Wednesday, May 25, 1988
Grand Jury Declares Deaths “Homicides.”
Dr. Burton's Autopsy Report
The second autopsy revealed that, contrary to Malak's ruling, the boys had been wounded and probably were dead when they were placed on the tracks; Henry with a stab wound in his back, and Ives with a crushed skull.
....taking the opposite posture that the boys deaths were simply due to accident. I cannot justify this posture. I have considered the possibility of a suicide pact, in which these boys decided to take their own lives.
Historically, there is nothing in their past to suggest such and it would be again, virtually impossible to assume that both boys had the stamina, fortitude and determination to lie unmoving on the train track while the train bearing down on them, overran their bodies. At least one boy would have given in to the fear of impending death and tried at the last minute to escape the injuries which would be certainly fated as the train approached. None of the forensic investigators or other forensic pathologists which I have discussed this case with and have reviewed the case consider this to be a possibility.
I think that the Grand Jury should know that Dr. William Anderson, who is a well known Forensic Pathologist, not only in our State and the Southeast, but also in these United States, has been made available all of the evidence that I have been sent and examined myself. Dr. Wayne Ross, also of my office, has examined portions of this evidence.
A total of seven Forensic Investigators, who have an accumulative experience of 100 years of Law Enforcement Homicide Investigation experience, have looked at and reviewed the evidence in this case. It is not just my opinion, but it in unquestionably the opinion of all of these individuals that the manner of deaths of these two boys should be considered as having resulted from foul play.
Experts with whom I have consulted in this case have gained nothing monetarily from their opinions nor have their been any political reasons for having voiced their opinions one way or the other. Likewise, I have spent innumerable hours on this case which I have not only failed to keep track of, but have never intended to submit a statement or bill for services to Saline County or the State of Arkansas.
This is a case which demanded a thorough investigation, a case where two families and a community were concerned about the deaths of these boys, and it was not my intent, in the beginning or at this time, to take advantage of the situation for monetary or political gain. I have tried to be quite careful not to overread or read to much into some of these observations and findings, and that is why I have utilized other forensic experts to consider and test part of this evidence, taking it completely out of my hands.
The laboratory and Doctors (sic) who examined the shirt does cases all over the World and has just returned from Russia this year, where he worked on a forensic case. People who have been involved in this case during my investigation are experts in their fields. They are professional Forensic Scientists.
All to well, I and these other individuals realize the problems that may be created by someone misconstruing forensic, scientific or investigative evidence. I have made every attempt not to do this and to be completely and totally honest with you. As of this date, there are two other tests being....