A bizarre story!

Started by sjsbrfc, May 17, 2006, 15:09:25 pm

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I haven't had chance to check if it's true or not, but the following story makes interesting reading.

In 1994 at the annual awards dinner given for Forensic Science,AAFS.
The President Dr Don Harter Mills astounded his audience with legal complications of a bizarre death.

On March 23, 1994 a medical officer examined the body of Ronald Opus.
He concluded that Mr Opus had died as a result of a shotgun wound to the head.
Mr Opus had jumped from the top of a ten storey building intending to commit suicide. He had left a note to the effect indicating his despondency.
As he fell past the ninth floor his life was interrupted by a shotgun blast passing through a window, which killed him instantly.
Neither the shooter nor the the deceased was aware that a safety net had been installed just below the eighth floor level to protect some building workers and that Ronald Opus would not have been able to complete his suicide the way he had planned.
Ordinarily a person who sets out to commit suicide and ultimately succeeds, even though the mechanism might not be what he intended, is still defined as committing suicide.
The fact that Mr Opus was shot on the way to certain death, but probably would not have been successful because of the safety net, caused the medical examiner to feel that he had a homicide on his hands.
The room on the ninth floor, where the shotgun blast eminated, was occupied by an elderly couple.
They were arguing vigorously and the husband was threatening the wife with a shotgun. The husband was so upset that when he pulled the trigger he missed his wife and the pellets went through the window striking Mr Opus in the head, on his way down.
When one intends to kill a subject

From first to last. The peak is never passed. Something always fires the light that gets in your eyes


Maybe not true but very amusing, Simon.

Sounds like a tall story to me....grins....
I aim to grow old, bald, and fat gracefully


May 17, 2006, 15:16:27 pm #2 Last Edit: May 17, 2006, 15:18:04 pm by sjsbrfc
 Unfortuanately it isn't true. Dr. Mills has been queried thoroughly and frequently regarding the Opus case since the story broke on the Internet in 1994. In 1997 he came clean to the press about it:

"I made up the story in 1987 to present at the meeting," he told the Daily Telegraph on March 2nd 1997, "for entertainment and to illustrate how if you alter a few small facts you greatly alter the legal consequences."
Just another urban myth :(

From first to last. The peak is never passed. Something always fires the light that gets in your eyes

Gary L. Grape

Like Roadcrew said: Maybe not true but very amusing. It sure would have been ironic had it been true...

Tom Garrett

deserves to be true though. ;D
Don't argue with the ignorant and stupid; they'll take you down to their level and beat you with experience!