Girls On Their Own Are Easy Prey…” (Ian Bealey to his then girlfriend, 1980-1981)

With those words in mind it is news for the reader that pressure is being applied on us, personally, to remove this website. But we’re not going to. The many messages of support and good will alone would justify its remaining but we have the right to ask questions that nobody else appears to be doing. This website is LEGAL.

To the families and friends of Genette Tate we say this; ask the Police the difficult questions. Don’t necessarily accept what they say IF you believe that all, or part, of what we’re saying here is correct. Demand renewed action. It’s not too late. We realise how difficult this is for and if you feel upset or annoyed by our own renewed investigation we apologise BUT we feel have a moral and public duty to speak out.

Whether the Police do the right thing, and follow the obvious path indicated not only by us but by their predecessors, is open to question at this point. By now they know that our group is not a bunch of  idiots devoid of facts or ideas but, rather, a group of determined individuals with the ability to work through evidence. We don’t have their legal power but we have at least as good an idea of what’s going on – possibly more so when we look at the bigger picture relating to child abuse as a whole, its impact on modern society and the deeper reasons for it . Sometimes you have to be able to think outside the box and use a “right brain” approach to the matters at hand.

 Meanwhile, just because we disagree with various aspects of the official investigation in more recent times does not make us dangerous, or to be silenced.  Asking questions is not “anti Police”. To suggest this is childish, petulant nonsense.

Let us be clear. We live in a country where the most horrific miscarraiges of justice, frame ups, mistakes and Police incompetence reign supreme. These are facts.

The Birmingham Six, The Guildford Four. Ring any bells? Real examples of appalling miscarraiges of justice. Remember the men accused of murdering newspaper boy Carl Bridgewater?  The “Bridgewater Four” were Patrick Molloy, Jim Robinson and cousins Michael Hickey and Vincent Hickey. They served 18 years in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. Look on the internet for miscarraiges of justice. You’ll be surprised, and possibly horrified, by the sheer number of cases you find at the click of a mouse.

Some Police officers in this area would have us believe that such things never happen, that the Police are the fount of all knowledge; the sacred keepers of perfection, of timeless efficiency and that they never make mistakes. It would be, quote, “bullshit” to suggest that, where Genette Tate is concerned, mistakes were made. Devon and Cornwall Police are “professionals” and couldn’t possibly miss the obvious for 33 years.

Could they?

Policemen talk of protocols, of reviews, that they know best despite the obvious fact that 33 years after Genette’s vanishment nobody has been charged. They ask us for new evidence. We suggest it’s in their files. We suggest that they look harder. We suggest they attempt to look beyond their procedures and think in a different way about the case. A casual perusal of, say, the history of Robert Black’s deviancy and murder is not enough. It won’t solve this case and, as the Police HAVE ALREADY ADMITTED, only a confession by Black would do. And what place do confessions hold in the justice system if we believe that a defendant, no matter how “evil”  they are, has been pressurised, coerced, or has mental illness and whose testimony cannot be trusted without additional corroborative evidence?

So even a confession could, potentially, amount to very little.

Another disturbing aspect is the Police insistence that child murders of the sort we’re examining are the work of “the lone pervert”. This is simply not so. It appears, from where we’re sitting, that for some reason it is preferred that we, the taxpayer, the Police employer (if you will), MUST NEVER ATTEMPT TO JOIN THE DOTS UP. The Police scoff at the suggestion of “conspiracy” when they themselves have the power to arrest people for conspiracy.

This is not a “conspiracy theory” website. Are there conspiracies in the world? You bet. Do groups of often powerful individuals operate to cover their tracks, to commit crimes and to then put the blame on a patsy type figure? Of course. Could Ian Bealey be such a patsy? Possibly…….

Of course the legal system works both way and, for the record, it’s not natural justice or “evening things out” (as some might suggest) when many of the wrong people get put in prison for things they didn’t do and, consequently, people evade prison for things they did do.

We are FOR effective policing, not for detectives who blindly follow up just one set of limited possibilities without result. If you continue to bang your head on a wall you get a headache. So stop banging your head on the damn wall and walk around it!

In the 1980s-1990s, our chief investigator sat with Police detectives FOR HOURS AND HOURS discussing the Genette Tate case, helping them where he could, and seeing their efforts unfold in real time. Despite huge evidence in favour of questioning by-then-convicted-murderer Ian Bealey AT LEAST on the understanding that he might know something about Genette Tate’s disappearance it was only in the mid 1990s that the direction changed and Black came into the picture on, as we’ve seen, the sketchiest of “evidence”. The change in focus was certainly not for a lack of evidence where Mr Bealey was concerned.

Timeframe – 2.30pm, August 19th ’78. Bealey does his last job at a farm some seven miles from Aylesbeare. He was working for the AI (Artifical Insemination) Unit near Exeter Aiport, just a mile from Aylesbeare. According to Detective Furzeland it was established that Ian Bealey left the farm premises around 2.30-2.45pm. The Police investigation of the early-mid 1980s (and several years later) timed Bealey’s movements in detail, to the minute. (They did trial runs, full timings, re-runs, etc.) There is a gap in their own timings between 3pm and 3.45pm – the vital three quarters of an hour in this investigation  – when Bealey turned up at the AI Unit to fill out an accident report form. (Earlier that day it appears that he was in a state of some nervous tension, crashing into a Police car. That’s why he needed to fill the form in.)

So he was in the area at the right time, almost precisely so. And there is one vital piece of information relating to a vehicle he drove that we are not prepared to release at this time. If the Police look in the files, assuming they haven’t been lost or misplaced, then that particular answer should be available to them.

One of the things that has long concerned us is the precise timings that derive from the case evidence. Genette was known to have been working a route that had very precise timings. In other words, it could be determined, to a mathematically high probability, what time she would be where. It is known what time she left Aylesbeare, when she picked up the papers from the stop on the main road, where and when Tony Hammond was on that afternoon, when the various witnesses saw her in the lane. Such timings could also be gleaned from the regular paper boy in the village in terms of assuming her route and whereabouts. It could be assumed that Genette, on her first run (remember this was not only her first run at the job but the first time she was allowed to see her boyfriend, Tony Hammond, officially), might be a few minutes slower.

SO the suggestion that there was a timed plan relating to her disappearance, rather than the fanciful suggestion of bad luck and trouble as far as the schoolgirl was concerned, makes much greater sense.

The 1980s Police effort could not, to be absolutely sure, account for those 45 minutes of Ian Bealey’s Saturday afternoon. We can through logic, through evidence, through Police timings and their own investigations, make a strong case to suggest Mr Bealey was in the right area at the right time. This is not prejudice, not a conspiracy theory, not a mistake and not wishful thinking on our part. There is not hint of malice in our our investigations; just a desire to get at the truth. If the latter-day Police had a hundredth of our tenacity they’d have probably solved the case years ago.

We repeat: HOW could Bealey have known about Genette’s disappearance up to an hour before it was reported by John and Vi Tate? Bealey was at Michael Bastin’s house several miles away in Exeter, having been at the AI Unit at 3.45pm to fill in a form, by 4.20pm. So he simply didn’t, as you can see, have a chance to get back to Aylesbeare, meet someone by chance, be told about an abduction that nobody yet knew about and then travel at warp speed to Michael’s house to discuss the news.

It is not rocket science to suggest that there is something obvious here from an investigative point of view but the current crop of police detectives working locally are totally ignoring it. Why? If they had some vital new and miraculous piece of evidence you’d think they’d be trumpetting it all around the media!

Once upon a time, Ian Bealey was said to be the man the Police “could not rule out” of their investigations. Today, the Police are fixedly obsessed on Robert Black despite there being no evidence, apart from Black’s occasional deluded prison taunts about the Devon countryside, that he was anywhere near Aylesbeare on 19th August 1978.

For him to have been involved he’d have had to be approaching Aylesbeare within a window of opportunity of approx. 15-20 minutes. Six independent witnesses – a Policeman’s wife and daughter, Tracy Pratt and Maggie Heavey, and the Gormans further up the lane and in the village of Aylesbeare itself, saw a maroon triumph car. We understand that other witnesses saw this same car in Clyst Honiton that afternoon.

Ian Bealey is now out of prison having served an unusually long 27-year sentence for his 1981 murder. If he has nothing to hide, values his freedom, and wants to out some of his inner demons, then why should he not cooperate with detectives now? Read on…

The Police still claim, today, that there is a “lack of evidence” by which to EVEN QUESTION Bealey. True, he refused to answer any questions at one stage but a serious and well-directed operation, and effective questioning, as you’ll read below, proved Mr Bealey’s undoing in February 1981. So there is every reason to suppose that a breakthrough could be made. A certain lack of zeal appears to have hampered the Bealey investigation but not as far as Detectives Crabb, Furzeland and Davies were concerned. They were convinced that they had their man. They worked day and night on the case, and they were fully expecting the go ahead to proceed.

Robert Black, the man we’ve termed the ‘Red Herring Ripper’, came into matters very late on and not through any real evidence. As we’ve presented, none of the six witnesses in the lane on August 19th ’78 saw a red transit van and yet this bit of fiction has been allowed to poison the latter-day Police investigation. We restate the official position; there is no evidence to put Black in Aylesbeare and if there were he’d have been charged.

And think of it like this; what are the chances that not one but three child abusers happened upon one girl in one vehicle clearly seen to contain only one man (the dark-haired driver of the maroon vehicle) on that afternoon? Two men with an interest in children is unlikely but three? What are we saying if we believe this possibility to be true? That Tate, Bealey and Black somehow conspired together? Is this possible, or realistic?

What of common sense, or Occam’s Razor, or logical thinking? Call it what you will, Ian Bealey has at least many questions to answer about Genette’s disappearance. We don’t know if he killed Genette. He may not have done. He might have been cruelly used by other men involved in highly questionable activities as we suggest above. He might have been exploited. He might have been a small player in a bigger organisation. If so, he has every reason to set the record straight. He’s done 27 years and if he did those because of other men’s sickness and malice then he should talk and talk now.

Unless and until Ian Bealey talks, or further pressure is applied, little progress can, it seems, be made, but the WILL to act must exist within Devon and Cornwall Police, or Exeter CID at least. We would, despite our suspicions, be prepared to see a situation develop where Mr Bealey, having served 27 years for the murder of Virginia Maunder, was given immunity from further prosecution.

OUR PUBLIC CHALLENGE

The Genette Tate Investigation Group is prepared to fund a fully independent series of lie detector tests undertaken by the best-known and most respected experts in the field. Here is a scenario: Mr John Tate and Mr Ian Bealey, given their claims of innocence and absolutely no knowledge of Genette’s disappearance or whereabouts, have nothing to hide.

Although the lie detector tests would not be viable in a UK Court at least we’d have a much better handle on this horrible affair.

If either or both of the men pass the test/s we’ll remove this website, pack up our operation and discontinue our efforts.

It’s an easy way to shut us up for good. So will either/both take the challenge? Let us hope so. Our offer is genuine and made in good faith.

…….

February 1981 – What Happened Then.

At the time of Genette Tate’s disappearance our investigators were, like millions of others, only spectators to an unfolding tragedy whose dark secrets were yet to be revealed. It was not until the day following the 2nd February 1981 that things changed. The date in question was, of course, that of the abduction and murder of 19-year-old student Virginia Maunder of Old Blundells, Tiverton.

Virginia stepped off the train at St David’s Station, Exeter, at approximately 10pm on February. It was a foul and foggy night. The young woman did not have enough money to hire the usual taxi home and, given the particularly poor road conditions resulting from the inclement weather, she did not want to bring her father out on treacherous roads.

So she made a fatal decision. To thumb a lift.

A car stopped. Virginia got in. She was raped and murdered.

Two days later a man picked up his girlfriend, her two children and the dog, and went for a walk to the area by Quarry Lane, Exeter. The area is very quiet, given its proximity with the city centre, and sits between the Exeter bypass and road running from Middlemoor to Sidmouth, Exmouth and the M5 service station at Clyst St Mary.

The small group of walkers hadn’t ventured far into the field when the man “discovered” the body of Virginia Maunder under a sheet of metal. The discoverer was a local man, Ian Bealey.

Bealey was the murderer.

One of many 1981 local newspaper reports on the Ian Bealey murder trial. Click for greater detail.

He had used his 34-year-old girlfriend, Mrs Jenny Clark of Silverton, as a cover. According to Mrs Clark Bealey had come to her home the night after the body was discovered and, according the contemporary reports (featured in detail in all the local newspapers, some of which we republish here for your information) admitted that he had killed Virginia. “I did it, that girl, I did it,” he reported.

“He kept saying that he had done it and I kept saying that I did not want to hear it,” added Mrs Clark under examination.

Bealey, for his part, claimed as follows: “I was driving past the petrol station and saw the girl walking in the opposite direction. It was a shocking night and she was on her own.” He was fully aware of the many girls seen locally out and about and he always commented, said Mrs Clark:

“Girls on their own are easy prey…”

The carefully constructed image of a family man out for a walk, the stage-managed theatrics of the body being “discovered” and Bealey’s subsequent reporting of the “find” to the Police might have worked under what might be called “normal local circumstances” had it not been for the intervention of a man recently arrived at Exeter Police HQ. This was Detective Superintendent Peter Reay, a no-nonsense Geordie whose latter-day profile notes, “Peter Reay QPM, Senior Partner, a career detective orginating from the north east of England, is a former Detective Chief Superintendent and an investigator of international repute.”

So as far as certain elements within Devon and Cornwall Police were concerned, Reay was new and assuredly not “one of the boys.” By all accounts, Reay investigated Bealey by the book which, unsurprisingly, was bound to be the most obvious way of finding rather large holes in the fiction the murderer had developed.

But Bealey was no fool. Knowing that he needed to cover up his foul act he went to the Police with a fabricated story of finding Virginia’s body – the concerned citizen doing his duty – and managed to pretty much fool Detective Sergeant Ken Tuckett who interviewed him. For no less than three and a half hours, with only one unusual emotional outburst (“natural grief”) at the start when Bealey “looked like he was going to cry” (Tuckett’s own words) the first encounter went well from the murderer’s point of view.

A local newspaper quoted Tuckett thus. During that time Mr Bealey was “perfectly composed and answered all…questions with conviction and without hesitation.” Despite being warned by Police that simple forensic tests would quickly indicate whether or not, for example, the victim had been in Bealey’s car, he simply “smiled and said the girl had never been in his vehicle.”

Indeed, Tuckett later added that Bealey was obviously practiced in deception and had “made the lies up as he went” during interviews. It seems logical to conclude that Bealey had done this sort of thing before and that, even under initial pressure and with a little bit of luck (or help from friendly Policemen?) he could evade detection and escape justice.

Tuckett and Reay, upon further examination of Bealey’s back story, the ‘where he’d been on the night in question’ part of their initial investigations, soon worked out that the man had driven down the Tiverton-Exeter road where Virginia was standing and, they were expected to believe, just happened to have found the body shortly afterwards! What were the chances of that? Clearly something was amiss. Of equal concern was the emerging reality that Bealey had driven past Virginia and turned around to pick her up. He was on the prowl that night…….

The Genette Tate affair throws up many surprises. Occult-loving author Colin Wilson wrote the 'Schoolgirl Murder Case' novel in 1975. Interestingly, he wrote about another schoolgirl murder case, with a former neighbour, John Tate, in 1979.

Not unlike many murderers and sex criminals, Bealey sought to justify his actions by making up a ludicrous story about Virginia’s offering him sex in return for a lift. He blamed the student for the whole incident as soon as his carefully concocted story started falling to bits. She, apparently, taunted him for his “lack of sexual prowess” (yes, it is sick-minded nonsense but that is what the trial transcripts record). Bealey “just snapped”. This, of course, was to prove an outrageous fiction on Bealey’s part.

The whole affair, from his picking Virginia up, driving her in the direction of Tiverton (almost, in fact, as far as Silverton, his then girlfriend’s village), driving the young woman back into Exeter, indicates some sort of plan rather than “deep panic” and a murder that was the culmination of “unforseen circumstances”.

Bealey ended up, as we know, at Quarry Lane, a short distance from Middlemoor Police HQ.

Quarry Lane has its own unusual and singular history. It is perhaps best known locally as the site of the Digby Hospital,  Exeter Borough Asylum, or Exeter City Lunatic Asylum, opened in 1886 and closed in 1987. Today the site is a landscaped housing estate but parts of the original buildings were incorporated into the later structures. The local asylum, so beloved of Victorian authority was built to house, treat, and sometimes torture, England’s unwanted and difficult members of society. From the 1960s onwards the hospital environs also became known as a focal point for a variety of bizarre ritual-type activities. Although easy to dismiss as the stuff of nonsense (especially given the location) many witnesses have, over the years, come forward to report in some detail what they variously describe as “Satanic” activities, “ritual magic” and other sorts of macabre goings-on.

Indeed, a young man who attended the nearby Hele’s School in the late 1970s (Hele’s merged with Bishop Blackall school at the Quarry Lane site in 1983 and is now known as St. Peter’s Church of England School) came to us with a detailed description of an old building by Quarry Lane that was covered within by what he called “witchcraft signs” including a large pentagram in the centre of the main room. Another witness describes seeing a “number of men” performing rituals at the very same location.

Deeply worrying and, sadly, as you’ll see, this aspect takes on a rather greater significance as the Genette Tate story unfolds. It is, of course, from the investigators point of view, simply a question of where the evidence takes us but it is probably not a mistake to remind readers that Virginia Maunder’s actual murder took place not on February 1st but on February 2nd according to the evidence presented at the ’81 trial.

February 2nd is, like August 19th (1978) a date of some deeper, darker machination.

It is also worth bearing in mind that many local Policemen tasked to hunt for Genette Tate some three years before the Maunder abduction were, it was reported, “frightened of the witchcraft element”..whatever that might eventually prove to be.  Add to this author Colin Wilson’s insistence on writing about “Occult detectives” and John Tate’s regular allusions to “the Devil’s work” in books on the case and one wonders whether there is indeed something to all this above and beyond the realms of dark tragedy.

Colin Wilson, occult author, who, we understand, ghost wrote John Tate's books on the Genette affair. Would it surprise you to discover that Wilson wrote a paperback novel in 1975 entitled "The Schoolgirl Murder Case". Wilson knew John Tate in Cornwall in the early-mid 1970s. They were neighbours...

Wilson, Tate and, of course, Bealey (by the date of his actions) open this aspect of our investigation up. They have introduced it, promoted the idea and mused at some length about it. So we can only follow these disturbing matters up…….

Bealey would have us, and the Police detectives in 1981, believe that he chose Quarry Lane quite by accident and yet we feel that this is not so. As Paul Chadd, QC, prosecuting counsel made very clear during the trial, everything Bealey did was cold, calculated murder. Bealey, “was an evil murderer and not mad as he claimed,” said Chadd. “You are not dealing with an abnormal man. You are dealing with an evil man.”

Bealey was crafty: “Why was the body taken to Digby Hospital [at Quarry Lane]? Why was the body found in the way it was, and why has he gone out of his way to tell as many friends as he can [for instance the Bastins] the story he has?”

“It is all part of a scheme to protect himself,” Chadd claimed.

And, not to put too fine a point on it, with a nod to Colin Wilson, “Candlemass, February 2nd, is a Satanic Sabbat festival in which sex and blood rituals are performed.” On Wikipedia, for example, the period of 2nd to 21st February in some primitive cultures is related to the “sacrifice of children and captives to the water deities” whilst another website suggests that the date is one where, specifically, “7-17 year-olds are taken for blood and sexual rituals”.

Sick but true and, as you will come to discover, such activities were hardly unknown, in similar form, to a number of children and young people in the Exeter district in the 1970s-early 1980s. A similar claim is made by an American group called Survivorship, that is dedicated to improving the lives of those who have survived ritual or sexual abuse. It highlights the 2nd February as a significant date for abusers and the abused:

http://www.survivorship.org/resources/altcalendar.html

Remember this; however you look at it all the evidence suggests, particularly from local people in Aylesbeare, Farringdon, other places in East Devon and in Exeter itself, child abuse was rife in both 1978 and 1981. To quote one social worker involved in trying to help the children, “It wasn’t the lack of evidence that was our problem. It was getting the Police to prosecute.” Why was that, we asked:

“Because the people involved were, sometimes, Policemen and lawyers,” she replied…….

More to follow…….

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