Bloody sockprints debated at Bain trial

Reconstruction of the bloody sockprints through the Bain family murder scenes has occupied the 27th day of the murder trial of David Cullen Bain in the High Court at Christchurch.

Forensic testing on sockprints done with a 270mm size foot - the same size as his father Robin Bain's - after being soaked in animal blood and walking on carpet, was 282mm when tested with luminol, which indicates the presence of blood.

When doing tests with a 298mm foot - David Bain's was 300mm - the average size was 297mm, forensic scientist Kevan Walsh told the trial.

The bloody footprints found in the Bain house in Every Street, Dunedin, were measured at 280mm.

David Bain is accused of shooting his parents and three siblings in June, 1994. The Crown alleges Robin Bain was shot when he entered the house, and a detective in the case has said the killer likely left the sockprints in the house.

The defence team told the court today they had their own forensic scientist do measurements on a 300mm foot and their average prints measured 306mm.

None of their footprints measured less than 300mm with a luminol spray used on them.

In the original trial Dr Peter Hentschel told the jury that a foot of 280mm would make a smaller size print.

Mr Walsh told the court testing on David Bain's socks found blood on the toe, heel, ball, and instep of one of them. He said there were heavy and light areas of staining.

When questioned by defence counsel Michael Reed QC, Mr Walsh said there was a large potential for error when using photographs to determine a likely firing distance for Robin Bain's head wound.

He was told that the first crown pathologist to give evidence, Dr Alexander Dempster, said he had seen splitting of the skin, indicating it was a close contact wound but Mr Walsh said the tearing would be "quite significant" for a contact shot.


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