The Mysterious Case Of Elisa Lam

Swifty

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Mate I've looked at the stuff on the net and it's idiotic.
I agree .. hence the tinfoil hat on joke disclaimer ... btw, the Mrs says we can both fuck off (if that helps) :) ..... she can't be barred because she hasn't posted anything yet.
 

Naughty_Felid

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I agree .. hence the tinfoil hat on joke disclaimer ... btw, the Mrs says we can both fuck off (if that helps) :) ..... she can't be barred because she hasn't posted anything yet.
So I've just logged on after wasting 20 minutes to look at the evidence you were suggesting people check out and I need to "fuck off"?
 

Naughty_Felid

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I particularly like how this clown says that if you try and google LAM ELISA you can't get any information on the TB test because it's a cover up. Therefore the TB test is some sort of evil experiment.


Try googling "lipoarabinomannan ELISA" and you will get hundreds of hits.

LAM ELISA is a tool used to HELP people ffs.


the other one was about that the actress Elisa Sam, the name sounds like Elisa Lam, Elisa Sam is missing so it must be some sort of conspiracy by the Illuminati.

I googled her seems she is doing fine.
 

Naughty_Felid

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IMHO this TB-test-conspiracy-whatever spin on the case is idiotic ...

ELISA is an acronym for 'enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay'. The label, if not the acronym, dates back to parallel research efforts defining and promoting this approach to clinical biochemical testing in 1971 - twenty years before the late Ms. Lam was born.

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/...ionid=712B528808AD089D10A4C0CEC99C96CD.f02t02

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/001927917190454X?via=ihub

ELISA is therefore a broad term encompassing a set of bio-assay techniques, and it's not peculiar to any disease or group of diseases.

LAM is an acronym for lipoarabinommanan - a lipid strongly correlated with the TB bacterium.

LAM-ELISA is simply the ELISA procedure testing for LAM.

Even if there's any significance to this lexical coincidence, I'd claim it needs to be approached from the opposite direction - i.e., starting with the woman rather than the test. The young woman known as Elisa Lam was born to a family of Chinese immigrants and given the Cantonese name 'Ho-Yi Lam'. It's never been clear to me whether 'Elisa' was her legal / official name of record (in Canada).

For all I know, 'Elisa' was a legally-recognized self-attributed name / nickname chosen as a pun on the clinical test.

On the other hand ... Given her well-documented fragile mental state, it wouldn't surprise me if a strong emotional reaction upon discovering the parallel use of the term 'LAM-ELISA' contributed to the (near-?) psychotic break I still suspect to be the explanation for her odd behaviors and ultimate death.
As you probably know it's fairly common for some ethnicities to anglicize their names or take on an English name in place of their given name in predominately English speaking countries. Luckily it's a practice that seems to be dying out.
 

EnolaGaia

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As you probably know it's fairly common for some ethnicities to anglicize their names or take on an English name in place of their given name in predominately English speaking countries. Luckily it's a practice that seems to be dying out.
Yes, I know ... I had seen references to her having a different name in Cantonese, but I couldn't confirm whether her official / legal name was the Cantonese version or Elisa.
 

Swifty

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Yes, I know ... I had seen references to her having a different name in Cantonese, but I couldn't confirm whether her official / legal name was the Cantonese version or Elisa.
Enola, tell Naughty that I'm not talking to him ..
 

EnolaGaia

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SIDE NOTE: In looking for some relevant postings from back at the time of Lam's death (2013) I discovered substantial postings about the case in two other threads. I've posted a request to merge / transfer them into this thread.
 

EnolaGaia

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So I've just logged on after wasting 20 minutes to look at the evidence you were suggesting people check out and I need to "fuck off"?
NOTE to Naughty_Felid: Swifty's not talking to you.

(It may well be that he couldn't possibly hear you for all his wife's laughing at him vis a vis the Humour & Jokes thread.)

:evillaugh:
 

Swifty

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NOTE to Naughty_Felid: Swifty's not talking to you.

(It may well be that he couldn't possibly hear you for all his wife's laughing at him vis a vis the Humour & Jokes thread.)

:evillaugh:
Naughty thinks I might have to apologise to you and he's normally correct about these things .. so I'm not going to wait for his private message reply .. sorry EnolaGaia ... :friends:.
 

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Here is a good video concerning the manipulated elevator footage. The author brings up quite a few interesting points, but for me the most important is why was the video released? As he points out, it tells us nothing we didn't already know. Presumably it was to show her actions were unusual, but that is largely the product of the manipulation. At normal speed, her actions appear far more ordinary. This video explores some analysis done by some people who study body language, which is interesting.

At the beginning of the video, there is a bit about the time line, and apparently the video was released five days before the body was discovered. It's easy to think it was released in its altered form to make it look like Elisa was strung out and behaving weirdly at the time she disappeared. It stinks, I tell you.

I like this guy's videos. He takes a very sensible approach. I've seen some of his others. He has more on Elisa's death, but I haven't seen them yet.

 

CuriousIdent

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Me neither. When someone comes up with a believable/non conspiracy theory cause of her death, I'll be the first in line to draw some relief at a sensible closure .. my gut instincts are more grounded to be honest .. she met some junkies, they killed her, they dumped her in the tank .. it's the who and how and when factors that haven't been satisfactorily explained yet. That leaves room for weirder explanations until everyone knows for sure.

My own personal take right now would be this.

The elevator video shows a young woman playing a game with a member of the Hotel Staff, who was on shift at the time so not perceived by other staff as a third party of note when interviewed by police.

During her stay Miss Lam had been having some kind of flirtation with this staff member, who later trapped her and held her captive in a room somewhere within the hotel where they knew nobody was likely to look. It was in this location that the sandy residue got on her clothes.

Whether their motivation was sexual or more of a want to abuse in another fashion they probably assumed an Asian tourist staying in a fleabag hotel in a not so great part of town would not be noticed as missing.

Only they were. And when the police got involved the captor made sure Miss Lam was not found while they themselves tried to work out now what they were going to do. Because with the Hotel now a crime scene disposing of a body was going to be very difficult without some trace coming back to them. Likewise as sexual assault. If Miss Lam remained alive after that the police would be quickly aware. They would be arrested.

So they waited.

The police searched but found nothing.

After which time, and now regretting their actions, they took Miss Lam to the roof. They may even have asked her to undress considering a sexual assault, but then backed out at the last minute. They persuaded Miss Lam to get into the water tank closed the lid. Leaving her to drown in a location where nobody would hear her cries.

The clothes of curse were the only means of identifying her. The abuser may have given her alternative clothing while captive and had those removed before she got into the tank, returning later to dump the identifiable items (including her room key) in after her. She would have been dead by that time.

As has been pointed out by others a place like the Cecil had a high staff turnover, and probably didn't vet its staff terribly well. It also cannot be entirely disregarded that because of its history of unusual death's, it's ties to both the Black Dhalia and the Nightstalker cases, it is exactly the kind of place which could be a huge draw to wannabe murderers. Somebody who was inclined to want to commit such an act may have even justified it to themselves that this was the place to go to perform such an act.

I actually don't think that would be too far-fetched.
 
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CuriousIdent

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The author brings up quite a few interesting points, but for me the most important is why was the video released? As he points out, it tells us nothing we didn't already know. Presumably it was to show her actions were unusual, but that is largely the product of the manipulation. At normal speed, her actions appear far more ordinary.
Well, it would not be unusual to release video and CCTV footage of last known movements. That's a perfectly normal thing for any missing person investigation, and designed to try and jog the memory of the public that day.

Did you see somebody dressed like this that day? Or more recently?

In can be incredibly important where such a video can help prompt witnesses to aid the police in building up a sequence of last known movements. We've had that be the case here i the UK for the James Bulger case in the early 1990s and Milly Dowler in the early 2000s, because it was footage of a public spaces where people may have seen the person.

But I agree. That's not what this is.

Because the police already really knew who claimed to be in the foyer at the time of this video. They spoken to staff. It wasn't terribly likely to add new information. It doesn't tell us anything particularly useful about her last movements. It doesn't show her leaving the building. It doesn't show her taking the elevator to another floor.

It just shows a series of gestures which when slowed down could be tagged to a narrative that she was displaying signs of mental illness. I find the notion that a video would have been edited to emphasise that as a deeply troubling.
 
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PeteS

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I wonder how many people were reported as missing in Los Angeles at the same time? Did they get the same amount of publicity- I suspect not. Was it because she was Canadian or something else? Endless speculation but the authorities, by their actions, have caused this, instead of coming clean.
 

Swifty

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On a side note, I read somewhere that the room Richard Ramirez stayed in was room 19 on the 14th floor, I wonder how often they get serial killer 'enthusiasts' specifically asking to stay in that room ? ... apparently the staff are also very anti people filming inside the building.
 

CuriousIdent

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I wonder how many people were reported as missing in Los Angeles at the same time? Did they get the same amount of publicity- I suspect not. Was it because she was Canadian or something else? Endless speculation but the authorities, by their actions, have caused this, instead of coming clean.
Absolutely. People go missing all the time. Especially in the less salubrious areas of a big city.

When you watch that press conference the guy leading it is basically saying they are invrstigating because Canadian authorities are asking them to.
 

maximus otter

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Let's unleash Occam's Razor. Here are a few bullet points from the Wikipedia entry Death of Elisa Lam:

"She traveled alone...her roommates complained about "certain odd behavior"...Lam had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and depression....lamented that a "relapse" at the start of the current school term had forced her to drop several classes, leaving her feeling "so utterly directionless and lost."...a body language specialist who reviewed the video, suggested that she might be under the influence of ecstasy or some other party drug. When her bipolar disorder became known, the theory that she was having a psychotic episode also emerged. A very small quantity of alcohol (about 0.02 g%) was present...no evidence of physical trauma, sexual assault..."

(Note: the alcohol level 0.02 g% is ¼ the US drink-driving limit.)

I see no reason to assume foul play here. Were it not for the inconclusive CCTV footage, the headline would have read "Mentally Disturbed Lone Woman Found Dead in Foreign City", and we'd have yawned and turned to the TV page.

maximus otter
 
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PeteS

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I'm one of the greatest fans of ideas along the lines of Occam's Razor such as the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. However too much is left open to speculation - the clearly manipulated video(and one body language specialist indicated that the girl was displaying flirtish none anxious excitement),and how the girl managed to get in the tank in the first place . On the contrary I see no reason to assume it was anything other than foul play. However further speculation is a bit pointless until any confession is made or further evidence comes to light. The social media activities of her sister were a bit weird too. Hey ho - its a strange world sometimes.
 

maximus otter

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The perverse result of more investigation, and the resultant accumulation of more evidence and testimony, is that more of the clues will contradict one another:

Witness A: "He was wearing a blue shirt and green pants."
Witness B: "He was wearing a green shirt and blue pants."

Policeman: "The witnesses are confused."
Conspiracy theorist: "He must have changed clothes in order to evade a pursuing agency..."

Witness A: "I saw him outside the pub at 2345 hrs. walking towards the bus station."
Witness B: "I saw him at the bus station at 2350 hrs."

Conspiracy theorist: "It's impossible for someone to have walked that far, that fast. He must have been driven there!"
Policeman: "The witnesses' watches weren't synchronised."

And so on.

maximus otter
 

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Let's unleash Occam's Razor here. Here are a few bullet points from the Wikipedia entry Death of Elisa Lam:

"She traveled alone...her roommates complained about "certain odd behavior"...Lam had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and depression....lamented that a "relapse" at the start of the current school term had forced her to drop several classes, leaving her feeling "so utterly directionless and lost."...a body language specialist who reviewed the video, suggested that she might be under the influence of ecstasy or some other party drug. When her bipolar disorder became known, the theory that she was having a psychotic episode also emerged. A very small quantity of alcohol (about 0.02 g%) was present...no evidence of physical trauma, sexual assault..."

(Note: the alcohol level 0.02 g% is ¼ the US drink-driving limit.)

I see no reason to assume foul play here. Were it not for the inconclusive CCTV footage, the headline would have read "Mentally Disturbed Lone Woman Found Dead in Foreign City", and we'd have yawned and turned to the TV page.

maximus otter
But by the same token you could also have picked out:

It took the Los Angeles County Coroner's office four months, after repeated delays, to release the autopsy report

Katie Orphan, manager of a nearby bookstore, was the only person who recalled seeing Lam that day. "She was outgoing, very lively, very friendly," while getting gifts to take home to her family,

They searched Lam's room and had dogs go through the building, including the rooftop, unsuccessfully attempting to detect her scent.

"But we didn't search every room,"

they claimed, parts had been slowed down, and nearly a minute of footage had been discreetly removed.

clothing similar to that she was wearing in the elevator video was floating in the water, coated with a "sand-like particulate".

Toxicology tests – incomplete because not enough of her blood was preserved – showed traces consistent with prescription medication found among her belongings, plus nonprescription drugs such as Sinutab and ibuprofen.[42] A very small quantity of alcohol (about 0.02 g%) was present

Doors and stairs that access the hotel's roof are locked, with only staff having the passcodes and keys, and any attempt to force them would supposedly have triggered an alarm

All four tanks are 4-by-8-foot (1.2 by 2.4 m) cylinders propped up on concrete blocks;[46] there is no fixed access to them and hotel workers had to use a ladder to look at the water. They are protected by heavy lids that would be difficult to replace from within

Police dogs that searched through the hotel for Lam, even on the roof, shortly after her disappearance was noted, did not find any trace of her

Theories about Lam's behavior in the elevator video did not stop with her death. Some argued that she was attempting to hide from a pursuer, perhaps someone ultimately responsible for her death, while others said she was merely frustrated with the elevator's apparent malfunction

The autopsy report and its conclusions have also been questioned. For instance, it does not say what the results of the rape and fingernail kits were, or even if they were processed

It also records subcutaneous pooling of blood in Lam's anal area,[40] which some observers suggested was a sign of sexual abuse;

One page of the report has a form with boxes to check as to whether the death was accidental, natural, homicide, suicide or undetermined, in large type and a sufficient distance from each other. The "accident" box is dated June 15; however three days later the "undetermined" box was checked instead.

Her phone was not found either with her body or in her hotel room; it has been assumed to have been stolen at some time around her death. Whether the continued updates to her blog were facilitated by the theft of her phone, the work of a hacker, or through the Queue, is not known; nor is it known whether the updates are related to her death

If you only cherry pick details you can create the impression of a very different story. I personal feel that there are two many unanswered question in this case. Unanswered because the police did a really half-arsed job.
 

Dr_Baltar

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But by the same token you could also have picked out:

etc.

If you only cherry pick details you can create the impression of a very different story. I personal feel that there are two many unanswered question in this case. Unanswered because the police did a really half-arsed job.
Do we know how accurate these "facts" are though? There seems to be an awful lot of armchair detective work and morbid speculation at work here.
 

maximus otter

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But by the same token you could also have picked out:

1. It took the Los Angeles County Coroner's office four months, after repeated delays, to release the autopsy report

2. Katie Orphan, manager of a nearby bookstore, was the only person who recalled seeing Lam that day. "She was outgoing, very lively, very friendly," while getting gifts to take home to her family,

3. They searched Lam's room and had dogs go through the building, including the rooftop, unsuccessfully attempting to detect her scent.

"But we didn't search every room,"

4. clothing similar to that she was wearing in the elevator video was floating in the water, coated with a "sand-like particulate".

5. Toxicology tests – incomplete because not enough of her blood was preserved – showed traces consistent with prescription medication found among her belongings, plus nonprescription drugs such as Sinutab and ibuprofen.[42] A very small quantity of alcohol (about 0.02 g%) was present

If you only cherry pick details you can create the impression of a very different story. I personal feel that there are two many unanswered question in this case. Unanswered because the police did a really half-arsed job.
Just to - again - "cherry pick" some of your points:

1. And bureaucracy is normally so prompt, especially in contentious cases, isn't it?

2. How often have we all read accounts where people who subsequently committed suicide were said to be "in good spirits that morning", or who had just bought tickets for a holiday?

3. They were legally forbidden from searching every room, as they had no probable cause to believe that an offence had been committed.

4. She drowned, probably thrashing around, in an uncleaned old water tank. It would be astonishing if some of the years of sand, grit and dirt in the tank didn't end up on her clothes.

5. Her prescribed meds, plus over-the-counter cold/headache meds, were found in her system. Again, it would be surprising if they hadn't been.

One really has to have a determined mindset to see anything suspicious in all this.

maximus otter
 

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There's a book/movie in there somewhere. 3900 is a great title.
 

Ringo

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The only weird thing I find about the whole case is that she had access to the roof without keys and how she managed to get inside the water tank (without a ladder) and then close the hatch. That looks like a body disposal to me.

The weird video stuff looks just like somebody quite childishly messing around, unaware that a camera is recording everything.
 

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CuriousIdent

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Just to - again - "cherry pick" some of your points:
I see what you did, there. :reyes:

1. And bureaucracy is normally so prompt, especially in contentious cases, isn't it?
Yeah. Agreed. Although things such as not taking enough blood from the body to perform all tests and potentially not even attempting the standard tests for sexual assault is relatively sloppy.

A woman turns up dead and naked - why would you not process those tests?


2. How often have we all read accounts where people who subsequently committed suicide were said to be "in good spirits that morning", or who had just bought tickets for a holiday?
I'm not ruling that out as implausible. But I think if a person genuinely wishes to commit suicide it is fart less likely that they try to gain access to a roof space and then choose to climb up into a raised areas, into a water tank which would have been very difficult to close on top of them and opt to drown themselves as opposed to say... jumping off the roof they had fought so hard to get onto?


3. They were legally forbidden from searching every room, as they had no probable cause to believe that an offence had been committed.
That's true. This one does seem really quite a bizarre law. To have video which could plausibly a missing person interacting with a third party in the lobby of a hotel, when no other evidence existing of her having left the hotel, but not being able to search the Hotel itself?

Who exactly is that law helping or protecting? :) Not the police, that's for sure.

If this was being classed as a homicide case then surely you need to find a body and that is preventing it. And especially given the hotel's history I find it surprising that the notion of her having been killed on site was one which so few were willing to even entertain.


4. She drowned, probably thrashing around, in an uncleaned old water tank. It would be astonishing if some of the years of sand, grit and dirt in the tank didn't end up on her clothes.
Now admittedly the Cecil was not the most pristine of establishments, but we're not talking about a general use water tank here - the kind used for showers or bathing. This was the drinking water supply. For rooms, a kitchen and coffee shop on site. It needed to be cleaner than that. A notice that the dirt described was on the clothing but not similarly noted on te body.


Her prescribed meds, plus over-the-counter cold/headache meds, were found in her system. Again, it would be surprising if they hadn't been.
Absolutely. But if they *were* in her system then the likelihood of her having a bipolar episode which led to her getting into that tank and somehow closing the lid, before drowning surely becomes far far less?

I'm not trying to claim some vast conspiracy here. But a lot of gaps in the way that the case was conducted do overlook a significant number of likely signs of a third party being involved in her death. More specifically had those been performed, and found to not be suspicious, they could have validated - without doubt - the conclusion which the police reached.

Without them there is reasonable doubt that the conclusion was accurate.
 

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As I understand the official story, found in some court documents, there were more than one police officer on the roof on more than one occasion, with the aid of more than one dog, yet no trace of Elisa was found, and the open hatch on the water tank was not noticed. That does not add up. One simple explanation is gross incompetence. Another is that maybe Elisa had not been on the roof at that point. Of course that requires an explanation of her whereabouts during that time.

The official story has the hatch open when the maintenance man found the body. The cover was apparently not hinged, and was sitting on the top of the tank, off to the side. Take a look at that rooftop on Google maps. Just search Maps for Cecil Hotel Los Angeles. You will also see the building is shaped like the letter E. As if there weren't enough weirdness in this case.
 

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The only weird thing I find about the whole case is that she had access to the roof without keys and how she managed to get inside the water tank (without a ladder) and then close the hatch. That looks like a body disposal to me.

The weird video stuff looks just like somebody quite childishly messing around, unaware that a camera is recording everything.
Exactly. I appreciate that it has since been shown that the roof *can* be (or at least could have back then) accessed by a fire escape, but the tanks themselves were difficult to climb up to and very difficult to close. The lids were heavy. Getting purchase on them one floating in water inside the tank would have been very difficult.

Disposal is what my gut goes with. It would be absolutely typical of that kind of behaviour.
 
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