I'm now going to run through the evidence of Ruth Absalom who spoke to the Inquiry by video link; she was examined by Mr Dingemans. Ms Absalom, a near neighbour of the Kellys, stated that she had known Dr Kelly for a number of years. So far as we know she was the last person to speak to Dr Kelly. She was out walking her dog and she and Dr Kelly exchanged some pleasantries, she thought that their conversation was 5 minutes long at the most. Interestingly her testimony showed that Dr Kelly opened the conversation and he didn't appear to be desperate to end it, it seemed to be the fact that Ms Absolom's dog was pulling on its lead that gave reason for the two people to part. Ms Absalom also stated that David Kelly was just his usual self so far as his demeanour was concerned.
Consultant psychiatrist Professor Keith Hawton (KH) was the subject of an extensive examination from Mr Dingemans and one of the questions asked by the latter concerned the evidence given by Ruth earlier that day in which she had indicated that David Kelly was just his usual self. KH, who we are informed is an expert on the subject of suicide, declared that it isn't unusual in those intent on killing themselves to experience a sense of peace and calm having made the fateful decision. Well I'm not totally convinced on that one in this instance.
The wretched business of timings which I had raised in my last post also manifests itself here. Ruth says that on that particular day she left home with her dog at about 2.15, rather earlier than her usual time of 3 o'clock. Although she didn't look at her watch she reckons that she met Dr Kelly at about three o'clock. Their paths crossed at the top of Harris's Lane in Longworth (that village lies between Southmoor where the Kelly's lived and Harrowdown Hill), this point being, by her estimation, about a mile from her home. However the evidence from Mrs Kelly seems to indicate that her husband didn't actually leave their house until sometime between 3 o'clock and 3.20 and then, assuming he took the shortest route to the top of Harris's Lane, one would need to add on at least 20 minutes I would have thought.
A couple of other points to round off this particular post. Mr Dingemans asked Ruth if she saw where Dr Kelly went after they separated. Understandably she wasn't sure but surmised that he went along the road toward Kingston Bagpuize, which place is south east of Longworth whereas Harrowdown Hill is to the north. The second point was the answer Ruth gave to the question about whether she had seen anyone between leaving home and bumping into Dr Kelly. She hadn't. Based on my own experience of village life there is often a lull in the afternoon when nobody seems to be about. I must admit I haven't checked on this but guess there isn't a village school at Longworth. If there was then this would have generated some activity in mid afternoon. I'm assuming that schools wouldn't have broken up by 17th July.
With nobody around on the streets Norman Baker's contention that Dr Kelly could have been quickly overpowered and abducted into a van say is only too possible in my opinion.