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Sad and Angry

An Englishman's Castle:

January 21, 2004
A failure of common sense.

Settle down class!
Meadow, what is the odds of rolling a six on a die?
1/6
Right, what are the odds of rolling double six?
1/6 times 1/6 so 1/36 sir.
Correct.
Now I have rolled a six with this die, what are the odds of rolling a six again.
1/36
Meadow - you are a miserable worm - Tompkins, what is the answer?
1/6 again, sir, they are two unconnected events. Actually sir it might be a bit less as the die might have a propensity to roll sixes!

To accuse a mother of murdering or deliberately harming her children is about the most heinous accusation you can make. Over the last few days we have discovered that not just one or two women but hundreds of women have been accused, found guilty, and jailed or had their children taken away from them for such crimes and the miserable worm Prof Meadow has been using very strange arguments as a professional witness in such cases.

Meadow, what is the odds of Sudden Infant Death occurring?
1/8500
Now one child has died of SID what are the chances of a second child in the family dying of SID.
1/8500 times 1/8500 so 1/73 million sir
Meadow - you are a miserable worm. Can a real expert give us the answer?
1/8500 again, sir, they are two unconnected events. Actually sir it might be quite bit less as SID is thought to be influenced by environmental and genetic factors and so after one death the same factors apply to other children and makes them at high risk. In fact the figures from the Care of Next Infant charity (CONI) show after one cot death the risk of a second actually increases to one in 200.

But Meadow still is fixated on mothers commonly hurting and killing their children. His inability to understand basic statistics is enough for me to distrust him completely. My gut instinct tells me he is wrong in many other particulars. And his ignorance has had devastating effects.

At the time I linked to a report of Sally Clark's trial written by her father, Frank Lockyer, QPM (Queen's Police Medal), a retired chief inspector of police, today I sadly and with considerable anger link to Sally Clark's obituary.

Comments

I never fully understand why some of us who are put in this position never decide to take their false witness with them.

Maybe it's just I'm not a very forgiving person. I believe that people make mistakes and that can, in some circumstances, be forgiven. But this sort of persecution goes beyond that. If I was one of the parents I would not be so forgiving as to end my own life without doing something to him before I go.

Maybe thats why people like him can spout off about these things. They have plenty of money, have no fears and can persecute others because of their beliefs. There is no repercussions because we just seem to roll over and take it. It's for the children seems to be a religious mantra.

There are so many of them as well and they get into more and more aspects of life. Hell, 10 years ago could you have guessed what would be the situation on smoking?

There must be many people in the UK now nearing the boil.

Excellent post, Englishman. Understanding this issue was beyond me till now, miserable worm that I am.

I'm afraid you really do have a jaundiced view but you would not be alone for we have a powerful ability to "Know what isn't so". English Law does not seek the truth but what it believes to be justice.The courts prefer to miss the occasional child murderer if it avoids sending an innocent mother to jail. Meadow has been demonised as a 'get out of jail' card to be played in any appeal which can be linked to him. The 1 in 73 figure has been so useful because most people haven't a clue about statistics and even less about medicine. The stats were calculated by statisticians, not Meadow, who relayed them (badly, I agree) to the court because it was anticipated that the defense were holding to a claim that the two deaths were 'cot deaths'. All it needed to squash them would be for the defense barrister to ask, "and what, Professor Meadow, are the odds on two murders as a risk in similiar families?" But they didn't, because it was irrelevent. Both children were damaged, whatever your imagination would prefer to believe. The first had old blood in his lungs and the second bleeding into the spine, haemorrhages in the eyelids(suffocation), old broken ribs and a dislocated clavicle.
This second baby died minutes after taking a feed happily whilst sitting in a bouncy chair in the few minutes his father left the room.Sally Clark's second appeal was allowed not because of the stats but because of missing path' reports which the defense was able to use to suggest that he might have died from infection.The fact that babies just don't die like this has been forgotten because the truth is what we choose to believe.The confused thinking about medicine is on a par with the mathematical illiteracy you mock.

The current extremely sad circumstances are perhaps not the best to continue this topic on statistical and legal issues. However, given where we are, I think more light is better than less.

For those who are seriously interested, there is an article on this issue of cot deaths and use of statistics in court, on Wikipedia at Sir_Roy_Meadow.

I note that the figure quoted by Dr Murray was actually 73 million to 1, not 73:1. Actually, leaving out the millions, the overall issue is one of whether some of the evidence (forensic evidence of cause of death) should be taken by the jury as being several hundred times more in favour of the prosecution's case, rather than being by chance.

Also, not fully in support of another matter that Dr Murray raised above, the Wikipeadia article states

Sir Roy's vindication was to be short-lived: It transpired that another expert witness had failed to disclose the results of medical tests which had suggested that at least one of the Clark babies had died from the bacterial infection Staphylococcus aureus (and not from smothering as the prosecution had claimed). A second appeal was launched and, in January 2003, Sally Clark's conviction was overturned.

Although the central reasons for the appeal's success had nothing to do with Sir Roy, the discredited statistics were revisited in the hearing. In their ruling, the judges stated that "....if this matter had been fully argued before us we would, in all probability, have considered that the statistical evidence provided a quite distinct basis upon which the appeal had to be allowed."

From what I can see, and this is my particular concern, the issue spreads beyond justice or injustice in any one particular case, or small number of cases, of infant death. It is an issue of the competence of the courts in matters statistical. Surely, judges and defence council (as well as the prosecution and all expert witnesses) have an obligation not to mislead the jury on any issue, and especially those issues where the jury have to rely on expertise beyond that which they might be expected to have themselves.

It would seem to me that, in the state of affairs that did exist, easy acceptance of factually wrongful evidence of a statistical nature is a very bad thing, and that those who have made, used, allowed use of, or failed to challenge such factually wrongful evidence need to consider their positions (or have them considered for them).

As Dr Murray pointed out, these particular cases may have contributed to misuse of the issue, in the other direction, as a sort of "public bounceback". Well, is that not an expected risk with moving away from true expertise to expert prejudice (and doesn't that word have interesting entomology).

Is not statistics, after all, pervasive on the whole issue of forensic evidence, even if the "consensus" of current legal thought might rather have it not so.

Perhaps, judges sitting in cases involving statistics (and other science, as appropriate) should have adequate education in such matters. If that cannot be managed in every case (and I accept that it is not an easy issue) then judges should have their own experts in statistics, etc, advising them in court, or on the basis of trial transcripts, prior to their summing up.

Best regards

All very well, Nigel, but there was no need for a statistical expert because Meadow's claim was clearly bogus whether or not you understand when it is valid to multiply probabilities. Because if two cot deaths in a family was as rare an event as he claimed, there would have been essentially no cases of it ever recorded and consequently no-one could know how rare it was. The problem wasn't a lack of statistical expertise, the problem was that no-one in the court seemd to have a combination of common sense and an ability to understand numbers. The rule that "most people are stupid and ignorant" covered every lawyer present, apparently.

Sorry I forgot the 'millions'.The 1 in 73(millions) has become such a mystic figure that you will see it in any child abuse case whether it is relevent or not, for it is now fixed in the public imagination as a form of post modern truth which bears little resemblance to reality but serves a purpose particularily to to those whose business is to undermine witnesses who might one day be opposite them in court of to those who earn a living by entertainment where all truth is relative. Sally Clark's second child had a number of samples from all over his body that grew a staphylococcus( the bug that causes boils and festering infections which can be lethal if antibiotic resistance is present as in some of our dirty hospitals with MRSA). The presence of this same bug from so many sites in a child who was well just a moment before suggests that the cultures were 'contaminants'.There is a rule in medicine that you don't treat the path reports but the patient. If a report says the patient is dead and he is chatting with you, you don't consign him to the morgue. Babies don't die in ten minutes from staph infections just when one of their parents has gone downstairs but a clever barrister can persuade a jury of limited competence(and believe me they can be limited ) that, could it just be possible that this is the first case of galloping, high speed, instant death staph from which there is no escape? They could and they do. If statistics are to be used then statisticians should be called and the defense in this case was negligent in not doing so but then they thought that it was all irrelevent because the children's deaths were not 'cot deaths'.The argument should never have been raised . Experts should be summoned by the Court from a panel of approved practitioners regularily assessed.They should be disinterested .The paediatrician or medical staff treating the child should be required to give the first evidence. Journalists who deliberatly disseminate falsehoods should be held responsible. Today for example papers have said that Meadow's 1 in 73(millions that is ) lead directly to Clark's conviction. There is no room for doubt here. It didn't, and no one has ever suggested that it did. But the public now believe it did and so it has become the 'truth'. By the way dearime, no-one has found a case of two "cot deaths"(babies that die in the night and are found in the morning having gone to bed well and in whom no abnormalities can be found at PM) in an affluent family, over
25,non smoking. I've looked for some years and am still waiting.It must be really really really rare. 1in 73 anyone?(millions that is)
Kind regards,
Dr David Murray.


You might be interested to look at this

http://tinyurl.com/34rjr8

and this

http://tinyurl.com/22unbk

and going back a bit

http://tinyurl.com/yuum23


It is almost ammusing when one innumerate tries to defend another and shoots himself in the foot! The poor professor, the victim of statistics worked out by statisticians! Even a "jury of limited competence" understands that they were being told by a medical expert (a Professor of paediatrics no less) that cot deaths are completely random events. They were being told that there are no genetic or environmental factors involved; that two cot deaths in one family cannot be connected in any way. What Roy Meadow exhibited was not statistical, but medical incompetence.

But can a medical expert be that stupid? Could this be VMSBP*? A re-interpretation of Meadow's law could be "One statistical fallacy is a tragedy, two is indefencible, and three is ..."

*Variant Munchhausen Syndrome By Proxy

Thank you Ziz for the links. All the flaws in the system are exposed as we try and dig for the truth.Barristers lie for their living and good ones can send the innocent to prison and the guilty home. I know about the path results and the comments of pathologists who argued about whether the presence of white cells in the spinal fluid indicated an in vivo response to the putative infection. The opposing opinion was that this was a response to blood in the cord and that the bleeding was subsequent upon trauma, like the broken ribs and blood in the lungs. As I've said before, doctors (even stupid doctors Tom) don't tend to treat path results but sick patients. No matter how much you may wish it, the child did not die of septicaemia in the context of the circumstances reported.
Tom, I referred to the jury in the way I did because Sally Clark pointed out that some of them seemed to have difficulty in reading the oath. She did not realise that they were in fact bright enough to realise the significance of the path results that would in the end release her. Once again, we are not talking about 'cot deaths' and the figures should never have been entered in evidence and once they had been, should have been siezed on by the defence and rubbished for they were indeed rubbish. They had been calculated as a rough guide to the wisdom of spending public money on the care of potential second cot deaths in certain social groups, not to be used as a "prosecutor's fallacy". Cot death is not an illness but a label for a set of circumstances in which a healthy(apparently) baby is found dead. Of course Meadow knows that you can have more than one and that they occur with a frequency greater than that he suggested in court. He was foolishly reading out these figures which were for the affluent family etc. Of course he knows about environmental and genetic factures involved in natural deaths( he described some of them) but we don't know what is the cause of death in the cot death babies(better called Sudden Unexpected Death in Childhood) they may all be natural of they may all be murder or more likely a mix of the two.
There's something niggling in all this. The story isn't over yet.
Best wishes
Dr.D.


So, Roy Meadow simply "foolishly" read out some statistics? Really? I repeat, the esteemed Sir Professor stated categorically that cot deaths are independent events. If "he knows about environmental and genetic factures involved in natural deaths", then it's worse. He is not just an arrogant fool, but a perjurer. By the way, Meadows did not just read out a statistic, he invented a new one to suit his purpose. Also, it appears that certain genetic predispositions combined with a staphylococcus infection can result in cot death.

Tom.To describe a man who has spent his life in the service of sick and dying children, one of the most demanding of the disciplines of medicine for your patient is frightened and often inarticulate, to describe a man who brought to our attention the dreadful abuse that relatives can inflict on their children and so recue hundreds of them from death and pain, to describe him as 'arrogant' and as a 'fool' and to defame him as a perjurer is to so misunderstand the the nature of the man and the circumstances of his disgraceful humiliation that one is tempted to conclude that your emotion has triumphed over your reason. He didn't categorically state that cot deaths are independent events, he was interpreting the Study that had worked out the risk of two
'cot deaths' in a low risk family. He introduced a cautionary word about the imprecision of statistics and his figures were further qualified by other doctors and heavily by the Judge. He 'invented' nothing. Genetic factors combined with infection may well lead to death but not to 'cot deaths' for they would not in that case 'be' cot deaths.


DR. D. -

Seems ironic that David Southall, the professor who accused Sally Clark’s husband of murdering his child whilst he was away from home, has been involved with smothering experimentation WITHOUT PARENTAL CONSENT.


http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=31383&SESSION=875

EDM 2767

WORK OF PROFESSOR DAVID SOUTHALL
17.10.2006


Hemming, John

That this House notes that according to the report written by Professor David Hull for North Staffordshire Trust about the work of Professor David Southall in the report written for the University Hospital of North Staffordshire by Professor McLeish and Dr Durbin, Professor McLeish said that Professor Southall `pursued multiple clinical research studies that were poorly designed and therefore were unlikely to produce new knowledge of worth. More worryingly he appears to have had insufficient regard for the ethical standards that should surround all clinical studies in babies'; believes that such comments are important comments that require proper consideration; is surprised that the University Hospital of North Staffordshire is unable to find a copy of this report; calls for the hospital to find a copy of this report and publish its contents; and further calls for an independent judicial or Parliamentary inquiry into the research and clinical activities of Professor David Southall, the failure of the regulatory system to prevent unethical experiments on babies managed by Professor Southall and the misuse of child protection and judicial procedures both to prevent parents from raising complaints about his research and procure children for his research.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story/0,,1859611,00.html

Monday August 28, 2006
Guardian

Detectives have stepped up an investigation into claims that the leading paediatrician David Southall left a child brain damaged as a result of a controversial breathing experiment 15 years ago, the Guardian has learned.

South Wales police have broadened their inquiry into an allegation that Professor Southall assaulted the boy by carrying out the test and are asking dozens of parents whose children may have come into contact with the paediatrician over the years to come forward if their child suffered any injuries as a result of his treatment. Professor Southall has denied that his treatment has harmed any child.

In a letter to parents last week, Detective Inspector Chris Mullane, of the force's child protection unit, said further inquiries could be opened as a result of the responses from parents. The letter says police are investigating an allegation of assault on a boy that may have occurred while he was undergoing treatment by Prof Southall at the University Hospital of Wales. It asks parents: "Has your child been treated directly or indirectly by Professor Southall ... Did your child suffer any injuries or adverse effects from that treatment ... Have you reported this matter to the police or any other body?"

The investigation began after the parents of Ben McLean alleged that he had been left brain damaged by Prof Southall's experiments at the University Hospital of Wales in 1991.

The child's mother, Davina McLean, believes that without their informed consent, her five-year-old son was given carbon dioxide to breathe and his airway was occluded during a sleep study. She claims that she and her husband were forced to take part in the study after Prof Southall said they were suffering from Munchausen's syndrome by proxy, and warned that unless they allowed Ben to take part he would be taken into care. Prof Southall has also denied these claims.

When Ben left hospital he was placed in foster care, but a year later a court found the McLeans had not harmed their child. Ben, now 20, lives with his parents and has severe speech and learning difficulties. Mrs McLean told the Guardian: "We are pleased that other parents out there who may have concerns are being contacted. All we want is justice for our son."

Prof Southall has attracted praise and controversy during his long career. Last year he was found guilty of serious professional misconduct and banned from child protection work for three years after wrongly accusing the husband of Sally Clark of killing their baby sons.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/england/realmedia/midlandstoday/bulletin.ram

South Wales Police Heddlu De Cymru

Working with the Community Cydweithio Gyda’r Gymuned

Public Protection Unit
Central Police Station
King Edward VII Avenue
Cathays Park
CARDIFF
CF10 3NN

Telephone (029) 20527272

10th August 2006

Dear

South Wales Police are currently investigating an allegation of assault on a young boy that may have occurred whilst undergoing treatment by Professor David Southall at the University Hospital of Wales.

I have been given your details by Mr William BACHE, Solicitor, who assures me that he has your authority for me to make contact with you.

I would be obliged if I could be provided with certain replies to the below questions. I must emphasise that South Wales Police are not carrying out an enquiry into Professor Southall, but are investigating one allegation of assault carried out in our force area. It may well transpire that further enquiries are carried out in the future if document dictate that to be the appropriate course of action. Please reply via email if you wish or I have enclosed a S.A.E.for your convenience.

1. Has your child been treated directly or indirectly by Professor Southall.
2. If yes please outline the document of that treatment.
3. Did your child suffer any injuries or adverse effects from that treatment.
4. Have you reported this matter to the Police or any other body such as the GMC (please specify).
5. If you reported the matter to the police
i) which force
ii) when
iii) have you details of an investigating officer or any other means of reference
iv) Result of the Police investigation

My apologies for being brief and to the point, but I am sure you appreciate the complexities of this enquiry.

Yours faithfully


Chris Mullane
DETECTIVE INSPECTOR
chris.mullane@south-wales.pnn.police.uk

DAILY EXPRESS TUESDAY FEBRUARY 6 2001 Page 30

Scandal of 'smothered' babies in cot death test
Police investigate experiments on little children with lung problems

EXCLUSIVE
BY LUCY JOHNSTON
AND JONATHAN CALVERT


SECRET hospital cot death experiments in which doctors planned deliberately
to `smother' babies are being investigated by police.


The research project, devised by some of Britain's leading child specialists,
envisaged using tiny infants with severe breathing difficulties.

The babies' faces were to be covered with a mask attached to a breathing
machine and their mouths `smothered' for up to 10 seconds on five occasions.


It is not clear whether the scheme was ever fully carried out, but it
appears that some parts did take place.


The controversial procedure, approved by an ethics committee, was regarded
as safe. The infants would be secretly monitored by doctors as they got
older. If they died of unrelated illness, pieces of their lungs, brains,
livers, and hearts would be sent to a pathologist in Sheffield Children's
Hospital for analysis and comparison with the project data.


The study was designed to help discover whether cot death was caused by
breathing and heart abnormalities and involved children across the country.


In a highly unusual move, doctors decided they would not seek written
consent from parents because they did not want to cause alarm.


The study, named the Sudden Infant Death Project, was planned to be carried
out at three hospitals: Rotherham District General, the Doncaster Royal
Infirmary and the Barnsley District Hospital during the late Eighties and
early Nineties.

A spokesperson for the Rotherham District General Hospital said: "Our
consultant has said that the study did go ahead so I'm pretty sure it did."


A spokeswoman for the Doncaster Royal Infirmary said it could not comment on
the matter "because it is subject of a police inquiry".


The Daily Express has evidence the experiment could also have been conducted
at other hospitals. Two sets of parents believe their children were brain
damaged after being put into similar experiments.


The two children, whose brains were developing normally, now have speech and
co-ordination problems and severe learning difficulties.


The parents have not been able to find out what happened while their
children were in hospital.


British Medical Journal paper recording the experimentation in smothering.

http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/316/7135/887

http://tinyurl.com/2so6pd

Dr. David Murray, a responder here is NOT a doctor. He is a stalking pervert who posts from scads and scads of different servers from all around the world.

So...Dr.David Murry, the above poster aka. Celerman of Celermansworld, aka Rob Cooper and Monk Bretton - answer this question:

Whilst we are on the subject of babies and doctors neglecting babies,, why are you NOT DEFENDING Madeleine McCann's parents (a GP and a Consultant) for leaving THREE babies locked up for at least an hour whilst they went to dinner?

I have not said anything in my blog because that will not bring her back, but I intend on making great inroads to prevent perverts from stalking families and their children as is evidenced by new Policing Laws in Britain. The Police can now stop and question ANYBODY under the Prevention of Terrorism Act for NO REASON in particular. I intend to give families and civilians similar powers to stop ANYBODY for stalking other people's children and that includes creating websites for that purpose, one of which is here:

www.debcooper.blogspot.com

I want to know who cowardly custard is. I want to take legal action. So does my wife. I have absolutely no idea who Dr David Murray is and you have no idea who either my wife or I are.

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