Birks' Case Text Message Data

Uploaded: 2021-09-08
Languages: English
Collected from: 2009
Access category: Restricted
To: 2010


This data set comprises an Excel spreadsheet of text messages used in the authorship analysis in the Christopher and Amanda Birks murder investigation. This authorship analysis is reported in Grant, T. (2012). TXT 4N6: method, consistency, and distinctiveness in the analysis of SMS text messages. JL & Pol'y, 21, 467.

Subject keywords: authorship analysis, text messaging, SMS, casework
Data types: Written
Funders: N/A
Associated AIFL centres: Centre for Forensic Text Analysis (FTA)
License: N/A


The data comprises approximately 200 messages from each of Amanda Birks and Christopher Birks and about 20 disputed messages sent from Amanda Birks' phone apparently after the time of her death. These are presented as three separate tabs on an Excel spreadsheet with time, sender and recipient information. The recipient information has been anonymised except for Christopher Birks and Amanda Birks themselves. The family of Amanda Birks gave permission for these messages to be used in forensic linguistic research and teaching.

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Information: This dataset contains sensitive material or data that come from a third party and have some constraints on access and use. Users who wish to access this dataset must make a detailed application to FoLD and the researcher, as well as potentially gain additional agreement from an external organisation before they can be approved for access.

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