Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A formidable barrier

In order for Conner to have washed ashore, he had to cross a formidable barrier -- the southern breakwater. Rick Distaso foisted People's 100 on the Court, the jury, and the public in the hopes that seeing all this water on the Conner Recovery Site would convince all that Conner could easily wash ashore.

People's 100 is a fraud because it does not represent the Conner Recovery Site as it looked on April 13, 2003, the day the State alleged Conner washed ashore.  People's 100 was taken at a water level of 6.39 feet, and the HH tide on April 13, 2003 only reached 5.87 feet.  [NOTE:  NOAA's High/Low verified stats for April 13, 2003 give 5.87 ft as the HH; its 6-minute verified data gives 5.88 ft as the highest water level reached.  I don't know why the difference in their records, but it only amounts to one-tenth of an inch.]

Nor does it do anything to enlighten the Court, the jury, or the public about the south breakwater that Conner had to pass over to be found where he was.  The combination of that massive breakwater and Conner's placement relative to the debris line is formidable evidence that Conner did not wash ashore.

I was at the Conner Recovery Site on December 23, 2010, arriving at the south breakwater at 7:39 a.m., PWL 3.16 feet.  The site was very soggy from the previous day's exceptionally high tide of 7.61 feet.  This photo shows what the site looks like at that water level.  The grass in the northern 2/3 of the site is about 2 1/2 feet tall, and with the exception of an isolated blade here and there, it is completely covered, so the entire site is immersed in over 2 1/2 feet of water.  That line you see about half-way up on the right side, just below the landscape, is what is still visible of the south breakwater.  Click to enlarge.  

First, let's review some basic facts.  The NOAA Richmond (Station ID: 9414863) is the station to use when determining water levels at the Conner site.  Its datum shows the MHW (average of all high tides) is 5.45 feet (17.02 minus the MLLW of 11.57), and its MHHW (average of all higher-high tides) is 6.05 feet (17.02 minus 11.57).  This is the verified water data from the NOAA Richmond station for April 11-13, 2003.  You can see that the storm on the 12th did indeed create a storm surge, which is accounted for in the difference between the red line and the blue line on the chart, but the surged water levels didn't even reach the MHHW of 6.05, so they still were lower than average HH tides.    

Historic Tide Data

Station Date      Time Vrfy HL
DCP#:                        1
Units:                    Feet
Data%:  MLLW     Local   1.667  
Maximum:                  5.87  
Minimum:                 -0.20  
------- -------- ----- ------- 
9414863 20030411 02:18    3.03  L
9414863 20030411 07:36    4.84  H
9414863 20030411 14:36   -0.20  LL
9414863 20030411 22:12    4.96  HH
9414863 20030412 03:06    2.88  L
9414863 20030412 08:42    5.76  HH
9414863 20030412 15:36    0.38  LL
9414863 20030412 22:36    5.57  H
9414863 20030413 04:00    2.39  L
9414863 20030413 10:00    5.87  HH
9414863 20030413 16:24    0.12  LL
9414863 20030413 23:12    5.68  H

Now back to December 23, 2010.  The tide was low enough when I arrived that I could get some good photos of the south breakwater as the water level rose to the 5.87 ft HH on April 13, 2003.  On the 23rd the winds were very mild, which enables us to see the actual water level produced by the rising tide.  Strong winds will increase the wave action, which will put a bit more water on the site than a calm day, but which also would add considerable hazard to a delicate, decomposed baby trying to cross the breakwater.  

The south breakwater has three parts:  a lower rock bed that extends out about 20 feet to the south, followed by a short slope of larger rocks, and then an upper rock bed about 15-20' deep of rocks of varying sizes that sits on the mudflat.  This upper rock bed appears to be slightly mounded along its west-east center line, at least in some places.  These photos taken on December 13, 2005, with lower water levels show the extent and composition of the lower bed, which appears to have a row of larger rocks at its southern edge.

The focus always is the stretch of breakwater directly in front of the grass section where Conner was found, as he had to come over that section if he washed ashore.  

These first 6 photos were taken on the 23rd at 7:45 a.m., PWL 3.22 feet, Winds N 1.1-2.5 mph.  They pan from the south to the west.  Brooks Island is visible in the last 3.  If you compare them with the above photos, you will see that the lower rock bed is covered, with some of the larger rocks still protruding or barely under the surface.

The next three photos show close-ups of the upper rock bed.  The rock indicated in the first picture will give you an idea of the size of the rocks in this bed.  Photos taken at 7:46-7:48 a.m., PWL 3.23-3.25 feet, Wind N at 1.1-2.5 mph.

9:30-9:32, PWL 4.77-4.81 feet, Wind from the NW at 1.8 mph, gusts to 3.8.  The first photo shows the water line along the breakwater to the west, with a clear view of Brooks Island to the left.  The last photo shows that the water among the rocks doesn't extend all the way through the upper rock bed.

9:37 - 9:38 a.m., PWL 4.90-4.91 feet, the water is making it all the way through the upper rock bed.  Wind from NW at 1.3 mph, with gusts 3.1 mph.

9:46 a.m., 9:42 a.m., PWL 4.97 ft., Wind from the North at 2.0 mph, gusts 3.1 mph.  The two rocks in the previous photo are shown prominently in this photo.  The rock on the left measured 2'4".

9:46 a.m., PWL 5.07 feet, Wind from the NW at 1.8 mph, gusts 2.5.  The grass is saturated and matted down -- not just from the 7.61 HH tide the previous day, but from the series of very high tides.  The grass usually stands about 6 inches tall and is quite thick.  The chart showing the tides for the previous days follows.

 These HH tides were well above the MHHW of 6.05 feet.

9:53 a.m., PWL 5.24 feet, Winds from the NNE at 1.1 mph, with gusts 2.2.  The tape measure you see was used to measure the distance to the rock that sits on the grass, which was frequently featured in the photos from the October 6, 2010 field trip.  The distance is approximately 7 feet.  You can see in the first picture that the Bay water level is now pretty even with the mudflat.

9:54, PWL 5.26 ft., Wind from the NNE at 1.1 mph, gusts 2.2

9:57 a.m., PWL 5.32 ft., Wind from the NNE at 1.1 mph, gusts 2.2.

9:58 a.m., PWL 5.34 feet, Wind from the NNE at 1.1 mph, gusts 2.2.  

10:11 a.m., PWL 5.59 feet, Wind from the N at 1.1 mph, gusts 1.8 mph.  I was off doing other things and didn't catch the water level at 5.45, the MHW for the Richmond station.  5.59 feet is 1.68 inches above 5.45 feet. 

10:15 a.m., PWL 5.65 feet, Wind from the NW at 1.1 mph, gusts 1.6 mph.  

10:28 a.m., PWL 5.82 feet, Wind calm, gusts 3.4 mph.  The HH tide on April 12, 2003 produced a water level of 5.76 feet, almost 3/4 of an inch below this water level.  At the time of the HH tide on April 12, the NOAA reported winds of 26 mph, gusts 32; UC Berkeley Richmond field station reported 20 mph, gusts 32; and Point Isabel reported 18 mph, gusts 27.  UC Berkeley Richmond field station is the closest site to the mudflat.  Add those strong, gusty winds to this mix of rocks still showing, with many more just under the surface, and you don't have a decomposing baby in one piece, with the only damage being a tear across the abdomen.  This upper rock bed is about 15-20 feet deep.  The waves break against the rocks.  That's why it's called a breakwater.  I mention this because some have suggested that the stronger winds during the storm would have been a benefit to Conner.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  The two white flags show the possible locations for Conner's body; the one to the left by manual measurements and the one on the right by laser measurements.

10:29 a.m., PWL 5.83 feet, Wind from the N at 1.1 mph, gusts 3.4.  I didn't luck out to get photographs at exactly 5.87 feet, the water level of the HH tide on the morning of April 13, 2003, that the State argued washed Conner ashore.  This water level, 5.83, is just 1/2 inch below 5.87.  On April 13, 2003, at the HH tide NOAA Richmond station reported winds of 17 mph, gusts 21; UC Berkeley Richmond field station reported 14 mph, gusts 23; and Point Isabel reported 17 mph, gusts 25.  Strong, gusty winds that break waves against these rocks.  

10:37 a.m., PWL 5.95 feet, Wind calm, gusts 1.1 mph.  5.95 feet is almost an inch above 5.87, the HH tide on April 13, 2003.

For Conner to wash ashore, he had to cross the formidable south breakwater.  That's a cold, hard fact.  People's 100 was foisted on the Court, the jury, and the public to convince all that it would be an easy thing for Conner to wash ashore.  The photos above prove that the rocks still exposed and the rocks lurking just beneath the surface combined with strong, gusty winds would make this a very treacherous journey.  Add this to the undeniable fact that Conner was where he should not have been -- north of the debris line -- and you have formidable evidence that Conner did not wash ashore.  The only other way he could get there was to be put there by human hands, and that fully exonerates Scott Peterson.    


Burkey said...

Very impressive.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

Sorry, but does not convince me...i see plenty of area for the kid to wash up....nice pictures though...

Jane said...

Bruce, you had better go back and look again. Starting from the bottom of the page, look closely at the second photo up and the seventh one up. Note the position of the white flags which indicate laser and manual measurements for the location of Conner's body.

The area where the flags are was never covered by water even when the tide was higher than the one on April 12.

This absolutely proves that the baby did not wash ashore. The proximity of the dirt path to the location of the body makes it very clear that the baby was placed where he was found by human hands.

Jane said...

Sorry, I meant April 13.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

sorry, not buying it...but i'm sure this exonerating evidence has been forwarded to the petersons...i know i have been reading the "connor did not wash ashore" theory for years...what's taking the petersons so long to get scott out????? gee, if it was my kid, and i had evidence that he was "factually innocent", i'd be screaming it to high heaven....

Jane said...

It won't do any good to scream it to high heaven. Once a person is wrongfully convicted, it takes years for the appellate system to work. But eventually, it will work; and Scott will be a free man.

Burkey said...

Bruce, are you just an objective observer or do you have some personal connection to the case?

I'm just finding it hard to understand how someone could just blow off the Aponte tip as meaningless.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

Does not take much to file a motion...judges have received evidence that exonerates a man, and calls for his immediate release...may take a few days in paperwork, but it does happen....and in such a high profile case, it would be landmark...surely there must be a lawyer out there who wants to be famous for freeing scott peterson...

Bruce Dombrowski said...

i think the burglars were confusing dj for laci, and thinking they were the same person, these are not the smartest pencils in the box....and if they had abducted her, they all would have known it, as by your theory, the van would have been sitting there for an hour with her in it....

Jane said...

Bruce, no they were not just sitting there in the van. They abducted her; they drove away with her; they came back in about an hour.

If she was in the van for that hour, she was not just sitting there chatting with the driver. She was bound and gagged in the back of the van.

What are you talking about with this idea that they confused Laci with DJ? I don't get it.

Burkey said...

Me either...I'm still wondering about my first question

Burkey said...

Anyway, the quickly-filed motions exonerating death row inmates have mostly if not all been due to DNA evidence, if I'm not mistaken.

And on the high-profile argument, you have lots of law enforcement types, badge and esq. both, whose careers were goosed big time by the Peterson case. Lots of political considerations there, and add in to that the fact that there's been no mainstream media coverage of the items that tend to exonerate Peterson. Dan Abrams was the only talking head who bothered with Dalton's book.

Jackson looks nothing like Laci and I'm not buying that argument of mixing them up. If there had been a confrontation, Jackson would have said so.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

so they abduct her in the van, leave, put her somewhere for safe keeping, then come back in the van in time for dj to see them, then they take the safe away in the car...and i think soemone waved off dj as she passed by, and the others were confusing her for laci after laci ws killed by scott....these guys can't even burglarize a house correctly, they were spotted bringing a safe out, do you really beleive they kidnapped laci, took her away, came back, then hours later, let her pee on the side of the road..oh yeah, first they forced her to change into black pants..what a coincidence that they would have her change into black pants, the same description scott gave, so then harshamn sees her, then they make her hcange back into the tan pants that her body is found in....

Bruce Dombrowski said...

Bruce, are you just an objective observer or do you have some personal connection to the case?

maybe i'm the real killer, and you people are getting just a little too close.... :)

Bruce Dombrowski said...

no, i'm not actually the real kiiler, he sits on death row...what does it mateer what my connection is to this murder?

Jane said...

Clothing descriptions by witnesses may have been influenced by media reports and by the people who interviewed them.

I'd like to know what Harshman said in his first call to MPD 3 or 4 days before December 28. That would have been before the tip line was established; and all calls would have gone to 911 or the main number at the PD.

Grogan was less than truthful about Harshman's information. He tried to make it sound as though Harshman saw this on December 28. Also, when Grogan said that Harshman saw this between 2 and 4 p.m., that may actually refer to the time Harshman called in on the day he saw this.

Burkey said...

In the phone call Aponte recorded, there was mention of a confrontation, not a drive-by or someone seeing someone in a car. I see what you're getting at Bruce, but, for me, together with Dalton's witnesses and the development of the baby in the womb, there are still too many questions for me to agree that putting someone to death is a good idea. Now, I'm not in favor of the death penalty, either, but what I'm saying is I'm just not convinced Peterson did it.

As for identities, I understand that part of online discussion is that prized anonymity. However, I personally am weirded out by extended discussions with people whose faces I cannot see, and whose voices I cannot hear, when there's friction or disagreement. Just a comfort level with online conversation that I personally am not at. I don't actually think you have anything to do with the case, but I have to ask. You don't want to answer, that's cool. I'm just baffled why someone would come on here and read all this stuff if they think it's such balderdash.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

I'm not anonymous here, i have my first and last name here...even changed my picture....and i read this stuff because it is interesting....and it also gives me insight intp how people think.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

"but what I'm saying is I'm just not convinced Peterson did it."

I've made a case for the wrongful conviction of charlie manson...would you let him go free?

Bruce Dombrowski said...

"Clothing descriptions by witnesses may have been influenced by media reports and by the people who interviewed them."

Does this not make them unreliable?

Burkey said...

If you don't know Peterson, the only way to judge his tears is from a Diane Sawyer interview which begins with Sawyer telling the audience his tears are fake. I've posted about this previously on my blog.

Without knowing someone, I don't believe you can judge that person's authenticity just based on the opinions of others who do not know him. Sawyer doesn't, and Amber Frey--the original accuser of fake tears (what she told police December 30th)---also knew him for only a month. Have you read Amber's book? The scenario she describes doesn't convince me that Peterson was faking tears, but rather makes me believe that he may have been genuinely remorseful and conflicted about what he was doing with her. My point is that you cannot "know" someone through the media. You know your daughter, but just because you think her tears are sometimes fake doesn't mean necessarily that they are, and it certainly doesn't mean Peterson's are. Perception is a funny thing and it becomes unreliable through the manipulative medium of TV. It's no substitute for knowing someone. I've been accused by my own family of faking and I don't talk to them anymore because of it. It's that serious. So I have a personal bias which I will freely admit. People get it wrong even about people they supposedly know.

Anyway, the judgements of Peterson's tears are worth just about a grain of salt to me, and Sawyer's is instantly questionable because no proper journalist begins an interview by telling the audience that the subject's tears are probably fake. That's not journalism, it's tabloid TV, and while it's Sawyer's choice to play that game, in my opinion it ruins her credibility. By the way, I have strong opinions about journalistic credibility, as you probably know from things I've said. It comes from being immersed in news reports (local, state, national, intl.) for 40 hours a week for about 17 years now. It's my job to write news headlines for a wire service and I've been doing that for many years. And it really pisses me off when networks give credibility to hacks like Dan Abrams, for example. (He's MSNBC's legal guy and he has never practiced law) So TV you have to be really careful with, and my experience is that people in general are not aware of how unreliable it is for facts because of the facts it omits, and because no retractions are issued for stories that are not correct, as happened with evidence early in the Peterson case.

Amber's credibility is worth little more to me since--according to her own story--- she didn't even have the brains to figure out he was married even after her friends told her he was. Amber also wants us to believe she didn't figure out Scott Peterson was "her" Scott Peterson until 6 days after Laci went missing.
I don't think so!!!

Bruce Dombrowski said...

Of all the people who are involved in any way in this case, who do you really "know"? do you know the cops and what their heartfelt intentions were? Do you "know" that all of the witnesses who say they saw Laci that fateful day were truly being honest, or were they just looking for their 15 minutes? from what i've read here, all the cops are dishonest, all the witnesses against scott are lying, and all the witnesses for scott are telling the truth. I don't know John Walsh, but the tears I saw when he was pleading for help in locating his son Adam were real tears. Scotts did not appear to be real. They appeared to be forced.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

"You know your daughter, but just because you think her tears are sometimes fake doesn't mean necessarily that they are"

lol, oh, i know when the real/fake tears are flowing...oh yes, I know my

Burkey said...

Only way to determine a person's intentions is by what they say and do. And there have been numerous lies by the police to the families. Not little white lies like 'I'm in Bakersfield" but big lies, like for example that entire paragraph that got excised from Brocchini's report of the woman who saw Laci at Scott's warehouse. Poof! Just gone.

Or the lie about the life insurance.

These are evil lies. And the police should not need to lie if they have genuine evidence or genuine reason to believe a suspect did something. In this case the police had nothing except 1)the possible knowledge of Amber going in and 2)the immediate suspicion and hostility of the victim's family towards her husband. Who five days after Laci disappeared wanted to go to the media with a videotape of Scott holding a baby and saying "this isn't that much fun."

No way do we know the whole story here, but we know the police lied about some very significant things.

It's evil and it's wrong and it's not necessary with real evidence. It's evil because Laci may have been alive and able to be rescued and they did NOTHING. Does Laci not matter to you in all this?

Bruce Dombrowski said...

"Only way to determine a person's intentions is by what they say and do."

so, what were scotts intentions by what he said and did before and after his wife went "missing"?

The police were trying to catch who they believed to be the killer, scotts actions, as well as his words bore that out...

Marlene Newell said...

Bruce, your case for Charles Manson appears to me, IIRC, to be based on the fact that he was not physically present at the murders. Are yuu not aware that co-conspirators do not have to be present for the crime, they just have to be involved in the planning. If they had to be physically present, then none of them could be prosecuted. You've not proven, to me at least, that Manson did not initiate the idea and instruct them on how to carry it out -- and that makes him just as guilty of the murder as though he were there doing it himself. What about a person that hires someone to commit a murder -- they aren't there physically for the murder, but aren't they just as responsible, even more responsible? The contracted killer wouldn't have killed unless hired to do so. And I doubt those others would have killed if Manson had not instructed them to do so. But if you can make the case that he wasn't at all involved in the planning of the murders, then go ahead. I suggest you put up a website and lay out your arguments. If you really believe he is innocent, then advocate his innocence.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

i agree marlene, contract killers are not present...but there is always a connection..a money trail of payments..evidence of the that case the killers merely said "charlie told us to do it"

Burkey said...

Hey Bruce,

What I've been saying is that I don't agree that Scott's actions were suspicious. Scott may have told some white lies, but he told the truth about the important stuff. I myself tell white lies (I heard one pop out the other day: co-worker: Are you dressed up because you're going out? Me: Uh, yeah!).

The logic goes, he lied about the affair so he lied about murdering Laci. But looking at how he acted, he seems to have gone out of his way to apologize to those he wronged, and that counts for a lot with me. I mean, he said on national TV that his in-laws were "wonderful people" and he hoped he could work with them to find Laci. Since they wouldn't talk to him, that was the only thing he could do.
He refrained from talking too much about his relationship with Laci, to Amber. I find that loyal and sensitive. I have to give him points for continuing to call back Laci's mom even as she continued to blame him and berate him. And then he finally just says, you don't believe me and so I can't talk to you anymore, does it without yelling,
No, I don't think Scott's behavior is as reprehensible as the state's behavior. And his private stuff isn't my business, but the state's actions are my business, since I pay taxes. That's how I view it.

Also, despite the fact that you choose to be anonymous (Unless Bruce Dombrowski really is your name) I do appreciate you coming around and having the conversation. You're the only one from the other side who cares to do so right now, and the whole point of these blogs is to spark conversation and debate. I have no personal stake in the Peterson case but have become interested through reading about it. The thing that interests me is that the Petersons (Scott and Laci) seemed to have a friendship and a respect and regard for each other despite their troubles, which all couples do have. Their actions, and his actions, said: In my leisure time, I like to get outside and also do lots of stuff in the house and yard. Her actions said something similar. Their priorities were expressed in their actions. Scott saw this one woman a few times but think of all the times he was with his wife, all their history, their plans for the kid, the nursery, to me these are actions worthy of notice. Just because a marriage isn't perfect doesn't mean it's doomed. If Scott didn't divorce Laci it's possible to me, based on all of his actions, that he did not wish to do any such thing.
That's just what I see combing through all the info available.

Bruce Dombrowski said...

He didnt talk to his girlfriend about the wife he was cheating on, and you find that to be a loyal trait????

And I think its a stretch to compare asking a co-worker if they are going out, and telling a lie to romancing a girl while your glorious wife is missing, as well as lying to the police, your family, and the family of your missing wife...those are not "little white lies"

And yes, I use my real name.

p.s. if you try to face book me to see if there really is a bruce d, you will find a few, I am not the freaky looking bald guy holdinga camera, no idea who he is, but i get a lot of comments on that picture is a surfing picture...i am an open book, friend me and you can see my life.
Waht is a Burkey? Is that a name, or are you anonymous?

Burkey said...

I only found one Bruce D. on Facebook and it is the person you mention. No surfing picture to be found. Maybe you could point me to the link.

Burkey is my last name and I'm told it originated in Germany before finding its way to the Appalachia Trail and then to Ohio, where I was born.

Bruce Dombrowski said...!/

Burkey said...


Burkey said...

Yes he lied about the affair, I agree about that. And it's not a little white lie, I wasn't clear about that. I was referring more to "bleached my hair in the pool" or "I'm in Gilroy" as white lies.

I would not argue the Amber lie is a white lie because it was so hurtful, but telling would also have been hurtful and to me it's not impossible he (or anyone) would seek to minimize the hurt in a difficult situation.

I would argue if he's innocent, he would want to keep it under wraps with the hope that his wife will come back, because she wouldn't want him to tell about it, because it would only embarrass her also.
Maybe she would not want the whole world to know!!
I only have the belief she would not want to tell the world about it, because the two of them were private about previous indiscretions.
But, no, I wasn't clear about the Amber lie being a white lie, that is not what I meant; however the motivations for that lie may not be entirely dastardly, is what I'm saying.
But besides the lying concerning the affair, what lies bother you the most? Because it seems to me like he told the truth about where he was, what he did that day, and so forth.