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Full Version: The Full Autopsy Report
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I had always found the absence of the autopsy report tantalizing, and knew I had to find it. That seemed impossible until Alecker mentioned a French book:

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The Amazon blurb claims that it includes the full autopsy report. I was skeptical, of course, but there it is indeed, if the author, Stephane Bourgoin, a lecturer at the French Gendarmerie Academy, is to be believed. How did he get hold of the report? According to him, he asked at first LAPD, which claimed it didn’t have it, and told him to ask the Coroner’s. When Bourgoin asked the Coroner, of course he was told to ask LAPD. He saw he was getting the runaround, as many others, and wouldn’t get anywhere through the official channels.

So he asked a friend of his, a retired FBI agent with good connections in LA law enforcement. The (unnamed) FBI agent got access to the report, but was not allowed to make a photocopy. He transcribed it verbatim and Bourgoin translated it in French.

The beginning of the report corresponds exactly with Dr. Newbarr’s testimony at the inquest, just before his statement was interrupted. Here’s a summary from memory, because I left the book behind in the course of my travels. I won’t repeat what can be easily found in the inquest transcript, but here are a few new elements:

1. The abdominal organs are still in place, but the intestine and kidneys show (unspecified) injuries. Were they cut accidentally when the body was severed, or deliberately lacerated? The report doesn’t say.
2. Bruising and lacerations around the rectum. (So we can assume that part of the sexual assault took place while Beth was still alive.) Pubic hair pushed into the rectum.
3. Piece of skin with criss-cross lacerations pushed into the vagina.
4. No traces of semen anywhere on or inside the body.
5. The uterus is small. (Beth was not pregnant.)
6. Unspecified brown stains on the soles of the feet. (So was the body really washed, as claimed?)
7. Various ligature marks.
8. Healed scar on the chest. (Sounds surgical from Newbarr’s description, though he doesn’t say so explicitly.)

The report does NOT mention any vaginal abnormalities. No mention of any vaginal injuries either, or wheter Beth was a virgin. But I got the definite impression that Dr. Newbarr left much unsaid, maybe deliberately so. Marks and lacerations visible on the crime scene/autopsy photos are not described.

Also the autopsy is dated of the 16th, 24 hours after the discovery of the body (consistent with Newbarr’s testimony at the inquest.) Not exactly a rush job for such a high-profile case… Newbarr doesn’t say that he examined the body any earlier than that, so one wonders where he got his estimate of the time of death.

I will be able to post a full translation in a couple of weeks, when I get hold of my copy of the book again.

As for the rest of the book, Bourgoin dismisses the various theories proposed by Hodel and other authors as crackpot, but doesn’t propose any of this own. He is clearly fascinated by Ellroy, whose texts and interviews are reproduced by permission.
Thanks, Catherine! Looking forward to the full translation. Guests cannot see images in posts.
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Hi Noir,


Call the french academy founded by cardinal Richelieu for the translation...It's a joke,off course!!!Guests cannot see images in posts.
Thanks!!!Youre the Catherine la Grande of the board...Catherine la Grande the Russia empress on XVIIIe century.Guests cannot see images in posts.
Great find. Thanks.
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Thanks to all! And esp. to Alecker of course for pointing me in the right direction. I would never have thought of looking into a French book for information that was never published in English.
I am very happy to have found it, but was a bit disappointed by its incomplete, cursory nature. Sounds like Dr. Newbarr was in a big hurry to go play golf that day... or left many things out on purpose.
Guests cannot see quotes in posts. (11-22-2010 12:22 PM)Lou Sfar Wrote: Guests cannot see links in posts.Great find. Thanks. Thanks to all! And esp. to Alecker of course for pointing me in the right direction. I would never have thought of looking into a French book for information that was never published in English.
I am very happy to have found it, but was a bit disappointed by its incomplete, cursory nature. Sounds like Dr. Newbarr was in a big hurry to go play golf that day... or left many things out on purpose.
Catherine,I am very happy to help you!!!Guests cannot see images in posts.
For me, all of this case actors was negligent...For unaccountable reasons,the inquest was miss.Involuntary or not.Guests cannot see images in posts.
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On pg. 127 of Severed, John Gilmore implied that Harry Hansen monkeyed with the autopsy report so that some facts were left out. Gilmore said that he talked to Finis Brown before he died, and that Brown was the source of his information. Not sure if it's 100% true or not, but it's something to consider at any rate.
Guests cannot see quotes in posts. (11-22-2010 10:54 PM)CatherineWriter Wrote: Guests cannot see links in posts.I am very happy to have found it, but was a bit disappointed by its incomplete, cursory nature. Sounds like Dr. Newbarr was in a big hurry to go play golf that day... or left many things out on purpose.
On pg. 127 of Severed, John Gilmore implied that Harry Hansen monkeyed with the autopsy report so that some facts were left out. Gilmore said that he talked to Finis Brown before he died, and that Brown was the source of his information. Not sure if it's 100% true or not, but it's something to consider at any rate.
Sure, Noir. Anything Gilmore says or writes has to be taken with a grain of salt, but the report does smack of unfinished business. I am very familiar, for professional reasons, with modern autopsy reports and this one clearly doesn't make the cut.

One of the striking things one gets of reading the Bourgoin book is how the press hijacked the investigation and LAPD was playing second fiddle to journalists more intent on selling copy than finding the murderer. A sure recipe for a botched investigation.

So I see it as quite possible that Newbarr, while writing his report, was pressured by LAPD into leaving out crucial info in case the press got hold of it. Just a guess on my part, of course. I don't know if that's what's Gilmore means by "monkeying".
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How does it stack up when compared to contemporary autopsy reports?
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