Episode 7 of the Newsroom series Peter Ellis, the creche case and me reveals the power and politics behind the case through the release of an explosive new book.
In never-before-seen footage and interviews, this gripping new series takes you inside one of New Zealand’s most controversial legal cases, when a kind of madness gripped Christchurch, resulting in a miscarriage of justice that would take 30 years to put right.
Peter Ellis, the creche case & me is an 8-part Newsroom Investigates video series and podcast presented by Melanie Reid. WATCH EPISODE 7 ABOVE OR LISTEN TO THE PODCAST
The flapping red flags all over this case were not just ignored – the system never even allowed them to be seen.
That became abundantly clear with the 2001 release of Lynley Hood’s incendiary book, A City Possessed, which examined the Christchurch Civic Creche case in granular detail and exposed the flawed processes, interviewing techniques and investigators at the heart of a totally flawed investigation.
Melanie Reid spoke in depth with Hood about her book on the eve of its release and its inevitable incrimination of an establishment that refused to look at the big picture.
In Hood’s sights were not just the police and the investigators, but the judiciary and parliament as well. But though her book created waves, it didn’t change a thing for Ellis.
“Bureaucrats can be remarkably resilient,” Hood laughed.
One of those bureaucrats was Justice Minister Phil Goff. Watch as Reid interrogates him in an interview to top all political interviews when she questions him about the government-initiated Eichelbaum inquiry, which applied the same narrow focus to its investigation of the case as both of Ellis’s appeals, ensuring the status quo remained in place – that he was guilty.
Team Ellis could see it: as long as those in charge kept doing the same thing over and over again, he was on a hiding to nothing.
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