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22 The question of lividity. Cleland, Cleland, Dwyer, Feltus, Hicks and Moss.

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Professor John Cleland – “I do not remember if there was any post-mortem evidence of lividity of the neck and shoulders.”

Dr John Dwyer – “The post mortem rigidity was intense, and there was deep lividity behind, particularly above the ears and neck.”

Professor John Cleland – “The lividity around the ears and neck was perhaps surprising in view of his position, but it was explainable. It would depend on how much the head was supported, it may have been slight, perhaps no more than one’s head supported on a pillow.

PC John Moss – ” I proceeded to the beach at Somerton, where I saw lying near a sea wall opposite the Somerton Crippled Children’s Home the body of the deceased which was fully clothed, lying on its back with feet towards the west, with the head resting against the sea wall, slightly inclined to the right.”

somerton body

Gerry Feltus – “The question of ‘lividity’ was an issue with the experts, in particular the observations of blood that had gravitated behind the ears of the deceased. This observation in some way suggested the possibility that the deceased had died lying on his back.

Did he die elsewhere?”

Professor Sir Stanton Hicks – ” …. If it (the poison) had not been self-administered, and the body brought there (Somerton Beach), that would remove any doubts as to the time at which death took place, as well as any other difficulties.”



2 Comments Post a comment
  1. Clive #

    Doesn’t PC Moss contradict himself? States the body he was lying near the sea wall, but his head was resting against the sea wall-which version is correct?

    April 3, 2018
  2. The representation of the body shows that his head is elevated much more than if slightly supported by a pillow.

    April 3, 2018

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