In total there are eight (8) audio witnesses some positioned inside the building and some positioned outside. Audio Witnesses Inside Hyde Building are the couple on the floor below and the next door neighbours. Audio Witnesses Outside Hyde Building are the student the council workers and Joshua Rathmell.
The Japanese student who is external audio witness one was the closest. The two Council Workers are external Audio Witnesses Two and Three.
Furthest away and behind trees was where Joshua Rathmell, the fourth external audio witness was positioned.
It is interesting to note that neither the council workers nor the Japanese student were accompanied by armed guards to the hearing, whilst Joshua Rathmell was surrounded by armed guards.
Using an Android application on numerous occasions to test the noise levels in the morning at round 10:00 am indicated that the background noise varies between high 75 and mid 80 decibels. Most online sites indicate that with more accurate measuring instruments city traffic noise is usually around 85 plus Decibels.
Even if the sound on the balcony was exceptionally loud, let’s say 100 Decibels (for some perspective here, a rock concert or a jet engine is typically measured to be 120 Decibels this would decrease to 82 Decibels if you are 90 metres away), then the sound heard by someone 90 metres away (keep in mind Joshua was further away than this) would decrease to around 61 Decibels and this figure has been rounded up. Given that the background noise is very likely to have been louder, how is he able to hear it so distinctly and also determine so rapidly which direction the sound came from? The council workers clearly indicated that one believed the noise he heard was not loud enough or distinct enough to cause them to look up and he thought it was a bird. The other council worker was under the belief that somebody had been hit by a car.
The significance of the audio associated with this event is that sound is what Joshua Rathmell stated drew his attention to the event. This is most significant as without the sound no one would have any reason to look up instantly. Which also begs the question, why make a sound unless it is one of distress?
During the walk through video Joshua Rathmell made a very interesting statement ” I must say its very loud all I can hear are buses, cars and walking signs”
One does not need to be an expert to know that the closer you are to a sound the louder it will be. Audio Witness One hears a single loud noise and indicates it was brief. Audio Witnesses Two and Three hear a softer sound, which is understandable as they are further away they also indicated that the noise was brief. Audio Witness Four, Joshua Rathmell in his initial statement indicates he hears a “muffled sound”, given he is furthest away it should be just that. In subsequent statements this evolves to multiple sounds, “Deranged Screams”, compared to that of a junkie on an “Ice Bender” and loud yelling. On at least one occasion he states that he was not sure if the sound came from the park or from across the road.
It has been characteristic of many of the Crown witness statements in this case to have been amended and Joshua Rathmell’s statement is no exception. This must be the only instance where recollection improves with time. This raises many questions:
How does someone further away hear louder and longer sounds after initially stating they heard a muffled sound?
How does he hear several distinct sounds after seeing the “object” falling? This has to infer he hears the body and either the Handbag or possibly a shoe hit the ground.
Why didn’t Joshua hear the sound of the awning being struck?
Is this inadvertent witness Bias?
Is this misremembering?
Is this “false memory”?