Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Lesson: San Bernadino Ally's Statement

"I can't believe he did this!" said the ally of the San Bernadino Islamic massacre shortly after the bombing.  He went on to being arrested. 

I read that "statement analysis showed his guilt in this statement."

Not so fast.  

I have noted that some have said, "the word "this" in his statement shows that he was involved, since "this" is close and "that" is distant. 

This is the type of over simplification that inevitably brings doubt to the work of Statement Analysts. 

In this particular case, the analyst was correct; but it is far too much of a leap for accurate application elsewhere.  

Here is why:

The word "this" indicates closeness.  He did not say, "I can't believe he did that!", which in using the word "that", would have shown distancing language.  

We do not know, in context, what the closeness or distance is related to. 

The closeness could be chronological:  it just happened whereas years from now, the same sentence would include "that" due to the passage of time. 
It could be geographical:  the cousin is in San Bernadino. 

From time to time I raise the concerns of the over simplification in analysis.  With the cousin arrested, it may sound impressive to "know" on a single sentence, but it will not hold up with consistency over time.  

When I analyzed Gov. Chris Christie's denial of "Bridge Gate" I noted that he did, of his own accord, say "I did not know..." in his speech, but I also noted that this was the lingering question hanging over the speech and he spoke at great length before getting to the denial; consistently avoiding that which was expected.  This is to "add to" the element of reliable denial moving to the point of being "unreliable."

The reliable denial is not something that parroting language will suffice for a conclusion, nor lengthy introductions, nor any change of language.  "I did not steal that damned guitar!" is actually something that is unreliable since the "guitar" has now been changed to a "damned" guitar.  This simple addition (due to the presence of emotion) changes the classification from reliable to unreliable.  

Over simplification, like in "101 courses" can lead to discrediting the science.  They are no easy answers in detecting deception and those that seek such will inevitably find a crisis of confidence in their own work, just as others will, too.  

Far better is to apply oneself, fasten your seatbelt, and put in the time and effort to learn principle, learn the psychology behind principle, and learn the appropriate application.  

It will not come quickly, nor easily, but it will yield marvelous results.  

To host a seminar, or take our at home course, go to Hyatt Analysis and register today.  

February 6th and 7th Seattle, Washington still has openings.  

Training is Saturday-Sunday February 6-7, 2016 

Location: Roosevelt Room, The Dreamclinic in Seattle, 916 NE 65th Street
Seattle, WA 98115
6 February, 0830-1600

$100 Fee



Anonymous said...

Peter, please correct me if I am wrong. The San Bernardino bombing never actually happened but was determined to be a previous plot by those (Farook and wife) that massacred 14 co-workers.

The ally you are referring to is the former neighbor and friend I guess? The one who supplied the automatic weapons.

Anonymous said...

What if I've been repeatedly accused of stealing the guitar, have been replying "I didn't steal the guitar!" each time, but eventually do say "the damn guitar!" because I am totally exasperated from the harping & I've reached the limits of rational patience?

Wait a minute, I think that proved your one-sentence in context rule, yes? ;)

I'll send this through anyway because surely I can't be the only contrary minded reader here, and this was the 1st question that came to mind. Emotionally based...

Gotta love science! Thank you Peter!

CJ said...

This (OT) headline caught my interest this morning. Unreliable denial, much?

I Didn't Kill My Stepson': Five Years After Kyron Horman Disappeared, His Stepmother Terri Speaks Out for the First Time

elf said...

I would think when he said that he couldn't believe his friend did this it's probably truthful. I have a friend that does crazy stuff ALL THE TIME. I've known her since I was twelve years old and I still cannot believe some of the stuff she has done, from repetitive dui charges to randomly attacking family members over perceived slights to wanting to take nude photos in a field to sending several pornographic magazine subscriptions to an obnoxious neighbor (that one was kind of funny lol ). Even when I'm not particularly surprised by her aberrant behavior I still always say to myself I can't believe she did that.

John Mc Gowan said...

OT Update:

'I Didn't Kill My Stepson': Five Years After Kyron Horman Disappeared, His Stepmother Terri Speaks Out for the First Time

The title is somewhat misleading. She does not say "'I Didn't Kill My Stepson'

What she does say is (in this vt anyway. Although it does seem to be in the free editing stage) ""Never..harmed my son. I never wanted to harm my husband."

Along with the dropped pronoun" never" does not mean didn't. She also minimizes the crime to "harm".This is way off an RD.

From article:

On June 4, 2010, Terri Horman had no idea her life would change forever.

She took her stepson Kyron, then 7, to a science fair at his school in Portland, Oregon. She took photos with her digital camera, toured his classmates' projects, and then said good-bye.

"I saw him walking down to his room. My vision of him is the back of his head almost at the door," Terri, 45, tells PEOPLE in an exclusive interview. "That's what I see when I sit here and think about him – that's my last thought."

That afternoon, when Kyron was not on the school bus, she says she called the school and they told her he wasn't there. "He had been unaccounted for six hours," she says. Within hours, investigators were searching around the school for the second grader. And within days, Terri appeared to be the focus of the investigation.

For more about the story and what Terri thinks happened to Kyron, pick up this week's issue of PEOPLE on newsstands Friday. Tune in to ABC's GMA and Nightline on Friday for a PEOPLE/ABC News exclusive sit down interview with Terri Horman.

Terri has never been named a suspect or a person of interest in the case surrounding Kyron's disappearance, which officials for the Multnomah County Sheriff's Department say is an "ongoing investigation."

Still, a cloud of suspicion has followed Terri, and she's ready to answer questions that people have wanted to know. Terri tells PEOPLE she did not harm or kill Kyron and has no idea what happened to him or where he is.

"The answer is what I've said a hundred times – I don't know."
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VT 8 mins

mom2many said...

I'd love to see more about the science behind Statement Analysis. Would you consider a future article(s) about it? Or if there is something already in the archives, could someone point me to a link?

John Mc Gowan said...

"I never wanted to harm my husband."

Although this is not an RD also. It is interesting she doesn't drop the pronoun "I" in this part of her statement. This shows more commitment. She attaches herself to the unreliable denial, and because this is unreliable and she does use the pronoun "I", i would hazard a guess that it is exactly what she wanted.

Tania Cadogan said...

You beat me john except mine is the daily mail :)

More than five years after 7-year-old Kyron Horman vanished without a trace from his Oregon school, the missing boy's stepmother is speaking out for the first time, insisting that she does not know what happened to her stepson.

Terri Horman, 45, has been living under a cloud of suspicion, even though she was never charged in connection to Kyron's disappearance. In the wake of the tragedy, Horman's marriage has unraveled, she has become estranged from her daughter, and her community turned against her.

In an exclusive interview with People Magazine and ABC's Good Morning America this week, the woman recounts her final moments with her stepson on the morning he disappeared, and her life was turned upside-down in the weeks and months that followed

'I saw him walking down to his room. My vision of him is the back of his head almost at the door,' Horman recalls. 'That's what I see when I sit here and think about him – that's my last thought.'

Shortly after 8am on June 4, 2010, Horman dropped off Kyron at his school in Portland, which was hosting a science fair that morning.

The stepmom took photos of Kyron in front of his project, took a look at his classmates' work, and then left to run some errands with her young daughter, Kiara, in tow. That was the last time she saw the bespectacled 7-year-old boy with a gap-toothed smile.

'What if I had stayed for the whole fair and not left early?' Horman still wonders. 'I think somebody from school took him.'

At 2.30pm that day, when Terri and her then-husband, Kaine Horman, headed to the bus stop to meet Kyron from school, they learned from the bus driver that the second-grader was not there.

Mrs Horman then called Kyron's elementary school and was told that he wasn't there either, even though his jacket and book bag still hung on a hook in a classroom. By that point, the boy had been unaccounted for for six hours.

Within hours, officials with the Multonmah Sheriff's Department launched a search for Kyron. Deputies were soon joined by hundreds of volunteers scouring the woods behind Skyline Elementary School. Despite their efforts, there was no sign of the boy anywhere.

By the third day, Horman says police zeroed in on her and were watching her every more, although she was never officially named a suspect or a person of interest in the investigation.

Several weeks later, Terri Horman failed a polygraph test - an outcome she has blamed on her emotional state.

'You're not supposed to give some a poly of they’ve not had any sleep or they're emotionally drained,' she tells People Magazine.

Nearly two months after Kyron had gone missing, Horman's husband, Kaine, left her with their daughter after the couple had an explosive argument.

Tania Cadogan said...

A short time later, Horman says a stranger showed up at her door threatening to tell police she had tried to hire him to kill Kaine, unless she paid him $10,000.

Horman contacted police to report the incident and avoided being charged in the murder-for-hire plot.

Thinking back on her encounter with the alleged blackmailer, Horman now believes it was a scheme concocted by her ex-husband and police in an attempt to get a confession out of her.

Terri has not spoken to Kaine or her young daughter from the day he left their home in his pickup truck in late June 2010. Their divorce was finalized in September 2013, and Terri is still waiting to be reintroduced into her daughter Kiara's life.

In divorce papers, Kaine Horman said he believes Terri 'is involved' in Kyron's disappearance CNN reported.

Kyron's biological mother, Desiree Young, has also said in interviews that she wanted to keep up pressure on the investigation into Terri Horman.

Last year, Horman left Portland and moved to California, away from a group of people she calls the Haters who have been hounding her both online and in person, ceaselessly asking her about Kyron's whereabouts.

'The answer is “I don’t know.” That will always be the answer, because I don’t know,’ she says.

Horman has petitioned for name changes without success in the years since Kyron's disappearance.

When she tried to change her name to Claire Stella Sullivan in 2014, Horman told a judge she needed a new name to start a new life without the stigma of Horman attached to it.

At the time, she said she hadn't been able to find a job in four years, and she was worried about her safety after receiving threats.

The 45-year-old woman still believes Kyron is alive, and she wants police to keep looking for him until he is found.

‘Until you show me something, I will always believe,’ she says.

Horman's interview will be aired on ABC's Nightline Friday evening, and her full account is featured in the February issue of People Magazine, now available on newsstands.

Read more:

John Mc Gowan said...

OT Update:

Charlie Bothuell's father pleads guilty to child abuse

Charlie Bothuell IV, the father accused of abusing his son and isolating him in a basement, has pleaded guilty to fourth-degree child abuse.

Bothuell was sentenced on Tuesday to 18 months of probation and anger management classes, according to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office. He was also ordered to have no contact with his son.

Bothuell made national news in June 2014 when he reported that his 12-year-old son, Charlie Bothuell V, had been missing from their Detroit, Michigan home for 11 days.

While discussing the case on air with Nancy Grace, Bothuell learned that state police had found the boy barricaded behind boxes in the basement of his home. Bothuell, who began breathing hard and clenching his chest, said he had no idea how the boy could have been in the basement all that time.

"I checked my basement. The FBI checked my basement. The police checked my basement," he said on air. "My wife checked my basement. I've been down there several times. We've all been checking."

After he was found, the boy told investigators that Bothuell and his stepmother forced him to live in the basement and not socialize with others. He had also been deprived of food and forced to engage in an “extreme and unreasonable exercise regime,” investigators said.

The boy, who prosecutors described as “very thin,” was forced to do 100 push-ups, 200 sit-ups, and 100 jumping jacks twice each day, according to court documents. He also had to curl a 25-pound weight on each arm and do 5,000 revolutions on an exercise machine.

The boy told child welfare investigators that he sometimes couldn’t finish the workout routine because he was in too much pain. He also told investigators he was beaten by Bothuell with a PVC pipe.

Bothuell’s attorney claimed the boy lied about the allegations.


elf said...

I saw him walking down to his room. My vision of him is the back of his head almost at the door. That's what I see when I sit here and think about him- that's my last thought.

This sounds made up. She doesn't use Kyron's name. What room is his room? His classroom? His bedroom? (If I didn't already know he supposedly went missing from school I would think by 'his room' it would mean his bedroom ) and her 'vision ' of him... that's just a weird sentence in itself. Like a psychic has a vision. Bringing up the back of his head is pretty specific, like Billie Dunn saying something about seeing Hailey's hair.
And what's with 'that's my last thought' ? That's gotta be an outright lie because not only has this happened to her stepson that she supposedly loved its also been affecting her life for the past 5 years. That can't be her last thought. It wouldn't be possible just because of human nature.

John Mc Gowan said...

OT Update:

DeOrr's grandfather: 'My grandson is alive and I will find him'

BOISE -- The grandfather of the eastern Idaho toddler missing since last summer is holding out hope that he's OK.

This comes as the private investigator hired to find DeOrr Kunz Jr. says there is evidence that he is not alive.

The Lemhi County Sheriff's Office is also releasing new information on the case that has captured the attention of the entire country.

DeOrr's family hired Klein Investigations and Consulting out of Texas to find the missing 2-year-old. Philip Klein tells KTVB that DeOrr wasn't attacked by animals and wasn't abducted. He believes he's now dead, either by accident or intentionally.

DeOrr Kunz Jr. has become a name people across the country are now familiar with.

On July 10, 2015, he went missing from a campground in Lemhi County where investigators say he was staying with his parents, great-grandfather and another man.

Ever since then, his grandfather, DeOrr Kunz, has been hopeful his grandson is OK.

"We know he is alive and we will stay with that until they show us something different," said Kunz.

This comes despite grim news from private investigator Philip Klein who says he doesn't believed DeOrr is still alive. We asked Klein via Skype if he has found any physical evidence of DeOrr's death.

"I cannot comment on that right now, I will be up front and honest with the public and say there is forensic evidence,
" said Klein.

Klein says after 80 interviews and hundreds of hours of investigation, a new witness has come forward. Klein believes in the weeks after DeOrr's disappearance many were scared to share what they knew because of harsh criticism seen on social media.

"The case continues to build, the information continues to build, so I think people are comfortable with us now, and I think we are moving forward," said Klein.

He says his team is getting close to solving the case and his investigators are heading back to Idaho soon for what he calls the second phase -- reconstructing the crime scene and walking back through the timeline.

Meanwhile, DeOrr's grandfather says his family continues to feel support from those in Idaho and across the country.

"It's overwhelming the help and response we got from people, good-hearted people, and I thank you all very, very much," said Kunz.

He says they just held a fundraiser this past weekend to raise money to pay for Klein's services and says people's donations were appreciated.

"I just want people to know that as far as my family is concerned my grandson is alive and that's the way it is," said Kunz.

Chief Deputy Steve Penner with the Lemhi County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday he didn't want to comment on Klein's latest release, but did send a statement: "The Lemhi County Sheriff's Office reports that new leads have developed in the missing person case of 3-year-old DeOrr Kunz. Investigators have obtained previously withheld information regarding the case and the investigation continues."

Philip Klein says he has been in communication with the Lemhi County Sheriff's Office.


Nanaof4 said...

Elf at 1:52

I was going to post the same thing about that statement. It struck me as odd. I don't doubt that the last thing she looked at was the back of his head, but not sure it was at the school. I wonder if she hit him in the back of his head.

What went down at the school has never been completely explained. I have heard a couple verions. One that Kyron was asked to help bring something in from a car and one that he left with Terri because he allegedly had a doctor or dentist appointment.

My other thought was the "I have no idea" statement. Everyone has an idea or theory of what could have happened. Especially after all these years and being accused of his murder. I would have many, many ideas if I were innocent.

horse chestnut said...

Linguistically interesting comments from a Kent State professor under investigation by the FBI.

Anonymous said...

I believe Horman. They (and I use the term loosely) follow the same tract each and every time without ever scratching their heads to think "WTF?"

He's not in the grocery store! He's not in a box with a barcode (box may be pseudoynm for police officer),and he isn't conducting research.

lynda said...

"I never wanted to harm my husband."

Well...that'a true isn't it? She didn't want to harm him..she wanted to KILL him.

I thought the same thing about the "vision" and the back of his head. That that is the last thing she saw while she hit/shot him in back of head or strangled him from behind. I agree the word vision evokes a "dreamlike" state or distant memory type feeling.

Lots happening in the world of Deorr. Tanisha (Daddys sister) says she was "shocked" at PI report. Shocked? Seriously?

Statement Analysis Blog said...

thanks, Horsechestnut.

Terri Horman back in the news, too.

lynda said...

There is hardly nowhere that she does not stutter on the pronoun "I".

No reliable denial

She speaks of "first" poly and gives excuses why she failed. She neglects to address the 2nd and 3rd poly. She doesn't speak at all about anything that DOES point to her as culpable. Wasn't it proven she drove out to an island or something? And she has denied being there? I have to go read up on this case again.