- Jan 7, 2015
- Reaction score
The thing that has always astonished me about this case is the credibility attached to Daley's evidence. While Michael Stone was in prison he asked to be put into solitary confinement because he felt that other prisoners were trying to trick him into saying something to incriminate himself. Yet we're supposed to believe that, having been granted his request, he then chose to make a full confession through the pipes in his cell to Daley.My word…. I’ve got to post something…. I’ve always had HUGE reservations about Stone’s conviction. Damian Daley …. Known and infamous in my town. Wholly unreliable is the nicest thing that can be said. The fact the Bellfield was known to be in the area and the fact that only about 1 in 100million people are capable of doing this kind of thing, it just screamed likelihood to me. I’ve always thought this since knowing Daley was involved. If there was a carrot of a lesser or easier sentence, he would have no qualms about doing ANYTHING.
I don’t disagree about STONE but I wasn’t referring to him per seWhilst true, the weakness of the original case combined with this development should make it impossible to hold the conviction of Stone to the 'beyond reasonable doubt' standard.
Another factor which is often ignored is the appalling record of Kent police in 'fitting up' convictions. About 10 years ago a number of Kent officers were arrested for fiddling crime statistics by loading unsolved crimes onto suspects arrested for unrelated crimes. And given that those involved were up to Inspector level it is probable that even more senior officers were involved. The suggestion at the time was that this had been going on for years and was just the tip of an iceberg of dubious practice led from the top.
I know that reviews of this case have been carried out by other forces but it is essential that any further investigation in this case is carried out by a force and officers with unimpeachable integrity.
Well l want to wait and see what happens next. I wouldn't be surprised if LB retracts it.
What about Bellfield's alibi? He doesn't really seem like the sort of man who would have spent all day with his wife because it was her birthday. Both a watertight alibi, but also a very out of character one, in my view. Lin Russell wasn't blonde, allegedly he hated blondes, though I doubt that was enough of a red line to stop him if an opportunity arose, and Lin Russell walking home might have been enough of an opportunity for him. Just my early thoughts. Bellfield seems to have been close to confessing for a while, and a detective has suggested he might just be playing mind games, which may be true. I suppose we're just going to have to see what emerges now.
I believe him.
There was a documentary on BBC some years ago where a team of lawyers and legal experts re-examined the case of Michael Stone, and included phone conversations with Stone.
The evidence that was brought out on that really changed my viewpoint. Sure, he's not probably the type most of us would want to have as a friend, but there was nothing to convince me he was a killer.
This is going to be monumental if proven Stone was innocent all along.
I've often wondered about Jo Collings' 'alibi' for Bellfield. As you say, she's happily given evidence against him for other crimes so would seem very unlikely to provide a false alibi for this one. But it is common for people to celebrate their birthdays on days close to, but not on, their actual birthday. Is it not possible that Bellfield told her he was busy on her birthday so they celebrated it the day before or after, and she's just forgotten that detail? Or even that she's remembering how they celebrated her birthday the year before or after? The Chillenden murders occured in 1996 and Bellfield only emerged as a potential suspect in recent years. That's a long way back to remember - surely an innocent lapse in memory is plausible?It is an interesting one, but the alibi is from the ex-wife who helped put Bellfield in the frame for the Milly Dowler murder (so not someone who has avoided pointing the finger at LB before now) and she has reason to remember the day. Perhaps it’s less positive than it seems in terms of spending time with the wife: a family birthday might have typically meant drinking all day in the pub, for example, rather than “quality time” with the wife, and that’s what they did.
It may be that Bellfield fears the bootlace will have his DNA on it and has concluded that by admitting the crime now he has more control over the situation than if he's snared by the evidence.Someone correct me if I’m wrong but the standard on appeal as I understand it, isn’t going back to “beyond reasonable doubt” but whether it can be shown that the conviction was unsafe.
At original trial, introducing other possible suspects can cause enough doubt in a jury’s mind for them to decide to acquit, but to overturn Stone’s conviction there will need to be more than the possibility of another suspect, and something more along the lines of concrete new evidence pointing away from him. Perhaps the shoelace will show Bellfield’s DNA. I’m ready & happy to be wrong, but I don’t think it will.
I see that another of Bellfield’s exes thinks he committed this crime and that he has now admitted it because his mother has died and he feels able to confess.
That documentary totally convinced me that the conviction was questionable, to put it kindly - I do try to take such programmes with a pinch of salt when my knowledge is limited, as some seem quite good at downplaying/omitting important evidence, but in this case, I've tried to find what actually pointed to Stone's guilt outside of "confessions" which likely wouldn't be accepted today, and have failed. So when I saw yesterday's headline... wow!!
Like others I do wonder if Bellfield is playing games, but he's a more likely suspect than Stone, so if he really did do it, the sooner it's confirmed the better; leaving Stone to rot in prison for 25 years is a disgrace on our legal system. Sure, he was a nasty man, might even have ended up committing murder in the end... but is he responsible for this murder? I really doubt it, and even if he was, there is no way the evidence proves it beyond a reasonable level of doubt appropriate for a conviction.