Friday, September 26, 2014

Statement Analysis: Tony Stewart

A strong denial would be, "I didn't intend to hit or intimidate Kevin Ward."  

I know 100 percent in my heart and in my mind that I did not do anything wrong. This was 100 percent an accident,” Stewart told The Associated Press on Thursday in his first interview since a grand jury decided he would not be charged in Ward’s death.
1.  "I know" allows for someone to "know" differently
2.  "100 percent"
3.  "in my heart"
4.  "in my mind"
There are four points of weakness in the statement.  
On the advice of legal counsel, Stewart would not describe what he remembers aboutthe crash at Canandaigua Motorsports Park.

Regarding what he did, it was not "wrong" in his mind.  

Ward’s family blasted Stewart Wednesday.
“Our son got out of his car during caution, while the race was suspended. All other vehicles were reducing speed and not accelerating, except for Tony Stewart, who intentionally tried to intimidate Kevin by accelerating and sliding his car towards him, causing this tragedy,” the Ward family said in a statement.
“The focus should be on the actions of Tony Stewart and not Kevin. The matter is not at rest and we will pursue all remedies, in fairness to Kevin.”


Anonymous said...

he shouldn't have gotten out of the car. maybe they should have taught kevin that getting out of a car on a racetrack is/was dangerous. they want to vilify tony because kevin acted like a spoiled little hothead. bet that kid never had to take responsibility or had consequences for his actions.
it is very tragic, life gone so young but quit blaming stewart. kevins OWN actions got him killed. jmho

Anonymous said...

I don't think he intended to kill him but I think he was reckless and tried to drive close enough to kick dirt up at him and miscalculated. They were both hot heads at the time and the combination proved deadly.

John Mc Gowan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Mc Gowan said...


Classic example of NOT issuing a reliable denial, when there is no better opportunity to do so.

DLT Sentenced For Groping TV Personality
Dave Lee Travis says he is "mortified" and "really disappointed" over his conviction and those closest to him "know the truth".

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget Kevin ward was high at the time. I think there are sensitivities because this is a man who is truly worked up and blames himself for an accident caused by stupidity and arrogance. He risked his life getting out of the car and approaching a moving vehicle. He didn't swerve to hit him and didn't he only hit him with his back tired? Had he intentionally hit him wouldn't he have been driving towards him and hit him with front wheels as well? He did what was appropriate and didn't race with respect to wards family and while it was being investigated. This was an accident that will haunt him all his life. Let this be a lesson.

Anonymous said...

If Stewart had been able to stop instead what do you think might have happened? Do you think it's possible ward might have attacked Stewart? This would be a completely different story with Stewart as a victim. He was angry and he was walking towards a car full of rage and an accident happened. If this was a story of a road rage incident you wouldn't blame the person who accidentally hit the man approaching the car would you. Man vs car and car usually wins. He let drugs and anger rule his inhibitions. Maybe it wasn't the drugs. Maybe he is just hotheaded and made a bad decision. But we must be held responsible for our own bad decisions and be accountable to them. You walk in front of a moving vehicle and you might get hit.

rob said...

I agree with everyone's statements above. I don't think it was intentional, but if it was, then Stewart will have to live with and answer to that.

Anonymous said...

Oh, I agree that Stewart's statement is sensitive! I was open minded about this incident, but I feel Stewart's "machine" may be (literally and figuratively) running over Ward all over again. Then I read Stewart's statement and it's full of "weaknesses." Now I think it's very possible that he tried to intimidate Ward and miscalculated. Also, smoking pot before a race? I can't see an achievement-oriented, driven individual doing that. It does not fit.

Thanks for highlighting this, Peter. I was hoping you would!

Tania Cadogan said...

off topic

Sniffer dogs have failed to pick up any scent of the three-year-old William Tyrell on the NSW mid-north coast, fuelling fears he may not have wandered away from home.

The search for the three-year-old who vanished from his grandmother’s Kendall home on Friday is in its fifth day – and the chances of finding him alive nearby are thought to be rapidly diminishing.

“It’s baffling that there’s no lead at this time,” Superintendent Paul Fehon told Macquarie Radio on Tuesday.

“We would have thought we would have had some indication of something at this stage of this very thorough search.”

Neither police sniffer dogs nor cadaver dogs had been able to pick up any sign of the boy, Fehon said.

He said investigators were “keeping an open mind” about whether William had been taken.

Police in the mid-north coast area have been working with specialist units across the state, including the sex crime squad.

Known sex offenders in the area have been contacted to confirm their whereabouts when William was last seen in his grandmother’s front yard around 10.30am last Friday.

“We are concentrating back on last Friday when he was in that yard, playing with his sister, with his grandmother there and his mother at home,” Fehon said.

“If someone saw anything or knew of anyone that was visiting the Kendall area before 11 o’clock, if they could please call Crime Stoppers.”

Authorities and members of the Kendall community are refusing to give up, as fresh crews from Sydney and Newcastle join the search.

“We do have grave concerns,” Fehon said. “To disappear that quickly absolutely bewilders us.”

The search will be expanded on Tuesday from 1.5km around the home, which backs on to bush, out to 3km, with police on trial bikes venturing further afield.

“The whole operation has covered in excess of 10 square kilometres,” Fehon said.

A family friend told the Seven Network that William was a “gorgeous little boy, happy, cheeky adventurer”.

Crime Stoppers can be contacted on 1800 333 000

This does not look good.

I wonder if the adults present have been polygraphed?

Anonymous said...

Hmm..great read. Makes my mind think. I have one question, Peter.

Regarding this statement: "I know" allows for someone to "know" differently.

Can't saying "I know" also indicate that others think differently, not so much KNOW differently? You always have a knack at explaining these things, and would appreciate your input.


John Mc Gowan said...

Tania's OT

Authorities and members of the Kendall community are refusing to give up, as fresh crews from Sydney and Newcastle join the search.

“We do have grave concerns,” Fehon said. “To disappear that quickly absolutely bewilders us.”

Hi Tania,

Although in most cases, this is a figure of speech. I'm wondering, given that. "Neither police sniffer dogs nor cadaver dogs had been able to pick up any sign of the boy". They may believe he may have been buried somewhere. I always note when this phrase enters someones language.

What are your thought on this?

Statement Analysis Blog said...

I'm with others on this one.

I think he intended to put a scare in the other driver. Had they both stopped, I think there would have been a fight.

He did not intend, directly, to drive over him.

I have read that Stewart has threatened this previously, and, as things have it, he made good on his threat.

This is my guess.

I don't know if I am thinking that he only intended to scare him (as one said, with the dirt, etc), because it is so difficult to picture someone doing this purposely.

I know that people do bad things, in a moment of rage, that they regret for a lifetime.

He did hate his rival, and did (methinks) threaten his rival, so I very well be wrong here.

His statement shows sensitivity.

Why is it sensitive?


It's for better minds than my own.


Tania Cadogan said...

Hi john

“We do have grave concerns,” Fehon said. “To disappear that quickly absolutely bewilders us.”

Yhis particularly stands out to me because of the use of the word GRAVE.

Grave is associated with death and burial, I know it can also be associated with seriousness of concern though.
i wonder if this is leakage of marbles since every word is thought a microsecond before speaking or writing.

Why use the word grave not serious or major or that they are very concerned?

it is concerning that neither sniffer dogs nor cadaver dogs have been able to find his scent.

if he was in the house alive that day, there should be scent, if he was outside playing, there should be scent.
if live sarch dogs are not reacting in the house or yard when was he last there?
Cadaver dogs will be able to detect cadaverine approx 90 mins after death depending on environmental conditions hot as opposed to cool and also manner of death since open wounds may release cadaverine detectable to dogs slightly earlier than an intact body.

No detection of cadaverine could indicate he was killed and removed before decomp had a chance to set in for a dog to detect or he was killed outside away from the area.

When was he last seen by an independant witness?

Have they interviewed his siblings or the family members?

Have the grandparents taken a polygraph and what were the results?

William’s parents, who cannot be named for legal reasons, are “distraught and fatigued in coming to terms with the unexplained disappearance of their young boy,” says Fehon
This is unusual, why would the parents not be named for legal reasons?
Given the nature of the case, is it possible that the parents have a history with CPS or LE and they cannot be named due to that reason?
They cannot name the parents to protect the sibling?

The fact the search has been scaled back also indicates the likely belief the child is not alive.
Given the environment and the length of time this is somewhat expected, they have stopped active searching and are now working on information.

Did they do this because of his age and the local area and length of time?

Did they do this due to knowledge or suspicion?

The fact they are looking at human intervention precludes him wandering off.
In this case it points either to abduction by stranger, abduction by a family member (what are the family dynamics?) or, something happened to him at the hands of a stanger or a family member.

Have the family made any public statements?

Anonymous said...

@Tania - we don't automatically polygraph people in Australia. They have been proven to be unreliable and that it why they aren't used in courts. Also,we don't automatically look at the parents. This is a tragedy. A terrible time for the parents and family. We are not so suspicious in Aus.

Tania Cadogan said...

Off topic

The Middle Brother State Forest is a lonely place for a little boy.

Just off the Pacific Highway, on the NSW mid-north coast, a gravel road snakes through 30-metre high trees and dry, tangled bush.

For days, SES and police have searched deep into the thick forest looking for anything – clothing, rubbish, a weapon – that may have been discarded from a car carrying three-year-old William Tyrell.

But every day since William went missing from his grandmother's backyard in Kendall on September 12, wearing his favourite Spider-Man suit, searchers have returned with the same answer: "Nil result".

In one of the most baffling missing persons cases he has seen, veteran mid-north coast police officer Superintendent Paul Fehon, who ran the local search for fugitive Malcolm Naden, said he has nothing, not even a hunch, to suggest what has happened to William.

How does a little boy simply vanish without a trace?

William and his sister, 4, arrived at their grandmother's house in Benaroon Drive, on the evening of Thursday, September 11 for their first visit from Sydney's north shore. (William has a complicated family history and, for legal reasons, his family cannot be identified). It had already been a tough year for his grandmother. Her husband died in March, she had battled her own illness and relinquished much of her involvement in Kendall's community groups, only recently returning to her beloved lawn bowls.

As William played in the backyard on Friday morning, his mother caught a snap on her phone of him drawing with crayons, his sister behind him and his grandmother on the deck with her slippers just in view. He started a game of "chaseys" with his sister, running around the two-storey Queenslander, when suddenly he was gone.

William's grandmother was sitting out back and saw nothing. His mother had ducked inside to make a cup of tea at the front of the house, with windows that look down Benaroon Drive, and saw nothing.

A neighbour told Fairfax Media that his grandmother came running down Benaroon Drive knocking on doors and asking, "Have you seen my grandson?" The neighbour watched the father, who had been in town running errands (which have been verified by police), arrive back within seconds and start "running around like a mad thing".

Police were called within 20 minutes. Within two hours, a full-scale search was underway and detectives were on the scene.

However, Superintendent Fehon said there has not been a shred of evidence that William either wandered into the bush, was abducted by a stranger, or taken by someone known to him.

William's grandmother's house sits on a hill, providing an open view down Benaroon Drive. Houses sit well-back from the road on manicured, acreage blocks. Every movement is noticed in the quiet dead-end street. There is little, if any, through traffic, making the probability of a random, opportunistic attack "next to nil," Superintendent Fehon said.

Neighbours said they didn't hear or see any cars or strangers on Friday. The whereabouts of relatives have been verified and there is no family conflict that could provide a motive.

"But we were out there searching and if that boy was out there, he would have been found quickly," said a neighbour who helped search in the first few, frantic minutes. "None of us around here believe that if that little boy had walked down the road, we wouldn't have found him."

If he wandered into the prickly scrub on the edges of Benaroon Drive, he left no threads or markings. "Even our heavy overalls have been tearing in this bush," Superintendent Fehon said.

Every home has been searched. The Sex Crimes Squad has verified the whereabouts of known offenders in the street or town. Cameras have been sent down sewer pipes. William's grandmother's house has been searched from the roof cavity to the basement.

Tania Cadogan said...


After trampling the three-kilometre "hot zone" three times over, police widened their operation on Thursday to a 48-square kilometre "evidence-based search" through the Middle Brother State Forest, looking for any signs of "human intervention" such as items discarded by a kidnapper in a car.

Strike Force Rosann detectives are sifting through hundreds of pieces of information: possible sightings, bits of clothing, a man who asked at the general store for directions to Benaroon Drive. But nothing has proven credible.

"That's the baffling part of this case," Superintendent Fehon said. "There is simply nothing."

Tracker Pete Moss said he went missing from this area as a five-year-old in 1963 and managed to wander three kilometres until he was found five hours later. He joined the search a week ago and has noticed the mood sink further each day as crews return with nothing.

"It's like this hour-glass and you see the grains just disappearing," he said. "There was a point where everyone just changed. It moved from rescue to recovery and now we're just staying until we find something, anything."

Local SES controller Paul Burg said most volunteers have vowed to keep going because they know William's family. "But it's never gone this long without anything," he said.

William's father has often joined the search, drenched in sweat and tears and thanking the search crews and the local ladies who have kept them fed with donated food.

"He looked like he had aged about 10 years in a day," said one friend. "He keeps saying, 'where's my little Spidey-Man?'."

It's believed William's grandmother has left home to stay with a friend, overwhelmed by stress. Two little bikes remain on the back porch. Superintendent Paul Fehon walks around the property and is at a loss to explain what might have happened.

"Tell me, what do you think has happened?" he asks, turning to a small group of reporters who all shrug. "We don't know either," he says.

Read more:

Anonymous said...

a peaceful muslim beheaded a woman in Oklahoma today.

Tania Cadogan said...

Anonymous said...

tania, why do you keep posting irrelevant stuff here? This is about Stewart's statement.

Firstly: This is Peter's blog and as such, we do not have an option to start a new topic.

Secondly: Peter has told us many times that he is happy to have off topic posts posted as they keep him up to date on new information on current cases and also breaking cases where statement analysis can prove useful.
He has told us he checks here first for the latest news.

If the topic is appropriate and relevant to the general theme of his blog, he can, and often does, start a new topic where we can then continue to post.

You ask why i posted irrelevant stuff here, i assume you are new and do not know how Peter runs his blog otherwise you would understand it is not irrelevant ( no missing child case ever is)
I also don't wish to be pedantic( anything in the negative is sensitive, i know :) ) but your post was irrelevant to the topic on hand.

have a pleasant evening :)

Anonymous said...

There were early reports that he rev'ed his engine as he approached Ward. I don't know if that is true or not, just what I had heard in the early days. If that is true, it makes me believe he was trying to spit dirt at him or fish tail toward him as he passed. Maybe just to bump him or cause he to have to jump back. Interesting that his legal counsel will not allow him to describe what he remembers.

Anonymous said...

@Tanya be very careful where you are getting your information. Sounds like 'quality' journalism. Please don't try to make something out of a tragedy. We don't "hound" families in Australia. A few mistakes were made and we learnt to wait for 'facts'. Please, please leave this family alone.

Anonymous said...

I don't think he intentionally killed Ward, I don't think he even intentionally hit him. I think he shows sensitivity because, in fact, even if unintentional, he did end up killing him. To anyone with a conscience, I would think there would be guilty feelings for killing someone, even if it was unintentional.

I don't know the mechanics of the vehicle he was driving, but other off road vehicles, specifically snowmobiles I have experience with, it's much easier to maneuver/turn, if you push the gas lever, rather than slow down. If stopping in his track wasn't an option (meaning he knew he'd still hit him if he simply tried to stop), then I could see why he'd "rev" the engine. That is all dependant upon the mechanics of what he was driving though of course.

Also, there was a lot more of his statement, than may (or may not?) be worth analysing.

Anonymous said...

Now that makes sense, Peter. I couldn't come up with an angle that made sense. Two hot heads. Stewart didn't intend to kill, but intended to intimidate. His mistake was just that. Ward's mistake, getting out of the car. Mistake 1 + Mistake 2 = Tragedy. They are both at fault. Stewart does "know" this, which is why he wants so much to convince otherwise. The costs: Ward's life, and Stewart's conscience is forever stained with Ward's blood. Great, great lesson in SA.


Statement Analysis Blog said...


Please know I am guessing.

IF it is true, that he did say he would run him over, it may change things for me.

I struggle with my own bias.


Anonymous said...

I do, Peter. It just reminded me, that even if it's hard to comprehend someone doing something so horrid, it doesn't make it not possible. I was convinced, that a 'possible' scenario didn't exist.


Big Russian said...

Did any of you see the video where Kevin Ward grabbed the fin of Stewart's car? It appeared that he was trying to jump into or onto the car!

I think there is ambiguity in Tony's statements because when you accidentally harm or kill someone, you feel guilty, no matter how unintentional it may be.

Unknown said...

I read a few weeks ago that enhanced, multiple angle video of the accident was studied by the prosecutor, who decided to present it to the grand jury.

*(read: take the heat off of himself for not perusing charges)

The grand jury did not return any charges, so I can only assume that no evidence of swerving, or obvious attempt at intimidation, existed.

I would say Stewart's sensitivity has a lot to do with Hart's family hounding, and threatening civil action, along with their continued insistence that he is at fault. (Even though it was their high/impaired, reckless, hot headed family member who jumped out of his vehicle, and ran into traffic to confront someone he felt caused him to lose control of his vehicle.

It's a tragedy that Hart died, but the accident was his fault. If he had stayed in his vehicle, this wouldn't have happened.

Anonymous said...

Here is a link to a transcript of Tony Stewart's comments to the media yesterday (Monday, Sept 29).