Peter Ellis
Peter Ellis
Peter Hugh McGregor Ellis is a former Christchurch child care worker who has been at the centre of one of New Zealand's most enduring judicial controversies. In June 1993 Ellis was found guilty in the High Court on 16 counts of sexual offences involving children in his care at the Christchurch Civic Creche and was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment.
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Peter Hugh McGregor Ellis's personal information overview.
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Government declines inquiry into convictions of Peter Ellis - Stuff.co.nz
Google News - almost 2 years
Stuff.co.nz Government declines inquiry into convictions of Peter Ellis Stuff.co.nz The Government has ruled against an independent inquiry into the sexual assault convictions of Peter Ellis. Justice Minister Amy Adams has declined a request from supporters of Ellis for a Commission of Inquiry on the basis that it could be used to determine ... Govt turns down Ellis inquiry requestRadio New Zealand Child sex offender Peter Ellis denied Commission of Inquiry3News NZ No inquiry into Peter Ellis case: MinisterNewstalk ZB Voxy all 7 news articles »
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Google News article
A Computer Constructed From a Consortium of Live Crabs
Popular Science - almost 5 years
Soldier Crabs on the March Peter Ellis via Wikimedia If biomimicry is the instance of technology emulating nature, then this must be something like the opposite: researchers at Kobe University have built a computer out of crabs. Placed within a geometrically constrained environment, swarms of soldier crabs can be effectively used to emulate logic gates. In other words, researchers have replicated the fundamental workings of a computer--with crabs. The crabs in question, soldier crabs, live in large groups in lagoon environments (not to be confused with Shanghai hairy crabs, which live in a vending machine). When they move they swarm, with no real discernible leader. Crabs near the edges of the group exhibit serious leadership qualities, keeping the group together and moving in a direction as a cohesive body. Crabs in the interior of the group go with the flow, following their neighbors who are following their neighbors who are following the leaders at the edges. But, interes ...
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Popular Science article
Overseas delegates bolster conventions - Otago Daily Times
Google News - over 5 years
... the survey contributed more than $460 million to the economy. The ministry's tourism research and evaluation manager, Peter Ellis, said this week the data showed the conventions and conference industry remained robust despite difficult economic times
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Founders of Dayton: Henry William, Micajah, and Jessie P. Munson - Liberty Vindicator
Google News - over 5 years
Lt. Col Ahumada requested that Stephen F. Austin and Peter Ellis Bean, the Mexican Indian agent, march to Nacogdoches to confront the rebels. Henry W. Munson served as a first lieutenant, second in command, in Capt. Hugh Blair Johnston's company of
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Ellis makes it a treble with Handicap win - Bradford Telegraph and Argus
Google News - over 5 years
... Philip Robinson (Royds Park), Peter Ellis (Spen Victoria), Paul Hillam (Eccleshill), Luke Thompson (Littlemoor), Steve Field (Spen Victoria), Alistair Fox (Rastrick), Jack Glazzard (Cleckheaton Sports), David Beardsworth (Farsley)
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Man charged with murder, child stealing, deprivation of liberty, indecent ... - Adelaide Now
Google News - over 5 years
Regional Forensic Pathologist at Queensland Health Forensic and Scientific Services (QHFSS) Peter Ellis has arrived at the Morcombe crime scene. PICTURE: Megan Slade. Source: The Courier-Mail Regional Forensic Pathologist at Queensland Health Forensic
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Alleged sex offences spark booze warning at CFB Esquimalt - BCLocalNews
Google News - over 5 years
“There were two incidents in a relatively short period of time and (Commodore Peter Ellis) had a town hall meeting in which he reminded people of their responsibility with respect to drinking responsibly and looking out for your buddies, and basically
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Expert helps in Morcombe search - Ninemsn
Google News - over 5 years
Queensland's leading forensic pathologist Peter Ellis has visited the site where police are searching for the remains of missing Sunshine Coast teenager Daniel Morcombe. Professor Ellis arrived at the site behind a macadamia farm in the Beerburrum ... -
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Visitors spend $390m less before turmoil - New Zealand Herald
Google News - over 5 years
The ministry's tourism research and evaluation manager Peter Ellis said spending by international tourists had been dropping for more than a year even though the number arriving remained steady. "One reason tourists are spending less per visit still
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RWC welcome 'shot in the arm' for business - New Zealand Herald
Google News - over 5 years
"Hopefully the World Cup will be a shot in the arm for the industry which has faced such a tough time this year,'' the ministry's tourism research and evaluation manager Peter Ellis said. "Many tourism operators also appear less concerned about the
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Former Villa chairman helps with deal - Football Trade Directory
Google News - over 5 years
Peter Ellis, Aston Manor's managing director and son of Doug Ellis, said the deal backed up the company's commitment to sport. They also sponsor Aston Manor Cricket Club in Birmingham and Commonwealth Games gold medalist Louise Hazel,
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Tiverton sign deal with Aston Manor Brewery - This Is The Westcountry
Google News - over 5 years
Peter Ellis, Aston Manor's managing director and son of Doug Ellis, said the deal backed up the company's commitment to sport. They also sponsor Aston Manor Cricket Club in Birmingham and Commonwealth Games gold medalist Louise Hazel,
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Theatre Royal reveals autumn season - Hampshire Chronicle
Google News - over 5 years
It will be directed by Peter Ellis, also known as Chief Superintendent Brownlow in The Bill, and stars his wife, Anita Parry. Drama during the autumn includes the London Classic Theatre's production of Equus from Thursday, October 20 to Saturday,
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Carbon cowboys - Sydney Morning Herald
Google News - over 5 years
Nilsson claimed the affair was overplayed by the Queensland Labor Party, because of Nilsson's association with the head of the state's Premier's Department, Peter Ellis. ''Jim Pearce is taking a pot shot at the government by aligning me with the
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Texas History ~ Founders of Liberty: Hugh Blair Johnston - Liberty Vindicator
Google News - over 5 years
Johnston marched with Stephen F. Austin and Peter Ellis Bean in this action arriving in Nacogdoches on January 31, 1827. The revolutionists gave up without much of a fight, fleeing across the Sabine River into Louisiana. George Orr, Hugh B. Johnston,
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Fund manager confidence takes a knock - Financial News (subscription)
Google News - over 5 years
Peter Ellis, managing director at Investit, said, “This response is entirely consistent with work we have been doing with US and Japanese based firms to ensure they have the right products and operational platforms to support new sales initiatives in
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Peter Hugh McGregor Ellis
    FIFTIES
  • 2011
    Age 52
    In 2011, Ellis announced his intention to lodge a fourth petition to the Governor General.
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    Ellis continues to campaign to clear his name, in 2011 he announced intention to lodge a fourth petition for pardon with the Governor General.
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  • FORTIES
  • 2008
    Age 49
    Francis's articles and Hayne's research were cited in January 2008 by Ellis's counsel when making a renewed request that the Ministry of Justice establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the case, but Associate Justice Minister Rick Barker rejected this approach in March 2008.
    More Details Hide Details A further call for a Commission of Inquiry was made by former National MPs Katherine Rich and Don Brash and author Lynley Hood in November 2008, and the new Minister of Justice Simon Power said that the government would reconsider the issue. He later declined their request for an inquiry, on the grounds that Ellis still held the right of appeal to the Privy Council and an inquiry therefore could not achieve finality.
  • 2007
    Age 48
    In late 2007 and January 2008, three articles on the Ellis case were published in The New Zealand Law Journal.
    More Details Hide Details These included New Evidence in the Peter Ellis Case by researcher Ross Francis, which prompted Sir Thomas Thorp to comment that the articles "must add to concerns expressed previously that that case may have gone awry". In December 2007 the New Zealand Innocence Project heard from University of Otago Professor Harlene Hayne of her research which compared the standard of interviews conducted in the Ellis case with those of the Kelly Michaels case. Empirical analysis allowed Hayne to conclude that there was a "strong risk that the evidence of children who told of sexual abuse by Ellis was contaminated by the way the interviews were carried out" and that, contrary to Eichelbaum's conclusions, "the standard of the questions in Ellis was not substantially better than those in Michaels".
  • 2005
    Age 46
    In August 2005, Parliament's justice and electoral select committee reported on the two petitions relating to the Ellis case.
    More Details Hide Details The committee had several concerns with the way the case was prosecuted. It recommended several changes, although it acknowledged that changes had already been made to the way that children were now interviewed. It also suggested that the testimony of expert prosecution witness Karen Zelas would not be permitted if it were proffered now. The committee noted that: "The operation of the legal system in respect of this case did not inspire adequate public confidence in the operation of the legal system. A justice system should lead to certainty. In this case it seemed to increase the sense of uncertainty". However, the committee rejected the petitioners' call for a commission of inquiry, concluding that it was not practical to hold such an inquiry.
    In 2005, he suffered a heart attack and required hospitalisation.
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  • 2003
    Age 44
    And if I don't say anything, Peter Ellis will keep going around saying he's innocent and more people will believe him," stated 'Tom' in a 2003 newspaper interview.
    More Details Hide Details Tom, the son of Joy Bander, said he stood by the allegations, including being hung in a cage, that he had made as a young child. He said parents had nothing to do with what the children had said and that all his parents had ever said to him was that he should tell the truth. He continued to claim that female staff at the creche had abused him. Ellis has received widespread support. In 2001 Lynley Hood published a book about the case and the moral panic of sexual abuse within New Zealand at that time. In 2002 A City Possessed won the top prize for non-fiction and for readers' choice in the New Zealand Book Awards. In June 2003, two petitions called for a royal commission of inquiry into the case. The first, organised by then National Party leader Dr Don Brash and MP Katherine Rich, had 140 highly prominent signatories and these included retired high court judge Laurence Greig, nine QCs, two previous prime ministers of New Zealand David Lange and Mike Moore, former Auckland police chief Bryan Rowe, nine professors of law, historian Michael King, "Rachel", a complainant who later retracted her allegations that Ellis had abused her, and experts in scientific, legal and social fields. In 2006, Don Brash cited the case when supporting calls for an independent body investigating miscarriages of justice in New Zealand.
  • 2002
    Age 43
    The Ellis case is highly controversial, with many New Zealanders believing he is innocent. A poll of 750 adults conducted in 2002 by the National Business Review revealed that 51% thought Ellis was innocent, 25% thought he was guilty, and 24% were unsure. The case has been linked with the day care sexual abuse hysteria, a moral panic that originated out of California in 1982 and that existed throughout the 1980s.
    More Details Hide Details It has also been cited as a major cause in the decline in the number of male teachers in New Zealand schools. Research by London et al. (2005) has found that, contrary to the testimony of Dr Karen Zelas, sexually abused children typically disclose abuse when asked. They seldom deny or recant abuse allegations. The authors noted that the highest recantation rates were found in studies of allegedly abused children in a day-care setting. “Because of concerns about the actual abuse status of the children in these studies, one might argue that these recantation rates reflect the number of children who attempt to discredit their own previous false allegations by setting the record straight”. The continued campaign on behalf of Ellis has angered at least two of the complainants and their parents. "I would have been happy to never talk about the abuse ever again. I'm sick of being called a liar.
  • 1999
    Age 40
    In 1999 Lyon criticised the direction and relevance of research undertaken by experts nominated by Ellis's counsel.
    More Details Hide Details Lyon's critique was cited approvingly in the Crown's submission to the ministerial inquiry. The Crown submission said: "The new wave researches sic assume that highly suggestive interviewing techniques are the norm in an abuse investigation when there is little empirical evidence to support this view". Stephen J. Ceci, one of the "new wave", has rejected this claim. Also, it is difficult to see the relevance of the above quote in the context of the Civic Creche case, which is atypical of sex abuse investigations. Lyon agrees that "if one knows whether a particular child was interviewed with suggestive techniques, then one need not ask what most interviews are like". Two of the "new wave", Ceci and Maggie Bruck, wrote an amicus brief on suggestibility in support of Kelly Michaels. It was signed by 43 of the 46 researchers who were asked to do so, among them some of the "most well-respected researchers in psychology" (Lyon). Michaels' convictions were subsequently overturned. Ceci and Friedman write that "what Lyon characterizes as a ‘new wave’ of research is actually a broad and long-standing scientific mainstream".
    In 1999 retired High Court judge Sir Thomas Thorp examined a petition for the Royal prerogative of mercy lodged by Ellis's counsel, Judith Ablett Kerr.
    More Details Hide Details Thorp expressed misgivings with several aspects of the case and recommended a wide-ranging inquiry. His concerns included: the lack of corroboration of the children’s claims, the sanitising of some of the charges, the testimony of Karen Zelas, and the fact that several experts with reputations in their field had expressed doubts about the accuracy of the children’s claims. He made several recommendations, among which included employing the services of Stephen J. Ceci. Ceci had commented on the case for a TVNZ Assignment television program. Ceci had been supplied with a limited number of transcripts but had not seen videotapes of the children's interviews. Thorp wrote "Professor Ceci's involvement to date appears to have been as a consultant to TV3 sic. His studies of the American "mass allegation creche cases suggest that his opinion could be of particular value. There seems no reason why the Ministry, or Crown Law if it preferred, could not seek his opinion."
    In 1999 the Ellis case was referred to the Court of Appeal for a second time.
    More Details Hide Details Judith Ablett Kerr, QC, appeared as counsel for Ellis, and Simon France for the Crown. As was the case in the original trial and in the case of the first appeal, the court restricted the ambit of material it would examine. Reliability of the complainants' accounts, contamination by parents and other sources, along with non-disclosure by police of photographs to defence counsel, formed the basis of Ablett Kerr’s submission. Ablett Kerr argued that the jury had not been allowed to examine these issues in their entirety. The Crown argued that risks involved with multi allegation, multi victim cases were well understood at the time of the trial and the jury had been given a clear picture of the case. Dr Barry Parsonson, former head of the New Zealand Psychologists Board, said in relation to the children's evidence that led to Ellis's conviction, "the probability of the proportion of fact outweighing the proportion of fiction must be very, very small indeed". He wrote a 120 page-report into the children's interviews for Ellis's second Court of Appeal hearing. Michael Lamb, Ray Bull and Maggie Bruck are among international experts who have provided affidavits supporting Ellis's appeals to have his conviction overturned. At the second appeal the Crown presented the expert opinion of Dr Constance Dalenberg.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1998
    Age 39
    In November 1998, Ellis presented a second petition to the Governor General seeking a Royal Commission on Inquiry into his case, and either a free pardon or for the whole case to be referred back to the Court of Appeal.
    More Details Hide Details The Secretary for Justice sought advice from Sir Thomas Thorp on the second petition. His advice concluded that the terms of reference should be expanded.
  • 1993
    Age 34
    In June 1993 Ellis was convicted of 16 counts of sexual offences involving seven children.
    More Details Hide Details The following year he was acquitted of three charges involving the oldest complainant, who had retracted her allegations. A number of irregularities in the trial were publicised in a TV3 20/20 television programme which aired on 16 November 1997. The programme alleged that the jury foreman had been the celebrant at the Crown Prosecutor's wedding 15 years earlier, and another juror had had a sexual relationship with a close work colleague of a complainant's mother. The investigating detective, Colin Eade, had had sexual relationships with two of the mothers after the trial and had propositioned another during the course of the investigation. He also had had a sexual relationship with one of the evidential interviewers after the trial. The mother whom he propositioned subsequently withdrew her child, the first to make a formal disclosure of abuse, from the inquiry. In 1994 Eade left the police suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. Colin Eade said in the television documentary that he would not be surprised if all the complainants had not recanted at some stage of the investigation.
  • 1992
    Age 33
    Four female co-workers of Ellis were arrested on 1 October 1992.
    More Details Hide Details At depositions they faced 15 charges that included sexual violation, indecent assault and one charge of performing an indecent act in a public place. The charges were dropped, after depositions, on three grounds: firstly that evidence against them was of insufficient weight to justify a trial; secondly that there was so great a potential for prejudice against them that they might be convicted for the “wrong reasons”; thirdly that the unavoidable delay in their trial may have resulted in hardship to the child involved. In March 1995 they, and six other former staff who had also lost their jobs when the creche was closed in September 1992, were awarded $1 million by the Employment Court. This was later reduced to $170,000 by the Court of Appeal in September 1996. Following the first investigation into allegations of abuse at the creche, the Christchurch City Council requested that psychologist and sex therapist, Rosemary Smart, review the management practices at the crèche. The review of the management of the Civic Creche was in response to "incidents of alleged sexual abuse of children at the Centre over a period of six years by a male staff member" (Smart, 1992). Smart's report quoted from Finkelhor's Nursery Crimes: sexual abuse in day care (1988), supplied to Smart by the office of Ian Hassall, then Commissioner for Children. It is an examination of an epidemic of alleged sexual abuse, including satanic ritual abuse, in US day care centres.
    By the time of his depositions hearing in November 1992, he had been charged with 45 sexual offences involving 20 young children.
    More Details Hide Details Four female co-workers were charged with similar offences. At his trial, Ellis faced 28 charges involving 13 children. In June 1993, he was found guilty on 16 charges and was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment. He was released on parole on 2 February 2000 after serving the mandatory two-thirds of his sentence. Although eligible for parole from March 1998, Ellis refused to appear before the parole board, saying he would prefer to stay in jail if accepting parole required him to admit to a crime that he did not commit.
    On 30 March 1992, Ellis was arrested and charged with sexually abusing a child at the creche.
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  • 1991
    Age 32
    In December 1991, Detective Colin Eade advised the creche's employer, the Christchurch City Council, about the allegations.
    More Details Hide Details Eade wrote: "To date there have been no disclosures of any sort of indecent touching by any person employed at the Child Care centre…the reasons the parents, Ms Sidey DSW and myself were so concerned at the start of this enquiry, were that the children were displaying some behaviour that we often attribute to sexual abuse". Later in his letter Eade said the children who were interviewed by Sidey had a “general fear” of Ellis and this fear “may affect their behaviour for some time to come.” He commented that it was clear to him that Ellis “should not be involved in any way in the supervision or care of children. I believe that we were very lucky to have this brought to our attention at this stage. If he had continued on at the Centre, things could have got sic worse”. At that stage, Eade had not interviewed Peter Ellis. Eade had no expertise in early childhood education.
    The case began in November 1991 when a mother, who was a sexual abuse counsellor and self-diagnosed victim of sexual abuse, allegedly heard her four-year-old son say that he "didn't like Peter's black penis."
    More Details Hide Details Ellis was placed on leave subject to an internal investigation. When formally interviewed by the Department of Social Welfare DSW the boy, and five other children suspected of having been abused, made no disclosures of sexual abuse. No charges were laid. The boy who made the original complaint was moved to another creche where his mother again accused a male creche worker of sexually abusing her son. No charges were laid.
  • TWENTIES
  • 1986
    Age 27
    After completing his community work, Ellis began full-time employment at the Civic Creche from 15 September 1986 until 21 November 1991, when he was suspended.
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    In August 1986, Ellis carried out his community service at the Christchurch Civic Creche.
    More Details Hide Details His supervisor, Dora Reinfeld, later reported that "Peter... provided some hilarious puppetry shows - one of which we had to abandon as staff and children 'got out of hand'". Ellis became a relieving worker, and Reinfeld's next monthly report said: "Peter Ellis has fitted in extremely well and puts lots of energy into programme planning. Fantastic team spirit". Ellis's pre-sentencing report said "The overall picture gained of Peter Ellis is that of an outgoing, uninhibited, unconventional person given to putting plenty of enthusiasm and energy into his work and social activities, sometimes to the point of being risqué and outrageous". Prior to his imprisonment, Ellis had sexual relationships lasting for periods of two to five years with both men and women. He told Lynley Hood "In a relationship with a woman I was, for want of a better word, bisexual, and with a man I was monogamous". When working for the Civic Creche, Ellis was described by Hood as "blatantly homosexual".
    Most of the alleged abuse occurred in the toilets at the creche. "The offences were alleged to have taken place at unspecified times and dates between 1 May 1986 (four months before Ellis came to the creche) and 1 October 1992 (11 months after he left the creche, and one month after the creche was closed) (Hood, 2001)".
    More Details Hide Details Barristers Rob Harrison and Siobhan McNulty represented Ellis; Brent Stanaway and Chris Lange appeared for the Crown. The complainants testified by two separate means: pre-recorded videotaped interviews conducted by Department of Social Welfare officers (evidence in chief); testimony via a closed circuit TV link to the children, who were outside the courtroom. Prosecutors had sanitised some of the charges so that few of the bizarre allegations were heard. Rulings by the judge, Neil Williamson, meant that the playing of videotaped interviews not specific to the charges were subject to restrictions. The defence was permitted to play tapes of their choice, but the following applied: unlike prosecution tapes, the child complainants did not have to view defence tapes; in contrast to the prosecution tapes, the jury did not receive a transcript of tapes played by the defence. Before testifying, the children watched portions of their tapes, upon which the prosecution relied, but did not view defence-onus tapes in which they had denied being abused or had made bizarre allegations. Each complainant was accompanied in the CCTV room by an adult, usually a social worker who had been counselling the child in the months leading up to the trial.
    He was prosecuted and convicted in 1986 of "misleading a social welfare officer", and sentenced to 80 hours community service.
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  • TEENAGE
  • 1975
    Age 16
    Ellis is the eldest of four children. His parents were teachers who separated when he was nine. He left school at the end of 1975 and went tobacco picking in Motueka.
    More Details Hide Details After two years overseas, he returned to New Zealand and spent some time unemployed. He had a part-time job in a bakery in the early 1980s which eventually became full-time. When he left this job and applied for an unemployment benefit, authorities discovered he had received dole payments to which he was not entitled.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1958
    Born
    Born in 1958.
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Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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