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The Ellis-Jones’ Somerton Man ABC podcast


Information about the Somerton Man case is scant, and what little we know for certain should always be the bones of any attempt to engage listeners’ interest, particularly those who are new to the case.


Too many mistakes of fact, whether made by carelessness or lack of research, are read, listened to, repeated and finally believed.


About a couple of minutes into the first episode, presenter Ellis-Jones states ‘we now know for sure the body seen the night before was the same as the one found in the morning’ ... or words to that effect.

This disputes the findings of Coroner Cleland, who states in his winding up that it is ‘not known’ where the man died.

This misstatement of facts is typical of any exercise involving Prof Abbott, who is listed as being involved in the podcast. When it comes to accuracy, Abbott is and has always been lacking. Beginning with his early assertion, since corrected, that a T Keane, seaman on the SS Cycle was missing at the time.

His explanation for the appearance of a box of Bryant and May matches was that ‘Moss must have missed them.’ He also states that the phone number found on the back of the Rubaiyat belonged to a nurse living in Glenelg, where in fact she was just the one who opened the door to the police when they came looking for the subscriber, who has yet to be positively identified but was in all probability, Prosper Thomson.

And Abbott has yet to acknowledge the fact that the trousers worn by the man seen in the evening were different to those worn by the man found dead in the morning. He also disputes the accuracy of the statement given to the police, and sighted by Feltus, by the witness who saw a man carrying a man along the beach on the night of November 30.

Abbott promotes the theory that Harkness was nicknamed Jestyn, which, unfortunately, is now accepted as a fact despite having no factual basis as neither Alfred Boxall, Kate Thomson or Jessica herself alluded to it in their interviews.


pic is Fiona Ellis-Jones, presenter.

And no Ms Ellis-Jones, he wasn’t wearing an ‘immaculate suit.’

11 Comments Post a comment
  1. The fact that the telephone number found written in faint pencil on the back of the Rubaiyat was the one used regularly by Prosper Thomson has lead some to believe that SM was in town to see him – possibly to buy a car – Nick Pelling carried this theory on his ciphermysteries as far as he could.
    Another reason why Thomson’s phone number was so noted may have been because SM was given it as a means of finding Jessica ..

    October 2, 2019
    • Was the book actually ever in his possession?
      Was the TS planted?
      Were the trousers his?
      I wonder what sized clothes Prosper wore?

      October 3, 2019
    • For me, the Somerton Man car-related strand starts with one pivotal question: was the Rubaiyat dumped randomly into the car by a complete stranger, or was it directly connected to the car? Just because we are somehow supposed to believe the former narrative doesn’t make it true: we have essentially zero evidence to support it.

      I hope that at some time Gerry Feltus will post more substantial details of his discussions with John Freeman, and that this will cast even a small light on this aspect of the whole mystery.

      October 4, 2019
      • For someone to just dump the book meant they placed no value on the code written on the back … either that or they didn’t know it was there.

        October 4, 2019
        • All I’m saying is that “dumping the book” is a pretty pivotal assumption to be building entire narratives on, given that we have precisely zero evidence for it.

          October 4, 2019
          • Not trying to build a narrative here, just questioning everything …

            October 4, 2019
  2. petebowes #

    Forensic Science SA is a department of the Attorney-General’s Department South Australia –

    October 5, 2019
  3. Clive #

    I know it sounds naïve, but how did Forensic SA found out about Renee taking DNA samples? For the AG’s department to ‘confiscate’ the samples and keep quiet about it, seems their sudden interest in the case speaks volumes-come on Steve Marshall SA Premier, do the right thing, once and for all, tell us what the SA government don’t want Joe Public to know about this case.

    October 5, 2019

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