Coroner Cleland’s findings are worth challenging.
Given the differing depositions Coroner Cleland was handed with regard to the presence of matches on the body, he chose to believe a Detective Sergeant’s words rather than those of the police witness who first searched the body.
Coroner Cleland also chose not to consider the witness deposition that proved that the man seen in the evening was in all probability not the man found deceased in the morning.
In this case he chose to ignore witness Gordon Strapp’s deposition completely.
The same Coroner Cleland, who ruled after the 1949 Inquest : “Although he died during the night of the 30th November – 1st December, I cannot say where he died.”
- changed his mind in 1958.
“He died on the shore at Somerton on the 1st of December.”