The only child of Harvey and Jeannette Crewe has broken her silence to ask the police to re-investigate the unsolved murders of her parents 40 years ago.Stop. Now. This story fills the entire front page of the New Zealand Herald: a story about an unsolved murder committed forty years ago, a story prompted by the reaction of the victims' daughter after reading a book by Ian Wishart, a book which puts the blame on a man who is now dead and which offers no new evidence.
Rochelle Crewe - just 18 months old when found crying in her cot five days after the Crewes were last seen alive - has written to Police Commissioner Howard Broad to request that the case be reopened.
So, what reason does Ms Crewe (called throughout the Herald's story by her forename) have for asking that the case be opened again?
Rochelle told the Herald that it "concerns me that the Solicitor-General unilaterally usurped the role of the court".No, he did not. There was no court. The Solicitor-General looked at the evidence and decided it was insufficient to prosecute the policemen. That was his job. The Herald should know this. But in a tear-stained editorial the Herald concurs with Ms Crewe, apparently believing that it is just and proper to prosecute people without sufficient evidence, on the grounds that it would get everything out in the open. And the Herald persists:
The Police Commissioner may respond to Rochelle Crewe by suggesting there is no new evidence to warrant a new investigation. If so, the Minister of Police should appoint an independent investigator to re-examine the evidence. The chances of the truth being uncovered may be slim. So slim, in fact, that there is little point in pouring taxpayer dollars into the likes of another royal commission. But Rochelle Crewe is surely owed one last effort to try to find the truth before it is too late.We owe it to Ms Crewe to spend millions of dollars pointlessly re-examining insufficient evidence, it seems.
Meanwhile, important stories - about South Canterbury Finance, the Telecom sale and arming the police, among others - fester on the inside pages.
But then, a story about a orphaned baby found in her cot who grows up not knowing who murdered her parents has so much more sob value, as well as an outrage bonus. So hold the front page.