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Posts Tagged ‘Severed Head’

The George Orwell MiniTrue Award

Posted by te2ataria on November 22, 2009

sent by a reader in Blenheim

This Week’s Winner of The Big Brother Honest Journalism Award: The Northern Advocate

The George Orwell MiniTrue Award (aka the ‘Big Brother Honest Journalism Award’) for this week goes to New Zealand’s The Northern Advocate for the following:

Story Title: Gold-toothed skull found on beach

Orwellian Newspeak comment that grabbed the prize:

‘The skull – obviously old, but said to still have hair and gristle attached to it – was found by Australian tourists walking on the beach at Glinks Gully, 24km south of Dargaville, on Tuesday.’


GRISLY FIND: Glinks Gully resident Geoff Nicols points to the site where the skull was found. Source: Northern Advocate. Image may be subject to copyright.

Background information:

Tourist Catch of the Day: Severed Head, Torso

Tourists Find Severed Head and Torso in Northland, New Zealand. A pair of Australian tourists found a severed head and torso in the sand dunes near the entrance of Glinks Gully, about 20 kilometers south west of Dargaville, Northland, New Zealand.

However, the police, which seems to have decided that the headlines were bad for business, apparently forced the reporter(s) to change the headlines and certain parts of their story to make it sound as if the discovery of a severed head and dismembered torso was actually something completely different. The new Stuff NZ headline read: Skull found on Northland beach

NZ Herald echoed much of the same: Very old’ skull found on Northland beach

A “very old” human skull has been found on a beach south of Dargaville.

Police spokeswoman Sarah Kennett said the skull is being referred to a pathologist to find out when the person died.

She said the skull was found in the sand dunes in Glinks Gully, Te Kopuru, Northland.

Asked if it could be a skull from pre-European colonisation, Ms Kennett said she could not say. [Amazing!]

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10610331

NZ Police Interfere with News Coverage

As luck had it…

The two Australian tourists, Louisa and Michael Ergles, who discovered the severed head, read the new, amended headlines and apparently contacted the [advertising] media.

Mr Ergles who is a search and rescue officer in his hometown of Lajamanu in the Northern Territory, Australia, said, “there was still a bit of flesh on the head when we found it.”

“I don’t think it would have been there longer than a year.”

http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/3081933/Dargaville-skull-not-that-old-tourists

[Note: All mentions of the ‘torso’ have also been removed from the new versions of the story. ]

Related links:

    Posted in Australian tourists, freedom of press, grisly find, murder mystery, new zealand police | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    NZ Police Interfere with News Coverage

    Posted by te2ataria on November 20, 2009

    Freedom of Press? My Foot!

    Corrupt New Zealand police caught interfering with news coverage, AGAIN!

    Yesterday this blog posted details of a severed head and torso discovery by two Australian tourists in Northland:

    “Local camp ground operator Geoff Nicols says a pair of Australian tourists were shocked to spot a head poking up out of the sand and asked to use his phone to call police.” A report said.

    The story, reported by ROSE STIRLING of Dargaville News, clearly quoted eye witness  Geoff Nicols as saying, “Australian tourists were shocked to spot a head poking up out of the sand…”

    Two points about the statement:

    First, there’s no mention of a skull poking up out of sand. Most adult Australian would know the difference.

    Second, this blogger has never met or heard of anyone, especially the Aussies,  being shocked by the discovery of a skull on a beach.

    The original headline seemed perfectly adequate. Not least because it was factual:

    “Head, torso found on Northland beach”


    Here’s a screen shot of  a google search saved on November 20, 2009 at about 1:40GMT

    However, the police, which seems to have decided that the headlines were bad for business, apparently forced the reporter(s) to change the headlines and certain parts of their story to make it sound as if the discovery of a severed head and dismembered torso was actually something completely different. The new Stuff NZ headline read:

    Skull found on Northland beach

    [Note: The new version was not a regular update, but the reporter was made to re-write the story and then it was posted under the same URL: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/3079423/Head-torso-found-on-Northland-beach. As of posting, the original version was no longer available from Stuff NZ website.]

    NZ Herald echoed much of the same:

    ‘Very old’ skull found on Northland beach

    A “very old” human skull has been found on a beach south of Dargaville.

    Police spokeswoman Sarah Kennett said the skull is being referred to a pathologist to find out when the person died.

    She said the skull was found in the sand dunes in Glinks Gully, Te Kopuru, Northland.

    Asked if it could be a skull from pre-European colonisation, Ms Kennett said she could not say. [Amazing!]

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10610331

    As luck had it…

    The two Australian tourists, Louisa and Michael Ergles, who discovered the severed head, read the new, amended headlines and apparently contacted the [advertising] media.

    Mr Ergles who is a search and rescue officer in his hometown of Lajamanu in the Northern Territory, Australia, said, “there was still a bit of flesh on the head when we found it.”

    “I don’t think it would have been there longer than a year.”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/3081933/Dargaville-skull-not-that-old-tourists

    [Note: All mentions of the ‘torso’ have also been removed from the new versions of the story. ]

    Related Links:

    Posted in 10 Police Questions, 10 Worst Places, Dargaville, murder mystery, News Coverage, Stuff NZ | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    Tourist Catch of the Day: Severed Head, Torso

    Posted by te2ataria on November 19, 2009

    Tourists Find Severed Head and Torso in Northland, New Zealand

    A pair of Australian tourists found a severed head and torso in the sand dunes near the entrance of Glinks Gully, about 20 kilometers south west of Dargaville, Northland, New Zealand.

    “Local camp ground operator Geoff Nicols says a pair of Australian tourists were shocked to spot a head poking up out of the sand and asked to use his phone to call police.” A report said.

    “There’s no public telephone around here so they came down to my house to ring the police station.”

    Nicols says it took 45 minutes before a police officer contacted them, “No-one was answering the phone at the Dargaville police office.”

    “I went and saw the head and stayed with it until the police arrived.

    “There were bits of gristle and hair at the back of the skull,” says Mr Nicols.

    “I reckon it would have been buried there a few years.”
    [More recently dumped body parts take a while before they show up!]

    “It was right up the top of the dune and I’m sure it must have been placed there.”

    “It maybe that somebody disposed of the body in different places.”
    [Doesn’t he know the drill well?]

    Nichols thinks the find was unearthed when part of the dune was washed away by a large wave.

    Dargaville Police Station is still unmanned, and therefore no-one was available for comment.

    Related Links:

    Posted in Australian tourists, body disposal, dismembered body find, grisly find, murder mystery, new zealand police | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »