Thursday, July 4, 2013

Statement Analysis of Samantha Rosembaum, NYC

This is a perfect example of the unavoidable nature of Statement Analysis.  You (or I) will read this article and you will, inadvertently, have an opinion on whether Samantha Rosembaum is truthful, or, she has embellished her account and is after money her hands have not earned (or notoriety).  

Let's look at her words to see how she speaks of what happened to her. 
If, as alleged, she was attacked by police, we will find commitment to what happened.  Commitment to truth uses the pronoun "I", and will be connected with a past tense verb:  it is how we speak truthfully.  
Is Samantha Rosebaum telling the truth?

Please read her statements carefully.  

Statement Analysis is in bold type, with emphasis added in the quotes.  We have only a limited number of quotes.  

College student Samantha Rosenbaum sues NYPD over frisking in Williamsburg

Here’s someone who might agree with Mayor Bloomberg’s controversial comment about whites being subjected to stop-and-frisk “too much.”
A white, vegan, 22-year-old Bard College graduate is suing the NYPD after cops allegedly violently stopped her on a Williamsburg street last year — and then frisked her to the point of a semi-strip search.
My face and stomach were on the hood,” environmentalist and animal lover Samantha Rosenbaum told The Post, who claims in a Brooklyn federal court lawsuit filed this week that she was thrown against an unmarked police car in broad daylight, for no apparent reason, on July 17, 2012.
"My face and stomach were on the hood":  we note that she speaks in the past tense, which is good, and "face" comes before "stomach" which is also expected, as the face might be more important or sensitive to the subject.  She has connected this to the past, and there is nothing within the statement to think that she is deceptive.  Note that the main part of the story is in the past tense, making it appropriate. 
SLAMMED: Samantha Rosenbaum says she was roughed up by police while walking in Williamsburg.
SLAMMED: Samantha Rosenbaum says she was roughed up by police while walking in Williamsburg.

I don’t think anyone, no matter what color you are, deserves to be treated like that.”

The word "think" reduces commitment.  She did not say "No one deserves, no matter what color you are, to be treated like that."  The word "think" reduces commitment.  She likely feels that some people do deserve to be treated like "that" (and not the closer "this", as she creates distance with the weaker assertion.)

The case comes less than a week after the mayor drew heat by claiming whites are stopped and frisked at a higher rate than minorities relative to the number of offenders of each race.

She thought she was getting kidnapped,” her lawyer, Michael Goldstein, said of the confrontation, which the suit alleges also involved a female cop opening Rosenbaum’s clothing and peering inside her bra and her under pants.
At the time, Rosenbaum, of Essex County, NJ, was interning at Vaute Couture on Grand Street, a vegan clothing store .
On her way back from a work errand at the post office, she noticed a kitten behind a gate in a nearby alley.
The 5-foot-1, 110-pound woman was squatting to coo at the kitty when all hell broke loose, according to the suit.
“Hey, stop!” a strange man yelled from inside a gold sedan.

Was the strange man:
1.  in a police vehicle?
2.  Wearing a police uniform?

He was really aggressive,” Rosenbaum recalled. I had no idea who he was, so I just kept walking.
Here we find that being "aggressive" is sensitive with the word "really" but next we see the phrase "I had no idea" which, when someone says, is very difficult to believe because we all have ideas on just about everything.  Rather than having "no idea", didn't she think he was a stranger?  

Next note the highest sensitivity:  the need to explain, as we add this emphasis to our color coding with blue.  The need to explain why she kept walking is, itself, sensitive. She was squatting but now "kept" walking.  This may suggest a gap of missing information. 

A man and woman ran from the car, threw her against it, and demanded to know why she hadn’t stopped and whether she had drugs, the suit alleges.

“This whole time, I didn’t know who these people are,” she told The Post. “Finally, after a few minutes, they tell me they are police.”

We note the emphasis of "this whole time" is added to the negative, what she "didn't" know, and refers to them as "people."  
"Finally, after a few minutes" is a skip in time. 
Now notice that she, in recanting what happened, changes from the past tense version to the present tense:  "tell me they are police."  This is not reliable. 
Objection:  Can't PTSD from an event cause someone to re live it in the present tense?
Answer:   Yes it can, but regarding the 'assault', Rosenbaum used past tense but now has switched it during the sensitive part of the story which has everything to do with the lawsuit. 

They weren’t having any of her “just stopping to look at a kitty” story, she said.

If they did not identify themselves as police, nor look like police, the lawsuit likely goes forward.  Notice here she returns to past tense description:  

I offered to show them the cat,” she said. “They had two people on top of me, and my arm was really hurting.”
notice that she not only speaks past tense of this part of the story, but she continues to call them "people" even though they have been identified as "cops."  Since we know (and she knows) that they were cops, why not refer to them as such? 

Next note the pronouns.  She said "I offered to show them the cat.  They had two people on top of me.  If "they" had two people on top of her, this indicates that there were others present also at the time.  This is an issue that NYCPD should explore, and the others present will have statements to give. 

One might ask if she has been coached by her attorney.  

SCAN, the brain child of Avinoam Sapir, teaches us to listen to what someone tells us and what someone does not tell us. 

"my arm was really hurting" does not state that they hurt her arm.  

It got worse from there, the suit claims.
As passers-by gawked, the female cop lifted up Rosenbaum’s tank top, pulled back her bra and peered inside, the suit claims.
The officer then pulled open Rosenbaum’s jean shorts and took another intrusive peek — inside her underwear, the suit claims.
“Multiple times, the defendant officers threatened to take plaintiff down to the police station and write her up for [a] felony,” the suit says.

At this point, I’m just sobbing,” she said.

She started in the past tense, went into the present tense (unreliable), then returned to past tense, but now, regarding impact, turns present tense again.  Impact is part of the suit as she seeks "damages" or a settlement from NYPD.

Finally, she said, “they told me they didn’t want me to have a bad impression of cops so they were going to let me go.
Note the past tense again.  
This is a very nice young lady,” said her lawyer. “This was a false arrest and imprisonment. It’s assault.”
Note the attorney's need to portray her character.  If she was falsely arrested and imprisoned, one might ask why the attorney feels the need to touch upon character. 
City Law Department spokeswoman Kate O’Brien Ahlers said, ”The city will evaluate the claim,”

Perhaps Kate O'Brien Ahlers will read this analysis before making a decision on the claim. 


Anonymous said...

I call BS on her Story..

Tania Cadogan said...

Her tenses are all over the place plus there is the temporal lacuna between her crouching down to pet the kitty and her continuing to carry on walking.

Therein lies the problem.

What happened between her crouching and continuing to walk ( unless of course she was practising for her ministry of silly walks funding application)

Whatever it was she is not telling and it was enough to catch the eye of passing officers.

reformed troll xxxxxxx said...

"As passers by gawked"So She has witness,s??? Cctv? She seems insane.

Anonymous said...


Sus said...

The missing info is that the "aggressive" male identified himself as police when he pulled up. She then walked on, which puts her as eluding a police officer. I'd bet on that one.

sha said...

Most women know that, even IF a person identifies themselves as a police officer, they COULD BE LYING, especially if they are NOT in a uniform and NOT in an identifiable vehicle. Any jerk on the street can say, "stop i'm a cop" and it doesn't mean I have to stop for them, in fact I'd be an idiot if I did. Even REAL police officers know that women being traffic stopped will sometimes drive slowly on to a well lit parking lot or where other people are before they stop.

What do you want to bet that this woman tried to go over the fence, or open up a locked fence to "save the poor kitty" since all the references to her being vegan and blah blah blah in the article that doesn't matter. (such as her height as if small people cannot commit crime)

ltnt columbo said...

"Being à vegan"= FAKE HUMAN!!!!

Anne said...

How can we tell if a persons wording is changed after speaking with their lawyer? When doing SA it seems to me that statements could be changed/influenced by lawyers and press.

dadgum said...

Has anyone here seen the youtube video of the Hawthorne, CA police shooting a man;s dog? I'm not addressing the dog part, because it did go after the officers (warning: video is disturbing after the dog jumps out of the car). The man was detained and cuffed for recording police on a sidewalk. They didn't like it.

Women are instructed when pulled over by someone they cannot identify to keep moving to a lighted area. Not to roll windows down. To call 911 if they are afraid. I fear if we do as suggested, we'll still end up in trouble...

shmi said...

In every retelling of an event, an accused person will omit or gloss over (temporal lacuna)anything that suggests they might be culpable. I think it is a natural thing to do.

TrishapatK said...

Sometimes it seems to me as though the change of tense in the middle of a story is because the person telling it is so engaged in it that they feel as though both the person they are telling the story to and they, themselves are are going over it moment by moment.
Am I mistaken to see that as a possibility? If that is a possibility what are the qualifiers to indicate that it is a truthful reporting where they entered into it mentally and switched to present tense? I think it is that they would be experiencing some of the emotion once again too ... is that correct?

Anonymous said...

re the use of 'this' versus 'that' - in this context, where she is describing what (allegedly) took place in the past, it seems to me not only natural but also correct for her to use 'that'. It's distancing, but that's because she's at a distance from the alleged event. It would be unnatural for her to use 'this' if the alleged ill-treatment is not ongoing.

Is the sort of thing that interviews would dig into, to discover her usual usage of this vs that?



Anonymous said...

IMO the woman was unnecessarily harassed by unidentified police who approached her in an unmarked car, who then proceeded to intimidate her, when she was doing nothing but minding her own business and attempting to pet and rescue a frightened little cat.

I would have been frightened out of my mind had I been accosted by strangers in a similar situation.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

IMO the woman was unnecessarily harassed by unidentified police who approached her in an unmarked car, who then proceeded to intimidate her, when she was doing nothing but minding her own business and attempting to pet and rescue a frightened little cat.

I would have been frightened out of my mind had I been accosted by strangers in a similar situation.

I agree.

Anonymous said...

LONDON — British police say they have launched a full investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann, and want to trace 38 "persons of interest" in the case.

Detectives say it's possible that Madeleine, who vanished from a Portuguese holiday resort six years ago, is still alive.

me said...

If I was madeleine"s father,i would have shown a "gave"of "hope"NOT "Dread"as this "father"was obviously showing!

me said...

**FACE** NOT"GAVE"! ^^

Anonymous said...

Telling the truth but posturing at the same time?

Anonymous said...

The father is guilty,His face told/tells us.

Anonymous said...

I'm not convinced this news story lends itself to statement analysis of the subject's quotes.

It's likely that the "time jumps" that, in a full, open-eneded narrative might be indicative of intentional omission, are instead due to the reporter's selecting very few of the subject's utterances to publish in the story.

In addition, tense change, and explanatory connecting words such as "so" could easily be elicited by the reporter's questions (which are omitted).

The tense change is also characteristic of her generation, where, as the person gets into the meat of the story they'll segue to present-tense. I think it's correlated to immersion in social media and texting conventions of snippet-like live-action "updates." I do think generation, education level, and social class should inform statement analysis. Here we have a 22-y-o liberal arts graduate.

In evidence of my theory, check out the statements of a young man, survivor of yesterday's Asiana crash-landing at SFO.

“The back got the worst of it,” a passenger on the plane, Elliot Stone, told CNN. He said the plane seemed to be coming in at a sharp angle and just as they reached the runway, it seemed to gain speed. It struck the tarmac with tremendous force, he said, and the people in the back of the plane “got hammered.” “Everybody’s head goes up to the ceiling,” he said.

Now, I listened to that interview and in fact he did switch tense of his own accord. It was like he switched from describing it to reliving it.

Listening to him, I got a clear sense of Elliot. Very California, laid-back, affluent, uses some gaming language, probably popular and gregarious.

I believe he was describing exactly what he experienced, had no reason to lie, and was in a bit of shock. He mentioned several times, emphatically, that he saw about 5 badly injured people who'd been ejected from the tail section, and had trouble attracting the rescue people from the plane wreck itself to come back and take care of the injured people. He was very upset about this and that was totally believable as well.

At any rate, here we have a young man of, I'd guess, a similar age and socioeconomic background as the subject of the Post story, switching tenses in a similar way.

Anonymous said...

here's a link of that interview

Not only does he switch tense, he also distances by using "you" and drops pronouns entirely as he lists a sequence of events.

All of which would be flagged as suspect if he were a witness or suspect to a crime.

So I think this is a caution flag for jumping to conclusions.