Thursday, 7 June 2012

The bloodstained Barbour cap (1)

In previous posts I have discussed at some length the various bloodstained artifacts found in the vicinity of Dr Kelly's body: the knife, watch, Evian bottle and its top.  But also, close to the head, there was a Barbour cap ... also with blood on it.

This is what the witnesses said about the cap:

Louise Holmes and Paul Chapman
Although neither of them mention the cap or are asked about it, for completeness I feel that this needs to be mentioned.   What I found particularly interesting though is the fact that Louise Holmes who gets to within four feet of the body wasn't asked about what Dr Kelly was wearing yet Paul Chapman, much further away, was!  So far as the disclosed parts of their police witness statements in Annex TVP 3 are concerned there is no reference to clothing or to the cap.

 DC Coe
At the Inquiry DC Coe expresses a lot of uncertainty at times, as if not quite sure what answer he feels he should give, and the matter of the cap is a very good example of this.

Q. Did this person have any clothes on?
A. He did. He was fully dressed.
Q. Could you be more particular as to what the clothes you saw were?
A. He was wearing a Barbour jacket. There was a cap, a pair of trousers and think walking boots, but I cannot be certain on that. 
Q. Was the cap on the head or was the cap apart from the body? 
A. That I cannot remember -- I have a feeling the cap was off, but I cannot be sure. 

Why didn't Mr Knox ask Coe to check in his notebook about the position of the cap?

In Annex TVP 1 where part of DC Coe's statement is reproduced there is no problem:

There was also a peaked cap close to this male person.

Seven years later his memory still is clear on the matter because in the interview he gave Matt Sandy for the Mail on Sunday he states:

Near him was a pruning knife with a wooden handle and a curved, three-inch blade.
On the ground was a cap, a watch and a small Evian water bottle.

As with the other objects he doesn't mention seeing any blood on the cap.

Vanessa Hunt
Doesn't mention the cap at the Inquiry but nothing should be read into that.

Dave Bartlett
At the Hutton Inquiry:

Q. Did you notice any other items of clothing nearby? 
A. There was a cap ...(Pause). Yes, there was a flat cap on the left of the body, near the head end. 

It seems then that the cap was in place when viewed by Coe and Bartlett, whether it was there when the searchers discovered the body is unknown.
PC Franklin
As happened with Ms Hunt he doesn't note the presence of the cap.

PC Sawyer
He uses the word "cap" but from its context he is I think referring to the top of the Evian bottle.

Q. Did you see a bottle of water?
A. I did, by Dr Kelly's head. There was an open bottle of Evian, 500 ml or 300 ml bottle, with the cap by the side of it, by his head.

Dr Hunt
At the Inquiry:

Q. Did you investigate the scene next to the body? 
A. Yes.
Q. And what did that show?
A. There was a Barbour flat-type cap with some blood on the lining and the peak near his left shoulder and upper arm. In the region of his left hand lying on the grass there was a black resin strapped wristwatch, a digital watch, which was also bloodstained. 

In his report and under "Adjacent scene":
Lying adjacent to the left shoulder/upper arm was a 'Barbour' cap with the lining side uppermost.  There was blood over the lining and also the peak.

Mr Green
Cap not discussed with him at the Inquiry but the results of his tests on the cap will be noted in my next post.

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