Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Police Chief William McCollum Resigns
Police Chief William McCollum has resigned from his position as police chief of Peachtree City Police Department. A Grand Jury will hear misdemeanor charges of "reckless endangerment" against him on April 15, 2015.
On New Years, 2015, he called 911 to report that his wife had been shot in their bed. Below is the transcripts of the call, with Statement Analysis.
Statement Analysis of 911 calls follows the same principles of other statements, as we line up the "Expected versus the Unexpected" and utilize the same linguistic indicators that we do in verbal statements, written statements, emails, etc.
Statement Analysis works on the notion of presuppositional thinking.
We "presuppose", first, that the caller is an innocent caller reporting truthfully, in the expectation that the victim will receive help.
If the analysis and the expected is 'confronted' by that which we did not expect, and deception is indicated, we analyze a second time, presupposing guilt (that he 'did it'), and now view content.
In a domestic, we lay out a list of words or phrases that we expect to hear from an innocent caller, and move on to pronouns, change of language, temporal lacunae, and priority.
This analysis was published shortly after the shooting, when police released the 911 call. It is useful for instruction, particular in the realm of:
Order showing Priority;
We analyze the words, not the voice inflection, nor information outside of the language.
Maggie McCollum, the victim and his wife, is reportedly paralyzed from the waist down. Media also reported that Mrs. McCollum "thinks" the shooting was accidental.
The analysis is written in such a manner as to explain principles to those not familiar with Statement Analysis.
His resignation statement:
"It was my pleasure to serve with the men and women of the Peachtree City Police Department in the capacity of Assistant Chief and Chief. The City of Peachtree City has every reason to be proud of their police department as the personnel are both competent and professional. I wish each of them the best as they continue to serve the citizens. I have had had two families in Peachtree City – my police family and my personal family. In light of the recent tragedy in my personal family, I need to continue to focus my time and efforts there."
Note the order with "police family" coming before "personal family" as consistent with what happened.
Police Chief shoots wife 911 call has now been released.
In Statement Analysis, we view the Expected versus the Unexpected in 911 calls. In a domestic shooting, how the caller relates to the victim is critically important. He will either show a good relationship in the call, or he will show a troubled relationship.
Presuppositional Thinking in Statement Analysis means going word by word, first, presuming innocence (de facto innocence, not judicial), seeing if the language "fits" or is appropriate.
Then, re-do the analysis presupposing that the caller has had a domestic dispute with his wife and see if the language is fitting with this presupposition.
The Expected Versus The Unexpected.
We set up what we expect to hear from an innocent caller, who's wife has now accidentally been shot. What do we expect to hear, in such a case as this?
It is expected that the caller will:
a. ask for help for the victim, specifically for the victim; not in general, and not for himself.
b. show concern for the victim not for the caller himself. His wife is, perhaps, mortally wounded, and we expect to hear him care only for her.
c. use direct language befitting an emergency not staged language for the recording. This should sound like "excited utterance" and be helpful.
Given that he is law enforcement, we expect him to not only answer the questions, but to offer relevant information to the operator.
Remember, this is an Interview. The 911 operator is asking questions because she needs information.
In every interview, there is an impression:
Either the subject is working with the Interviewer to get the information, or the subject is showing resistance or reluctance, to impede the flow of information. This also can be where the subject impedes information by using tangents or avoidance.
d. Passive Language: passivity is used to conceal identity or responsibility In an accidental shooting, it would be expected about the gun going off, but nothing else. If there is passivity, it must be noted. The passivity should not be coupled with distancing language, since passivity already shows distance.
e. The social introduction is key to understanding the relationship at the time of the call.
If he and his wife fought, and this caused him to threaten her, perhaps, and the "gun went off", we may see him distance himself from his wife by avoiding her name, coupled with her title: "my wife______"
I expect him to say, "This is William McCollom, I just shot my wife, Margaret. She needs help." and give the address. Then when he is asked for details, he will say that the gun went off accidentally.
Order teaches us priority.
Police Chief William McCollom's 911 call analyzed.
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