By Mary W Maxwell
Tomorrow, March 7, 2016, Chanel 7 in Sydney will wow us with a documentary about Port Arthur that has been 20 years in the making. With hard-hitting investigative journalism, I think they will be able to answer many crucial questions. We offer thanks in advance to the media for whatever they can do.
Let’s have a pen and paper ready to jot down the answers that the TV show will give us. The first person who hears a satisfying answer to my first three questions below, and notices any other 5 good answers, wins BINGO. You must, of course, send a comment to Gumshoe when you think you’ve scored.
- Why did the DPP not allow Wendy Scurr, who was at Port Arthur all day on April 28, 1996, to provide a statement?
- How did the fire start at Seascape cottage on the morning of April 29th?
- Who lit it?
- Did Martin Bryant’s guardian (reportedly Perpetual Trustees) advise the police that they were his guardian?
- In what room of Glenside Hospital, SA, was Martin imprisoned in 1988?
- Wikipedia says that Martin tried to swallow a razor blade to kill himself. Did he really do that? How far did the razor blade get?
- Risdon said that Martin refused visits from his mother. Is that true? Why would a lonely person refuse company?
- How about the 21 guns that were found in a white piano at Martin’s house? How was that piano ultimately disposed of?
- Which member of the Tasmanian parliament decided that December 31, 1996 would be the day that the Coroners Act 1995 would come into effect?
- Why did Ray Groom step down from the premiership, with no provocation, six weeks before the massacre and take up the portfolio of attorney general?
- The Psychiatry Department of the University of Melbourne was started by Tavistock. Do they still run it?
- According to Ian Matterson who was coroner in 1996, the foresight of Ray Charleton in obtaining a large mortuary truck before the event was much appreciated. Why did he think it would be needed?
- Why did Anthony Nightingale (said to be an ASIO man) shout “Not here” when the gunman started shooting in the Broad Arrow Café?
- Jim Laycock saw one of the shootings that day. He had known Martin as a boy and as an adult, and he said Martin was not the shooter. Did this constitute evidence of Martin’s innocence in Judge Cox’s eyes?
- When the SAS came over to Tassie on the ferry a few days before the massacre, where did they camp?
- Why did a female psychiatrist, Dr Ireland, take Walter Mikac to see the bodies of his wife and children on the morning after they were killed, still lying on the road?
- What about the newsman who doctored the eyes in a photo of Martin to make him look like a maniac? He said he did not intend this result – it was accidental. Did he ever change that story to be more in keeping with reality?
- Maurice Bryant, the Dad of Martin and Lindy, was found in a dam, having suicided. Why did he leave a note on the front door saying “Call the police,” but not leave a goodbye note for his wife?
- Terrance Hill said he had confiscated Bryant’s gun before the massacre. So why did Damian Bugg hold up another gun as belonging to Martin?
- What of the fact that there would have been easy proof of the gunman’s identity via fingerprints on the Solo can, but his tray was ignored by police “forensics”?
- Is it true that Tasmania passed special legislation to remove Martin’s assets, thus depriving him of money to hire an attorney?
- How did psychiatrist Paul Mullen, who interviewed Bryant in hospital May 5th 1996, come to be living in Aramoana, NZ, in 1990 when a 33-year old man, David Gray, shot 13 neighbors dead and set a house blaze?
- What is the connection, if any, between the shooting at Dunblane in March 1996, and the shooting at Port Arthur?
- Why couldn’t Port Arthur Historic Site employee Stephen Howard get the authorities to answer questions about his wife Elizabeth’s death in the Broad Arrow Café?
— Mary W Maxwell is author “Fraud Upon The Court: Reclaiming the Law, Joyfully” (2015)