While in training this week, someone wisely asked,
"When you talk about a Reliable Denial and someone says 'I didn't do it', is the pronoun "it" acceptable?"
This was an astute question and showed the subject was paying attention. The answer is, "no", it is not reliable.
The Reliable Denial must have three components. Two, or Four, for example, are not reliable.
I. The Pronoun "I"
II. The past tense "did not", or casual "didn't" (we do not differentiate though Reid does)
III. The specific allegation addressed.
"I didn't do it" or "I didn't do this"
911 calls of Camm family murders released. John posted this for analysis...thank you, John.
Eyewitness News is hearing the first call for help made by a former state trooper after finding his wife and children murdered.
David Camm was acquitted last month in the murders after spending 13 years in prison. Camm made a frantic call to the Indiana State Police to report the murders.
Listen to the 911 call here. (Warning - this audio file may be distressing to some listeners.)
Dispatch: Indiana police radio, Patrice. Can I help you?
David Camm: Patrice, it's Dave Camm. Let me talk to Post Command right now.
Note that he did not ask for assistance for the victims, instead, asserting himself as one of authority. This is high minded. Him talking to Post Command is his priority; not the victims.
Dispatch: Okay, he's on another line.
David Camm: Right now (shouting). Let me talk to Post Command.
He still avoids asking for help. Instead, the high mindedness is confirmed. This should cause investigators to consider if he is a controlling aggressor.
Dispatch: Hold on.
Post Command: Dave?
David Camm: Get everybody out here to my house now!
He does not ask for help for the victims; he demands, on his own authority, not upon the condition of the victims. He has still avoided telling them why.
This speaks to his priority.
Post Command: Okay. All right.
David Camm: My wife and my kids are dead. Get everybody out here to my house.
If they are beyond help, what is the urgency? Note he continues to issue orders.
Post Command: Okay, David. We got people on the way, okay?
David Camm: Get everybody out here.
He wants "everybody" out there, but does not say why.
Post Command: Everything's gonna be okay.
David Camm: Everything's not okay! Get everybody out here now! (shouting)
The repetition and unusual wording should cause investigators to consider that this is scripted.
Post Command: Go to David Camm's house now. Do you know what happened, David?
Note the yes or no question is easy to lie to. We then note every word that comes after the denial:
David Camm: No. They're dead. I just got home from playing basketball....Oh, my God. What am I gonna do? Get everybody out here! (crying)
" No " is his answer. "Basketball" is very important.
After the word "no":
1. They're dead.
2. I just got home
3. I was playing basketball. This is utterly unnecessary as to what he was doing, therefore it is critical information. This is alibi building.
4. Divinity invoked
5. Open questions within a statement (rhetorical). Note that the question is not about the victims, but about himself.
6. Back to being in charge and ordering others.
this element of control may be scripted, but it also may be a window into his personality.
Note that there is no concern as to a killer on the loose.
Note there is no concern for justice for his family.
His concern is for him, and what he will do. This is too soon for him to process, regarding his own life. He has already accepted that he will be without his wife and children and wondering what he will do.
As to the immediate finding of his now dead family: it is artificial and too soon as the grieving process takes time.
Post Command: David, they're on their way right now, okay? I've got everybody coming. Listen, I'm gonna let you talk to Patrice. I've got people coming.
David Camm: I've gotta get across the street. I've gotta get some help. I've gotta go across to my parents' house.
Note the truthful words: he is the one in need of help. This call is about him.
Again, no mention of the danger of a killer on the loose.
Post Command: David, do you need an ambulance?
David Camm: I've gotta go!
Dispatch: Dave? He hung up.
The 911 call avoids all responsibility and concern. He sounds controlling.
Police found a horrific crime scene. Camm's wife and son on the garage floor, his daughter still in the family SUV, all shot to death. Bullet holes could be seen throughout the vehicle.
Camm, who resigned from the Indiana State Police just four months before the killing was now the one and only suspect.
"I cannot believe this. I cannot believe this," Camm said in an interview.
"What do you mean? You cannot believe what?" a detective asked.
"You are going to try to blame me for killing my children," Camm said. "I did not do this."
Please note that he said "killing my children" but in his denial, he avoids saying "I didn't kill my children. Follow the word "this" (closeness) and note it is what he denies rather than killing them.
Much of the evidence hinged on Camm's bloody sweatshirt. Was the blood transferred from the victims when he tried to help them or proof he was there when they were killed?
Time and again, he insisted he was innocent.
"I didn't do this. I didn't do it Mickey. I didn't do it. I didn't do it,"Camm said.
This still avoids saying, "I didn't kill Mickey."
Camm was convicted twice and successfully appealed those convictions twice. He was finally found not guilty by a Boone County jury last month.