Apparently one piece of circumstantial evidence can prove a murder case beyond doubt.  Michael Reed claims that the alleged residue marks on Robin's thumb as seen in the picture published on the 3rd Degree documentary slamdunk prove that Robin committed the murders because he loaded the magazines.

Why stop there?

  • David's fingerprints were on the rifle - slamdunk! David was the last person to use it.
  • David had a bruise on his temple, blood on his crotch and front and back of t-shirt and glasses he wore when his own were unavailable were found broken in the crime scene along with his bloodied opera gloves, consistent with a fight with Stephen - slamdunk! David killed Stephen.
  • All the bedroom lights were out when the police arrived except for Margaret's which is inconsistent with David being an innocent "finder" who would have left the lights on after ascertaining all the family members were deceased, as reported in the 111 call - slamdunk! David created the crime scene.
  • David had a plan to use the paper run as an alibi for a crime - slamdunk! David used that plan in order to kill his family and try and get off.
  • Hearsay evidence from Arawa is that David was threatening the family with his gun - slamdunk! David premeditated the murders.
  • The rifle belonged to David and he had control of it - slamdunk! He committed the murders
  • David destroyed crucial evidence, including the green jersey apparently worn by the killer, by putting it in the wash and leaving a partial palm print on the washing machine - slamdunk!  David wore the green jersey and it got covered in blood fighting Stephen.  He then had to destory the evidence by putting the woollen jersey into the machine wash, rather than have it hand washed as was the normal practice in the household.
  • The washing machine should have still been going when the police arrived if David turned it on after coming home from the paper run - slamdunk! David put the washing on after murdering his siblings and mother much earlier in the morning.
  • Robin's bladder was full at the time of death - slamdunk! Robin could not have committed the murders on a full bladder.
  • Robin's fingerprints were not on the rifle or in any way associated with the crime scene - slamdunk!  Robin could not have committed the murders.




Agree with your comments.

However you left out the (to my mind) most important piece of circumstantial evidence  -- His mother's glasses.

The "glasses evidence" alone makes for a game,set and match. 

Martin van Beynen is being interviewed by Duncan Garner and Guynon Espeiner on TV 3 Third Degree tonight at 8.30 pm.

Will be worth watching as Martin is certain David is guilty. He is articulate, intelligent and has an excellent grasp of the facts.

He sat through the entirety of the Christchurch trial and wrote a masterful article in the ChCh Press following the trial.

He will perform well - my only concern is that he has a tendency to give the benefit of the doubt to all evidence.  I hope he simply states exactly what he believes and does not get bogged down in technical minutiae. 

In David & Goliath, Karam decries Bain's conviction "solely on circumstantial evidence".  However ever since he has been searching for the slamdunk circumstance to exonerate him.  Evidently, circumstantial evidence is only valid if it acquits.  Mind you, if it is then added to a whole heap of hearsay from a witness who keeps missing his court day, then maybe .........

Yes - Karam has always had a 'buffet meal' approach to circumstantial evidence.  His team has been very effective in winning over public opinion.  This public sentiment was in part responsible for the second trial acquittal. 

All the circumstantial evidence has been thoroughly scrutinized and it is highly unlikely after all these years that any further significant evidence will emerge.  David is the only person who knows the truth and he remains silent.

There will never be a satisfactory conclusion to this case. The two camps have entrenched positions and the public seem evenly split. Of course public opinion is based largely on ignorance.  Many people I know have a firm opinion on DB's guilt or innocence and yet have a poor understanding of the evidence. 


I have spoken with heaps of Bain & Karam supporters and when I ask them if they have even read any of Karam's books they say they havn't.  Some have even said they were not aware he had written a book. At least I read David & Goliath before forming my opinion. 

You might be interested to know that your  comment about Martin van Beynen's performance has been posted on kiwiblog by a David Bain suupporter using the pseudonym Judith.
She looks in at counterspin about half a dozen times a day.
Which is about the number of lies she tells on kiwiblog every day.

In reply to by Mike Stockdale


Thanks for that Mike

I was not aware of the existence of KiwiBlog.  I have spent the past 20 minutes perusing it. "Judith" appears to be a crazed fanatic. She constantly contradicts herself and is intolerant of any views that counter her own.  

It never fails to amaze me how intelligent well informed people can look at the sum total of the circumstantial evidence and still believe in David's innocence / Robin's guilt.  

I guess we just have to accept that these nutters have their own opinions and have a democratic right to express those views. Apparently there are some PhD qualified scientists who believe the earth is flat. Others believe that climate change is a myth!!.


Hi Kent, the incessant search for the "game changer" - the slam dunk piece of evidence which "proves" Robin committed the murders - as seems to be the mind set of David Bain supporters, is an indictment of a public with low attention span and the analytical intelligence of plain paper.

There is so much evidence to refute the proposition that Robin committed the murders, I struggle to understand the mind set of people who are convinced of his guilt - and therefore by implication, proves David’s innocence. Sound bites were designed for such people.

There are a few points that I've heard little discussion on, but for me clinch Robin’s innocence. 

Firstly, the recently touted photos of Robins hands show clearly that his hands were dirty - ie: they do not appear to have been washed before he died (it's my understanding that this was part of the prosecution evidence in the original trial). I don't think there is any doubt that the murderer would have had blood all over his hands from the struggle with Steven.  Given the absence of blood on Robins hands (other than small specs of his own blood), and the state of his hands at the time of his death, it appears to me, demonstrable that he did not murder Steven. 

If one managed to get passed the first point, there is then the fact that no gun powder residue was found on Robins hands.  David Bain’s defence would have us believe that this is because Robins hands weren't treated with sufficient care, and the residue either rubbed off or degraded.  I have done my own research on this and found a number of evidential case studies on line, prepared for American and British courts, regarding the degradation of gunpowder residue.  One study was prepared for the FBI.  These studies dispute that gun powder residue degrades or "falls" off.  In fact all are adamant that gun powder residue doesn't degrade at all and in the absence of deliberate rubbing, or washing, gun powder residue will be detectable indefinitely (other than the obvious decomposition of the body).  It seems to me, that given that small specs of blood were evident on Robins hands during the autopsy - gun powder residue would have been detected, if he had shot himself.

It is my understanding that Stevens murder involved a physical struggle and a substantial amount of blood.  The conclusion is that it would be unlikely for the murderer not to have substantial amounts of blood on their clothes from the struggle.  And this is demonstrated by the blood soaked gloves. It is also evident that Steven's blood was not found anywhere on the clothes Robin died in.  It seems to be well understood and accepted by both sides of the argument, that if Robin had committed the murders, he would have had to have changed out of "murder" clothes and into the clothes that he was known to wear on a regular basis.  It is also known that Robin slept outside the house in a caravan.  If we accept that Robin committed the murders, one of the following would have ensued on the morning of the murder:

1. Robin would have gotten up and put on the clothes he committed the murders in, in the caravan, and taken his regular clothes into the house, placing them somewhere, for him to get changed back into after the murders, or

2. Robin would have gotten up and, put on his regular clothes in the caravan, then gone into the house and change into the murder clothes, commit the murders, then change back into his regular clothes, either before or after taking the murder clothes to the laundry, or

3. Robin would have gotten up and, put on his regular clothes in the caravan, then commit the murders, then return to the caravan to change his clothes, and then take the murder clothes to the laundry.

So now to my third point - as far as I am aware, no blood what so ever, was found in or around the caravan, so automatically scenario 3 can be discounted as extremely unlikely.  The thing that doesn't fit with the first two scenarios is that these actions presuppose that the murders would result in close contact by the murderer - ie: in the action of preparing to murder the family, he had contemplated and even planned that the murders would be bloody - and he would come into contact with that blood.  Yet... the murderer used a rifle, whereby he would remain at a distance from his victims.  In my view, a predetermined plan to change clothes therefore doesn't fit with the murder weapon, nor is it logical. Surely, if Robin had committed the murders, scenario 3 is the logical proposition, in which case there would have been blood found at the caravan.

My last point is this.  It is my understanding that at least two of the murder victims took several minutes (as much as 10 minutes) to die after being shoot directly in the head.  Laniet was shoot 3 times in the head and still took several minutes to die.  The murderer would have been well aware of this. Now consider this - if we accept the proposition that Robin committed the murders, and you put yourself in his position - having known that your victims took several minutes to die with up to three shots to the head, would you then attempt to take your life in the same way, using a single bullet, when your son (the only one you want to save), is about to walk through the door.







Hi AG, sorry to take so long to get to your comment.  I have comments unpublished by default and I am meant to pick them up as they come through.  This is to stop bots from posting adverts for penis enlargement and has nothing to do with the Bain case.

I agree with you that gunshot residue is a solid substance.  It is inert with respect to the air and so does not react and cannot be carried away chemically.  It consists of tiny particles of solid which deposit on surfaces, and can only be removed mechanically, that is by rubbing or falling due to gravity, although static electricity may prevent the latter.

As for Robin changing his clothes, in Karam's first book, David and Goliath, he attempts to claim that the blood found on Robin's clothes would belong to Stephen.  When scientists showed that it was only his own blood, then he invented the change his clothes to meet his maker scenario, which, I agree, is completely ridiculous.