Monday, May 23, 2016

Deputy Jeremy Banks 911 Call Death of Michelle O'Connell

This was originally analyzed in 2013 concluding that the caller was not truthful in his call.   The department concluded suicide.  From Crime Watch Daily, I understand he has passed a polygraph and the case is closed.  

Deputy Jeremy Banks made this 911 call.  First is the transcript, then it is repeated, with emphasis added, with Statement Analysis in bold type. 

Question for Analysis:  Does Jeremy Banks make this call as a caller with guilty knowledge of the death of Michelle O'Connell?


JEREMY BANKS: Hey.  Please get someone to my house! It’s 

4700 Sherlock Place. Please!

We have already noted that in an emergency call, the typical 

Statement Analysis principle of "expected versus unexpected" is 

in play, as the call begins with "Hey" which is a greeting.  We 

do not expect politeness, in any form, in such an emergency 

as one finding his girlfriend bleeding to death.  Urgency is 


Please now consider the topic of "Urgency" 

In any emergency like this one, urgency is presupposed.  What 

do we look for?

We look for "Urgency" versus the "appearance of urgency" in the 


Consider that this is a deputy calling.  This means he knows

precisely how the 911 system works:   

while he is on the phone, dispatch begins.  This is an example 

of scripted or feigned urgency, as he repeats the call for help

yet he never asks for help for the victim. 

In fact, he says "get someone", and not anyone specific to come, 

but already:

1.  We do not expect the emergency call to begin with a greeting;

2.  We do not expect to hear politeness 

3.  We do expect the caller to ask for help for the victim, or, in

the case of CPR, help for himself, including how to stop the 

blood.  Even those trained, under emergency settings, still may 

require guidance, should the training give way to emotion.  

"Please" is repeated here. 

The 'need to ingratiate' or align himself with 'the good guys', that

is, with authorities, is evident.  

It is one single mistake made by the Dispatch that reveals great 

insight into Jeremy Banks' personality.  

DISPATCHER: What’s going on?

JEREMY BANKS: Please. Send─ my girlfriend, I think she 

just shot herself. There’s blood 


We note in analysis that he does not ask for help for her.  We 

have his third use of the polite and ingratiating "please", as if 

he does not know that dispatch has already taken place.  We 

then come to a critical place in the call where the victim is 

now introduced for the first time.  This is vital in our 

understanding.   Who is Michelle O'Connell?

This question is not for us to answer, but the subject, himself. 

Who is Michelle O'Connell to the caller?

We begin with Statement Analysis 101:  the social introduction.  

As this is an emergency call, we had already expected him to 

have already identified why rescue, not someone, was needed.

He did not, but gave the address, along with his politeness and 

his greeting.  He took the time to say "please" twice, but not 

to report that Michelle was bleeding. 

He reports that his girlfriend may have shot herself. 

He does not report that his girlfriend is bleeding.  

He does not report that he has his hand on the wound to stop

the blood flow. 

He only identifies her as she relates to him.  

This "incomplete social introduction" is an indication that at this

point in the statement, the relationship is not good.  

This is the essence of the teaching of social introductions.  We 

learn the quality of the relationship in the statement, in the

verbalized perception of reality, from the subject's unique point

of view. 

This is to tell us:

He has not asked for help for her, and that there is a problem in 

their relationship while she lays bleeding and he speaks to 


Context is key. 

That he has not asked for help for her is noted or 'red flagged.'


Because those who have committed the crime may not want 

help for the victim; but for themselves.  

If she lives, she may be able to tell authorities what happened.  

Psychologically, he is telling us that while Michelle lay bleeding

to death, he does not want to use her name, nor for her to receive

help as this might impact him.  (please see analysis of the 911 

call for clarity as this focuses upon the psychology of principle).

Next, he must report what happened:

1.  He only "thinks" she shot herself

2.  Passivity employed regarding the blood.

1.  He gives a weak assertion that she may have shot herself.  To 

use the word "think" here, he expresses a 'weak commitment' to

what happened.  It is a guess, at best.  This indicates that he 

either does not know if she shot herself, or that he does not 

want to be identified as knowing that she shot herself.  

This is then connected to:

2.  "There's blood everywhere."

This is in Passive Voice.  Passivity in analysis indicates a desire

to conceal, and this concealment is often responsibility. 

"There's blood everywhere" does not tell us:

a.  who's blood it is

b.  who caused it

In less than a millisecond of time, he chose wording that would 

conceal responsibility for the shooting while, again, 

psychologically distancing himself from her while she lay 

bleeding out. 

What could he have said?

"Michelle is bleeding from..." and what he is doing to remedy it.  

The use of passivity means he does not want it know who's 

blood is everywhere because blood does not just end up 

everywhere, it must be caused by someone and some thing.  This 

use of passivity does not sound 'right' to dispatch:  


With or without proper Statement Analysis training, the person is

going to recognize how awkward things sound...not hearing her

name as well as the passive voice.  Hence, the question is asked

for the purpose of clarification.  This ended up working out for

those interested in truth:  

JEREMY BANKS: She shot herself! Please. [unintelligible] Get 

someone here please.

Here he plainly reports the change:  "she shot herself."

a.  "She" is not "Michelle"; he again avoids using her name.

b.  "She shot herself" no longer is qualified by "think" which

reveals that he initially was not truthful when he used the 

additional word "think."  For those who would defend him 

based upon 'excited utterance'; the same defense is the same

that convicts him:  it takes more effort to add a word in than 

it does to leave it out (the law of economy).  By forcing him 

to repeat "what happened?", he goes to the shortest route of 

language dropping the qualifier.  

This is where "deception indicated" becomes strengthened.  We 

also have him making an effort with two more uses of the polite

"please" that is used to appear to be begging.  This need to 

appear to be urgent is undermined by his use of both passivity 

and of psychological distancing language; including his 

avoidance of saying her name.  

The next statement gives us insight into the negative relationship

that has already been discerned by the incomplete social 

introduction, distancing language and passivity:  

DISPATCHER: Ma’am? Ma’am, I need you to calm down.

JEREMY BANKS: It’s mister! It’s SIR!

This is critical.  Whereas most would not care to correct but to 

seek guidance on how to stop the blood flow, he uses the 

opportunity, instead of helping Michelle, to correct the 911 

operator.  He not only corrects 911, he uses two different 

words to do so.  

First he uses "mister" as to identify gender, but the language 

undergoes a serious change.  Remember the context:  not only 

has he not asked for help, nor guidance to stop the blood flow,

but he has a need for respect while she lay bleeding to death.

He makes certain she knows it is not only a "male" that 

911 is talking to, but he will be addressed as "Sir." 

As we consider that he does not ask for help, nor does he address

the blood flow or first aid techniques, he has already revealed 

a problem in their relationship.  Now, he shows more concern 

that he, himself, be respected, than Michelle, who's name he will 

not utter, who lays bleeding out.  

This is to provide insight and due to the extremity of the 

situation, respecting him is a priority far above that of 

Michelle's emergency need for help.  

DISPATCHER: Ma’am, listen to me─

With a loved one bleeding to death, one is not likely to care to 

correct the error, but to address the first aid need to stop the 


JEREMY BANKS: It’s SIR! It’s SIR. Listen─ hang on, let me 

tell you the truth.  I’m Deputy  Banks with the St. Johns County

 Sheriff’s Office. I work with y’all. Get someone here now!

This provides insight into his psyche.

He is "Deputy Banks" and you better address him as "Sir" as he

now takes "authority" yet a single word here, "truth", tells us

precisely what he wanted to withhold:  his own identity. 

He introduces himself by saying, "let me tell you the truth."

This indicates that the "truth" of this case involves him, 

on  a professional level. 

Not only did he not ask for help for her, nor offer help for her,

and that he distanced himself from her, her status, one of 

bleeding to death is directly related to his job.

This tells us to carefully go back and review the need for 

passivity in speech:  to conceal responsibility. 

Dept. Banks has the need to conceal who caused the blood of

Michelle O'Connell to be found everywhere.  

He does not ask for help for her because he does not want her 

to receive help.  

He has now admitted that he has not told the truth, but:

'You will call me "Sir", for I am "Deputy Banks" and I have not 

told you the truth before, but now I have revealed it. '

When coupled with passivity in speech, we have a connection 

between him as a professional (armed) and her blood. 

This is his connection, in which he attempts to conceal with 

his scripted "please please" (5x) as he continues to demand

what he already knows is happening, yet his brain, in choosing 

what words to speak, will not allow him to say why "someone" 

should come to his house.  

He does not ask for help for the victim.  

He has told us that this is a bad relationship and that he has a 

powerful need to be respected...or else.  This is likely what 

Michelle O'Connell lived under.  

DISPATCHER: Ok i need you to calm down you know how it 

goes. Whats the address ? I don't..

JEREMY BANKS: 4700 Sherlock Place.

DISPATCHER: Ok what's going on there?

Dispatch has a need to ask this because he gave conflicting 

accounts.  First he feigned that he did not know and then 

he told that he did know, and introduced the word "truth" all 

the while avoiding both her name and the request for assistance.

He did not ask for help for himself in administering aid to 

stop the blood, nor has he expressed any concern for her. 

Yet, while showing no concern for her, he makes quite certain

that he gets the respect his office demands. 

There are likely those who will attest to this personality, both

in the department and in the public, including those who may 

have been stopped by him in traffic.  

We all give ourselves away in language.  Here, we are hearing

not only deception, but classic insecurity and control that is

indicative of precisely what the language of incomplete social

introduction and distancing show:  domestic violence.  

JEREMY BANKS: My girlfriend has just shot herself with my 

duty weapon. Please get someone here now please.

Here is another critical point:  he already has admitted knowing

that she "shot herself" but now, rather than show any concern

for how he may assist her, the call continues to be about 

Jeremy Banks, himself:   this sentence reveals the ownership of

the weapon, as if this matters.

It does not matter to an innocent caller who owns the weapon, 

instead, the innocent caller wants the victim saved. 

He has not addressed any urgent need for the victim, but 

has the need to, now that he is telling the truth, identify the 

ownership of the gun.  

The scripting of "please" (7x) continues, while he avoids using

the victim's name; only relating to her how she relates to 

him.  We have his girlfriend and his "weapon."  

That he called it his "weapon" warrants further exploration into 

his cultural use of the phrase.  However, the pronoun "my" 

tells us of his priority.  

Do you know Michelle's condition?

Do you know where her blood is leaving her body?

Do you know if she is breathing?

Do you know if he has done anything to stop the blood flowing?

We know none of these but we do know who owns the weapon. 

We also know something else...


"has just"

Consider how close this comes to a confession. 

If he said, "my girlfriend just shot herself" it would indicate 

that he was deceptive when he said, "think" previously.  This 

deception is affirmed but the incomplete past tense use here 

tells us much more information than meets the eye.

He did not say "my girlfriend just shot herself" which the word

"just" would indicate something close to the present time; that 

is, quite sudden, or before this call.

Instead, he used "has just" which is an imperfect past tense 


"My girlfriend has just shot herself..." even though his point 

of admission is ownership of the gun, the use of 

"has just" indicates a passing of time. 

He took it from 'sudden' past, to a 'spread out' past time. 

This tells us, in the less than millisecond of time that his 

brain chose this word for the tongue, that time elapsed 

longer than he wishes to let on, of which he was eye witness.

Now, why would he do this?


Because he is thinking of what happened before she shot 

herself.  He is thinking of the time period that he was 

present, where something happened that he does not want

the 911 operator to know. 

He is withholding critical information.  

Something happened, in direct relationship to her shooting

herself, that Jeremy Banks is withholding.  

It is in this period of time that there may have been a brutal

fight, assault, or something else that is directly related to 

her death.  

If it is true that he broke her jaw, this is when it happened.  

DISPATCHER: Sir we're doing that while in talking to you. is 

she still breathing ?

911 properly addresses him as "Sir", and reminds him of what 

he already knows:  they are in transit.  

Since he has offered nothing about her, but lots about himself, 

he now must be asked about her current condition.  

Is Michelle breathing?

JEREMY BANKS: No,there is blood coming out of everywhere.-


He answered the question, used his "please" again (8) and

avoided her name, while going back to the passive voice

about blood.  Now it is coming "out" of everywhere.  This 

avoids telling us the source of the blood, while we continue to 

wait for him to say that he is trying to stop the blood flow.  

DISPATCHER: Ok, she's not breathing.

JEREMY BANKS: Call dispatch on Tac 2, get them here now.

He has gotten through the 'worst' of revealing who he is and 

has employed deception to avoid telling what happened 

in its entirety, and has regained his 'authority' over dispatch. 

This is affirmed by the sudden disappearance  of "please"; as he

no longer feels the psychological burden to ingratiate himself;

he has been called "sir" and he has been restored to his 

place of authority. 

This is a dangerous man.  

As to this regaining of confidence, it is quickly lost when a 

single word from the operator reverses the roles:  he is told what 

the police "need" him to do:   

DISPATCHER: Sir they're on the phone I need you to calm 


This puts him back into a subordinated role as police "need" or 

direct him to do something.  This brings back the script:  

JEREMY BANKS: Please please please-

DISPATCHER: Jeremy were coming as fast as we can ok? Calm 

down for me ok.

911 now calls him "Jeremy" and implores him to calm down.  

He gave them no information and how to be asked about her


JEREMY BANKS: Please, you don't understand she just shot 

herself, pleases get someone here.

As he continues this subordinated position, he implores the 

operator to "understand" what he has repeated.  This is to show

that he has a decent intellect; he understands the points that 

he made poorly, including "I think my girlfriend shot herself..." 

which then nullifies "my girlfriend has just shot herself"; as 

an outright lie.  

Jeremy Banks is the one in need. 

He needs to be understood. 

He needs to be justified.  

He gave no detail about her condition yet pleads for that which 

he already knows is underway (see his 'authoritative voice') 

and his need of personal respect. 

He is more concerned about himself and the ownership of 

the gun than the victim, of whom he did not ask for help. 

He did not offer her condition, nor how he would remedy her 

condition through first aid.  

Analysis Conclusion:

Jeremy Banks indicates deception via withholding information, and the interview will have to be combative in nature if it hopes to obtain an admission, or more likely, enough inconsistencies for a conviction.  

He is not likely  to admit much but investigators will have to focus on interrogation skills using blunt language and forensics but especially the tool of his own language, need for respect, and his need for control.  

They must exploit his need for respect, while putting him into a subordinated role by using his own words as well as evidence. He will feel 'shamed' in reading 
or hearing his own words and how they betrayed 
him.  His anger could provoke him into admission, or in the least, to revealing information, just as we saw when the 911 operator referred to him as a female.  

Collateral interviews should confirm or suggest confirmation about the relationship as well as his acute need for respect.  

The language is consistent with Domestic Violence. If the exhuming of her body has revealed a broken jaw, it is likely that this is what Banks had in mind when he used an imperfect past tense (elongated) reference above.  This is likely where the dispute escalated.  

 Jeremy Banks is deliberately withholding information about what happened.  

Please note that Jeremy Banks has been cleared by investigators and is judicially innocent.  

When one speaks, there is an expectation that the audience will believe or disbelief the subject, and retain the right of personal opinion.  

If you are interested in Statement Analysis training, for your department or business,  please visit for seminars, courses, on going training, and support.  


John Mc Gowan said...

EXCLUSIVE: Mother who 'shot herself' dead in sheriff deputy boyfriend's house was actually MURDERED and suffered broken jaw before the gun was fired, bombshell autopsy reveals

Michelle O'Connell was found shot dead in her home in September 2010
Was living with cop boyfriend Jeremy Banks and her daughter at the time
Police quickly said her death was suicide, and ruled out colleague Banks
But an independent autopsy has found her injuries point to homicide
Her family is now set to file the case with the medical examiner
They hope the report will persuade prosecutors to convene a grand jury
Banks was told he wouldn't face murder charges in her death last year

Read more:

Statement Analysis Blog said...

Thanks for adding it, John,

When I saw it, I thought his name was familiar and looked in the archives and sure enough...

"deception indicated" back in 2013.

I lose track as we do so many.

Nic said...

And independent autopsy means that the family would have requested it? It's then pretty hard not to consider that there was a cover-up from the LE to medical examiner's office. And it's pretty hard not to consider that a polygraph was never given (to him). As in, if there is a tangible record/result on file, someone else sitting in the hot seat. Liike volunteering clean urine for someone's drug test.

Speculating/thinking out loud, here.


Anonymous said...

Communities dont know how to screen out the immature, arrogant, psychopathic personality during interviews.

Anonymous said...

What could she have done differently? What could she have done to save herself? I don't know anything about the story other than all I've read in the last 4 hours. I want to believe that there is an opportunity to save oneself, but how? What? It sounds like it all happened so quickly. Sounds like she broke up with him, and then he went nutso and killed her.

Tania Cadogan said...

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- The death of the girlfriend of a St Johns County Sheriff's deputy in 2010 was a murder, not a suicide, according to an attorney for the family of Michelle O'Connell.

The family's attorney tells First Coast News that an independent pathologist examined O'Connell's remains after her body was exhumed earlier this year.

O'Connell's family's attorney says this new information from the third autopsy will be sent to the state medical review board O’Connell is the St. Johns County mother who was found dead from a gunshot wound to the head in 2010.

Her family has always maintained her death was a homicide, and blamed her then-boyfriend, Sheriff’s Deputy Jeremy Banks.

Banks has always maintained his innocence. First Coast News first reported O’Connell’s story in 2012, but it was later picked up by several national news outlets, including Dateline and a joint investigation by The New York Times and Frontline.

O’Connell’s mother Patty O’Connell confirmed to First Coast News that Michelle's body was exhumed in January by private investigator Clue Wright. Wright previously investigated the handling of the case, which had already resulted in internal investigations by the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and admissions by Sheriff David Shoar that mistakes were made.

The case also yielded the suspension of FDLE veteran investigator Rusty Rodgers, who remains on leave pending that agency’s probe.

Patty O’Connell said the decision to exhume her daughter was “hard,” but notes she wanted to do it from the beginning, in hopes that further investigation would help the family find “justice.”

Last summer, a third special prosecutor’s investigation found there is no probable cause to suspect O'Connell was murdered.

Statement Analysis Blog said...

Thanks Hobs!


Anonymous said...

I'm fascinated with statement analysis, and at first I wanted to delve into this case like always with stuff posted here, but now I am hesitating because it's so depressing when it's yet another old/cold case where we find out there was/is no justice. I'll keep visiting and reading here, but will get "involved" only in current or on-going cases. Hobbyist, yes. Ambitions to become a pro, no.


This is similar to a case that was on DateLine last night. The police found that the wife committed suicide. The husband was in Law Enforcement. His 911 call screamed, literally, with guilt. "Help meeeeeeeeee" His actions when he was being interviewed by the police were extreme. His rage was off the charts. He smashed a water bottle because the investigator wasn't believing his statement. He had scratches on his chest and he attributed it to his newly waxed chest. He was itchy and scratching. And guess what. The police/M.E. ruled it was suicide. They didn't take into account that the parents were there 10 mins before their daughter killed herself and they said no way, she was happy and planning another party.

4 years later, the media got the case reopened and the husband was put on trial for 2nd degree murder. He conveniently supplied not 1 but 2 suicide notes from the wife. They were typewritten. Dateline states they were proven to be from the wife. I don't know how that could happen without a handwritten note. And after 4 hours deliberation, he was found not guilty.

I'll try to find the name of the wife so if anyone is interested in reading up on it, can. Of course, the husband cannot be tried again, unless it is a civil trial. Very disappointing.


The victim was Ashley Fallis. Her husband, Tom Fallis made the 911 call. You can hear it and see part of the police interview in this 2 min blurb from Inside Edition. Notice when he calls 911, who does he scream needs help? Flags all over the field. And watch the detective asking him questions. He is enraged. Divorce papers filed. Typed suicide note. Bag on the bed like wife was packing to leave. The jury did see this and found him NOT guilty. Shocking.

Anonymous said...

All police should be tested for steroids

Lily said...

Sheriff's statement. He has a lot to say!

A news release from Sheriff David Shoar --

On January 12th, 2016 media reports circulated that the body of Michelle O’Connell was removed from her place of rest by certain members of her family. At the time, no one was certain exactly why this was done but the speculation was that a paid expert witness would be hired by these family members to produce a report that of course would support their belief about the case. Today we learn that this speculation was accurate. The report of the paid expert was delivered by a resident of Clay County who has a “private investigators” license with no connection to any official entity including law enforcement. It is critically important to note that no person officially associated with a prosecutor’s office or law enforcement agency was in any way involved including when she was removed from her place of rest. Why did these certain family members not request a judge to order a proper and officially sanctioned exhumation? We suspect the answer is that they would not have met the threshold for a judge to order one. Most importantly, there have been three separate officially sanctioned medical examiners review this case as well as two officially sanctioned special prosecutors (Jeff Ashton and Brad King) appointed by the Governor, all have determined there is NO evidence present to indicate anything other than that Michelle died by her own hand. The last special prosecutor went so far as to write that he was, “thankful it was NOT a homicide because had it been, it could never have been prosecuted due to the actions of the state agent who at one time was involved in this case.” The information presented today is nothing new and all was reviewed during the initial autopsy. Molesting Michelle from her place of rest using some freelance type approach is beyond unconventional, it was reprehensible.

Lily said...


The primary advisers to the few family members who will go to any lengths to maintain their moment in the spotlight consist of the private investigator, a former St. Johns County Deputy Sheriff who was fired for ethical misconduct and who is now a candidate for political office. Interestingly, this same individual has been hinting at some recent political events that there was some “big news” coming regarding the O’Connell case. Coincidently, the last time Michelle’s sister was interviewed on local television she actually told the reporter that this case is about, “politics”. Though thereporter never followed up on her comment, as the political season evolves it has become very clear what she meant. And finally a career “drug” investigator and current state agent who was recently reprimanded for conducting a “substandard” investigation into the death of Michelle O’Connell.

Lily said...


A great question for the public and media to ask would be, why hasn’t the family filed suit against the person they think was culpable in Michelle’s death? The answer is probably the same as why they did not seek an official exhumation, because there is no Probable Cause to indicate Michelle died by anything other than her own hand. Of vital importance that most folks do not understand is that the person that certain members of the family think is culpable in Michelle’s death, is one of only two people (along with Michelle’s brother Scott) who HAS filed a civil suit in relation to this case (against FDLE and Agent Rodgers). People who are culpable or have committed crimes do not file civil suits because when they do, they can longer shield themselves behind the Fifth Amendment and a civil suit puts everything under a microscope. Fortunately, the civil suit filed by Michelle’s brother Scott and Jeremy Banks is well under way and hopefully there should be closure within the next year. I have always taken the position that if a jury ever gets to hear what Scott and Jeremy had to endure because of the conduct of a few people with personal agendas, it would shock their consciences and they would rule in favor of both Scott and Jeremy, I still maintain that position.

Lily said...

The last! Whew.

The record clearly shows that we have always held employees accountable at the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office when they violate our policies or engage in criminal conduct. In the past, I have had to discipline and even arrest employees for misconduct. If, however, an employee is unfairly and maliciously targeted by external forces they will have no stronger advocate than myself. This case is an example of the latter and not the former.

Anonymous said...

Read the book Tomato Land. You'll see what the State of Florida is 'really' like.

Lis said...

The Sheriff's statement is extremely unprofessional!
Red flag right there. No wonder the family bypassed his office.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

The family should start by filing a civil suit against the deputy BF.