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Dingo-baby mystery still unsolved

Kara Menini

A dingo is a wild dog from Australia

Mother requests fourth inquest to prove a dingo killed her daughter

A dingo can be a dangerous animal and Lindy Chamberlain has known this for 30 years. In 1980, Chamberlain was camping in the Australian outback with her husband and nine-week-old daughter, Azaria. While Lindy was cooking dinner, a dingo allegedly snuck into the family tent and stole the baby from her bed. “Upon seeing Azaria’s empty bassinet, Lindy screamed, “The dingo’s got my baby!” — a line made famous by the Meryl Streep movie, “A Cry in the Dark,” based on the case,” NPR reports.

Since then, the Chamberlain’s have been fighting the courts, and the public, to convince them that a wild dog was the reason for their daughter’s death. New evidence has caused an Australian coroner to open a fourth inquest to prove that the Chamberlains have not been lying.

The day the dingo attack happened, NPR reports that even though “fellow campers told police they heard a low growl followed by a baby’s cry,” it was ruled unlikely that a dingo would have been strong enough to carry a baby out of a tent. Because of that ruling, Lindy Chamberlain was sentenced to life in prison as it was believed that she was responsible for her daughter’s death. Her sentence was overturned three years later when Azaria’s jacket was found near a dingo den. “Since then, the Chamberlains have gathered new evidence of around a dozen dingo attacks on children, three of them fatal, said their lawyer, Stuart Tipple,” NPR reports. Further evidence supports the Chamberlains innocence; dingo prints were found outside of the tent from where the child was taken and there were spots of blood on the baby’s bedding. 

Because Azaria’s body has never been found, her cause of death has been undetermined and her parents are hoping that with this new evidence, the courts will officially declare she was killed by a dingo, rather than by her mother. 

“It gives me hope that this time Australians will finally be warned and realizes that dingoes are dangerous animals,” Lindy Chamberlain said according to SunSentinel, “and I hope that this will give a final finding which closes the inquest into my daughter’s death, which so far has been standing open and unfinished.”

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