Another inquest held in dingo case

Feb. 24, 2012 at 5:38 PM

DARWIN, Australia, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- A fourth inquest opened Friday on Azaria Chamberlain, the baby allegedly killed by a dingo in 1980 at one of Australia's best-known landmarks, Ayers Rock.

The baby's parents, Michael Chamberlain and Lindy Chamberlain-Creighton, both asked a coroner in Darwin to make a conclusive ruling that a dingo, a wild dog native to Australia, entered their tent and took the baby, The Australian reported. Chamberlain-Creighton was convicted of killing her 9-week-old daughter and spent several years in prison before the verdict was overturned, and her husband was convicted as an accessory but spared a prison term.

The couple divorced after Chamberlain-Creighton was released from prison. They did not sit together in court.

Both Rex Wild, a lawyer assisting coroner Elizabeth Morris and Stuart Tipple, the Chamberlains' lawyer, cited cases since Azaria's disappearance of attacks by dingos on people, including at least three fatal ones.

Chamberlain-Creighton in a statement read in court described dingos as "sly, cunning and strong wild animals that do what comes naturally to a wild animal."

The case was the basis for a movie, "A Cry in the Dark," starring Sam Neil and Meryl Streep.

Morris did not make a ruling Friday. A coroner who held an inquest in 1995 issued an open verdict.

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