Monday, January 9, 2017

Statement Analysis: Color In Analysis

                       "Color In Statement Analysis"
                                                   by Peter Hyatt

This has come up in recent trainings where analysts correctly identified not only deception but some forensic detail unknown to them at the time of the analysis, that proved accurate.  

"Color" is not a separate category in detecting deception.  It falls under the category of "unnecessary language", which is only unnecessary for the reader; not for the subject. 

When asked "What happened?", the subject:

a.  cannot possibly tell us everything
b.  must choose what information to give (editing down) 
c.  must choose what order the information is given  (priority
d.  must choose what words to use  (psycho-linguistic profile
e.  must choose what tenses of the words to use (commitment
f.  must choose the syntax, or placement of the words in order to make sense.  (intention to deceive or be truthful). 

This makes an overall statement highly reliable for content analysis, even if it is deceptive.  While 9 out of 10 reliable denials are noted, 1 may be the rare outright fabrication of reality.  Yet, even this, if it is utterly untrue, still has a genesis that can, and should be traced in the interview.  If the subject said,

"I was at Sears in the mall" and it is later proven that at the time of the assault, he was not at Sears nor at the mall, this statement came from somewhere.  It is very likely that if this is a fabrication, the subject began his statement with truthful, experiential memory of a different day that he was at Sears at the Mall, intending to deceive the investigators.  Although rare, we must still follow through, point by point to learn why he had the need to place himself elsewhere, and even with this, the sentences that follow are likely to reveal relevant information. 

Some more advanced liars (high quality lies) end up implicating themselves in other crimes.  No one can really lie successfully.  

When color is noted in a statement, there are questions that the analyst should pose to himself:

1.  Is this an "unnecessary" detail?  This is the most important baseline question that will lead to:

2.  Why?  Why did the subject feel it so important to add in the color of an item?

An example of an ordinary or "non-unnecessary" detail is

"I was driving down Route 84 when a black pick up truck cut me off..."

Although one can argue that the color of the truck is, in deed, a sensory detail likely suggesting personal experience (and veracity), we must be careful because:

Subjects routinely give the color of vehicles in statements and interviews.  This is so much so that it is "the expected" within a statement.  Even with 'sensory detail' classification, we must temper our assignment of sensitivity, due to context. 

Yet, if the question to number one, "Is this an unnecessary detail?" is "yes", we should proceed with two premises:

a.  The unnecessary detail is very important (increasing its classification in the analysis)
b.  The unnecessary detail is a signal of veracity because "color" is often an indication of personal handling or involvement which is why it enters the recall phase.  

Allegation:  stolen phone

"I was going to the store anyway, so it's not like you guys are putting this on me.  You that you know it is what you guys do to us all the damn time.  You think just because we go in ***** ****** (private high-line electronics specialty store at mall) you know you think its like, man, these people must be stealing.  We are so fucking sick of this  shit you don't know.   I didn't steal nothing from nobody.  Fucking thing goes missing and right away you know who to accuse.  I didn't so no fancy blue damn phone anyway, so its like you need to look elsewhere."

That the subject felt the need to justify or explain his presence at the store (hina clause) tells us that he, himself, is very concerned about himself being there.  No one asked him why he was at the store.  This strongly suggests:

He anticipated being asked why he was at the store and wanted to address it now, and not wait until the investigator asked.  

What makes this even more sensitive is that it is not even guaranteed that the investigator would have even thought of the question "Why were you here?" since shopping at this mall is normal, though the private store may not be.   This may heighten the timing and location for the subject. 

Victim Status 

Next, even a casual observation would recognize that the subject has a very strong need to delay getting to the point of the investigation:  theft.  This is not a true "victim status mentality" but a ready to use delay tactic.  Psychologically, he does not want to "arrive" at the specific detail of the theft.  

He has already given "unreliable denials", which does not mean he is lying, it means that the classification of the denial is (0) Neutral, rather than Reliable (+) or Deceptive (-) in rating.  

It is noted, as the analyst moves through the statement, however, which will suggest some personality traits as the analyst is considering, if he is deceptive,  the "quality of liar" the subject may be.  


That the phone was "blue" is an unnecessary detail, coming after the unnecessary need to explain why he was at the store (suggesting premeditation), the unreliable denials, and the stalling technique. 

It is a strong indication that the subject, himself, has intimate knowledge of the phone, and likely even handled it himself.  

Question:  What if he, and everyone there, knew it was a blue phone?

Answer:  If this came in the free editing process, the principle remains the same.

Question:  What if the investigator, prior to this part of his statement, mentioned the color?

Answer:  Then the sensitivity is reduced; it is too easy for the subject to parrot back the language, and the analyst should not give it weightiness.  

This is why the investigator/interview relies upon legally sound, open ended questions to begin the interview and seeks, whether possible, to avoid introducing new language. 

If the investigator did  not introduce the color, given the signals of deception already noted, it is very likely that the thief is not only caught, but that he physically handled the stolen item. 

Lesson Conclusion:

1.  Always note color in a statement, for possible sensory description.  

2.  Sensory description is often a signal of personal experience.  It does not mean that it happened now in the statement, but it happened at some point in the subject's life.  

3.  If color is unnecessary it is deemed very important. 

4.  Most vehicle identification is commonly done with color.  

5.  If unnecessary color enters a statement in the free editing process (without the influence of the interviewer), it is a strong signal of personal handling of an item. 

6.  Color in theft should be considered a strong indication of probable guilt. 

7.  The analysis conclusion is not based upon any single point but the conclusion must suggest itself. 

8.  Do not be led astray by distractions (above, the "victim status mentality") but note the need to lead astray. 

9.  Always be open to assessing the quality of a lie, to reveal the sophistication and comfort level a subject has with deception.  

To enroll in training at your department, business, or in your home, visit Hyatt Analysis Services.  


Anonymous said...

Peter, wow! Yes this is true about color. I can tell you from personal experience of having been lied to as a child, color can enter a statement when an individual is fabricating reality. Particularly when they are thinking in their head "Hmmm...what am I going to tell other people about how this happened? Oh I know! I will say a (pick a color) (fill in noun) did it! ". I think fabricating reality liars feel it adds authenticity and believability to their story to include "color".
Interesting about how stating color can indicate the individual touched an object in certain instances also.

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

ISIS Shows Preschooler Killing Victim Tied to Carnival Ball Pit

Anonymous said...

Color in the news:
Shocked 'black' waitress is left a racist note by white couple who 'don't tip black people' even after they admitted she gave them 'great service' Dailymail. UK

Hmmmmmm. On credit card reciept?

Anonymous said...

Enough to drive you crazy! Motorist gets $128 ticket for leaving his car running to warm up on his OWN driveway.

This state is textbook corruption.

Anonymous said...

for the person who said trouble at the work place over pronoun but was not believed check this out

it is hard to believe it has come to this --

Anonymous said...

gonna defend this cop?

Anonymous said...

OMG did you read the chief's response?

Anonymous said...

That what happens when they cover for each other instead doing whats right.

Anonymous said...

I just saw the Meryl Streep thing. She is an overrated actress who isnt believable in any role she plays. "Bridges of Madison County" lmao...she can fake accents yet has no depth. That was totally unbelievable that stupid 3-day love affair with a National Geographic reporter that supposedly was such an amazing love story. Meryl did NOTHING to make it convincing. Im a housewife with an accent...oh my God Clint Eastwood just told me tales of his wild photography adventures....soon my boring farmer hisband will be you believe how much I love Clint Eastwood? Do you believe this Hollywood pile of crap?

Anonymous said...

I cant think of one good actor or actress...except maybe that guy who is in Breaking Bad... he can do comedy, drama, change his whole self to fit the role. The rest of them are crappy. Meryl Streep pulls the same crap everytime: she plays a fake person with an accent and tries to fake having one hidden layer of depth in her faje character...same formula in every role.

Anonymous said...

Oh....hahaha!!!! Just googled to watch the whole thing...she's saying that Hollywood is so persecuted, the individuals all underdogs/immigrants who have risen to the top! LMAO!!!! SHe belongs in a mental hospital! How out of touch with reality are these actors/actresses? Other than the few who actually have talent, these people are nothing but delusional phonies! I would have gladly never watched TV or seen a single movie....these people do not enhance anyone's life!!!! Often the highest rated actors are NOT the best by any means--may just have the looks or charisma or extreme arrogance.

Anonymous said...

I absolutely cant stand people like Meryl Streep who talk in a faux voice (when not acting) and do these faux body language like "look how neat-o I am! ". Why the hell do actors/actresses do that? Like when she is starting her speech and saying "I love you all but Ive lost my voice" in in overdramaticvoice while wiggling her shoulders...the whole message is "Look at me! Arent I neat-o? Arent I special?" So annoying!

Anonymous said...

I dont think Trump intentionally made fun of the disabled reporter.

But that is great to know Ryan Goseling is from Canada. He must have suffered greatly in refugee camps before he made it to America.

Anonymous said...

Very well said 5:10

Anonymous said...

Out of control policing or what? Thats definately nazi like. Fined for warming up your car.

Anonymous said...

Judge Jeanie just tell him to please stop responding to every insult. He won. Ignor them and dont ridicule anyone. Go high when they go low!!! Ok

Anonymous said...

I think Trump's tweet is truthful...Trump imitates EVERYONE who criticizes him...I think Trump may have unconsciously mimicked the handicapped reporter in a way that showed the handicap...Trump imitates EVERY PERSON who criticized him...I watched many of his speeches....Trump is a very flawed person but I dont think he intended malice towards the handicapped man. Anyway, whatever...I dont see Hollywood embracing handicapped people...Hollywood is totally superficial...all about a person's appearance and physical form. Trump has a serious flaw that he imitates and mimicks EVERYONE who criticizes him. Im sure he would treat a handicapped person with respect unlike Hollywood's disgusting patronizing pity which no handicapped person would want.

Anonymous said...

Wasnt Tom Hanks imitating a handicapped person in Forest Gump when Hollywood was trying to make fun of retarded people? Ive met many retarded people who are much smarter than Forest Gump--Forest Gump was actually a parody of a retarded person--they were actually making fun of retarded people for some unknown reason. His relationship with Jenny was totally unrealistic and was just put in there to make fun of retarded people so the viewer could feel superior by watching exaggerated stupidity and totally preposterous redemption of "stupid" Forest by the pity of a normal intelligence person (Jenny) in a "romantic" relationship that would NEVER have happened in reality.

Anonymous said...

Hollywood is the #1 promoter of degradation of all women, minoroties and handicapped people. Women are constantly taught their only worth lies in their apoearance and that lucky them if they are attractive they should be happy to be emotionally and sexually abused by old perverts like Hugh Heffner while also being held in captivity. Read Holly Madison's book.

Anonymous said...

Off Topic: What do you do if someone is asking you personal questions and the person is speaking and acting like a zombie?

Anonymous said...

Walk away

Anonymous said...

It's messages they are sending. They are acting totally robotic and no longer have any personality? Like as an example of the tone "I went to the store today and looked around it was fun. It is funny that you say you used to like lifting weights. I was in my aerobics class and there was a poster on the wall of someone lifting weights and it looked like you isn't that funny. Do you think that is funny. I am thinking of getting a dog a labrador. I want to get a labrador. Like my other labrador he is 5 years old. I wont tell anyone or they might flip. But when I do tell them they will be happy."....then starts asking personal questions, not invasively personal questions, but I starting having anxiety and heart palpitations because I don't understand why this person is acting robotic?!?! They used to have a lot of personality and it seriously does not even feel like it is the same person? I don't want to be mean and not answer but I don't understand why they are writing like a robot??

Anon "I" said...

Anonymous said...
Enough to drive you crazy! Motorist gets $128 ticket for leaving his car running to warm up on his OWN driveway.

This state is textbook corruption.

January 9, 2017 at 3:22 PM


The cop was way over-zealous in this case and the police chief should be on suspension for the "Drop dead" comment. Out of order.

I may be the only person who has two stories defending the idea of not leaving a car to warm up, although I may or may not have been a hypocrite about it.

One is where a police officer left his car running with his service dog in the car. With no emergency brake on, the dog actually knocked the gear into drive and took a short trip. In the driveway or across a small street , I think it was... ? I can't remember what he hit, but the vehicle did come to a stop. This was 35 some years ago.

So, some 45 years ago, a very young boy was in a car and his mother left him to do something presumably quickly. Said boy touched a button of some sort (Don't ask me what it was, I wasn't driving back then.) and the car started to move. He knew he was not to be in a running car without an adult. He hopped out of the car to obey previous rules only to be run over by one wheel of the moving vehicle. He cracked his pelvis and was in a very uncomfortable cast for a long time.

The cop that left the ticket in the article was either drunk with power or their brain may have frozen over with the wind chill factor. Common sense isn't so common anymore. A simple knock on the door would have warned the man without ruining his day. Somehow this obliterates a badly needed positive police perception.

Anonymous said...

Sherri Papini Kidnapping Update: New Photos Of California Mom, Husband Keith Released

Sherri Papini, the 34-year-old mom of two who police say was kidnapped in November while on a jog, has been caught on camera for the first time since her case went viral last year. The New York Post published exclusive photos Monday of Papini and her family outside a house in Redding, California.

In the pictures, taken Saturday, Papini was wearing a white jacket, hat and hood. The Post noted that its reporter also saw Papini Monday in a car.

Papini made national news when she vanished while running in her neighborhood Nov. 2. Her husband, Keith Papini, became alarmed when stay-at-home mom didn't pick up her kids from day care and alerted local police, who launched a massive search for evidence of the missing woman. She was ultimately discovered on the side of a road Nov. 24 about 140 miles away from her home.

Her husband told reporters her captors "chopped off" her hair, branded her skin and bound her with restraints. Sherri Papini told police she'd been taken by two Hispanic women with a weapon, raising the possibility that she was abducted for sex trafficking.

The case fascinated internet sleuths who tracked down racially offensive blog posts in Sherri Papini's name, investigated a hostage negotiator involved in the case and scrutinized Keith Papini's GoFundMe for her recovery efforts. At first, they had a lot of material to work with — Keith Papini regularly spoke to media outlets, and the police gave frequent updates — but once the missing mom was found, the family vanished from the public eye.

A neighbor said Keith Papini, his wife and their two kids had escaped "way up north" as police continued to work on the case

Holly Herrig @HerrigHolly
Where is Sherri & Keith Papini?? Why no more coverage? #sherripapini
6:26 AM - 6 Jan 2017
1 1 Retweet 3 3 likes
Keith Papini told ABC News Dec. 2 his priority was healing.

"You would expect that I want to get these people ... and then your mind goes into a place that it shouldn’t and I think most people are doing that," Keith said. "Clearly, I want justice but right now I’m just happy that my wife is back."

Anonymous said...

don't forget the elderly. Its infuriating how they are stereotyped as the butt of so many jokes, using there physical, mental, and financial demise to mock. Jokes about falling and broken hips. People have died from those. And many times they use elderly characters to mock themselves so the viewers will feel comfortable laughing at them. That narcissistic bullsh*t makes me SICK!!!