Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Over the past eighteen months I have used this Blog to intensively report on developments relating to Dr. Charles Smith culminating with the recently concluded Goudge Inquiry.

I am now winding up this phase of the Blog - to be replaced eventually by periodic reporting of developments relating to Dr. Smith and related issues as they occur - with an examination of Justice Goudge's findings in the cases reviewed by the Inquiry.

I think it is important to take this closer look at the report in this Blog, because the mainstream media, which has done an admirable job in reporting the inquiry, have gone on to other stories.

Justice Goudge's findings relating to the various cases have been scattered throughout the report.

My approach is to weave together the findings relating to all of the principal actors - so we can get a fuller picture of Justice Goudge's findings as to their conduct;


As set out in an overview report prepared by Commission staff:

Amber was born in Timmins, Ontario on March 13, 1987. Amber was the child of Frances and Richard. Amber died on July 30, 1988, at the age of 16 months at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.

Criminal proceedings were initiated against Amber's 12 year-old babysitter SM. SM was charged with manslaughter on December 15, 1988. Her trial commenced on October 15, 1989. There were 30 hearing days over the next 13 months, and the trial concluded on November 6, 1990.

On July 25, 1991, Justice Patrick Dunn acquitted S.M.


Justice Goudge found that the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (the College) should have conducted a further investigation - instead of merely accepting Dr. Smith's word that Judge Dunn confided to him that SM was guilty throughout the manslaughter trial.

More particularly, Goudge notes that the College had to be forced by a review body to exercise jurisdiction over Dr. Smith in connection with a complaint launched against him, saying he agreed that, "Dr. Smith was engaged in the practice of medicine when he performed his post-mortem examination and that the College should have taken jurisdiction of the complaints made against him."

"The decision to decline jurisdiction of DM's complaint (SM's father) was a missed opportunity for the College to deal with the complaints alleged against Dr. Smith by 1998."

(From my reading of the evidence called at the Goudge Inquiry, College investigators did their best to conduct a thorough investigation of Smith in response to the complaints against him - but were thwarted by Smith and impeded by their superiors.)