Friday, October 21, 2016

Jeffrey Scott Jones Suicide Attempt in Court


The words we choose reveal us, whether or not  we do not intend them to. Even deceptive words can reveal truth.  

Here, a 56 year old man attempted suicide by slashing his own throat after jurors found him guilty of sexually assaulting a teenager.  

How did he smuggle a razor blade into court?  

As deputies administered first aid, Jones was uncooperative, so they handcuffed him in order to save his life.  He has survived the public attempt on his own life.  

An investigation has commenced on how Jones managed to get the razor blade through various security checkpoints.  

Here is what his attorney, Ed Welbourn said:


"It was totally unexpected and very unfortunate."

We note that it was unexpected, with the word "unexpected" modified with the additional word "totally", just as "unfortunate" is now modified by the word "very."  

What might cause a defense attorney to not say,

"It was unexpected", plainly and simply, but instead opt for additional (and persuasive) language with:  "it was totally unexpected"

The event being "unexpected" is now sensitive to him. 

The law of economy in language takes the shortest route and unnecessary words give us additional information.  

What might cause the need to employ "totally" in terms of being unexpected?  "Totally" seeks to rule out any possibility of expectation in the sentence.  It is to be "complete", "total", with no room for anything else to be considered. Under accusation, one might say "it was totally unexpected" with the consideration of the need to emphasize.  

Or, this is something one might say if one just witnessed the shocking and frightening event of an attempted suicide, including the fact that he defended this man and in doing so, may have gotten to know him, somewhat, personally.  Hence, "very unfortunate" may be due to this personal knowledge.  

For it to be "totally" unexpected, one might feel overwhelmed at the site of such a traumatic event.  This is to add in an emotional content to the statement (though the empathetic part of the statement came second to the element of unexpected).  Yet it is that being shocked at what one just witnessed may feel "totally" shocking to the senses and with the additional element of emotion (hormonal influence), the word "totally" might be produced because of what his eyes just witnessed.  

The article continues:  


Welbourn said a courtroom clerk had just finished reading the jury's guilty verdict when Jones suddenly cut himself with a standard razor blade.

"I didn't see it happen, my attention was on the jury, but from what people tell me he had a blade somewhere in his clothing and he pulled it out when the verdicts were read," he said.

Here we have a number points to analyze, but let's only consider two main principles:  

1.  Negation

He reports what happened, in relation to himself, in the negative.  "I didn't see it happen..."

What one reports in the negative is of elevated importance to the subject.  

2.  Hina Clause 

In a recent article, we looked at the "Hina Clause", borrowing from the Greek, where a subject feels a need to explain why, without being asked.  Instead of highlighting a simple word, such as "because", we see the wording as a specific clause showing: 

The subject (lawyer) has a need to explain why he did not see what happened, though it does not appear that he was asked, "So, why didn't you see it?"  This is to 'pre-empt' a question because the subject anticipates the challenge:

How is it you, his attorney, seated right here beside him, didn't see him do this?

Please carefully note:  In edited articles, we do not know if the reported asked, "Did you see it happen?"  If the reporter then asked,  "Why didn't you see it happen?", the sensitivity is no longer there but explained by the question.    

Analysis Conclusion:  

The investigation into how Jones got the razor blade through security checkpoints, to the 8th floor, which may also have metal detectors, should include a thorough interview with his attorney.  

It could be because the attorney anticipates an investigation, which makes the timing of the statement critical for analysis. 

Or it could be because the attorney knew a suicide attempt was possible...

Or, it could be guilty knowledge.  

The thorough interview should reveal why the subject had a need to explain why he did not see it, and why the expectation of suicide by his client is sensitive to him.  

Lastly, if the attorney was challenged by a reporter, the answers are 'contaminated' and only in response to direct questioning. It is difficult to imagine a reporter asking someone seated so close, "Why didn't you see it?" but strangers things have happened. 

5 comments:

foodiefoodnerd said...

Is it possible that he anticipates the question because he is standing closest to the defendant?

Many are going to presume he did see it, so he likely would want to set straight that detail before the wrong presumption is repeated into "fact" throughout the media.

Nic said...

"I didn't see it happen."

Apart from seeing what about knowing it could/would happen? If he client said something to the effect that he would kill himself first before going to prison, would the lawyer request his client be put on suicide watch?

___________

Welbourn said a courtroom clerk had just finished reading the jury's guilty verdict when Jones suddenly cut himself with a standard razor blade.

The lawyer said "I didn't see it happen, my attention was on the jury, but from what people tell me he had a blade somewhere in his clothing and he pulled it out when the verdicts were read,"


This is interesting in that "people" (vague) watched Scott pull the blade out of "somewhere" (vague) in his clothing, when the verdicts were read yet "people" didn't do anything to stop Scott.

People is vague considering "people" who could see Scott do this were either the judge, jury or clerk - Scott had his back to everyone else.

In any event, wouldn't all eyes be on the clerk, just like Welbourn? Also, was there anyone from this group of "people" who came forward and said they saw what Welbourn said they told him they saw?

jmo

Nic said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nic said...

I didn't see it happen.

What? That Scott fished the blade out from somewhere in his clothing or that Scott slit his throat?

Welbourn avoids saying what he didn't see.

Habundia said...

Here i found another article were in "
The law of economy in language takes the shortest route and unnecessary words give additional information."
Is highly present
http://www.wrcbtv.com/story/32074812/update-lacie-stone-and-others-release-statements-after-domestic-assault-case-dismissed-for-husband

So many of these unnecessary words are being used in this.