Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Hailey Dunn Case: Statement Analysis 101



The following is an introduction to Statement Analysis as used in the Hailey Dunn case, for new readers. The words come from the very first words of Billie Dunn to the nation about her daughter.

Scientific Content Analysis (SCAN) is the precise method used here which is commonly called "Statement Analysis."

Statement Analysis seeks content and truth or deception from a statement.  It is based upon the teaching of Avinoam Sapir, founder of the Laboratory of Scientific Interrogation.  Mr. Sapir is responsible for the teaching of Statement Analysis to all major law enforcement agencies in the United States and internationally. The same principles are used case after case.   This tutorial is about the Hailey Dunn case.

Want to know how it is that it was known that Hailey was dead long before media?

Early in the case, Statement Analysis concluded that Hailey Dunn was dead, and that her mother, Billie Jean Dunn, and her mother's boyfriend, Shawn Adkins, had guilty knowledge of the death.  Initially, due to the missing person status, the blog received a large volume of hate messages, including death threats, due to the analysis which was only based upon Billie Dunn's appearance on the Nancy Grace Show. At that time ,there was little information from media.

It was after  after the release of the affidavit that more and more readers saw how accurate the analysis was, and how the media's reporting confirmed the basic facts reported here.  This caused an increase in readership as well as an increase in the confidence in the SCAN system as evidenced by the volume and comments left.

So, before media released information, including the Affidavit, why did Statement Analysis turn the topic from a missing child to a homicide?  Here are three points; all taken from the answers of Billie Dunn, which highlight what Statement Analysis is and does.

Statement Analysis is used by law enforcement, private citizens, Fortune 500 companies, bill collectors, counselors, therapists, insurance and civil investigators, junior high school principals and mothers of teenagers.

I.   Hailey Dunn is Dead

II.  Billie Jean Dunn Needs An Alibi 

III.  Words Revealing Content of Frightening Detail

I.  Hailey Dunn is dead.

Just a few days after reporting Hailey missing, Billie Jean Dunn went on the Nancy Grace Show and was asked two questions:

1.  How far did Hailey have to go to the sleep over?
2.  What happened that day?

In these two short questions, an abundance of information was gleaned by the application of the SCAN principles.

Nancy Grace:  "How far did she have to go to the little sleepover?


DUNN: Four to five blocks. It wasn`t rare for Hailey to walk a short distance during daylight. She wasn`t allowed out after dark especially to walk, but she only had four to five blocks to go. 


1.  "Four to five blocks" answers the question.  When someone goes beyond the boundary of the question, every word is to be considered sensitive. 

2.  "It wasn't rare..." and "she wasn't allowed..."  As the mother attempted to portray herself as a good and conscientious mother, she referenced her daughter in the past tense, just like Susan Smith, Casey Anthony, Justin DiPietro and others. 

When a parent of a missing child speaks of the child in the past tense, it is an indication that the parent knows or believes the child is dead.  It goes against natural denial, especially of a mother (Solomon).  We then seek to learn if the police told the mother that the child was likely dead.  In this case, at this point, police thought she may have run away.  

This is a strong indication that Billie Jean Dunn knows her child is dead. 

II.  Billie Jean Dunn Needs Alibi


GRACE: Tell me what happened the day she went missing, Miss Dunn. 

"What happened?" is the best question to ask. It is the perfect question that allows the subject to:

1.  Begin the account wherever she chooses.  The first sentence is always important.  She could choose to start it anywhere, but where she chooses is critical and shows priority.  
2.  She will choose when to end the account. 
3.  Her words are her own.  Nervousness is expected, which is why courts find the nervous 911 call so reliable and label them "excited utterance"; that is, to the courts, their words are, to the court, the most reliable, since the person is upset.  
4.  Free Editing Process makes Statement Analysis reliable.  We do not interpret, we listen.  

DUNN: She went missing on Monday while I was at work. My boyfriend - - he came home from work about 3:00 -- or he got to my house about 3:00. And he`s seen Hailey. Hailey was there. She told him, I`m running across the street to my dad`s house for a few minutes but I`m going Mary Beth`s, and I`m staying the night there. Let my mom know. 

So that evening when he picked me up from work, we got home, we were getting ready for bed. I didn`t get worried when I hadn`t heard from Hailey. I thought she was at Mary Beth`s. I was kind of upset that she didn`t call and confirm it with me, but not worried at that point. 

Tuesday, I was at work again, I left my cell phone at home for my kids to use when I`m working. So Tuesday, I called my son. I said tell Hailey text the little girl, her friend, tell Hailey she needs to go ahead and get home. This was around lunch. My son called me back within a few minutes and she said, mom, she said Hailey never made it over there. She never spent the night. 

So at that point I called Hailey`s dad and found out she didn`t over there and she didn`t stay the night with him. I left from work and went to the police station in Colorado City and reported her missing. 


This is important enough to view by itself:

DUNN:  She went missing on Monday while I was at work. 


She chooses to begin her account by establishing an alibi.

Dunn was not asked "when did she go missing?" which means the question, "What happened to Hailey" is "sensitive" to the subject.  

To an innocent parent, the question is not "sensitive" within itself.  The entire topic is very emotional, but "sensitive" is a word used in analysis.  When the father of Hailey Dunn was asked the same question, his answer showed no sensitivity indicators, though he was upset out of his mind.   

To now be introduced to this case, the reader/analyst is immediately confronted with a mother who has indicated her child is dead, and is establishing an alibi for herself.  

On January 3, 2011, the mother of Hailey Dunn indicated:

1.  Hailey is dead
2.  Mother needs an alibi


My boyfriend - - he came home from work about 3:00

1.  ISI

Note first that she introduced Shawn Adkins without his name.  This is an improper social introduction and it is indicative of a troubled relationship.  That she takes ownership with the possessive pronoun, "my" shows that they are together, but in relation to the missing child, there is something less than good, as evidenced by the missing proper name.  

Note that she knows how to use present tense and past tense verbs and uses past tense here.  

2.  Note that she chooses the time "3:00".   We note this as the liar's number. 

 or he got to my house about 3:00


She allows for an "either/or" possibility reducing commitment to the story.  This allows for changes to be made later and shows the uncertainty of her account.  Why would the mother of a missing child, on high adrenaline alert, not have established, a week later, what happened and where her boyfriend was, or what time he got home?  This uncertainty is taken in context with the indication of death, and the need to establish an alibi.

Note it is "my house" which is expected.    


And he`s seen Hailey. Hailey was there. 


1.  A sentence that begins with "And" indicates the need for a connecting word = missing information.  It is a jump in an account. 

2.  Redundancy means sensitivity. 

"he's seen Hailey."  She establishes that Adins laid eyes on Hailey.  Extra words give us additional information.  This is critical. 

"Hailey was there."

If he "seen Hailey", wouldn't she have to be there to be seen?

The extra words indicate deception.  It is the need to emphasize that Hailey was there, (alive is the presupposition she hopes the listener will accept, even though she spoke of her as dead) which shows deception. 

Hailey was not likely alive to be seen at 3PM.  


She told him, I`m running across the street to my dad`s house for a few minutes but I`m going Mary Beth`s, and I`m staying the night there. Let my mom know.

Communicative language is important.  We note that "said" and "told" are different. 

"My boss said to take this to Main St." is one way of saying something but with more authority, "My boss told me to take this to Maine St." is another.  

Here, she uses the more authoritative "told" regarding a 13 year old child speaking to an adult. This is not the expected. 

As to the story of going to a friend's house, we later learned that Billie Dunn told Nancy Grace that she had "true crime" literature in her home, and it was the same material that Nancy Grace, herself, was associated with.  What is this reference?

It is reference to the case of Carlie Brucia who was abducted and killed.  The story line is the same. 

Billie Dunn referenced where the case came from and gave a similar story.  

So that evening when he picked me up from work, we got home

She then uses the very sensitive word "so" explaining her actions.  Why is this so sensitive?  It is so sensitive because she has the need to tell us why she did something.  

Note another needless statement:  "we got home."  

Look at the awkwardness of the entire statement.  What is the reason she has to explain that while driving home they got home? 

we were getting ready for bed. 

We listen to what someone tells us.  She only says "we" were getting ready for bed.  She does not say they went to bed, nor does she say they went to sleep.  

There is a reason to everything that is said.  Always note when people say that they were getting ready to do something as it does not mean they did something; only that they were getting ready to.  There is a need to give a sentence of beginning something but not doing it.  When people do something, they say so.  When they may not have done something, they will often say they began to do something.  Did they finish it?  If they did not say so, we cannot say so for them.

Next, when speaking from memory, a person can tell us what they did, and what they thought.  If they tell us what did not happen, what they did not see, what they did not think, we are on high alert for deception:   


didn`t get worried when I hadn`t heard from Hailey. 


We now have a dead child, a mother establishing an alibi, and now she tells us of what emotions she did not have.  

Deception indicated. 

I thought she was at Mary Beth`s. I was kind of upset that she didn`t call and confirm it with me, but not worried at that point. 

Since Hailey didn't say to Adkins that she was staying at Marybeth's, but "told" him, if the language was consistent, there should have been a report of a fight, or disagreement.  This inconsistency is noted.  She again reports what didn't happen:  Hailey "didn't call."

This is a truthful sentence and an example of how a sentence can be truthful while being overall deceptive. 
Tuesday, I was at work again


Here is another case of a seemingly unnecesary word becoming of vital importance.  Why the need to say she was at work, "again"?

1.  It could be that she rarely works, and was per diem, and found herself surprised to be called in.  This is something a substitute teacher might say. 

2.  She is continuing to work her alibi.  

Since we have, in context, her establishment of alibi, the analyst/reader should see this as the subject seeking to affirm her alibi.  Later, we learned that this was her regular job and not a per diem or temp. position. 

I left my cell phone at home for my kids to use when I`m working. 

She now tells us why she did something, making "what happened?" into "why something happened" meaning high sensitivity.  She is setting up a scenario and explaining why she did something. 

She is portraying herself as a caring mother.  
Question:  Who portrays themselves in positive terms?  
Answer:  those who have been negligent and have a need to persuade.   


So Tuesday, I called my son. I said tell Hailey text the little girl, her friend, tell Hailey she needs to go ahead and get home. 

1.  "So" explains why she did something, highly sensitive, rather than answering the basic "what happened?" question. 

2.  Note the communication of what she said to her son:

a.  Tell Hailey
b.  Text the little girl
c.  her friend
d.  tell Hailey

The sentence begins strongly, with "I" indicating that she should be able to say what she said, but she isn't.  Why the confusion?  Tell Hailey via what means?  The phone?  She already said she left her phone home for her kids.  Text?  The "little girl" which is then explained as "her friend", and then back to "tell Hailey."


This was around lunch. My son called me back within a few minutes and she said, mom, she said Hailey never made it over there. She never spent the night. 

She "said, mom, she said..." uses her title, "mom".  Note that economy of words from truthful statements are short: "he said..." yet she adds in "mom" as if story telling.

"never made it over there" is one thing but for the third time she gives us useless redundancy:  "she never spent the night".  It is useless since if she never made it there, she never spent the night. 
So at that point I called Hailey`s dad and found out she didn`t over there and she didn`t stay the night with him. I left from work and went to the police station in Colorado City and reported her missing.  



She returns to the explanation of why she did something.  In the SCAN tecnigue is colored as "blue", or the highest level of sensitivity.  A single indication of "blue" is sensitive, but where there is 2 or more, the analyst holds the paper up to the light and sees that in this area, between the "blues" is the most critical portion of the statement and where deception
is to be found. 

In just where Hailey Dunn's mother spoke for only a few moments this is what we learned about a missing 13 year old:

1.  She is dead
2.  The mother has a need for an alibi
3.  The mother is making up a story about what happened:  she is deceptive. 
4.  There is trouble with the boyfriend.  

All this in just one answer to one question.  

Without knowing anything about the police affidavit, investigation, or anything else, you already know that this is not a missing child case, but a homicide. 

You also know it is a domestic homicide. 


This is why defense attorneys do not let their clients speak. 







III.  Words revealing content.  This is called "leakage" in which a subject gives out, inadvertently, information not intended.  

GRACE: Well, I don`t know what to believe, either, because I`m getting all these different stories about you having a New Year`s Eve party, and you`re high when you go take the polygraph. Let me ask you this. Let`s get back to the facts. When was the last time you absolutely are positive you saw Hailey?

Note that Nancy Grace frames the words "you having a New Year's Eve party" within her sentence recognizing that the gathering, the serving of alcohol, and the watching of the ball drop define a party, even if Dunn wishes to deny. She moves past this, but then asks the simple question about the last time Dunn saw Hailey. 

BILLIE DUNN: I saw her Sunday night.

Dunn did not address the accusations of telling different stories, having a party, and being high for the polygraph. Billie Dunn does not refute it and Nancy Grace knows this. 

"I saw her Sunday night" is a very strong statement.  This is likely true.  She saw her Sunday night.  What did she see?  Was it an alive Hailey?  Was it a dead Hailey?  

This answer, "I saw her Sunday night" should be considered a very important sentence from Billie Dunn.

Objection:  It is without sensitivity indicators.  Why do you call it "very important"?

Answer:     Billie Dunn has given us lots of statements and even against the objection of her attorney, continues to.  Billie Dunn's method of deception is to add many words to her answers, and to go beyond the boundary of the question. 
It may be that when she gives a short answer, we should pay even closer attention to the fact that it is not the norm for her, but a break in her pattern.  This is a critical part of her story.  We now get to the point of the most chilling words as Billie Jean Dunn reaches into her memory to choose words, yet it is the addition of one single word which tells us the worst possible news.  

GRACE: What time, 10:00 PM?

Mistake.  She should ask "what time?" without giving the subject the answer. 

BILLIE DUNN: Probably around 10:00.

Two qualifiers for 10:00, "probably" and "around" making it a weak assertion.  

GRACE: Now, was that when you looked in her room and it is was dark and you thought she was lying in her bed?

Please note that when this statement is viewed in light of all the other statements made to this point, the analyst is confronted with something possibly horrific.  

What is Billie Dunn describing? 

 Use the standard principles of analysis including body posture, reporting what did not happen, was not thought, and the standard sensitivity principle.

Here we have the critical "cluster of blues" that can solve a case.  Here Billie Dunn is inviting us  in to see what she saw, with her own eyes:   

BILLIE DUNN:   "I did see her in her room, but I saw her watching TV. 

Monday morning, I looked in her room and it was dark and it looked like she was laying in bed. But I didn`t go touch her, make sure that was her. I just peeked in to make sure she was in bed to ease my mind and..."

1.  "I did see her in her room, but..."  The word but can refute, negate, or minimize what preceded it.  What has caused her to make comparison by putting a pause in her sentence and insert, in less than a micro-second, the word "but"? This is allegedly Sunday night.  

2.  We have since learned that pornography made by Billie Dunn, was stored on the children's X- box.  

3.  The subject feels it is important enough to add in "TV"

4.  The need to explain why:  

In the SCAN technique from LSI, we give "so, since, to, therefore, because" the color coding blue as the highest level of sensitivity that can be found in a statement of someone reported what happened.  It is here that the person has a need to tell us "why" something was done.  This is often the solving of a case.  A single "blue" is a strong sensitivity indicator but two or more "blues" is called a "cluster of blues" in which the information contained with the cluster is the most critical information of a case.  Just as we highlight "left" in blue, we highlight "because" in any form that seeks to explain why something was done.  

If a question is "what did you do?" and it is answered with an explanation "why", it is critical.  

Here we have three blues in one short statement and come to the most important part of everything she had told us.

We are at the most critical point of what happened to Hailey, as described by her mother.   

Note that she doesn't tell us that Hailey was laying in bed, but rather says it looked like she was laying in bed.   This is how she appeared to her mother.   

Most might say "she was laying in bed" but she said it only "looked like she was laying in bed"; as if she is viewing a corpse, who looks peaceful, like as if she is sleeping.  She could not bring herself to say she was laying in bed because Hailey was deceased and her corpse looked "like" rather than "was laying" in bed.  

This one small word, "like", means to compare, is critical and it is why attorneys do not let guilty clients speak out on television. 

She was viewing a corpse.  What do most people NOT do to a corpse?  She is consistent here:
Next Billie states what she didn't do, touch her.  

That which is reported in the negative is important.  

Billie didn't touch what looked like it was sleeping in the bed.  
Ask yourself in what circumstance you would touch something to make sure what it was. 

 Would you touch your child to make sure it was him or her in bed?

Hailey is dead and Billie Dunn cannot bring herself to enter the room and touch her.  

She cannot do it.  

Most people do not like touching a dead body.  Dead bodies can look "like" they are sleeping but people do not like to touch them.  Even a dead dog in the street:  people often poke it with a stick, rather than directly touch it. 

Billie Dunn is speaking to you.  

She is taking you, the listener, in with her, back to the next morning that, whatever happened the night before, Hailey did not wake up and now is there, as if she was "like" laying in bed but she was not asleep.  

For her, the body looked "like" it was asleep. 
Now note that Billie "peeked in" to make sure she was in bed to ease her mind.  I believe this is true. 

 Why did Billie need to ease her mind?  There was no report of a missing child.  There was nothing that we know of, according to her story, that would cause her a need for comfort. 

Something had happened to Hailey that Billie needed comfort and something to ease her mind.  

There had been drugs the night before, we know that.  She even stopped off, like a dutiful daughter, to ask her own mother if she needed drugs and then used the ATM to empty her account to buy drugs.  This is something Nancy Grace would soon learn, too. 

Hailey did not go to her bed, peacefully, the night before.  If that was the case, there would be no reason to "ease" her mother's mind. By this time, the mother was in need of comfort and
reassurance. 

 There is nothing to soothe or calm, just a sleeping teenager.   

 What about Hailey being in bed caused Billie's mind to need to be put at ease? 

 This is what it means to let Billie Dunn guide you with her words.  These may be the most important words in the case.  

She said that she needed her mind to be put at ease, even though she claimed to last see Hailey, in her own home, at 10PM the night before, watching TV.   

No problem reported. 

In order to have your mind eased, your mind must be at unease. 

Something must happen to put your mind at unease. 

Hailey was watching TV at 10PM the night before. 

Between 10PM that night, and 6AM the following morning, something upset the mind of Billie Dunn, in which she needed to have her mind eased.

  Her choice of words are odd if you think nothing happened, but are perfectly fitting if you believe she and Shawn killed Hailey.

Here Billie Dunn has given herself away, in her attempt to use a multitude of words to make her sound innocent.  SCAN's "Cluster of Blues" is the most critical point of her statement. 

I believe that the only thing that could ease her troubled mind would be Shawn ridding them of the evidence. 

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

OT: Katelyn Markham's remains have been found by Texas Equusearch:

http://texasequusearch.org/2013/04/found-deceased-katelyn-markham-22-yrs-fairfield-oh-081411-search-no-2/

OMG - maybe justice for her is around the corner!!

Apple said...

Thank you, Texas Equusearch!!!

Anonymous said...

"But I didn`t go touch her, make sure that was her. I just peeked in to make sure she was in bed to ease my mind and..."

Who else would have been sleeping in Hailey's bed, is what I'm wanting to know. Dunn, while lying and wanting to make sure we think Hailey was in her bed, wants to leave herself wiggle room by suggesting it may not have been Hailey sleeping in her bed, in her her room. But in doing this, she makes it sound as though she is used to someone else being in there.

Anonymous said...

If Hailey's death took place on or before 10:00 p.m. then David her brother was home. This means he knows, helped or witnessed what happened. He is also a key/link into this. Perhaps this is why he was playing xbox the day Hailey was reported missing instead of searching. He didn't search. Dunn didn't search. Sean didn't search. Yep, they had reason not to, they knew exactly where Hailey was.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 1:37 , how do you know he was home at that time?

Anonymous said...

Wasn't it stated he left before 8?

Anonymous said...

He didn't sleep over at a friends as far as I know. He was out and came home late that evening. I will check and come back to this post.

CarlaP said...

A lot of us that follow your blog have been trying to use the SCAN techniques in analyzing these interview clips. We would love to hear your analysis on them, Peter. It's been such a divisive and hot topic on this blog, your insight would be helpful.

http://youtu.be/DdkY1nmMxfU

http://bazaardaily.com/2013/03/24/uncut-slain-toddlers-father-speaks-to-the-media/

CarlaP said...

I forgot to add I'm teardrops on mu chummy chin.

Local anon said...

David stated that he went his friend's house at 10:00 and Hailey was playing his Xbox. He further stated that base on her skill level and far she had gotten in the game she played until around midnight.

Anonymous said...

In earlier posts it had been stated that David left the home at around 9:00 p.m. to spend the night at a friends' home, but Billie later said she thought it was 8:00 p.m. when David left?

Dang it, when so many lies get told it's easy to forget when and what and who said it. Somewhere along the line, in comes the 10:00 p.m. story, which could be the most likely time Billie & Shawn started their evil rape and blood-lust torment of Hailey that led to her death.

However, as to David's comments, (all heresay), David said previously that the level she was playing at, that normally Hailey would play on the xbox until around midnight, not that she was on the xbox that night until midnight.

Anon 1

yep said...

"There had been drugs the night before, we know that. She even stopped off, like a dutiful daughter, to ask her own mother if she needed drugs and then used the ATM to empty her account to buy drugs".
The above statement is where information seems to go haywire. The drugs were purchased on Monday night from the ATM, not Sunday night. Billie says she looked in "to ease her mind" on Monday morning. Why would her mind need easing? Did Hailey have a habit of sneaking out at night? I doubt that because Billie let her children run the streets of CC. I don't believe a dead Hailey was in her bed on Monday morning(dogs would have picked up the death smell). I think Billie is saying this to fit in when Hailey went missing, an attempt to establish she was alive at that time, alive at 3 pm so she couldn't have went missing during the night on Sunday. Drugs were bought on Monday night. Maybe they had a conscience and needed the drugs to ease their feelings of what they had done. On Tuesday morning though, Shawn couldn't stand it, he had to go back and see, make sure there was no evidence left to point the finger at them. In doing so, tore the suspension up in the car. I still want to know who drove Billie to work that day. BTW we know who had the car on Monday also because Shawn picked her up from work and went to the ATM,meaning Billie didn't get home until after this time. I would like to see the ATM pics along with Shawns timecard for Monday. Everyone seems to be focused on Tuesday where my focus is from Sunday evening when David left until David returned and saw Shawn with the deer in the headlights look. The reason I want Shawn's timecard is to see what time he got off. If he even went to work that Monday, could it be that he got off and was home to send the text at 2pm himself? I would also like to see the store footage from Sunday to see what Hailey was wearing, if she had the earrings in since she left Clints, walked to the store then walked home. I visited CC to see where Hailey would have walked, how far it was from home to Clints, from Clints to the dollar store, to see where the beauty shop was, the view from the beauty shop window. I'm sure everything I want to see will be evidence in their trial.

Local anon said...

A couple of comments: I think Anon 1 is right about David's timing and how long Hailey was on the Xbox. There is a lot of hearsay regarding David's statements. Secondly, we may not know who drove Billie to work but LE surely does. They surely would have interviewed that person to verify Billie's claim.

Anonymous said...

Local Anon, Yep makes some excellent observations too, mostly all that I agree with. I would have loved to go and visit that area but can only imagine it. I do understand the vastness of Texas and the miles and miles of sparsely populated areas.

I had to drive all the way across the State of Texas once a long time ago, going towards Cheyenne, Wy; didn't realize how vast and deserted so much of it was and got stuck driving across Texas for hours without another soul in site, not even another vehicle headlights, while there I was driving during the night in whipping wind (in a convertible) across the plains and total pitch darkness for what seemed like hundreds of miles.

I tell ya, it was frightening. Had I known what I was in for I would have checked into a motel earlier while still in daylight hours, but had no idea, filled up my tank and drove on. I drove on for HOURS. Finally, after I had been driving on empty for a long time, up above sits one lone gasoline pump and a shack. Oh man. Talk about relieved. Yet there was this fool there whose telling me "this is God's country". Yeah right, I thought, just didn't want to say it; hell, he could have shot me. I thought I would never EVER get out of that God forsaken place!

Yep, It makes sense that Billie's car was torn up while driving it over rough terrain to Haileys' dumping site. However, I've never gotten it out of my mind that there might have been another person involved in Haileys' torture, rape and brutal murder. Like possibly Billie's brother, uncle, or the dope peddler Billie & Shawn bought their last batch of dope from. Maybe one of them drives a truck and this is what was used to dump Hailey that night? Yes, I do believe she was dumped the night they killed her.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I meant to sign as Anon 1. Wish I could get it down pat and stop ignoring to do this.

Anon 1 said...

Sorry ,meant to use sig.

pg said...

Dose anyone know what kind of car SA drove?