Today in 2012, an Australian coroner found enough evidence to rule that a dingo (or pack of dingoes) was responsible for the death of an infant in 1980. Although multiple variations of “dingoes ate my baby” exist throughout pop culture (including Family Guy, The Simpsons, and most famously Seinfeld), the true story that inspired the ridiculous-sounding defense is certainly the most tragic. On August 17, 1980, Lindy and Michael Chamberlain and their three children were on a camping trip to Uluru in central Australia. The Chamberlains’ daughter Azaria (two months) was killed by a wild dingo. This was widely believed to be a ridiculous lie and after numerous trials, Lindy was sentenced to life in prison for the murder of her daughter. Azaria’s body was never found, but three years later her jacket was discovered buried near an isolated dingo den. This new evidence led to Lindy’s exoneration and release from prison. Lindy and Michael pushed for years for police to continue investigating their daughters case, as “presumed innocent” wasn’t good enough for them. Almost 32 years after Azaria’s death, new technologies and better understanding of wildlife had allowed the Chamberlains to finally have their peace.
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