Death of Azaria Chamberlain

  • Birth

    Azaria Chamberlain is born
  • Disappearance

    17th Aug, 1980 Disapperance of a 9 week year old A nine week year old baby girl at Ayers Rock on the 17th of August 1980 disappeared
  • Found torn jumpsuit

    Azaria Chamberlians torn and dirt infested jump suit was found.
  • Statements are made

    Police statements given by all four Chamberlains Police statements given by all four Chamberlains at their home in Mt. Isa. Chamberlain car searched.
  • First Coroner's Inquest

    The first coroner's inquest into the death of Azaria opens.
  • Coroner Barritt finds that a dingo took and presumably killed Azaria Chamberlain.

    Alice Springs Coroner, Denis Barritt finds that a dingo (or a wild dog) took Azaria and that no member of the Chamberlain family was responsible for her death. However, there were findings of interference with the clothing by 'person or persons unknown'. Dr Kenneth Brown requests permission to do further tests on the jumpsuit.
  • 'Operation Ochre'

    The Chamberlain's home was searched and large quantities of items were taken by police. At the same time, all of the eyewitnesses had police at their doors, asking for statements. When the eyewitnesses began to describe what they had seen or heard, the police told them that 'they did not want to hear anything about a dingo. This is a murder investigation.'
  • The Supreme Court of the Northern Territory quashes first inquest and orders a new one

    The Supreme Court of the Northern Territory quashes the findings of the first inquest and orders that a second inquest into Azaria Chamberlain's death be held.
  • Second Coroner's Inquest

    A second Coroner's Inquest into the death of Azaria Chamberlain opens before Gerry P. Galvin.
  • Coroner Galvin commits Lindy Chamberlain for the murder of Azaria. Michael Chamberlain is charged with being an accessory.

    Second Inquest Coroner Gerry Galvin commits Lindy Chamberlain to trial on the charge of murdering Azaria. Michael Chamberlain is charged as an accessory after the fact. This event was dubbed "Inquest by Ambush" by the media.
  • Chamberlain trial opens in a Darwin courthouse before Justice James Muirhead.

    Chamberlain trial begins in Darwin, Northern Territory before Judge Justice James Muirhead of the Supreme Court. It is referred to as the "Trial of the Century".
  • The Defence opens its case in the Chamberlain trial.

    The Defence opens its case in the Chamberlain trial.
  • The Chamberlain case goes to the jury. The jury finds Lindy guilty of murder and Michael guilty of being an accessory.

    A heavily pregnant Lindy Chamberlain is found guilty of 1st Degree Murder and sentenced to life in prison. Michael Chamberlain is charged as an accessory after the fact and receives an eighteen month suspended sentence.
  • Kahlia Chamberlain born in custody.

    Lindy Chamberlain givies birth to a baby girl, Kahlia, while in jail.
  • Lindy Chamberlain is released on bail pending an appeal.

    Lindy Chamberlain, two days after giving birth to Kahlia, is released on bail pending an appeal.
  • The Full Bench of the Federal Court hears the appeal of the Chamberlains.

    The Full Bench of the Federal Court hears the appeal of the Chamberlains.
  • Federal court rejects appeal

    The federal court, in a unianimous vote, rejects the Chamberlain's appeal and Lindy is returned to prison.
  • Lindy application for Bail rejected

    Lindy, after her appeal being rejected by the federal court, applies for an appeal at the High Court, and applies for bail whilst waiting for the pending appeal to be decided. However, the high court denies bail.
  • Kahlia Chamberlain given to foster parents

    Kahlia Chamberlain goes to live with foster parents Wayne and Jenny Miller
  • Australian High Court Rejects appeal

    Australian's High Court, voting 3 to 2, upholds the conviction of the CHamberlaines.
  • PPetition Presented

    With doubts about the case rising, a petition of 131,000 signatures (later 150,000) calling for Lindy's release and a judicial enquiry into the case is presented to Sir Ninian Stevens, the GOvernor-General.
  • The Matinee Jacket is found!

    Ever since the start of this ase, Linndy always insisted that Azaria was wearing a Matinee jacket since she was killed, and on this day the missing jacket was found by tourists near a group of dingo lairs. The missing piece of evidence wass vital to this case, as if Azaria was wearing it, it would have explained the lack of dingo saliva on the jumpsuit. With this new evidence, the Chamberlain's lawyer demands that Lindy be immediately released and that a new inquiry into the case is to begin.
  • Lindy Chamberlain confirms that the jacket is Azaria's

  • Lindy is released from jail

    N.TGovernment release Lindy from Jail and announce a Royal Commission on the case - though whatever the findings she will not be returned to jail.
  • Judicial Inquiry Opened

    A judicial inquiry into the Chamberlain case opens in Darwin before Justice Trevor Morling
  • Justice Morling Hands DOwn Findings

    Justice Moorling issues a 379-page report analyzing the evidence in the Chamberlain's case. He concludes that the Chamberlains'conviction ought not to stand. He says "I do not think any jury could properly convict them on the evidence as it now appears".The exoneration was based on a rejection of the 2 key points of the prosecution's case - particularly the alleged fetal haemoglobin evidece - and of bias and invalid assumptions made during the initial trial.
  • Blood in the car proved to be false

    The main reason that the case was overturned was because of a newly discovered fault in the prosecution's case - the foetal blood found in the car wasn't actually foetal blood! Professor Boettcher after the trial conacted the German chemical company which made the reagent used. The company admitted that the batch was faulty. Tests were made on several Holden Torana Hatchbacks ad it turned out, it was not blood, but in face a chemical commonly used by car manufacturers.
  • Chamberlain's Offered Pardon

    In response to Justice Morlilng's findings, the N.T. Annouunces that the Chamberlains are pardoned of all charges. However, a pardon still suggests guild in Australia.
  • Legislation Allowing to return to court authorized

    A new act of parliament is fored through to allow the Camberlain's to return to clear their convictions.
  • Convictions Quashed

    The Supreme Court of Darwin unanimously quashes all convictions and declares the Chamberlains totally innocent.
  • Film based on The Chamberlains released

  • Chamberlains awarded compensation

    The Chamberlains (and the Seventh Adventist Church) were awarded $1.3M in compensation for wrongful imprisonent, a sum that covered approximately 1/4 of legal expenses.
  • Third Coronial Inquest Opened

    The Chamberlains wanted Azaria's Death certificate to be amended and to read that her cause of death was being attacked by a dingo. In response, a third Coroner's inquest was opened by Coroner John Lowndes.
  • Results of Third Inquest Announced

    Findings of the Third Inquest are announced. Coroner Jogn Londes reiterates that neither Lindy nor Michael were in any way invonved with the disappearance of their daughter. However, he concludeds that 'As to the cause of her death and the manner in which she died the evidence adduced does not enable me to say. I therefore return to an open finding and record the cause and manner of her death as Unknown.'This meant that there was still room for rumors and whispers that Lindy killed her.
  • Dingoes are Dangerous

    After a series of dingo attacks towards people, a fourth coroner's inquest into the death of Azaria is opened. Lindy Chamberlain expresses the hope that the inquest will both clear her name and alert the public to the fact that "Dingoes are indeed very dangerous."
  • Fourth Inquest Opened

    After years of the Chamberlain's writing to the N.T. Government requesting for a fourth inquest to amend AZaria's death certificate, they were finally granted this fourth inquest follwing a series of dingo attacks in the area.
  • Case Finally Closed

    The findings of the fourth coronial inquest were finally announced on this day. The coroner announced "Azaria Chamberlain died at Uluru, then known as Ayers Rock, on the 17th August 1980. The cause of her death was as the result of being attacked and taken by a dingo." Her death certificate now reads this and the Chamberlains (now divorced) expressed their relief at their names being cleard and to the end of this case of rumours, media and faulty /incorrect and biased evidence.