Who took the Tamam Shud Case off the board?
DS Leane went into retirement suspecting the Somerton Man was murdered. He owned the case in its initial stages. He owned the file. Anyone did anything it was his request, either that or he did it himself – read Feltus.
Then Len Brown took over the responsibility. He owned the file now.
Murder files remain in currency until they are solved or are shifted to an unsolved archive that can be handily referenced.
Because some detectives like to read backwards on murder cases – see if a similar event occurred in the past – others wait for a new murder, see if it connects with an old murder.
The Adelaide police handled the Somerton Man case all the way – pre-inquest and post-inquest, then the case’s unexpected revival when new and crucial evidence came to hand.
A phone number.
Following that case-invigorating event they interviewed Harkness at home, then, the next day, they interviewed her at the museum where Lawson showed her his work. This was a serious and sustained interview with every detective on the case in the room asking questions. But Harkness held her brief and remained silent.
But the interviewing detectives had already won the Jackpot.
She nearly fainted upon seeing the bust.
That, without doubt, is a prime example of a cold case’s Holy Grail: the long-awaited delivery of a bona fide Person of Interest, in this case the only one. Someone they knew was involved. Were certain of it.
Then they all knocked off.
Let’s say –
.. the news of Harkness’s reaction was passed to an individual in another government agency, and he, upon recognising the name, ordered that the police investigation be terminated, immediately.
Remember that Harkness initially gave two false names to the police, Thompson and Thomson, an indication that she too didn’t care for her name to become public.
Good to talk to you today, GC, something always comes from it.