Lindy Chamberlain-Creighton has given her blessing for Australian Federal Police (AFP) forensic recruits to use pieces of evidence collected during the investigation into her daughter Azaria’s disappearance to enhance their study.
And Chamberlain-Creighton, who was jailed and later exonerated over Azaria’s death, called on the recruits to ensure they set aside their preconceptions and “test and retest” their findings when examining evidence to ensure that no person was ever again wrongly accused in the way that she was over the loss of her baby daughter.
The NT News reported the AFP had sough that 70-year-old’s permission to use more than 250 items collected during the investigation because it was aware of the sensitivity of the case. It’s the first time forensic trainees have been given access to the items, which are held at the National Museum of Australia.
But AFP chief forensic scientist Sarah Bension told the NT News that Chamberlain-Creighton was very pleased that the pieces were being used to further the education of new forensic workers.
“In some ways your presence here today helped to confirm to [Chamberlain-Creighton] the value of all that she has done in terms of documenting her experiences, and most importantly, of making them, and her story, public property and an ongoing archive for us all,” Benson reportedly told the recruits as they gathered for the opening of their training.
The Chamberlain case made headlines around the world in 1980 when Lindy Chamberlain told police that a dingo had snatched her two-month-old from the family’s tent while they were camping at what was then called Ayers Rock. Chamberlain – she later split with husband Michael and married Rick Creighton – was charged with Azaria’s murder in 1982, partly on the basis of what police claimed were blood stains from a baby found in the family car.
But Lindy furiously protested her innocence, and was exonerated in 1888, in part because scientists found that what had been thought to be blood in the Chamberlain’s Torana was actually more likely to be a liquid used during the car’s manufacture to soundproof the vehicle. An inquest in 2012 formally found that Azaria died after being snatched by a dingo.