Session 11. Monday Morning, April 30, 2012

SESSION 11. Monday Morning, April 30, 2012
9:04@skynewsgathererGareth's body was removed from the bottom of the bag - not via the zipped opening
9:05@skynewsgathererTwo hairs were found on Gareth's thumb
9:08@skynewsgathererDr Swift says that if someone was already dead when moved there would be no bruising
WITNESS: Benjamin Swift
9:09@skynewsgathererDr Swift says that in cases of smothering there are often no marks left
9:11@skynewsgathererDr Swift found a 0.6cm bruise to left forearm, graze to left elbow and 0.7 graze to right elbow, and inner left eye socket
9:12@skynewsgathererDr Swift says injuries likely to have been caused after death due to position in the bag
9:14@skynewsgathererNo injuries in Gareth's neck, or head, there were 3 internal bruises to loin, elbow and right chest wall. No bruising around wrists
9:17@skynewsgathererDr Swift says injuries could have been caused accidentally. No signs of obvious poisoning
9:18@skynewsgathererNo obvious signs of natural disease
9:19@skynewsgathererPathologist: No significant traumatic injury, no injuries of offensive or defence nature, no sexual assault
9:20@skynewsgathererPathologist Dr Swift could not confirm cause of death
9:21@skynewsgathererPathologist tells coroner there we no signs from Gareth's finger tips that he tried to get out the bag
9:23@skynewsgathererCause of death could not be ascertained due to decomposition of Gareth's body, pathologist says
9:26@skynewsgathererFamily lawyer now asking questions about how decomposition affected results of PM. Inquest hears how the heating was on in August
9:27@skynewsgathererDr Swift refuses to speculate on what might have caused Gareth's death
9:29@skynewsgathererWhen pushed Dr says asphyxiation and poison were two 'foremost contenders' to be most likely cause of death
9:33@skynewsgathererExperienced pathologist Dr Ian Calder performed 2nd PM
WITNESS: Ian Calder
9:35@skynewsgathererDr Calder says he agrees with Dr Swift that if Gareth had been moved after death he wouldn't have sustained bruises
9:36@skynewsgathererDr Calder agrees that cause of death was 'unascertained'
9:40@skynewsgathererDr Calder explains that it's not so much the lack of oxygen in bag - but the build up of carbon dioxide
9:42@skynewsgathererCO2 makes people confused which would make someone 'fade away with no pain and increasing lack of awareness of environment' says witness
9:46@skynewsgathererDr Calder says 'very likely' cause of death was hypercapnia (too much carbon dioxide in blood)
9:54@skynewsgathererDr Richard Shepherd, acting for the coroner, now giving evidence. He agrees with other 2 pathologists
WITNESS: Richard Shepherd
9:55@skynewsgathererDr Shepherd found no patterns of injuries and no restraining injuries
9:56@skynewsgathererDr Shepherd says it would have been 'extremely difficult' to place a newly dead body into the bag
9:57@skynewsgathererDr Shepherd says a person 'playing dead' is not same as an actual dead body. His experience is that it would be 'very difficult process'
9:58@skynewsgathererDr says that if Gareth was alive going in bag he would have expected some 'gripping injuries'
9:59@skynewsgathererDr says it's more likely that Gareth was alive when he entered the bag than dead
10:01@skynewsgathererDr agrees 'mode of dying' was most likely carbon dioxide
10:03@skynewsgathererDr says two possibilities of cause of death were suffocation or poisoning
10:05@skynewsgathererInquest hears that although cause of death is unascertained Gareth's death is 'unnatural'
10:09@stone_skynewsPathologist says in his opinion Gareth Williams death was unnatural and caused either by poisoning or suffocation because of too much CO2
10:09@skynewsgathererDr Shepherd says it is possible that Gareth voluntarily got into the bag
10:11@skynewsgathererDr: Gareth would probably have been aware oxygen was running out but not known at what stage this would happen
10:13@skynewsgathererPathologist suggesting Gareth would have known air was running out but he may already have been too affected by Co2 to do anything about it
10:16@skynewsgathererTo sum up - on balance of probability Gareth was alive getting into bag and would have had some awareness, says witness
10:17@skynewsgathererOn balance of probability the mode of dying was hypercapnia but cause of death unascertained
10:25@skynewsgathererPathologists says the youngest & fittest can survive hypercapnia the longest
10:26@skynewsgathererInquest taking short break. Then will hear from forensic scientists on DNA evidence
10:58@skynewsgathererInquest resumes with evidence from coroner officer's Barry May
WITNESS: Barry May
10:59@skynewsgathererMr May was asked to investigate by previous coroner after family raised concerns about 2nd PM examination
11:02@skynewsgathererRequest for 2nd independent PM didn't follow protocol due to inexperience of a worker the coroner's office
11:07@skynewsgathererPolice, family and first pathologist weren't told of 2nd examination when they should have been
11:12@skynewsgathererInquest told of 'communication breakdown' in the former coroner's office in regard to 2nd PM examination
11:16@skynewsgathererStatement now from Tony Larkin, a scientist from forensic firm LGC. He looked of bloodstains, DNA and hairs
WITNESS: Tony Larkin
11:19@skynewsgathererMr Larkin found a spot of blood near lights switch and an 'aged' spot of blood on the floor
11:23@skynewsgathererMr Larkin says possible bloodstain on bag - but very weak result
11:24@skynewsgathererAlso weak blood spot on the padlock
11:26@skynewsgathererMr Larkin actually works for Met Police - witness list was incorrect
11:36@skynewsgathererInquest hears that an error in logging DNA means that Gareth's family thought there was evidence of 3rd party
11:37@skynewsgathererDNA was actually from another scientist - error was only found when case was reviewed
11:41@skynewsgathererInquest now adjourned until 2pm
END OF SESSION 11. Monday Morning, April 30, 2012

Link to source of April 30 coverage