Daily Archives: March 16, 2004

No Kelly inquest shocker

Now then, let’s see. An internationally respected scientist dies after being exposed as a journalistic source. An inquest is opened and adjourned pending the outcome of a top-level inquiry. The inquiry – not an inquest, and led by a judge not a coroner – determines that the scientist committed suicide. The inquiry did not take proper forensic evidence, nobody was under oath, and there was no cross-examination in this area. Many reputable people, including coroners, forensic experts and (of course) lawyers, dispute the idea that the scientist killed himself. They say there are a number of unanswered questions. What to do?

It’s obvious, isn’t it? You have a proper inquest, as you would have done had there been no inquiry. As you would have done after any death like this, whether or not the person was in the public eye. After all, an inquest is the One True Way
to determine cause of death, especially where there is doubt.

So naturally, the coroner says he believes there are no “exceptional reasons” that would necessitate the opening of an inquest.

I don’t know whether Kelly killed himself or not; he probably did. I am sure that Hutton was not qualified to determine cause of death, and that the Hutton Inquiry did not follow the due process of an inquest.

I should be staggered that the Oxfordshire coroner, Nicholas Gardiner, decided a full inquest was not necessary.

But sadly I’m not.

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London excitement

Went to London with Sarah today to window shop in Knightsbridge and the Kings Road. Felt underdressed in various locations. Sarah scandalously violated the window-shopping ethic by buying something.

Didn’t see any of the supposed additional security measures: we certainly didn’t get our bags searched on the train. There were, however, lots of airport-style tannoy announcements telling us not to leave bags unattended. I’m sure it gives someone the warm and fuzzies.

I did catch a brief glimpse of what I’m sure was a passenger jet being escorted by two fighter jets. The louder-than-usual jet noise alerted me, and I looked up just in time to spot them – fighters tickling the wing tips of the passenger jet – before they disappeared behind a building. They were banking right, not following the usual Heathrow approach (at least compared to the other aircraft we saw). I had my camera with me, but no time to take any photos.

Haven’t seen anything about this on the web. Maybe it’s so common these days that it doesn’t register as newsworthy any longer.

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