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Alfred the Innocent

I had Boxall in the middle of this mystery from the start, thinking that Harkness’ over-detailed description of their old relationship as told to Detective Canney might have been rehearsed. I mean Verse 70? Who thought that one up?

But no more.

If you were to believe, or even consider the slip and the book were meant to be used as a means of covert recognition then you will have to replace Boxall with another man and insert him into the narrative at the chosen time – about dusk on the night of November 30th – and in the chosen place. I’m thinking the bench occupied by Strapps and Neill would have been a fair choice, being out of sight of the road. But how would he have known that? And Keane, who told him where to go?

Harkness knew Keane personally and the other man had her phone number.

That’s how.

Trouble was Keane, being new to Adelaide got his beaches mixed up and got into a bit of a tangle with Adelaide’s transport system, ended up at Henley Beach by mistake. Or so the tickets left in his pocket say.

No ID, no luggage office stub, no train ticket stub, no ration book, no suitcase key, no folding money, no door keys … no matches .. everything of consequence gone but the tickets.

6 Comments Post a comment
  1. Clive #

    Could the tickets (train/bus) have been ‘planted’ on him? If he bought the train ticket, but didn’t use it-wouldn’t you throw it away, once you knew the correct suburb to head to?

    April 11, 2021
    • Answering your first question Clive.
      Then you would wonder if there was a link with what appeared to be missing from his suitcase.

      April 11, 2021
  2. Clive #

    Well, both tickets (train/bus) could be traced back to two locations Adelaide Railway Station & a bus stop opposite the Adelaide Railway Station, If these tickets were both ‘planted’, what better way of signalling that the SM was at the station, knowing that sooner or later a suitcase would turn up with a name. A name that didn’t exist on any piece of clothing the SM was wearing, on no paperwork, no diary, no passport, no i.d. card etc. To all intent and purposes he had been ‘sanitized’. Why were photos of the singlet and laundry bag not shown, only the tie?

    April 12, 2021
    • An unidentified body found without any luggage may have been a risk the perpetrators weren’t prepared to take, in that other authorities may have shown an interest, widening the scope of the investigation.
      There were advantages to have the case remain in police hands …. most of them listed here.

      And you would have to ask yourself why Canney didn’t show Harkness Keane’s picture when he visited her, rather than have her and three detectives traipse down to the museum to admire Lawson’s work.

      April 12, 2021
  3. Clive #

    If we ignore the name ‘Kean(e)’, the only possible connection between the SM and the suitcase is a button and sewing cotton, another two ‘plants’? Perhaps Canney asked Jessie if she had seen the photograph in the local paper, Jessie told him yes, but didn’t know who he was so, Jessie agree to look at the bust. Perhaps she wanted to find out for herself if the bust was of a man she definitely knew, it was, for her, the only way of knowing if events were going to go pear shaped for her? Her ‘performance’ at the viewing of the bust was questionable, but perhaps, the local police already knew what to expect and, Jessie played her role to perfection?

    April 13, 2021
    • It would have been a complicated and time-consuming plant, particularly with regard to the matching thread. That would mean they closely examined the clothes he was wearing purely with the objective of buying a reel of matching thread if the need be.
      It was his stuff, Clive, but like his pockets, relieved of anything of consequence.
      And if they knew Keane wasn’t his name there wouldn’t be any need to for them to dispose of the articles with that name written on them.

      In addition, if Harkness had indicated to Canney that she recognised the man’s face he would have certainly included that fact in his report.

      April 13, 2021

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