Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Ramsey Case: Private Investigators

What do you make of the denial of being paid?  This highlights the importance of listening. 

Here is an opportunity to exercise what you have learned in Statement Analysis. This is a statement regarding the JonBenet Ramsey murder.

Mary Lacy, Boulder DA, had previously announced an arrest in the JonBenet case, and called a press conference where she sat in the middle of a long table of professionals and spent most of her time congratulating the work that they had all done in bringing John Mark Karr to Boulder.

The problem for the elected official was that John Mark Karr, aka Captain Highpants, had never been in Boulder, though he was a self admitted pedophile. A simple phone call would have saved the money spent on the apprehension and extradition to Boulder, as well as the embarrassment of a long self-congratulatory press conference. 

Later, in another attempt to save face from the embarrassment of the John Mark Carr fiasco, Mary Lacy took another bold move: publicly clearing the Ramseys. 

It seemed "front and center" took precedence over truth for Mary Lacy.

Unknown DNA is simply that;  unknown.  It proves nothing, and clears no one.

On this Nancy Grace Show, Grace reported that new DNA evidence cleared the Ramseys of the murder of JonBenet. All it did was show that unknown DNA was found on her article of clothing.

In this exchange, Wendy Murphy responded to the claim made by Mary Lacy (that the Ramseys are "cleared" of the murder) of which Nancy Grace then turns her attention to two private investigators working for the Ramseys.

In this Statement Analysis exercise, use the copy/paste feature and submit your analysis of the investigators, with your conclusion:

Did they receive payment for their work? Any additional sensitivity you would have explored via interview? View the denial and post an answer with explanation on your choice:

a. Yes; they were paid for their work, at some time, by someone and are being deceptive.
b. No. The denial is firm and there is no payment associated with their work for the Ramsesys
c. Unknown: More Information needed in spite of sensitivity indicators.

Although the question is related to remuneration for either investigator, give additional analysis of either investigator's answers if you believe it is warranted.

GRACE: To you, Wendy Murphy. And shortly joining us will be the private investigators that actually worked for the Ramseys on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Wendy Murphy, when you refer to the mountain of evidence suggesting there was not an intruder that killed JonBenet Ramsey, to what are you referring?

MURPHY: Well, first let me say it would take me a long time to go into all of it, Nancy. But you mentioned my book. I have an awful lot of stuff in there, more than one chapter with good, solid, based-in-fact information and evidence about the case that says nothing about an intruder.

Most important evidence -- this child -- and the autopsy confirms this. It`s publicly available. This child had chronic vaginal trauma. Her hymen was nearly gone. Only a tiny piece of it remained. She both acute, meaning fresh, and chronic, meaning old, vaginal injuries. That to me doesn`t sound like some bogeyman showed up on the night in question. She had epithelial erosion in her genital area. Erosion -- Nancy, what does erosion mean? Wearing away over time.

GRACE: Over time.

MURPHY: Over time. Now, unless this man, this mystery man, had ongoing intimate access to the child, it really doesn`t make me feel better about the case at all.

GRACE: And Wendy, what about that long ransom note apparently written, pages and pages of it -- written in the home, on Patsy Ramsey`s notepad with Patsy Ramsey`s pen, and a practice note? Whoever wrote the ransom note was not the least bit concerned of being discovered right there in the home!

MURPHY: That`s exactly right. Now, somebody might say, Well, that doesn`t prove it was a family member. Maybe so, but it sure doesn`t sound like a stranger, either, now, does it?

Now, here`s something I want to say to Mary Lacy. If you`re so confident that you have just pronounced the innocence of the Ramseys, then I hope you`ll be respectful of this child and the public`s right to know the truth and you will tomorrow release for public consumption all of the evidence that you gathered that implicated the Ramseys, that kept them under the umbrella of suspicion for so long.

For example, there were three search warrants conducted for child pornography in the Ramsey home, on their computer, two homes, indeed. There was some material gathered. It is on file with the court. I don`t know what`s there. Please release it to the public so we can see. And how about the tests, if any, that were done on that pineapple?

Can I take a moment here to explain this, Nancy? Probably the most important forensic evidence, far more important than this DNA, this child had undigested pineapple in her belly, which means she ate it within two hours of death. She died sometime after midnight. Parents said they brought her home from a party sound asleep and put her to bed sleeping. But aha, there was a bowl of pineapple on the kitchen table, Patsy`s fingerprints on the bowl. Both parents said, I didn`t give it to her.

Now, mind you, I`m not so sure what`s bad about giving your child pineapple. French fries I understand. Pineapple, I don`t understand. But they were both adamant, I didn`t give it to her. We know that pineapple bowl was seized and tested, don`t we? At least, that`s what one would do if one found undigested pineapple in a dead child`s belly. So Mary Lacy, where are those test results? I think we have a right to know.

GRACE: Joining us now, two very special guests from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Ollie Gray and John San Agustin, both private investigators that worked on the JonBenet Ramsey case. Gentlemen, thank you for being with us.

To you, Ollie. Do you believe this bombshell evidence that we now know about, more DNA evidence pointing to an unknown male found on the longjohns JonBenet was wearing when she went to bed -- do you believe that exonerates the Ramsey family?

OLLIE GRAY, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Nancy, I think that the DNA tells the story. Everybody makes a big thing of the DNA. Then I think we ought to take it and understand it. And in this particular case, it proves the same thing that we`ve known since February of 1997, that the Ramseys were not involved and did not match any DNA testing at that time. Whether that was old archaic and this is new and modern, the results are the same. It lists somebody as a potential killer. And I think all the physical evidence points to an intruder, not the family at home.

GRACE: What about it, John San Augustin?

JOHN SAN AGUSTIN, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: Well, you know, in all due respect to your last speaker, I don`t think she ever had the opportunity to truly review all the evidence in this case. We have. And I can tell you that there is plenty of physical evidence that points to intruder. We have a stun gun that was used on this poor little girl`s face and on her back. She was strangled with a garrote. She was sexually assaulted. We know that there`s a piece of this paintbrush that was used in the garrote that was missing. We have foreign footwear impressions inside of the room where she was found.

So how do we explain all this? And the reality is this, Nancy, is that we have good physical evidence. DNA evidence is good physical evidence. And if you read in this -- go ahead, I`m sorry.

Note that he asks a question, without waiting for anyone to answer; this may indicate that he was speaking to himself, not others.  Does he need to explain these things?

GRACE: John, you and Ollie were paid by whom?

Direct question; very straight forward:

SAN AGUSTIN: Paid by whom? We weren`t paid by anybody. We`ve been on pro bono for the Ramsey family since 1999.

Note that he repeats the question about being paid; making the question, itself, sensitive. 
Note that "anybody" didn't pay them.  
Note the additional information, "since 1999" is significant and it is not lost by Nancy Grace. 

GRACE: I`m sorry? I couldn`t hear you. Repeat?

SAN AGUSTIN: We have been working pro bono on behalf of the family since 1999.

GRACE: And when did you enter the case?

Here, Nancy Grace caught the additional wording as important and asks about it.  This brings truth: 

SAN AGUSTIN: Well, we were initially called back in 1996 by Commander Eller. We were brought in to initially look at this case. And then after that, shortly we were brought on by Alex Hunter`s staff to assist Lou Smit in the intruder theory.

We have the sensitivity of dating;
We have the word "initially" indicating that there was, at least, a secondary reason.
We have a "temporal lacuane", or, skipping over of time;
We then have a stated purpose:  they were brought in to prove a theory.  

GRACE: So at no time...
SAN AGUSTIN: ... where we were asked to review...

GRACE: At no time were you employed by the Ramseys?
SAN AGUSTIN: No, we were. We were working for them pro bono since 1999 under Mr. Wood, Mr. Lin Wood.

GRACE: Oh, I understand. So you were never paid for your work?

She might have specifically mentioned 1996 to 1999. 

SAN AGUSTIN: No, ma`am. We were working pro bono on behalf of the Ramsey family, you know? And the reason why Ollie and myself have been committed to this case is because of the physical evidence. You know, we have people out there writing books and giving commentary, but nobody has truly looked at the physical evidence in this case.

To him, people have looked at the evidence, but not "truly", indicating that, in his personal, subjective internal dictionary, there is more than one way to view evidence; that is, to "look" at the evidence 


Jen said...

They were paid, but not (in their opinion) by the Ramsey's. They worked 'under' the Ramsey's attorney Lin Wood and were probably paid by the law firm as 'investigative consultants', or some similar title to review collected evidence, and as they said.. 'try to prove the intruder theory'. Since they were not retained and directly paid by the Ramsey's, they say they worked 'pro bono on their behalf', which is actually an incorrect use of the term as they are not attorneys and also not performing their service 'for the public good' which is what the latin term means.

They seem to intend for us to take 'pro bono' to mean they worked on this case without being paid, however their addition of 'under Mr. Lin Wood', reveals they answered to, or felt themselves to be working under the direction of, the Ramsey's attorney, Lin Wood.

Also their inclusion of the year 1999 as the beginning of their 'pro bono' work suggests to me that they WERE paid for their involvement initially, and when their 'official' position in these investigations ended they designated themselves as 'pro bono' in order to continue involving themselves in the case, making themselves available for interviews and presenting themselves to have privileged knowledge of the case (much like 'pro bono' psychics).

Anonymous said...

Please help find Ayla
Repost post
Matthew 18 seems to have inspired

1. "Mr. Ramsey.
2. Listen carefully! We are a group of individuals that represent
3. a small foreign faction. At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, ‘Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’
We xx respect your business but not the country that it serves. At this time we have
5. your daughter in our posession. He called a child, whom he put among them, and said,
She is safe and unharmed and if you want her to see 1997, ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like children
you must follow our instructions to the letter.
, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

4Whoever becomes humble like this child is
the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5Whoever
welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
September 28, 2012 4:28 AM

Peter, do you see the veracity in this analysis?

brosnanfan said...

I, too, wonder if their use of "pro bono" is incorrect. They state that they were not paid by the Ramsey family, but perhaps they were paid by someone else. But I thought of something interesting, a theory that came to mind while reading this.

We`ve been on pro bono for the Ramsey family since 1999.

If they understood the meaning of the phrase, they might say, "We've been working pro bono for the Ramsey family..." or "We've been doing pro bono work for the Ramsey Family..." Their usage of the phrase, to me, indicates unfamiliarity with the phrase and how it is used...but then again, maybe not.

We were working pro bono on behalf of the Ramsey family, you know?

He figured out how to use the phrase...or, on the original tape, was there some sort of vocal inflection in the first "pro bono" statement that showed he was self-censoring? I know, "The subject is dead; the statement is alive," and we are not supposed to listen to vocal inflection as a cue, but in some cases it can be used to show when a person is stopping themselves and correcting themselves. I've seen some transcripts that do not take this into account, and just create a run-on sentence that makes no sense until you watch the tape and realize the person made a pause or a self-censor.

Look at the first phrase if it were transcribed like this:

Paid by whom? We weren`t paid by anybody. We`ve been on--pro bono for the Ramsey family since 1999.

Look at the dash as a pause, a self-censor, a moment when he catches himself getting ready to say something he shouldn't. It can be a very small pause, and sometimes people can get away with it if they keep talking; it just looks like awkward sentence is awkward.

But, if he caught himself saying something, and decided mid-sentence that it didn't bolster his assertion that they weren't on the Ramsey payroll, he could have inserted the "pro bono" phrase. Then, when NG presses, he clarifies with what he wanted to say to start with, in a smoother way:

We have been working pro bono on behalf of the family since 1999.

But, look at it like this, what he might have said if not for my thought that he self-censored:

"Paid by whom? We weren`t paid by anybody. We`ve been on this case since 1999."

To his way of thinking, this is not as strong a denial; he thinks that inserting the words "pro bono" makes it stronger.

I could be wrong; I haven't seen the tape to know. It's just a theory I have.

Eliza said...

I just listened to the rebroadcast of the Ramsey CrimeWire show.. It was great, thank you for doing it!

Eliza said...

This statement is the one that stands out the most IMO:

"shortly we were brought on by Alex Hunter`s staff to assist Lou Smit in the intruder theory."

He said they were brought to help in the intruder theory! Not to investigate the facts... Just to prove a theory, they were on a mission.

Mainah said...

Jen articulated my thoughts as well.

I noted the word "back" as in we were initially called back in 1999. Seems they had been hired (perhaps much earlier) to find an intruder (theory), they obliged and called detectives to spin the evidence, and hence (to quote Patsy), were "initially" called "back". He was deceptive/sensitive and did not answer the question of when they began their work on the case. He took additional efforts to mask the truth about it.

I suppose, if I had to look at myself in the mirror everyday, knowing I profited from lying, against God, my community, an innocent child, I'd probably feel a need to deflect (aka: change the subject).

IMO, particularly JOHN SAN AGUSTIN knows he, himself, is a lying hack who took moneys to misrepresent evidence against the real perpetrators. Yuck, what a pathetic way to live: off the souls of innocent children.

Mouse74 said...

I agree 100% with Eliza. They were paid to prove the intruder theory, and nothing else.

private investigator greece said...

Do you really need a private investigator? Many people think they need a PI but it really depends allot on what you want to know or find out.