December 7, 2012 12:15

Man who died at party attended by Pete Doherty was dropped to his death, say experts

Analysis of CCTV footage suggests that Mark Blanco was dropped from a first floor balcony

Photo: Roger Sargent Next Previous

Photo Gallery: Pete Doherty
Photo: Roger Sargent

Expert analysis of CCTV footage suggests that Mark Blanco, the actor who died at a 2006 party attended by Pete Doherty, was probably dropped to his death.

Blanco suffered fatal head injuries after falling from a first floor balcony in Whitechapel, East London in December 2006. He had been attending a party in a flat on the floor above, at which Doherty and his minder Jonathan Jeannevol were also present.

Doherty was implicated after a 2007 inquest found that the singer had asked Jeannevol to "have a word" with Blanco because he had "annoyed" him. CCTV footage shows the singer running away from Blanco's body, something which Doherty has admitted he is "completely ashamed" of.

Doherty and others present at the party have always maintained that they have no idea how Blanco died. Writing on his blog last year (2011), Doherty insisted: "When he fell or jumped he was alone. That is what happened. He either fell or was making an extreme point about the nature of life imitating art."

Although a coroner ruled out suicide, police have never been able to get to the bottom of what happened. For the past eight months, BBC Newsnight has been conducting its own investigation into the case. In doing so, the show asked a pair of video forensics experts to re-examine the CCTV footage of Blanco coming off the balcony.

US video forensics analyst Grant Fredericks concluded that CCTV images of Blanco falling from the first floor are "very consistent with a person being carried and literally dropped over the edge of the balcony".

UK expert John Kennedy came to much the same conclusion, saying: "There's no defensive movement whatsoever. It's literally a drop from outside the rail. The only explanation I can think of is that somebody might have dropped him off the balcony. He doesn't climb over the railing himself. He doesn't jump. He just suddenly appears outside the railing and falls."

Responding to the experts' conclusions, the actor's mother Sheila Blanco has vowed to petition for a new police investigation. She told BBC Newsnight: "I think the whole case needs revisiting. The truth will out."

Read More On This Artist

More News
Dr. Dre and Lily Allen take on ice bucket challenge as Gwyneth Paltrow challenges Chris Martin
Gerard Way covers The Jesus And Mary Chain as he makes his live solo debut
Morrissey claims label 'botched' his album release in new statement
Amy Winehouse sculpture to be installed in Camden Market
SBTRKT debuts Warpaint collaboration on BBC session
Dave Grohl becomes father for third time
News site behind Tame Impala plagiarism story admit hoax, yet band may still face legal action
Cliff Richard turns down Portuguese honour following sexual abuse allegations
Two out-of-print Jimi Hendrix albums set for re-release
Waxahatchee and White Lung frontwomen team up for acoustic 'Coast To Coast' – watch
Marcus Mumford, Elvis Costello, Jim James feature on first song from 'lost' Bob Dylan...
Sky Ferreira begins work on second album
Liars announce October and November UK tour dates
Thurston Moore announces new album 'The Best Day' – hear first song now
Slipknot confirmed for Australia's Soundwave Festival
Cliff Richard returns to Official Singles Chart following sex abuse allegations
Gerard Way opens up about relapse into alcoholism before My Chemical Romance split
Rustie streams new album 'Green Language'
Blink-182 promise they have 'something special' in store for Reading & Leeds...
Phil Collins announces first gig in four years
Hayley Williams says Reading & Leeds Festivals give Paramore chance to 'prove people...
Arctic Monkeys' Alex Turner says Reading & Leeds is 'perfect place to leave things...

More News

Comments

Please login to add your comment.

Featured Videos
Latest Tickets - Booking Now
 
Know Your NME
 

 
NME Store & Framed Prints
Most Read News
Popular This Week
Inside NME.COM
On NME.COM Today