Claremont serial killings trial: ‘Bradley Robert Edwards, we say, is the Claremont serial killer’
The final words of prosecutor Carmel Barbagallo as she wrapped up seven months of evidence left Tim Clarke saying she believed she could say with authority:
"Physical evidence can't be intimidated and it can't forget.”
"It sits there and it waits to be preserved, detected, evaluated and examined.”
"And it's that forensic evidence which - surrounded and supported by the evidence of the witnesses - has cast light on and unmasked the killer sought by so many and for so long.”
"That evidence, all of that circumstantial evidence in this case, is not tricky. In fact, if you look at the mountain of circumstantial evidence collectively, cumulatively and dispassionately.”
"There is no evidence, there is no evidence - when looked at in the context of all evidence - which is inconsistent with the accused man being the murderer of these three women.”
"The state's process of reasoning finding pathways to guilt are based on logic and the evidence. It is difficult to argue against logic.”
"The evidence leads to one offender being responsible for the murders of Sarah Spiers, Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon.”
"Bradley Robert Edwards, we say, is the Claremont serial killer.”
- Defence claims DNA not enough to convict Edwards
- Months of evidence have ‘unmasked the Claremont killer’
- The case of the missing Claremont victim Sarah Spiers
Then, the defence took their turn.
Immediately saying rather than looking at the bigger picture, Justice Hall should look to each detail with his opening words:
"When we do get bogged down (in detail) we lose sight of the bigger picture,"
"What the defence says is we must pay attention to the detail, not just the fibre evidence but every aspect of the case and not gloss over anything that doesn't fit the case theory."
Defence lawyer Paul Yovich honed in on what the defence said was the state’s key piece of evidence - Ciara Glennon’s left thumbnail, labelled by scientists AJM40.
That fingernail was never tested before 2008, and when combined with AJM42, another of Ciara’s fingernails, found the male DNA profile the prosecution says is Bradley Edwards.
The defence said they aren’t disputing the DNA is Bradley Robert Edwards, they’re disputing how his DNA was found with Ciara’s fingernail samples.
The prosecution says it was because Ciara fought for her life, scratching her attacker. The defence says contamination with samples that are known to have Bradley Edwards’ DNA - the Karrakatta rape victim samples.
Join Natalie Bonjolo, Tim Clarke and Damien Cripps as they analyse the final closings of the prosecution, and the start of the defence’s.
If you have any questions for the Claremont in Conversation podcast team, send them in to email@example.com
The West Australian has also released a two-part video series, as Tim Clarke takes you through the areas which are key to the trial, from Claremont, where the women went missing, to Hollywood hospital and to the sites were Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon’s bodies were found.
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