A Conspiracy Of Silence

  • Category: History
  • Words: 798
  • Grade: 75
Conspiracy of Silence

Conspiracy of Silence by Lisa Preist is the life of four boys after murdering a native girl just outside of The Pas. There were many pieces of evidence presented in the book to prove who killed Betty Osborne. The evidence was small and limited but it was eventually for a trial. There was a lot of racism in the book that had a lot to do with the outcome of the trial. Racism isn't always apparent in the book but it is a never-ending problem.
In this book there are many pieces of evidence that can prove who did or did not murder Betty Osborne. Evidence will assure that justice is served by anyone involved in the murder. One of the first pieces of evidence found was a cabdriver seeing a car leaving the area of the murder that night. He managed to remember two numbers of the numbers on the license plate; 42. The police used a method very rarely used is a police investigation, they hypnotized him in order to recall that night to find new information. It worked and he remembered four numbers of the license plate in sequence; 5342. This led them to the second piece of evidence, the death car. This was substantial evidence seven months after the murder. They only found a few hairs with similar characteristics of Betty Osborne's proving that maybe sometime before her death she had been in the car. They also found a small bloodstain but they could only prove that it was human blood. Also they found their third piece of evidence, a bra strap under the back seat of the car. They got an expert to fit the strap with the correct size and got the match 32AA, style 122. That was the exact size found at the murder scene that the victim was wearing. Now they had very good physical evidence that Betty Osborne had been in the car that night. One of the very last pieces of evidence ever discovered was probably the most important piece of information in the trial. In 1985 Andrea Wiwcharuk told police what she had heard about the murder from Dwayne Johnston at a trailer-camp party thirteen years earlier. She had heard Johnston brag about the killing and boast how great it felt to kill someone. Andrea was just sitting there when she heard Johnston "I picked up a screwdriver and I stabbed her and I stabbed her and I stabbed her" just standing there making stabbing motions with his hands. This was by far the greatest piece of evidence to the trial.
This book also has many acts of racism in it some apparent and some not so apparent. The acts of racism are not necessarily directed at individuals as they may be towards groups of people. Betty Osborne was racist towards white men. She proves this by saying "No white man will ever sleep with me". All four people involved in the murder were racist but the one that I thought was the big problem was Dwayne. He stereo typed Betty as he would most native girls as being "easy", but when he found out she wasn't going to do what he wanted her to do he flipped out. First he beat her up but then he decided he had went too far so he killed her. This made him look even more racist. The city of The Pas itself was racist. They separated the natives from whites the best they could. By putting them on the Big Eddy and The Pas reserves. Whites ran all of the shops, schools, and hospital on the south side, or the white side of The Pas. The last point is that in 1965 the Canadian Council of Christmas and Jews found that nearly 75% of The Pas showed some prejudice against Indians and 10% showed extreme prejudice. A large amount of people stated that Indians were shiftless, undependable. They also said that Indian homes have nothing to offer children or elderly people. Most say they have no common standards and no decency. The only thing that connects Indians to whites is sex and booze.
Evidence proved to be very important to the book, each piece opened up a new chapter. The important information proved who was guilty and who was innocent. Racism had a lot to do with how the trial eventually fell together 16 years later. Although racism didn't have much importance to the trial itself but more to do with the life before the murder and even the trial.
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