22/08/1917 - SOME NEW EVIDENCE HAS BEEN UNEARTHED
But Veil of Mystery Still Hangs Over the Circumstances Leading Up To The Tragic Death of Dr. D. G. MacRobbie On Sunday Night
Police Have Names of Two Men Who Called at Office to See Harry Smith, Their Visit Resulting in the Discovery of the Tragedy
Several new clues, which are regarded as having a most important bearing on the case, have been unearthed in the police investigation of the mysterious death of Dr. D. G. MacRobbie in a storeroom over the Crescent Oil Company’s office on West Cannon street Sunday night.
Herbert Asselstine, the night watchman, who claims that he found the doctor in an unconscious condition at 10.30 o’clock, has made a statement to the police to the effect that two men called for Smith that night, and that is was when he took these men upstairs to see Smith that he discovered the doctor’s body and the three men lying asleep on a pile of valves. The two men who called to see Smith are known to the police and will appear at the inquest tomorrow evening to give testimony. The fact that Asselstine took the men upstairs to see Smith is proof according to the police, that Asselstine knew the whereabouts of Smith, at least, if not of the others, some time prior to the tragedy.
This is a contradiction of Asselstine’s first statement to the police that he was returning from an auto ride in the country with his wife, and seeing unusual illumination in the building, decided to investigate, thereby making the horrible discovery.
Asselstine explains the finding by the police of McAuliffe asleep in the yard behind the building by stating that McAuliffe was so drunk that he (Asselstine) took him out in the yard and laid him down.
DOCTORS INTERESTED IN CASE
Local doctors are taking a great interest in the case and doing everything in their power to help solve the mystery surrounding the death of Dr. MacRobbie, who was very popular in his profession. In order to test the truth of Asselstine’s statement that he found the body lying on its right side (it was lying on its back when the first medical man, Dr. Langs, arrived), Dr. Langs and Dr. Parry this morning poured water on the blood stains on the floor, where the doctor’s head was resting, to discover if the water would run in the same direction as the stains. These tests indicated that the victim’s head had rested in two different positions for some considerable time, as the two larger stains were separate.
Tests were made to ascertain whether the blood spots on the floor for a distance of more than three feet around the body and more than four feet above, could have been spattered there by the victim attempting to rise from the floor and falling back. Striking the pools of blood with his hand and head. Dr. Langs demonstrated that this would have been quite possible.
NEW BLOOD SPOT
A new blood spot has been found, this one on a window about six feet behind the position where the doctor’s head was lying. According to Drs. Parry and Langs the smear of blood found on the buggy box might have been made by the doctor’s fingers as he attempted to rise from the floor. The spots of blood found on the floor close to where the doctor’s hip was resting are supposed to have dripped from the victim’s hand, which he had evidently put to his head when he received the wound.
According to Constable Arnold, who guarded the scene of the tragedy on Monday, the doctor’s collar was ripped open without being unfastened, and there were marks of two hands on his neck, which may have been made by the doctor himself. The victim’s neck-tie was torn in two and a piece of it is said to have been found under him.
Yesterday a broken bottle with a fresh Scotch whisky label on it was found in the yard underneath the lavatory window and three bottles – one of them evidently freshly emptied whisky bottle, another that had been empty for some time and an empty soda-water bottle were found in the lavatory. This morning another recently-used whisky bottle was found hidden in the room where the body was found. Upstairs in the attic behind a pile of wooden pulleys, four packing covers, such as are used to protect the bottles shipped in cases, were found.
In the lavatory of the building (the place had been built and used for a residence before it was transformed into an office) there were two pairs of ladies’ slippers, a lady’s coat, and a powder puff, but no importance is attached to the presence of these feminine articles as lady clerks were employed in the office.