Monday, August 8, 2011

#McCanns : Dr.Roberts 'Thirty Days' casting doubt as to which day Madeleine met her death.

Thirty days

Madeleine McCann

By Dr Martin Roberts
05 August 2011


Thirty days hath September, April, June and November. The rest have thirty-one (except for May which, in 2007, was short by one Wednesday).

"Wednesday, 2 May, 2007. Our last completely happy day. Our last, to date, as a family of five." (Kate McCann in 'Madeleine' p.59).

Ripe for recollection, this particular Wednesday in May ought to feature conspicuously in the McCanns' various accounts of the truth, yet it does not; even in Kate McCann's recently published attempt at putting the record straight. Although the nocturnal shenanigans are ritually described, references to the diurnal aspect of that 'last completely happy (family) day' are conspicuous only by their near absence. The sentence quoted above is followed by two short paragraphs. And that's it. Heralded as a major event, Wednesday 2 May proves, in fact, to be something of a non-event.

O.K., so it rained. It's still possible to have family fun indoors, even in a small holiday apartment. Unless of course you are desperate to off-load the children so you can show off your new pink trainers down at the beach again with Matt, running the gauntlet of small dogs. That must have been a long run, taking up most of the morning, as the next thing that happens is "Gerry and I picked up the children, had lunch in the apartment and then took them to the play area for an hour before walking them to their clubs." (p.60). Tennis was rescheduled. "After that it was the usual routine: tea with the children, playtime, bath time, milk, stories, kids' bedtime, get ready, Tapas at 8.30 p.m."

And that, dear reader, is the extent of the family experience on Wednesday 2 May.

Some might consider an interval of several years adequate justification for poor recall, but such justification cannot apply to an interval of only one week! Here's what Gerry McCann had to say to Portuguese investigators on 10 May, 2007. Notice how Wednesday daytime fails to merit a mention:

"Concerning the routine, on Tuesday there was a slight change given that after lunch, at 13H30, the deponent and KATE decided to take the three children to Praia da Luz, having gone on foot, taking only the twins in baby buggies. They all left by the main door because of the buggies, went around to the right, down the street of the "BATISTA" supermarket and went to the beach along a road directly ahead.

"They were at the beach for about 20 minutes...

"On the day that MADELEINE disappeared, Thursday, 3 May 2007, they all woke up at the same time, between 07H30 and 08H00. When they were having breakfast, MADELEINE addressed her mother and asked her "why didn't you come last night when SEAN and I were crying?"

"On Wednesday night, 2 May 2007, apart from the deponent and his wife, he thinks that DAVID PAYNE also went to his apartment to check that his children were well, not having reported to him any abnormal situation with the children...

"He cannot say exactly, but he thinks that on Monday or Tuesday MADELEINE had slept for some time in his bedroom, with KATE, as she had told him that one or both twins were crying, making much noise.

"Back to Thursday..."

Back to Thursday. Without ever having visited Wednesday, either on the 10th or the week previously (the 4th), although Kate manages to mention it, just, during her earliest interview:

"Apart from that, on Wednesday or Thursday, Madeleine and the other children went sailing at the beach, five minutes away from the club, for an hour, in an event that was organised by the resort. The surveillance of this activity and the organisation were done by the club, and the deponent was not present, nor was her husband."

Not only are Wednesday and Thursday evidently interchangeable but, in terms of Madeleine's known whereabouts, that was a matter for resort staff, as neither Kate nor Gerry was present during the organised activity. (Gerry makes a comparable observation in his own 4 May statement).

The McCanns' 'last completely happy day' appears to have been dropped from the calendar, whilst confirmation of Madeleine's presence rests squarely with Mark Warner nannies. There are the creche registers of course (well, they exist at least), and the occasional 'sightings' by third parties.

According to Nanny Cat Baker's 10 May responses to Portuguese police inquiries, Madeleine should have been with her at the beach on Tuesday, Wednesday [15.30 - 16.30] AND Thursday [10.00 - 11.00] when she had a boat trip - at the same time as Jane Tanner is supposed, by Rachael Oldfield, to have taken her photograph while engaged in mini-tennis - which she did not do according to Russell O'Brien.

But we are more concerned with the Wednesday. As was Dianne Webster:

4078 "When was the last time you saw Madeleine?"
Reply "(Sighs) You see I don't remember seeing her on the Thursday because I didn't go to the high tea, err but I was apparently in the play area afterwards but I can't recall that."
4078 "Okay."
Reply "Err so from what I can recall, the last time I would have seen Madeleine would have been the Wednesday at the high tea probably."

Use of the conditional + 'probably' does not mean it happened. For all we know the witness may even have partaken of 'probably the best lager in the world' (instead of high tea).

As far as the McCanns were concerned, May 2007 consisted of thirty recorded days. But surely even two paragraphs from Kate justify recognising the full thirty-one? Well, if you insist. But, in terms of diurnal activity, the result is the same. Monday isn't accounted for either - neither in their statements, nor the book.

Between two deleted days therefore we have a duplicate visit to the beach and, from Wednesday evening through Thursday, a succession of questionable 'checks' and 'sightings.' It's just as well we have the handful of photographs taken in Praia da Luz, including the 'last' one, or we might be tempted to question whether Madeleine was seen at all that week by anyone except her parents.