The Boy on the Bicycle

June 29, 2020

Another case of wrongful conviction

True crime author Nate Hendley tells about a horrid case of wrongful conviction in 1950’s Toronto Canada. In a change of pace from organized crime stories, Gary Jenkins interviews Mr. Hendley about his latest book, The Boy on a Bicycle: A Forgotten Case of Wrongful Conviction in Toronto Canada.  On September 15, 1056, a passerby found the body of seven-year-old Wayne Mallette on the grounds of the Canadian National Exhibition in Toronto. The police found he had been sexually abused prior to his murder.   In this interview, Mr. Hendley tells how the police coerced a confession out of young Wayne Mallette and failed to find the real killer, Peter Woodcock, until after he killed two more children. Nate Hendley is a prolific true crime author who resides in Canada. Please visit this site at www.natehendely.com  or click here to Amazon and see all his books.

The suspect

Toronto police detectives learned that a 14-year-old boy named Ronald Moffat had worked at the National Exhibition grounds and his parents had recently reported him as a runaway. They found this boy and subjected him to hours of intense interrogation. Just like many other cases of wrongful convictions, the investigators soon broke the boy down and obtained a confession. Like many other wrongful confession cases, all the evidence available that he killed Wayne Mallette was the suspect’s confession. Meanwhile, the real suspect, Peter Woodcock, was still riding his bicycle around Toronto and using it to lure children into a place where he would molest and kill them.

If a suspect confesses, he must have done it

Gary tells his own story of how he was a young inexperienced detective when he obtained a false confession from a teenage murder suspect. Thankfully, a veteran detective stepped in and asked a few key questions about the suspect’s memory of the crime scene and the kid got all the details wrong. They released this kid and about 2 weeks later the true suspect was arrested. In this case, a reliable witness reported the probable murderer was riding a bicycle. If the police had looked into their suspect Wayne Mallette, they would have learned he had a balance problem from damage to his inner ear and he was unable to balance on a bicycle. Meanwhile, a budding young serial killer named Peter Woodcock murdered and sexually abused two more children until he was captured and convicted.  Amazon describes this as “A shocking true story, about a coerced confession, fumbled police investigation, a miscarriage of justice, and the star lawyer who fought to free Moffatt from custody.”

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