Scott Watson case special – Elementary 1, Elementary 2.1 and 2.2, Plus Arthur Allan Thomas
If you’ve got questions about the Scott Watson case, this is the info pack you need. Elementary is the first book on the case to reveal what actually happened – the real timeline, Scott Watson’s real past (including his stated intention to multiple witnesses to rape and kill, and his physical assault on a teenage girl at Furneaux in pursuit of sex), the exposure of Watson’s Erie Bay painting alibi as false, the details of where Watson really went, and much more.
PLUS – two massive ebooks, Elementary 2.1 and Elementary 2.2 – containing not just the full police statements of water taxi witnesses Sarah Dyer and Hayden Morresey, but also their full court testimony. There is nowhere else you can get all this. Of the last three people to see Ben and Olivia, these two witnesses did not see a ketch (two masts) nor did they see portholes. See how their stories changed the more times they were asked to repeat them.
The secret to this enduring murder mystery is contained in this book pack, and smart people will quickly find it.
PLUS – Arthur Allan Thomas: The Inside Story by Ian Wishart (print version).
REVIEW OF ELEMENTARY by Ross Burns, defence lawyer
The Crown case relied on eliminating everyone other than Watson from being the killer. Police had spoken to every person on every boat that was there that evening and over the duration of the 11 week trial, the jury heard from most of them. Sherlock Holmes – who Ian Wishart silently acknowledges by calling his book Elementary – would have said, “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” The jury agreed, finding Watson guilty of both killings.
Critical to an understanding of the controversy over Watson’s conviction is the evidence of Guy Wallace, a water taxi driver who says he saw Ben and Olivia climb aboard a yacht, which he described as very different to Watson’s vessel Blade. A ketch, not a sloop. From such detail comes doubt, and over a long time in prison, such doubt can move others to re-examine the case. This one is no different. There have been books and a documentary, there is a website and most recently Mike White’s interview with Watson himself. Wishart wrote a book in 1999 in which he came down squarely on Watson’s side.
Seventeen years later, Wishart has changed his mind. His first book was written based on the evidence heard in Court. In his second, he has had the benefit of the defence files, which include all the statements given to the inquiry team as well as material generated by a defence PI. In coming to his revised opinion, he has relied heavily on the statements made much closer to the time, and discounted the “much more unreliable court testimony”. He quotes extensively from these statements as he doggedly supports his thesis, only pausing from time to time to bitch-slap those whose conclusions he disagrees with and to criticise the police investigation.
His book breaks down into three main chunks; Scott Watson the psychopath and all-round bad bastard (the things the jury never heard), the “mystery man” and the ketch and whether they existed and finally what really happened.
His analysis of Watson’s character is detailed and if accepted at face value must cut away a large chunk of the sympathy vote which is so important to a successful innocence campaign. He gives the lie to depictions of Watson as a man who had got into a bit of trouble in his youth but had lived a blameless life in the years leading up to the murders, instead portraying him as violent, explosive when drinking and a sexual predator.
…Much has been made of the apparent differences between Watson and the mystery man. Wishart is at his strongest in pointing out that they are likely to have been the same man; that one man’s clean-shaven is another’s three-day growth and that describing hair that comes to the collar as long is not necessarily inconsistent. Given the known frailties of identification evidence, he has much to work with and does it well. Likewise in his analysis of whether there was a ketch which police never found, he is convincing in his reasoning that it never existed, and if he is right, and the water taxi driver got it wrong, Watson comes right back into the frame.
As for the “what really happened” part, by this stage in the book the narrative has become discursive, but Wishart nevertheless draws a number of interesting conclusions from the evidence which help in pinning down the events, all of which underline Watson’s involvement. It’s not the most readable part of the book, but is probably the most needed. It’s important for family members of the dead to understand what happened to their loved one. It helps the grieving process to understand the events over which they had no control.
THE CRITICS ON THE INSIDE STORY:
“Undeniably…when Wishart hits he hits big. Arthur Allan Thomas: The Inside Story is a book two generations of New Zealanders have waited for…Wishart…offers an explosive new theory about who pulled the trigger of the gun that killed the Crewes in their Pukekawa farmhouse and theorises about the mystery woman who fed their infant daughter, Rochelle, for days after the murders.
“…With his thorough analysis of the evidence and his generous use of first-person accounts it’s a stellar piece of journalism…” – Southland Times
“Wishart has a brand new prime suspect and he lays out his case in this fascinating and highly readable book. Wishart is painstaking in his investigation, and his interviews with the man at the centre of the case, Arthur Thomas, offer a remarkable insight into one of New Zealand‘s most memorable characters. ” – Kerre McIvor, Newstalk ZB
“Wishart’s report of Detective Sergeant Len Johnston’s brazen arrogance collecting items for later use as evidence from Thomas’s farm – pieces of wire, .22 shells and axle stubs – exposes a dark and scary side to our guardians.
“Through the book Wishart lays the ground for his claim that Johnston was actually the murderer and by his position on the inquiry team and proximity to Hutton, was able to influence an outcome which saw Thomas convicted twice of a double murder. Wishart’s conclusions are disturbingly possible in my view.
“The question of to what extent Hutton had the wool pulled over his eyes by Johnston is moot. Based on Wishart’s debunking of transcripts and evidence previously recorded, I think Hutton could well have been fooled by his best mate. Which means so too were the rest of the team deluded.” – former Det. Insp. Ross Meurant, NZ Herald