Siddall <***@splimmysplammyaskamite.demon.co.uk> wrote in news:***@askamite.demon.co.uk:

...
Post by Mike Siddall
I see you're just repeating the stuff you posted last time this was
raised including,
Of course, as I'm correct in what I say why change it?
Post by Mike Siddall
as others have noted, inflating the COA's *opinion*
that the jury were uninfluenced to a fact.
As for this "catalogue" of injuries... I know ( I have elder brothers
who confirm this ) that I sustained far worse in the course of a
normal childhood. ...
Hardly surprising, I've got a scar on my forehead from a childhood fall, my
children have bruises everywhere up and down their legs, however every
significant injury is explainable. No doubt when you suffered your
significant injuries as a child there were reasons for the injuries that
were known.

When injuries such as a broken rib in a baby a couple of months old are
noted and no explanation is given then that's a different kettle of fish
all togther.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Mike Siddall
2006-01-09 22:11:23 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
...
Post by Mike Siddall
I see you're just repeating the stuff you posted last time this was
raised including,
Of course, as I'm correct in what I say why change it?
Hang on, you're not the good prof himself are you ? I spot a certain
similarity of approach.
Post by Periander
Post by Mike Siddall
as others have noted, inflating the COA's *opinion*
that the jury were uninfluenced to a fact.
As for this "catalogue" of injuries... I know ( I have elder brothers
who confirm this ) that I sustained far worse in the course of a
normal childhood. ...
Hardly surprising, I've got a scar on my forehead from a childhood fall, my
children have bruises everywhere up and down their legs, however every
significant injury is explainable. No doubt when you suffered your
significant injuries as a child there were reasons for the injuries that
were known.
When injuries such as a broken rib in a baby a couple of months old are
noted and no explanation is given then that's a different kettle of fish
all togther.
Oh come on, you're the guy who relies on the COA as a statement of
objective fact. The significance, existence and whether or not said
injury ( if existent ) is reliant on the less than reliable observations
of Williams, not to mention his flexible interpretations.

It would be nice if there were single, simple symptoms completely
diagnostic of child abuse, but there isn't.

And since you're such a fan of the COA, and stating these fractures as
fact, here's what the second appeal had to say,

Evidence of rib injuries to Harry

97 It was not suggested that the rib injuries had played any part in
causing Harry's death but rather that they were evidence of physical
abuse.
Dr Williams said that Harry had suffered a fracture of the second right
rib at the side under the armpit. X-rays of the whole of Harry's
skeleton
had been taken and they on examination had revealed no evidence of any
fractures. He had however found the callus where the fracture had
healed.

98 He accepted that in his statement he had only said that there was a
"possible" old fracture but he was firm that there was no other possible
explanation for his finding. He further agreed that he had told a
police
officer that it could have been caused at birth but he said that this
was
unlikely because he had since learnt that Harry's birth had been a
normal,
uncomplicated delivery.

99 The other finding of which he gave evidence was of the first rib
being
dislocated from the cartilage near the breastbone. He had made no
reference to this in his report because he said it was of unknown
significance. He said that he was sure that it had not been caused at
birth or during the post-mortem and he had not seen such a dislocation
from
resuscitation attempts.

100 Professor Meadow and Dr Keeling said that the fracture of the rib
would
have been an unusual birth injury. Dr Keeling said that she was able to
confirm from examination of the microscopic slide that there had been
bone
growth indicating the presence of an injury such as a fracture.
Professor
Meadow and Dr Keeling each said that the dislocation of the first rib
would
have been an unusual resuscitation injury. Dr Keeling was surprised
that
there was no haemorrhage at the site of the dislocation and thus she
could
not exclude the possibility that it happened post mortem.

101 Professor Berry for the defence said that the fracture of the second
rib had not been confirmed and the process of new bone formation was not
necessarily confirmation of a fracture. If the dislocated first rib had
occurred in life, he would have expected some haemorrhage or tissue
damage
of which there was none. He did not think that either was a birth
injury
but the evidence suggested that the dislocation occurred after death.
--
Mike Siddall
Periander
2006-01-10 22:30:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Mike Siddall
...
of fish all togther.
Oh come on, you're the guy who relies on the COA as a statement of
objective fact. The significance, existence and whether or not said
injury ( if existent ) is reliant on the less than reliable
observations of Williams, not to mention his flexible interpretations.
It would be nice if there were single, simple symptoms completely
diagnostic of child abuse, but there isn't.
Absolutely, couldn't agree more.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
t***@hotmail.com
2006-01-10 00:22:05 UTC
Permalink
On 9 Jan 2006 17:08:03 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
...
Post by Mike Siddall
I see you're just repeating the stuff you posted last time this was
raised including,
Of course, as I'm correct in what I say why change it?
Post by Mike Siddall
as others have noted, inflating the COA's *opinion*
that the jury were uninfluenced to a fact.
As for this "catalogue" of injuries... I know ( I have elder brothers
who confirm this ) that I sustained far worse in the course of a
normal childhood. ...
Hardly surprising, I've got a scar on my forehead from a childhood fall, my
children have bruises everywhere up and down their legs, however every
significant injury is explainable. No doubt when you suffered your
significant injuries as a child there were reasons for the injuries that
were known.
When injuries such as a broken rib in a baby a couple of months old are
noted and no explanation is given then that's a different kettle of fish
all togther.
Of course it stinks if the police with all the powers and financial
backing they have cannot get a conviction for something you claim to
be so obvious then it.........no it can't be the polices fault can
it.......
pete
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Periander
2006-01-10 22:51:35 UTC
Permalink
***@hotmail.com wrote in news:***@4ax.com:

..
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Of course it stinks if the police with all the powers and financial
backing they have cannot get a conviction for something you claim to
be so obvious then it.........no it can't be the polices fault can
it.......
Oh you're a silly boy at times. Lets take broken ribs on a baby, it's not
teh sort of thing that happens very easily by accident. Comparatively
massive forces are required to create the injury. Now come the hard bit,
previous skelital surveys have shown no trace of injury (say birth), all
organic medical reasons have been ruled out and the parents can give no
explanation.

Are both parents to be prosecuted? What about grandparents, older siblings,
the baby sitter, the next door nieghbour how's always around duringt eh day
to have a chat with mother.

Even teh very best doctors can only give an indication of when the rib was
broken, depending on the age of the injury the range could be as little as
a few hours or as much as several weeks (+ a margin of error).

No-one knows anything, no one's seen anything, who do the police cause to
be prosecuted?

I'd always assumed that you were of the opinion that evidence of a person's
guilt was required.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Cynic
2006-01-13 15:31:01 UTC
Permalink
On 10 Jan 2006 22:51:35 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Oh you're a silly boy at times. Lets take broken ribs on a baby, it's not
teh sort of thing that happens very easily by accident. Comparatively
massive forces are required to create the injury.
IIUC it is possible to break a rib of a baby with the pressure of two
(adult) fingers. That is what I was told in first aid lessons many
years ago when being taught resusitation techniques for young infants.

I suspect that such an injury could in fact happen very easily by
accident. The fact that it does not happen all that often is more to
do with the fact that babies are generally treated with more care than
china plates than to the baby's inherant hardiness.
Post by Periander
Now come the hard bit,
previous skelital surveys have shown no trace of injury (say birth), all
organic medical reasons have been ruled out and the parents can give no
explanation.
In this case, the injury had healed (and so was not recent). Unless
the child had been in the care of the parents for 100% of the time
since birth, what is suspicious about the fact that they cannot
explain the injury? If it had occured at a time they were not
present, how could they be expected to explain it? It is an injury
that IME may shows little or no external signs of injury in adults,
and I should think the same is true of babies.

It is more likely that the injury was caused accidentally by someone
else than that it was the result of deliberate child abuse that
apparently left no additional signs. If a person caring for the child
(from a nurse in the post-natal hospital to a babysitter or relative)
had done something to cause the injury, they may well have kept quiet
about it for obvious reasons.

I suspect that you are well aware that when asked to explain an injury
on an infant, a person who deliberately caused the injury is more
likely to invent an innocent explanation than to say that they know
nothing whatsoever about it.
--
Cynic
Periander
2006-01-13 21:42:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cynic
On 10 Jan 2006 22:51:35 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Oh you're a silly boy at times. Lets take broken ribs on a baby, it's
not teh sort of thing that happens very easily by accident.
Comparatively massive forces are required to create the injury.
IIUC it is possible to break a rib of a baby with the pressure of two
(adult) fingers. That is what I was told in first aid lessons many
years ago when being taught resusitation techniques for young infants.
I remember the same thing, along with putting butter on burns and so forth.

I hope that you'll take this in the spirit it's intended but that advice
you and I received all those years ago was wrong. Properly conducted AR
will not usually break a baby's ribs, even poorly conducted AR will usually
fail to do so. And although I can't show you them I have several reports on
my desk at work relating to several different babies from several different
doctors and professors that say exactly that.
Post by Cynic
I suspect that such an injury could in fact happen very easily by
accident.
Of course it could happen by accident, but easily? It depends on how we're
using the word, the sort of force involved would be akin to (say) an iron
dropping from an ironing board, an older sibling falling with all it's
weight on to one hand on the ribs and so forth. The ribs of a baby can
typically flex/compress for over a 1/3 of their depth before they show
signs of injury.
Post by Cynic
The fact that it does not happen all that often is more to
do with the fact that babies are generally treated with more care than
china plates than to the baby's inherant hardiness.
Possibly, but babies bounce, it's hard to break their bones, generally
speaking they're quite flexible. One of mother nature's little miracles.
Post by Cynic
In this case, the injury had healed (and so was not recent). Unless
the child had been in the care of the parents for 100% of the time
since birth, what is suspicious about the fact that they cannot
explain the injury?
A very good point and is the reason why so many serious injuries to baby's
end up in the family court rather than the criminal court.

I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask you to take my word for it but in
essence this is the timeline for an injury of this nature.

Event occurs and the baby will scream/cry loudly uncontrollably for around
20 to 40 mins.

For the next few days it will cry more or less whenever it's handled.

Following that for the next couple of weeks it will cry if laid on the
injured side or handled roughly, it will also favour that side (if it can)
by rolling on to it's other side.

At no time is it likely that a bruise will form and a bump is unlikely to
be felt until around 4 weeks later (when the callus is becoming/or has
become fully formed).

Mix that in with a bit of teething, colic, existing organic medical
condition, grumpiness after an inoculation and a parent returning to pick
up the baby from (say) a minder will certainly pick up on the idea that
there may be something wrong but won't know why, nor will he or she unless
the baby is x-rayed.

So yes you are very largely correct.

Nevertheless the lack of explanation is in itself suspicious, OK so a child
may have been cared for by someone other than it's parents but what about
the after effects, were they noticed, when, who was consulted about them,
who were they discussed with and so forth ... if a baby cries every time
it's handled the parents far more often than not wonder why, they may ask
their own parents for advice, the health visitor, the doctor at the local
clinic. When the after effects go un remarked upon that adds greater
suspicion in relation to the original cause.
Post by Cynic
I suspect that you are well aware that when asked to explain an injury
on an infant, a person who deliberately caused the injury is more
likely to invent an innocent explanation than to say that they know
nothing whatsoever about it.
Actually that's not my experience, quite the opposite, once a criminal gets
in to the field of making up stories he or she runs a much greater risk of
getting found out, the story is open to scrutiny. The advice is always if
you're innocent say so and explain why - that's the quickest way you'll get
out of here, if your guilty keep your mouth shut unless you wish to
confess, if you don't your lies will be found out. Something known to all
criminals ... and solicitors.
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Cynic
2006-01-13 15:05:59 UTC
Permalink
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
And prey tell when did he say that? You simply have not read his evidence,
he did not say that nor did he say anything remotely like that. He gave
clinical explanations for the observed injuries. He sated (in response to
questioning) that the odds of two SUDIs in a sinlge family were some silly
figure that you quoted. He did not say that this was evidence in itself of
the guilt of the mother.
Presenting such a statistic is almost certainly going to rule out the
possibility of the death being a case of SIDS in the mind of any
reasonable person. If the only two possibilities that have been put
to the jury were that the death was either SIDS or it was murder, what
conclusion do you believe would follow?
--
Cynic
The Todal
2006-01-13 15:44:26 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
And prey tell when did he say that? You simply have not read his evidence,
he did not say that nor did he say anything remotely like that. He gave
clinical explanations for the observed injuries. He sated (in response to
questioning) that the odds of two SUDIs in a sinlge family were some silly
figure that you quoted. He did not say that this was evidence in itself of
the guilt of the mother.
Presenting such a statistic is almost certainly going to rule out the
possibility of the death being a case of SIDS in the mind of any
reasonable person. If the only two possibilities that have been put
to the jury were that the death was either SIDS or it was murder, what
conclusion do you believe would follow?
But in fact those weren't the options that were put to the jury. The experts
on both sides agreed that these weren't SIDS deaths. So the defendant was
asking the jury to believe that the children each developed a sudden
overwhelming illness during the day while the mother was awake (ie not at
night, not whilst the children were overheated under blankets in a cot,
etc).

The jury might of course have reasoned "whilst this isn't cot death/sudden
infant death syndrome, we're being asked to believe that it's something very
similar, and what are the chances of two children dying suddenly of an
infection like this? Maybe much the same as the chances of two SIDS deaths".
Or, more likely, they'd have reasoned "there seems to be no evidence of any
sudden infection, so what are we left with - the behaviour of the mother
(which has been characterised as eccentric and unreasonable) and the
possible evidence of past maltreatment, and some strange coincidences, and
that's enough to convict her as far as we're concerned".

In saying this, I don't suggest that Clark was guilty, and I accept that she
was innocent. I merely say that the significance of Meadow's statistics has
been hugely exaggerated.

I don't believe the jury were swayed by statistics from Professor Meadow.
What are the chances of two children in the same family suddenly getting ill
and dropping dead before medical help can intervene, and there being no sign
of any disease afterwards? Whether you say one in a hundred, one in a
million or one in ten million it seems inherently unlikely. I think they
probably judged her on the basis of the judgmental statements of the experts
and on what seemed to be a sinister pattern - in both cases the babies were
found unconscious in the same room and in the same chair and at almost
exactly the same time in the evening, and at about the same age, and in both
cases only the mother was present and in both cases there was some evidence
of possible past injury. The jury might have asked themselves, what the f*ck
is the likelihood of that happening by pure chance? And then, there were
judgmental statements from the doctors and other medics who were involved in
the aftermath of the deaths.

[quotes, just to give the general flavour of the evidence]
Mr Cooper, the ambulance driver described the appellant as very distressed,
crying and screaming. She was in the kitchen with Christopher, who was very
pale, cyanosed, cold and quite rigid. Resuscitation was attempted, but there
was no respiration and no pulse. The appellant was on the verge of hysteria
and kept asking if the baby was dead. She told him that she had found the
child in a cot upstairs, but she did not say when. The appellant went in the
ambulance with them to hospital. In the ambulance, Mr Bell was prevented
from putting Christopher on a ventilator because the appellant was so
distressed. At the hospital, the appellant continued to be distressed and Mr
Clark was contacted.

Christopher was declared dead at 10.40 p.m. Dr Douglas broke the news to the
appellant, whose reaction was very dramatic and hysterical. The doctor
described this as atypical and the over-reaction made her feel quite
uncomfortable. She was worried that the news had not really sunk in. Staff
Nurse Cobbett described how the appellant said that her husband would blame
her and would not love her any more.

The appellant gave a patchy account because she was upset. She said that
Christopher was snuffly, but had been active, had taken a feed at 7.30 p.m.
and had been sitting in a bouncy chair. Dr Cowan noticed the discrepancy
between this and Dr Douglas's note that he had been put in a Moses basket,
but the appellant was very distraught at the time. The appellant declined
the chance to see Christopher and became even more hysterical. Mr Clark did
see Christopher.

In relation to the lungs, examination of the slides revealed extensive
bleeding, both old and fresh. Dr Williams had not initially noted it as
significant because at the time it was a non-specific feature. The effect of
research since 1997 was that iron in the lungs and haemorrhaging was highly
suggestive that the child had been smothered. He agreed that it was not a
specific marker, but rather should prompt a critical evaluation of the cause
of death. The findings were consistent with smothering, but alveolar
haemorrhage was not in itself a diagnostic or specific indication of
smothering. He also found a diffuse amount of macrophage in the lungs. He
said that whether in suffocation cases blood found in the lungs was focal or
patchy rather than diffuse depended on the mechanism for suffocation and the
time it had taken. In his view, the old bleeding in Christopher's lungs was
not consistent with a nosebleed nor could a nosebleed explain the
haemosiderin found.

Dr Williams gave details of the bruises, which bore no obvious pattern to
link them to smothering. Although the bruises were not seen by hospital
staff, he was satisfied they had been caused before death. He had not
undertaken a histological examination of the bruises because there was
nothing else suspicious and he was in no doubt that they were bruises.
Professor Meadow, Professor Green and Dr Keeling were also of the opinion
that the bruises could only have been caused during life and were unlikely
to have resulted from resuscitation.

At 9.27 p.m. on 26 January 1998 the appellant made a 999 call because Harry
had stopped breathing. A transcript of the 10œ-minute call was before the
jury. The ambulance arrived at 9.36 p.m. Mr Limming and Mr Bourne, the
paramedics, each described the appellant running up and down the street
outside the house, barefoot, in pyjamas and very distressed. She directed
them upstairs, where Mr Limming found Mr Clark with Harry, who was limp,
pale and cyanosed. Mr Clark had begun a form of resuscitation and Mr Limming
took over, but there was no sign of life at all. At 9.40 p.m. the ambulance
left with Harry and the appellant. Mr Clark followed in a taxi. On the way,
the appellant was distressed and hysterical. She mentioned that this was the
second time it had happened and said that the baby had gone limp and blue in
her arms. Neither of the ambulance men saw any marks or signs of injury on
Harry. At the hospital, Harry was taken to the resuscitation room, while the
appellant was taken to the relatives' room and was later joined by her
husband. Dr Gilbert, a consultant paediatrician, declared Harry dead at
10.41 p.m. and examined the surface of Harry's body. He informed the
appellant and Mr Clark of the death. They told him that Harry had taken a
breast feed and seemed perfectly healthy. They had recently introduced a
bottle at bedtime and Mr Clark went to prepare that feed. Harry was placed
in a bouncy chair on the floor while the appellant watched television in the
same room. She heard nothing abnormal, but when she looked at Harry a few
minutes later, she thought he looked unusual. When she picked him up, he was
limp and she immediately called her husband.

The appellant said that she breast-fed Harry at about 7.30-8.00 p.m. Her
husband was with her and they chatted and played with Harry. Her husband put
him in the bouncy chair while he went to make a bottle. She sat on the bed
and after her husband had been away 3-5 minutes, she looked over at Harry in
the bouncy chair. She saw that his head was down and reacted with complete
panic.

[unquote]
Periander
2006-01-13 21:17:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by t***@hotmail.com
On 8 Jan 2006 21:35:28 GMT, Periander
...
Post by t***@hotmail.com
Presenting such a statistic is almost certainly going to rule out the
possibility of the death being a case of SIDS in the mind of any
reasonable person. If the only two possibilities that have been put
to the jury were that the death was either SIDS or it was murder, what
conclusion do you believe would follow?
I've already answered that in a reply to Derek, I believe that the question
should never have been put, that having been put should have been ruled
inadmissible, that having been asked should have been strongly challenged
by the defence team ... three failures, one for each side and one for the
court.

If I'd been sat in the jury I'd have made the point to my fellow jury
members that I made to Derek, that we should not convict on the basis of
statistics. I would though have reminded myself of all the glaring
consistencies between the two deaths, the evidence of those first at scene,
the previous unreported injuries, the existing injuries and would then have
strongly considered if any remaining doubts on my part were reasonable. I
forbear to comment further what my verdict would have been.
--
Regards,

Periander
D***@aol.com
2006-01-09 13:13:14 UTC
Permalink
Both Williams and Meadow were responsible for the convictions in Clark.
Meadow because he led the police and CPS down the two deaths is
suspcicious route and Williams for not only failing to perform and
adequate autopsy but for repeatedly failing to alert anyone that there
were further microbiology findings-both deserved to be struck
off-Williams got away very lightly indeed-when jury members ask a
witness via the judge if there are any other reports relating to
microbiology and you as a witness on the stand state categorically "no"
and you know there are that is perverting the course of justice.

I have the transcripts of the evidence given by Meadow in his hearing
please don't make the mistake of thinking that Meadow was struck off
soley on the basis of his testimony in Clark, he was struck off for the
dismal and pathetic attempts to cover up his own inexpertise when
giving evidence to the panel-something they saw straight through.
Classics would be that he "wasn't an expert in SIDS and had never said
he was" that "he had never volunteered to take these cases, the man
with the subpoena always got him" news indeed to the CPS and the
police, that the figure 73 million to onw "had been written on a
blackboard at some conference and that's where he got it from" it goes
on and on.

Suffice it to say that child protection has been led by the few with
their dodgy theories and because of them and their supporters child
protection is in disarray-if only the proper investigations had been
undertaken originally. Perhaps the real villain in all of this is the
state-failure to properly fund paediatric pathology and child
protection was always going to result in the huge catastrophes we now
see and if anyone is truly to blame it is a government that through
it's failure to fund the needs of children, has allowed the mavericks
in medicine to take a hold.

We all know and acknowledge that child abuse exists and you have to
wonder how many Victoria Climbie type cases have been missed in the
pursuit of hypothesis and theory.
Periander
2006-01-09 17:13:51 UTC
Permalink
"***@aol.com" <***@aol.com> wrote in news:***@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com:

Well it's nice at last to read something written by someone who has
actually read at least some of the actual reports etc rather than just the
usnet grapevine.
--
Regards,

Periander
D***@aol.com
2006-01-17 11:01:25 UTC
Permalink
Just so that people can see that the reason the genuine abuse was
overlooked was because the hypothesis was being chased and of course
chasing "data" on suspected MSbP cases is far more important than
recognising the scars and bruises on a child stood before you.

http://www.victoria-climbie-inquiry.org.uk/Evidence/Archive/Dec01/101201latestp6.htm


So this would not have made me ring more alarm bells

16 than normal. And the same for the "very worrying case"

17 thing. She often -- I mean I said to you earlier that

18 at the time I think we were dealing with about three

19 potential Munchausen syndrome cases, which is very

20 unusual, and she was working very hard chasing bits of

21 information about them and she was equally very worried

22 about those children because she is a paediatrician who

23 I believe genuinely cares about the children that she

24 sees.
Periander
2006-01-17 20:25:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by D***@aol.com
Just so that people can see that the reason the genuine abuse was
overlooked was because ...
http://www.victoria-climbie-inquiry.org.uk/Evidence/Archive/Dec01/10120
1latestp6.htm
I have my own copy, you may rest assured that I have read it from cover to
cover and stil refer to it at times even now. ;-)
--
Regards,

Periander
The Todal
2006-01-09 18:16:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by D***@aol.com
Both Williams and Meadow were responsible for the convictions in Clark.
Meadow because he led the police and CPS down the two deaths is
suspcicious route
Bollocks to that. You think the police and the CPS were thinking "two
deaths? nothing suspicious about that. Let the woman go" ..?
Post by D***@aol.com
and Williams for not only failing to perform and
adequate autopsy but for repeatedly failing to alert anyone that there
were further microbiology findings-both deserved to be struck
off-Williams got away very lightly indeed-when jury members ask a
witness via the judge if there are any other reports relating to
microbiology and you as a witness on the stand state categorically "no"
and you know there are that is perverting the course of justice.
Your criticism of Williams is justified, and it is surprising that he was
banned from acting as an expert witness for only 3 years.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/4595839.stm
Post by D***@aol.com
I have the transcripts of the evidence given by Meadow in his hearing
please don't make the mistake of thinking that Meadow was struck off
soley on the basis of his testimony in Clark, he was struck off for the
dismal and pathetic attempts to cover up his own inexpertise when
giving evidence to the panel-something they saw straight through.
He was struck off for political reasons, to restore public confidence in the
medical profession and in the GMC. His explanations and excuses were
reasonable and very persuasive but they chose to adopt a "show trial"
approach whereby his lack of contrition for a mistake that wasn't his fault,
was held against him.
Post by D***@aol.com
Classics would be that he "wasn't an expert in SIDS and had never said
he was"
He spoke the truth. He was a paediatrician, not an expert in SIDS. An expert
in SIDS would surely have to be a forensic pathologist. And the lawyers had
agreed in the Sally Clark case (rightly or wrongly) that the children didn't
die of SIDS anyway.
Post by D***@aol.com
that "he had never volunteered to take these cases, the man
with the subpoena always got him" news indeed to the CPS and the
police
If he said that, he spoke the truth. Expert witnesses are at liberty to turn
down work, but if they are approached to do a job they are not being
unreasonable if they agree to do it. He wasn't advertising his services as
an expert.
Post by D***@aol.com
, that the figure 73 million to onw "had been written on a
blackboard at some conference and that's where he got it from" it goes
on and on.
Er no, it stops there. Or you'd have quoted more. The figure of 73 million
to one was from the Confidential Enquiry into Stillbirths and Deaths in
Infancy. If asked how it was calculated, I am not at all surprised that he
should say "I don't really know, but I remember seeing a lecture where it
was on a blackboard" - the point is nevertheless valid that the statistic
was produced by a reputable group and it is unreasonable to expect someone
to give evidence on statistics if they are not a statistician.
Post by D***@aol.com
Suffice it to say that child protection has been led by the few with
their dodgy theories
Folklore. Invented by journalists marketing their stories for publication.
Post by D***@aol.com
and because of them and their supporters child
protection is in disarray-if only the proper investigations had been
undertaken originally. Perhaps the real villain in all of this is the
state-failure to properly fund paediatric pathology and child
protection was always going to result in the huge catastrophes we now
see
Huge catastrophes? I appreciate that it is never pleasant to have even one
person wrongly convicted, but there have only been a handful of dubious
convictions so that isn't a huge catastrophe.
Post by D***@aol.com
and if anyone is truly to blame it is a government that through
it's failure to fund the needs of children, has allowed the mavericks
in medicine to take a hold.
Whether evidence is reliable or not is an assessment best made by the
courts, not by journalists.
Post by D***@aol.com
We all know and acknowledge that child abuse exists and you have to
wonder how many Victoria Climbie type cases have been missed in the
pursuit of hypothesis and theory.
I don't think you can even begin to show that Victoria's death was
attributable to "hypothesis and theory".
Cynic
2006-01-13 15:42:48 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Huge catastrophes? I appreciate that it is never pleasant to have even one
person wrongly convicted, but there have only been a handful of dubious
convictions so that isn't a huge catastrophe.
Yes, huge catastophes. Wrongful murder convictions are not the only
catastophes that have happened. Do you really need to be reminded of
the *many* cases of wrongful accusations of child abuse that have
caused irrepairable harm to entire families - not least to the
children in whose name the accusations were made?

In each case we are assured "lessons have been learnt". And then the
same mistakes are repeated a short time later.

What is even worse is that whilst huge resources are being spent on
pursuing imagined abuses and increasingly absurd accusations, clear
evidence of real abuse is being totally ignored in other cases, and
"lack of resources," is being given as an excuse.
--
Cynic
The Todal
2006-01-13 16:39:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
Huge catastrophes? I appreciate that it is never pleasant to have even one
person wrongly convicted, but there have only been a handful of dubious
convictions so that isn't a huge catastrophe.
Yes, huge catastophes. Wrongful murder convictions are not the only
catastophes that have happened. Do you really need to be reminded of
the *many* cases of wrongful accusations of child abuse that have
caused irrepairable harm to entire families - not least to the
children in whose name the accusations were made?
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.

There have been several high-profile scandals where families have been
wrongly accused of child abuse. In some cases, the doctors have had a
genuine but quite misguided belief in diagnostic tests such as the anal
dilatation test. Sometimes the social workers have jumped to unwarranted
conclusions. But it isn't all part of one scandal, it's several different
mistakes in several entirely different sets of circumstances. You can't say
"the lesson we can learn from all these mistakes is.... " and then come up
with some glib statement like "why not trust the parents more, and give them
the benefit of any doubt" or "let's never take children into care unless
they are covered in sores and close to death".
Post by Cynic
In each case we are assured "lessons have been learnt". And then the
same mistakes are repeated a short time later.
I'm not convinced of that. It might look like the same mistakes, at first
glance.
Post by Cynic
What is even worse is that whilst huge resources are being spent on
pursuing imagined abuses and increasingly absurd accusations, clear
evidence of real abuse is being totally ignored in other cases, and
"lack of resources," is being given as an excuse.
Difficult to comment on this, because if you cited evidence of real abuse
that the authorities were ignoring you would risk being sued for libel by
whichever person or organisation was carrying out the abuse. What is beyond
doubt, of course, is that children who are taken into care for (allegedly)
their protection are sometimes abused in care and in many cases would have
been better off where they started. I suppose if I was writing a method
statement to detect abuse, I'd start by saying that all foster fathers must
be watched with considerable suspicion lest they abuse the children in their
care. And any foster parents reading this would react with great indignation
because they know that they are good parents and have never abused children.
Cynic
2006-01-16 10:42:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Post by Cynic
Yes, huge catastophes. Wrongful murder convictions are not the only
catastophes that have happened. Do you really need to be reminded of
the *many* cases of wrongful accusations of child abuse that have
caused irrepairable harm to entire families - not least to the
children in whose name the accusations were made?
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion. It used to be the case where
child abuse was considered extremely rare, and so people tended to
look for innocent explanations when they saw anything anomalous in a
child. That outlook changed - but swung *much* further than it should
have done, and the situation became such that the "professionals"
appear to believe that child abuse is rampant, and jump to the
conclusion that the slightest unusual behaviour or physical sign is a
result of abuse.

Meanwhile, child carers do not only have to refrain from abusing
children (which is not something the vast majority would have any
desire to do), but they have to behave in a way that could not be
construed as being an "indicator" by someone who is looking very hard
to find the signs. Which has meant that a huge amount of *normal*
adult/child interaction is now totally forbidden outside the immediate
family - and inside the family as well to an increasing extent.
--
Cynic
Derek Hornby
2006-01-16 20:38:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion. It used to be the case where
child abuse was considered extremely rare, and so people tended to
look for innocent explanations when they saw anything anomalous in a
child. That outlook changed - but swung *much* further than it should
have done, and the situation became such that the "professionals"
appear to believe that child abuse is rampant, and jump to the
conclusion that the slightest unusual behaviour or physical sign is a
result of abuse.
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
Derek
The Todal
2006-01-17 10:05:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion. It used to be the case where
child abuse was considered extremely rare, and so people tended to
look for innocent explanations when they saw anything anomalous in a
child. That outlook changed - but swung *much* further than it should
have done, and the situation became such that the "professionals"
appear to believe that child abuse is rampant, and jump to the
conclusion that the slightest unusual behaviour or physical sign is a
result of abuse.
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
A hypothesis here. I don't know, but I believe it is as a result of various
scandals where children were killed by their parents or molested in care
homes. For many, many years the police would turn a blind eye to domestic
violence and to violence towards children of the family. It was assumed that
reasonable parental chastisement included thrashing a child with a belt. It
was assumed also that if a child complained that he had been buggered by an
uncle or other adult, the chances of proving what happened behind closed
doors when the assailant was denying everything, were so remote that it
wasn't worth contemplating any prosecution. Far easier to say that children
make up stories and need not be believed.

Then we had the various cases of children killed by their parents/carers.
Maria Colwell through to Victoria Climbie via Jasmine Beckford etc. And we
had various childrens homes where children were buggered by care home staff.
Ordinarily the word of a child in care would count for nothing, but
gradually the police and the prosecutors have paid more heed to complaints
from children even though there are still plenty of people who would say
that children who complain of abuse are invariably liars trying to make
money.

And as a result the social workers - working from their dingy, overcrowded
offices and with little guidance from central government - have been trying
to protect abused children by seeing it where perhaps it doesn't exist. They
have an impossible job. Despite all their mistakes, I admire them for what
they try to do and for getting it right some of the time.
Paul Robson
2006-01-17 10:25:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
And as a result the social workers - working from their dingy, overcrowded
offices and with little guidance from central government - have been trying
to protect abused children by seeing it where perhaps it doesn't exist. They
have an impossible job. Despite all their mistakes, I admire them for what
they try to do and for getting it right some of the time.
The problem is too many of them are into careerist big hits, and not into
preventing abuse where it mostly happens, in families at the bottom end of
society. Not only is it a tough job, there's no kudos from breaking a big
scandal.
Cynic
2006-01-17 13:25:51 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Post by Derek Hornby
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
A hypothesis here. I don't know, but I believe it is as a result of various
scandals where children were killed by their parents or molested in care
homes. <snip>
I disagree with the reasons you give. I believe that there are two
main reasons for the change in attitude. The first reason, which I
applaud, is that children came to be seen as individual people with
rights of their own rather than the property of their parents. The
attitude toward a child being abused by its parents used to be similar
to the attitude toward a car being abused by its driver - something to
be deplored, but it doesn't affect anyone else so there is no reason
to interfere.

The second reason is where the problems have stemmed IMO. That is to
do with the creation of a child protection industry - which grew out
of social services and spawned a multitide of offshoot organisations
and enveloped areas of healthcare, teaching and other organisations.
The rapid growth of these areas led to them needing to justify their
existence and create work to gain staffing levels and funding. So at
the start we had obvious cases of abuse dealt with, then the growth of
the industry allowed for the investigation of cases that were more
difficult to detect, then came the time when work had to be invented.
The situation today is that everyone involved in professional
childcare in any way is being taught to actively seek out the most
nebulous indicators of possible abuse so as to feed work into the
organisations set up to deal with it.

Like so many other jobs, the employees are more interested in doing
the easier or more exciting work than dealing with the difficult or
mundane (where it is often most needed). It is far easier to stick an
oar into a normal family where a low level of "concern" has been
raised than to deal with an aggressive and perhaps violent family, or
with people who have learnt enough of the law to know how to frustrate
the efforts of child protection workers. And there are plenty of easy
borderline cases to keep the industry occupied without having to spend
time on the difficult but serious cases.

The departments are also keen to invent definitions of abuse that are
more & more prevalent so that it has more "victims" to justify its
existence, and to create an impression amongst the public that child
abuse is rampant so that they gain public support for their work.

It is just the same as any other industry - once you have developed
sufficient capacity so that supply exceeds demand, you need to create
additional demand in order to grow or even survive. So Ford makes
expensive adverts designed to encourage people to buy a new car even
though their present car is perfectly adequate, whilst the NSPCC makes
expensive adverts designed to convince us that huge numbers of
children in the UK are being horribly abused even though we don't see
any evidence of that ourselves.
--
Cynic
The Todal
2006-01-17 14:14:08 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
Post by Derek Hornby
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
A hypothesis here. I don't know, but I believe it is as a result of various
scandals where children were killed by their parents or molested in care
homes. <snip>
I disagree with the reasons you give. I believe that there are two
main reasons for the change in attitude. The first reason, which I
applaud, is that children came to be seen as individual people with
rights of their own rather than the property of their parents. The
attitude toward a child being abused by its parents used to be similar
to the attitude toward a car being abused by its driver - something to
be deplored, but it doesn't affect anyone else so there is no reason
to interfere.
Possibly we agree on that.
Post by Cynic
The second reason is where the problems have stemmed IMO. That is to
do with the creation of a child protection industry - which grew out
of social services and spawned a multitide of offshoot organisations
and enveloped areas of healthcare, teaching and other organisations.
The rapid growth of these areas led to them needing to justify their
existence and create work to gain staffing levels and funding. So at
the start we had obvious cases of abuse dealt with, then the growth of
the industry allowed for the investigation of cases that were more
difficult to detect, then came the time when work had to be invented.
The situation today is that everyone involved in professional
childcare in any way is being taught to actively seek out the most
nebulous indicators of possible abuse so as to feed work into the
organisations set up to deal with it.
I am not convinced of that at all. I would be interested to see the views of
social workers who believe that such a phenomenon exists. All the social
workers I have met are overworked and not at all anxious to seek out further
work for themselves. The problem is that children are undoubtedly being
abused throughout the country, in the privacy of their homes and in secrecy,
and there is no easy way of detecting that abuse. Teachers are therefore
expected to report certain kinds of behaviour. Inevitably they will
misinterpret what they see and hear, and then the social workers might
likewise misinterpret the information from the teachers and from the child.
I think the fear of making a mistake and getting into trouble with their
superiors is a far more powerful factor than any personal glorification.
Cynic
2006-01-17 16:47:35 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
I am not convinced of that at all. I would be interested to see the views of
social workers who believe that such a phenomenon exists.
Which would be akin to getting the views of a burger-flipper on the
merits and demerits of the fast-food industry and the motivation of
the people who run it. The social worker is not driving the industry,
s/he is following the rules set by those who are, and probably
believes 100% in the merits of what s/he is doing.
Post by The Todal
All the social
workers I have met are overworked and not at all anxious to seek out further
work for themselves.
Yes, and a burger-flipper may also feel overworked - which does not
mean that fast food has developed for good reasons or that there is a
huge necessity or even benefit in supplying hamburgers. Nor does it
mean that everything said about food by McDonald or Burger King
spokesmen are to be believed.
Post by The Todal
The problem is that children are undoubtedly being
abused throughout the country, in the privacy of their homes and in secrecy,
and there is no easy way of detecting that abuse.
Depending on your definition of "abuse", I would disagree that it is
anywhere near as big a problem as is being portrayed. What percentage
of the children amongst your friends, family and aquaitances would you
say there is a good possibility are being abused?
Post by The Todal
Teachers are therefore
expected to report certain kinds of behaviour. Inevitably they will
misinterpret what they see and hear, and then the social workers might
likewise misinterpret the information from the teachers and from the child.
I see it as being akin to sniffing out communists during the McCarthy
era. You gloss over the fact that the consequences of
"misinterpretation" can do far more permanent harm to the child than
the abuse that was suspected of occuring.

Anyone who works closely with children and establishes an unfettered
rapport does not need to look for ambiguous "indicators". Any abuse
that is serious enough to warrant intervention will almost always
become known in due course to anyone with sufficient interest.
Unfortunately, the rules that have been formulated to protect teachers
and other people who work with children from being suspected of sexual
motives also serve to create a distance between the adult & child that
makes it less likely that the adult will get close enough to become
aware of abuse.
Post by The Todal
I think the fear of making a mistake and getting into trouble with their
superiors is a far more powerful factor than any personal glorification.
I have no doubt at all that there are more than a few people who are
in it for the power trip. A social worker has fewer checks and
balances and less accountability than a policeman, and if found to
have interfered unnecessarily, can fall back on the "better safe than
sorry" position no matter what damage has been caused to a family.
--
Cynic
Him over there
2006-02-02 01:44:24 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
On Tue, 17 Jan 2006 10:05:24 -0000, "The Todal"
Post by The Todal
Post by Derek Hornby
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
A hypothesis here. I don't know, but I believe it is as a result of various
scandals where children were killed by their parents or molested in care
homes. <snip>
I disagree with the reasons you give. I believe that there are two
main reasons for the change in attitude. The first reason, which I
applaud, is that children came to be seen as individual people with
rights of their own rather than the property of their parents. The
attitude toward a child being abused by its parents used to be similar
to the attitude toward a car being abused by its driver - something to
be deplored, but it doesn't affect anyone else so there is no reason
to interfere.
Possibly we agree on that.
The second reason is where the problems have stemmed IMO. That is to
do with the creation of a child protection industry - which grew out
of social services and spawned a multitide of offshoot organisations
and enveloped areas of healthcare, teaching and other organisations.
The rapid growth of these areas led to them needing to justify their
existence and create work to gain staffing levels and funding. So at
the start we had obvious cases of abuse dealt with, then the growth of
the industry allowed for the investigation of cases that were more
difficult to detect, then came the time when work had to be invented.
The situation today is that everyone involved in professional
childcare in any way is being taught to actively seek out the most
nebulous indicators of possible abuse so as to feed work into the
organisations set up to deal with it.
I am not convinced of that at all. I would be interested to see the
views of social workers who believe that such a phenomenon exists. All
the social workers I have met are overworked and not at all anxious to
seek out further work for themselves. The problem is that children are
undoubtedly being abused throughout the country, in the privacy of
their homes and in secrecy, and there is no easy way of detecting that
abuse. Teachers are therefore expected to report certain kinds of
behaviour. Inevitably they will misinterpret what they see and hear,
and then the social workers might likewise misinterpret the
information from the teachers and from the child. I think the fear of
making a mistake and getting into trouble with their superiors is a
far more powerful factor than any personal glorification.
And there we hit the nub of the problem. Both social workers and
teachers are from the most intellectually bereft of the minor
professions, drawn from the least able strata of the lower end of the
university population (for those who made it there).
Harry The Horse
2006-02-02 15:15:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by Him over there
And there we hit the nub of the problem. Both social workers and
teachers are from the most intellectually bereft of the minor
professions, drawn from the least able strata of the lower end of the
university population (for those who made it there).
I have met many counter-examples to your infantile generalisation.
Him over there
2006-02-08 01:21:10 UTC
Permalink
Post by Harry The Horse
Post by Him over there
And there we hit the nub of the problem. Both social workers and
teachers are from the most intellectually bereft of the minor
professions, drawn from the least able strata of the lower end of the
university population (for those who made it there).
I have met many counter-examples to your infantile generalisation.
I suggest you are a member of one of those minor 'professions'.

I have met many more examples of your level of intellect in those
people.

PeteM
2006-01-17 12:19:20 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion. It used to be the case where
child abuse was considered extremely rare, and so people tended to
look for innocent explanations when they saw anything anomalous in a
child. That outlook changed - but swung *much* further than it should
have done, and the situation became such that the "professionals"
appear to believe that child abuse is rampant, and jump to the
conclusion that the slightest unusual behaviour or physical sign is a
result of abuse.
So what has caused this sudden change of public opinion as regards
whas is child abuse, what is or isn't acceptable?
It's an interesting question.

My view is that it was imported from the United States sometime in the
early to mid 1970s. The US saw a huge boom in pop-psychology theorising
at about that time, often closely linked to the All-Men-Are-Rapists
feminist politics that were then being widely taught in universities.

Along with this came the fad for recovering "suppressed memories". A
vast army of (almost invariably female) psychologists helped their
(almost invariably female) patients to remember that they had been
molested in childhood (almost invariably by men).

It turned out that a large proportion of the more suggestible patients
emerged from this therapy with memories of childhood abuse.

This gave rise to the theory - promoted by heavyweight feminists like
Andrea Dworkin - that almost every child is sexually abused by their
father, except for a tiny minority of fortunate ones (which by an
amazing coincidence includes everybody I have ever met).

Once this became the US orthodoxy, it was presumably exported to Britain
in the late 70s in the form of training courses for social workers and
paediatricians, just like the satanic abuse scare.

The first UK outbreak I recall was the one in Middlesbrough in about
1978, which is why I guess at the above chronology.
--
PeteM
The Todal
2006-01-19 13:37:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
Post by Cynic
Yes, huge catastophes. Wrongful murder convictions are not the only
catastophes that have happened. Do you really need to be reminded of
the *many* cases of wrongful accusations of child abuse that have
caused irrepairable harm to entire families - not least to the
children in whose name the accusations were made?
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion.
Incidentally, I see they have had a legal scandal in France, with people
being wrongly accused of paedophilia. I wonder if there is sufficient
information anywhere to help our country learn from their mistakes:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/france/story/0,,1689772,00.html and
http://www.guardian.co.uk/france/story/0,,1656049,00.html
Paul Robson
2006-01-19 15:42:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by The Todal
Post by Cynic
Post by The Todal
Post by Cynic
Yes, huge catastophes. Wrongful murder convictions are not the only
catastophes that have happened. Do you really need to be reminded of
the *many* cases of wrongful accusations of child abuse that have
caused irrepairable harm to entire families - not least to the
children in whose name the accusations were made?
It is unreasonable to attribute all the mistakes to one man, or to one
theory, or to a mood, or to a fashion.
I do not attribute them all to one person or theory, but I *do*
attribute them to a mood or fashion.
Incidentally, I see they have had a legal scandal in France, with people
being wrongly accused of paedophilia. I wonder if there is sufficient
http://www.guardian.co.uk/france/story/0,,1689772,00.html and
http://www.guardian.co.uk/france/story/0,,1656049,00.html
Doubt it, as those mistakes are still being made as I type and have been
for years.
Derek Hornby
2006-01-07 19:38:18 UTC
Permalink
Post by Periander
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
Err you mean ought not to bave been answered in teh way it was!

<snip>
Post by Periander
Intent to deceive usually comes in to the equation, making a mistake is not
dishonest.
But Sir Roy had stood by his flawed evidence, so what does that tell us about
his attitude?
Yes sure he has admitted his use of statistics at Mrs Clark's trial
was "insensitive". but he still stands by his evidence.
Note alsom he has never apologised has he?

The GMC said Sir Roy's conduct had been "fundamentally unacceptable".
The point is his evidence was flawed, he erroneously implied" two natural
deaths in a family would have to be independent of one another.
It's vital the public has confidence in the experts brought before the court
and that's why he had to be struck off, rather than be given a lesser penalty.
Remember, During the trial, Sir Roy said the probability of two natural
unexplained cot deaths in the family was 73 million to one.
Now that was later disputed by the Royal Statistical Society and other
experts have said that once genetic and environmental factors are taken into
consideration, the odds are closer to 200 to one.
His mistake wasn't a little mistake that can be just brushed aside.
Come now, if we had the death penalty think of the poor women hung for
what they did not do.
As matter of interest, what action do you feel the GMC should have taken?
Remmber the aim, the aim is to ensure the public has confidence in the
courts.
Derek
Periander
2006-01-08 12:26:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis
he was unqualified to make in the context of answering a question
that ought not to have been asked.
Err you mean ought not to bave been answered in teh way it was!
No, it should not have been asked in the first place.

For instance would it be acceptable to ask, "What proportion of Robberies
are committed by black youths in London?", "Tell me officer, what
proportion of gang-rapes are committed by black men?", "What proportiion of
convicted burglars go on to re-offend?", "What is the percentage rate for
repeat victimisation in respect of distraction burglary in your area?" or
any other similar question you can think of. That kind of question cannot
by it's very nature cannot determine if the actual person in the dock
facing specific charges is guilty or not guilty of the offence alleged.

Such a question is not probabative of the issue under discussion and should
not have been asked.
Post by Derek Hornby
<snip>
Post by Periander
Intent to deceive usually comes in to the equation, making a mistake is not
dishonest.
But Sir Roy had stood by his flawed evidence, so what does that tell
us about his attitude?
Other than the error in calculating a statistic given his evidence is
unchallenged so of course he stands by it.
Post by Derek Hornby
Yes sure he has admitted his use of statistics at Mrs Clark's trial
was "insensitive". but he still stands by his evidence.
Note alsom he has never apologised has he?
If you read the thread from uk.legal.moderated I highlighted in my last
reply I believe you would be surprised if anyone apologised for the
conviction in question.
Post by Derek Hornby
The GMC said Sir Roy's conduct had been "fundamentally unacceptable".
Ah but as I and many others have sugested the GMCs conduct has been
fundamentally unacceptable in this and several other high profile cases.
Post by Derek Hornby
The point is his evidence was flawed, he erroneously implied" two
natural deaths in a family would have to be independent of one
another. It's vital the public has confidence in the experts brought
before the court and that's why he had to be struck off, rather than
be given a lesser penalty. Remember, During the trial, Sir Roy said
the probability of two natural unexplained cot deaths in the family
was 73 million to one. Now that was later disputed by the Royal
Statistical Society and other experts have said that once genetic and
environmental factors are taken into consideration, the odds are
closer to 200 to one. His mistake wasn't a little mistake that can be
just brushed aside. Come now, if we had the death penalty think of
the poor women hung for what they did not do.
I asked myself the question were the two deaths "unexplained cot deaths?"
for reasons of libel I'm not going to discuss thatquestion publically.
Again though a reply that touched on that question was given in the thread
on the moderated newsgroup.
Post by Derek Hornby
As matter of interest, what action do you feel the GMC should have taken?
Bollocking in his case, San Lazaro stuck off.
Post by Derek Hornby
Remmber the aim, the aim is to ensure the public has
confidence in the courts.
And presumably the GMC?
--
Regards or otherwise,

Periander
Cynic
2006-01-13 11:57:47 UTC
Permalink
On 7 Jan 2006 00:19:08 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis he was
unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that ought not
to have been asked.
His testimony made it clear from the start that he was fixated on what
he believed was a case of child murder. He may have had an honestly
held opinion, but that is not good enough in the case of an expert
witness. Apart from the much-touted statistical nonsense that he
repeated, he had a closed mind and was not prepared to examine the
evidence that came to light in an objective way.

I believe that he was defending his pet theories more than he was
assisting the court to determine the facts. Which was wrong, but not
nearly as wrong as being deliberately dishonest as in the Lilly case.

These cases as well as quite a few other similar miscarriages of
justice have done a lot of damage in the area of serious child abuse,
because they have undermined the trust in expert evidence. Whilst I
am probably far more distrustful than most when hearing of such cases,
there has been a pretty extensive spead of incredulity amongst the
general public about such allegations, which inevitably leads to
genuine criminals being acquitted due to doubts about the accuracy of
expert evidence.

Anyone genuinely interested in the welfare of children should not
therefore dismiss such cases by saying, "Well, his heart was in the
right place, and he was sincere," but rather condemn a system that
does not weed out such zealots from the justice system.

It may be very nice for the prosecution or the defence to find an
expert witness who is blinkered and "on side" to their objectives, and
it will certainly give them success in the first few cases, but
ultimately it results in a huge backlash that does far more damage
than losing a few marginal cases would have done.
--
Cynic
Periander
2006-01-13 21:08:28 UTC
Permalink
Post by incubus
On 7 Jan 2006 00:19:08 GMT, Periander
Post by Periander
Post by Derek Hornby
I thought he made few mistakes!
You thought wrong, does your misunderstanding make you dishonest?
He made one and that was solely in respect of a statistical analysis
he was unqualified to make in the context of answering a question that
ought not to have been asked.
His testimony made it clear from the start that he was fixated on what
he believed was a case of child murder.
To be fair even the defence experts were quite clear that if indicators
found by Williams could be relied upon then yes there was a great deal of
concern. And of course at the time of the initial trial and the first
appeal there was no real appreciation that Williams had held back material.
Post by incubus
He may have had an honestly
held opinion, but that is not good enough in the case of an expert
witness. Apart from the much-touted statistical nonsense that he
repeated, he had a closed mind and was not prepared to examine the
evidence that came to light in an objective way.
I still think that you are being very unfair, much of what he actually said
is available on line, in his own words. I found his evidence in chief to be
reserved, cautious, easy to follow and well reasoned.

Suffice to say his evidence in chief was not disputed by any expert from
either side, albeit differing conclusions were reached.
--
Regards,

Periander
Paul Robson
2006-01-07 07:24:17 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Post by Periander
that in the context of the wider evidence made very little difference to
the outcome of the trail
How do you know?
If the jury believed what he said was 100% true then it may well have made
big difference to their judgement.
I think it's highly likely that an "eminent" Doctor standing up saying the
chances of two not being murder are astronomically high would have a big
effect on the jury (who are almost certainly mathematically ignorant)
despite what the Court of Appeal may say.

Peri's argument that the court folks are more responsible I don't buy ;
Meadowes is claiming this as a fact when he knows it is just an opinion,
the lawyers etc. are not claiming expertise.

In any case, as Jury discussions are protected, how the heck is the CoA
supposed to know what their main 'drivers' were ? Clairvoyance ?

If the Police are having problems finding people to work with them on
these things it's their OWN bloody fault, because they're far too keen on
'experts' who make very one-sided analyses.
Mr X
2006-01-19 10:58:02 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Now far better you explain how it can be right for a mother to be
jailed for murder, or manslaughter, if she didn't commit such crime.
Far better you explain why the women were arrested for a crime they
did not commit? The police should take some responsibility for lack of
care to investigate and come up with the truth.
Derek, the police are more than happy just to get a conviction.

They really don't care whether the person was innocent or guilty.
--
Mr X
Paul Robson
2006-01-06 18:55:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Steve Walker
I am reliably advised that Police now sometimes find it very difficult to
secure a forensic medical exam of an injured child in some areas, beause the
doctors take the view that they'll just be pilloried and sued for years
afterwards (they'll happily treat the child as usual, they just won't put
their name to any report).
Does "public and political opinion" want child abusers to escape for the
lack of evidence against them? Do we want the (alleged) rapists of that 3yr
old girl in Wales to walk free? There's two sides to every story.....
Dunno. You may be aware of the Isle of Lewis nonsense, or you can watch
Rochdale "interviews" next week.

It's fairly simple really. You want a middle ground between "not allowed
to say anything" and "allowed to fabricate stories at will".
Paul Robson
2006-01-06 18:53:11 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give way to such
pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of them can be
wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must be challenged.
But what of Sir David Hall's opinion he feels that the GMC
pays more attention to parents who complain than to the welfare of the child.
Camille San Lazaro. Or watch the Rochdale thing next week. This is the
kind of mentality you are dealing with.
PeteM
2006-01-07 17:11:45 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Robson
Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give way to such
pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of them can be
wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must be challenged.
But what of Sir David Hall's opinion he feels that the GMC
pays more attention to parents who complain than to the welfare of the child.
Camille San Lazaro. Or watch the Rochdale thing next week.
When's that?
--
PeteM
Brave New Britain
2006-01-07 23:26:29 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give way to such
pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of them can be
wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must be challenged.
But what of Sir David Hall's opinion he feels that the GMC
pays more attention to parents who complain than to the welfare of the child.
Camille San Lazaro. Or watch the Rochdale thing next week.
When's that?
Wednesday 11 January, 9.00pm - 10.00pm, BBC1
--
Brave New Britain
Paul Robson
2006-01-08 08:20:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
Camille San Lazaro. Or watch the Rochdale thing next week.
When's that?
9pm Weds I think. Apparently contains some footage of Social Work
Interviews (haven't seen it obviously) which should be interesting.
paul nutteing
2006-01-08 22:00:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Paul Robson
Post by PeteM
Post by Paul Robson
Camille San Lazaro. Or watch the Rochdale thing next week.
When's that?
9pm Weds I think. Apparently contains some footage of Social Work
Interviews (haven't seen it obviously) which should be interesting.
9 to 10pm BBC1 , this weds.
Why peak time/channel ? not say 10 to 11pm BBC2


What they aren't telling you about DNA profiles
and what Special Branch don't want you to know.
http://www.nutteing2.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
was on http://www.nutteing.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
or nutteingd in a search engine.

Valid email ***@fastmail.....fm (remove 4 of the 5 dots)
Ignore any other apparent em address used to post this message -
it is defunct due to spam.
Paul Robson
2006-01-09 08:02:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by paul nutteing
9 to 10pm BBC1 , this weds.
Why peak time/channel ? not say 10 to 11pm BBC2
Probably because if they use footage of Police/Social Worker interviews
(and I'd be surprised but pleased if they did) they are likely to be
blatantly dishonest. Basically, they encourage/pressure/bully people to
either make complaints or answer leading questions.
paul nutteing
2006-01-10 10:18:47 UTC
Permalink
More knock-on
http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,1682022,00.html
So what happened to all the feared miscarriages of justice?
Clare Dyer, legal editor
Monday January 9, 2006
...
A long-term fallout from the crisis of confidence in expert evidence is a
serious shortage of paediatricians willing to testify in court. In a current
case involving a Birmingham couple fighting for the return of their baby,
taken into care soon after her birth in summer 2004, no British
paediatrician was willing to prepare a report to help decide whether the
mother killed the couple's first baby, a son who died aged four months in
1999. A foreign paediatrician has been found to take the case, but the
search has put the hearing back till at least June and possibly October.
...

What they aren't telling you about DNA profiles
and what Special Branch don't want you to know.
http://www.nutteing2.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
was on http://www.nutteing.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
or nutteingd in a search engine.

Valid email ***@fastmail.....fm (remove 4 of the 5 dots)
Ignore any other apparent em address used to post this message -
it is defunct due to spam.
paul nutteing
2006-01-06 23:40:37 UTC
Permalink
Post by Derek Hornby
From The Guardian 5 January 2006
Experts afraid to speak out after two were struck off
GMC 'pays more attention to parents than children'
Sarah Boseley Health editor
children are being left at risk of abuse because doctors are afraid to speak
out following the pillorying of paediatricians in the media and by the General
Medical Council, senior doctors warn today.
In a strongly worded article for a leading medical journal, a former president
of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health criticises the GMC, the
doctors' regulatory body, for the disciplinary action it took against the
child protection experts Roy Meadow and David Southall.
Many in the profession no longer have confidence in the GMC, says Sir David
Hall, implicitly accusing it of paying more attention to parents who complain
than to the welfare of the child.
"Changes in the way complaints are managed are urgently needed,"
he writes in the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine.
Professor Meadow was struck off the medical register by the GMC for wrongly
asserting that the chances of a second cot death happening in a family were
one in 73 million. His expert evidence was given during the trial of Sally
Clark, who was convicted of killing her second child but later freed on appeal.
Professor Southall was suspended from child protection work for contacting
police to accuse Mrs Clark's husband of killing two of their babies after
watching him on a television programme. Both paediatricians have been the
target of vociferous campaigns by groups defending parents accused of abusing
their children. But Sir David writes that a paediatrician fundamentally owes
a duty of care to the child, not the parent. Guidance from the judiciary
and the Children's Act make it clear that the child's interests must be
paramount.
"With regret, it must be recorded on behalf of many UK doctors that they
currently have no confidence in the competence of the regulatory authorities
to apply this guidance when making judgements about the expertise or
professional behaviour of those working in child protection," he says.
"Nor do they believe that the authorities are able to withstand public,
political and media pressures in high-profile cases."
The evidence base in child protection cases is still weak, he says.
Insufficient research has been done on forensic questions, such as the
ageing or pattern of bruises or the significance of human bite marks.
"It is a bitter irony that among the doctors who have been called before the
General Medical Council are several who have contributed so much to our
knowledge of child abuse."
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Post by Derek Hornby
Does the GMC simply follow public and political opinion, and give way to such
pressure?
Or: Are some doctor just too arrogant to admit that some of them can be
wrong, that some of them have flawed views that must be challenged.
But what of Sir David Hall's opinion he feels that the GMC
pays more attention to parents who complain than to the welfare of the child.
Derek
The trouble I see it is medics are very good
at spotting 'lesions' / anomalies etc to
the human condition.
A kid abducted and raped or a kid with indisputable
cigarette burns on the skin is one thing
but anal dilation or, say, subdural or retinal
haemorrhages in "shaken babies" etc is quite
another matter to show actus reus, when they
can so easily have non-criminal causes.

What they aren't telling you about DNA profiles
and what Special Branch don't want you to know.
http://www.nutteing2.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
was on http://www.nutteing.50megs.com/dnapr.htm
or nutteingd in a search engine.

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