Friday, February 17, 2012

Statement Analysis: Diary of Kate McCann Part I

The following is analysis of the diary of missing Madeleine McCann's mother's diary.

A diary is a form of communication, therefore, it is subject to analysis. Anything that is intended for communication can be set to analysis.

Statement Analysis, in all its forms, is not wooden, but it is fluid. Local dialect, expressions, education level, and so on, are all part of the analysis; but none of these things exempt the subject from analysis. Many seek to excuse or 'give a pass' of one way or another, by employing one of these topics. If someone communicates through sarcasm, we will recognize not only the sarcasm, but the words chosen, as they do not come from a vacuum.

In texting, we are able to employ ongoing techniques of analysis, recognizing patterns.

Please note that everyone has an internal, subjective, personal dictionary, and it is the SCAN technique of Statement Analysis that seeks to 'break the code' of the internal, personal, subjective dictionary, for the purpose of understanding.

Here is an example of applying principle in a fluid manner:

When a statement begins without a pronoun, it is very likely to be a deceptive statement. This is something police find regularly. "Went to the store..." begins without a pronoun, and it is an indication that the subject wishes to distance himself from the topic.

In texting or emails, we find that pronouns are often missing.

Does this negate analysis?


Since texting or emailing often does not use pronouns, but abbreviations, our principle of analysis is to note the pronouns always:

If an email, for example, begins without a pronoun, we will not flag this for deception but we will note when a pronoun does, actually, appear, as highly significant.

In diary writing, we note names, spelling, and abbreviations.

When Kate writes, "M" referring to her daughter, we should seek to learn what causes her to write out the full name of her daughter in other entries. Pronouns (and proper names) remain important, as we seek to identify the subject's baseline of writing. If, for example, the email is known to have few pronouns, we recognize that this can be the norm; so that when a pronoun does suddenly appear, it should be flagged as important.

Education, intelligence, dialect, culture, and so on, does not negate analysis. Nor does writing styles.

Next, we know that pronouns and verb tenses are learned very early in life, with some pre dating speech ("my, mine" can be communicated from very young children even before annunciation is clear). By the age of 5 (or an adult with cognitive disabilities who functions as a 5 year old) understands past, present, and future.

We may make adjustments as we go along, but if the purpose of the writing or speaking is to communicate, analysis can be done.

In understanding this case, we will be doing over time, more analysis, particularly if the original interrogation transcripts become available.

Some of the analysis questions:

Why was the diary written?  What is its purpose?
When was the diary written?
Intended audience?

We will note such principles as order, priority and substance.

Diary Notes - May 2007
Autumn on Thu Mar 17, 2011 6:22 pm
THURSDAY, MAY 3: Milk and biscuits for the kids. I left them with this and books and games and went to have a quick shower/wash my hair. M tired—sitting on my lap—I read the story of Mog.

Note "left" as a verb; generally speaks to as missing information, 70% time, 30% sensitive.  The 70% time usually indicates a sense of rushing or being hurried.  The 30% sensitive is the unknown.  The context here shows a slight increase in tension:

Note "sitting"; When body posture enters a statement, there is often an increase in tension, therefore, we flag "sit, sat, stood, standing, sitting" and so on, as sensitive for a possible increase in tension.  She "left" them with milk and biscuits; 
Next note the inclusion of "shower/wash" in a statement often is associated with sexual abuse.  Please note that this is not a statement, but a diary. Therefore, we ask, "why does the subject feel it is important enough to mention?  Is this a theme?  Does a pattern emerge?

We will call attention to things regarding statement, then seek to learn why they are in a diary.  Was the tension due to rushing through the shower, washing of hair, and reading to M?

Note the children are referenced first by "kids".
Next, note "M" is the initial of her daughter.  Note where she is called "M"

Note, however, that no other child is specified by name nor initial. 

Brush teeth. To the bedroom with the kids. M pulls away and puts her head on pillow. Kisses goodnight for M. Pulled the door to as far as possible without shutting it. Silence.

Dry hair. Put make-up on. Glass of wine. Restaurant.

Note that "brushing teeth" is rarely found in statements and usually indicates withheld information about personal relationship; often domestic violence.  

Why the need to include brushing teeth in a diary, since brushing teeth is something always done by all of us?

This should be considered sensitive.

Note "kids" mentioned again, but no name of the kids other than "M"  

Why are the other children not mentioned by name?

Note what did not happen as important:  she finds it important to tell us that she did not close the door.

"M pulls away" is interesting.  Why did M pull away?  From whom or what did she pull away?
"Kisses goodnight" is something to be noted.   In domestic homicides, we flag greeting/salutation as possible time of death.  Here it is in a diary.  Why the need to tell us she was kissed goodnight?  Were the other children kissed goodnight?   In statements, kisses goodnight or good morning greetings are often indicative of a poor relationship when a spouse mentions it.  What is its meaning here?

Why do the other kids not have names or initials used?

Note that dry hair, make up and restaurant all have to do with subject; not child. 

FRIDAY, MAY 4: No sleep, Gerry and I started looking through the streets around 06.00 as it was starting to get light. Nobody around. Why not? Desperate.

Minutes seem like hours. Outside of the apartments masses of people asking questions about that night and for descriptions of Madeleine. Long day.

Note "Gerry and I" is used.  Since this is a diary, why not use the pronoun "we"?
Note all the dropped pronouns as a consistent pattern.  Diary writing is brief, so we will assume that the shortest sentence is the most likely, including dropped pronouns.  Therefore, why "Gerry and I"?  

Next note that something is reported to have started ("started looking" and "starting to get light") but without completion.  

Note as important, the name "Madeleine" is used here, rather than "M".  What is the contextual difference?

"M" is at home, read to, put to bed.
"Madeleine" is missing. 

Note people asking questions should be something natural and expected. 
Note "long day" as unexpected.  It is unexpected that a mother of a missing child would have thoughts on her own care with the words "long day" rather than what Madeline might be going through. 

Nobody from the police introduced themselves. Nobody offered us a drink or food. All the police dressed informally and smoking. No sympathy was shown and far from inspiring.

Note the order:

1.  Nobody from police introduced themselves.
2.   Nobody offered her drink or food.
3.   The clothing/appearance of police, and their habit of smoking
4.   No one offered sympathy.
5.  Far from inspiring.

As yourself:  if you were writing a diary about your missing child, what might be the first thing you write about?  What might not enter into your thinking?

The order above suggests a very strong concern about the subject herself.

I believe my statement would have been around 15.00 and such. They allowed G to come in with me but seated behind me. Translator present.

The police officer who took us by car to the station was the one asking the questions and afterwards typed the answers on a typewriter. Morose.

Note "G" is used here for Gerry, using the shortest possible. 
Note the asking of questions has now been repeated in the short diary, making question asking a sensitive topic. 
Note "with" between people shows distance;
note the body posture mentioned. 

We left the police station around 7.30pm to 8pm. After 15 minutes we received a call from the PJ saying we had to go back but they didn't tell us why. We turned around and flew back at around 200 kilometres an hour. Once again frightening. Did they find her? Please God. Is she dead? Prayers. We arrived—they showed us a photo of a girl they'd forgotten to show us from the close circuit TV footage. Not M. Devastating.

Note the entrance of the pronoun. 
"We left..." rather than the usual short, "Left".  Note in this entry how pronouns return to use:
the word "we" has a heavy usage here.  Why the need for emphasis now?
Note that Madeleine is now "M" again as referred to incorrectly as a picture.  
We continue to note the context.  While being fed, or put to sleep, and regarding a photo:  M
When missing, Madeleine.
Note the questions as important:
Did they find her?
Is she did?

Note that in these two questions, there is a change of verb tense?

Did they find her?
Was she dead? is not used, but "is she dead?"
Note "devastated" does not use a pronoun, though this entry has much used. 

SATURDAY, MAY 12: Madeleine is four years old. Day at resort with holiday group. Special Mass for Madeleine at 18.00 in Praia da Luz.

Here, on her birthday, she continues to be "Madeleine" which is a longer writing in a diary than the initial "M"

MONDAY, MAY 14: I slept well last night after a not very good end of the day, frustration with the FLO  asking me where would my little M be.

Note the pronoun used here to describe her sleep whereas above it is "no sleep."
Note here the use of the initial, "M"

I got up at 06.50. I dealt with some trifles and got myself ready for the statement to the press at 08.00.

Note the repeated use of "I" here; no shortcuts as before.  There is an inconsistency in pronoun use. 

I tried to put on a slightly more presentable and "healthy" air. Gerry again gave a great performance.

Note "I" and "Gerry", rather than no pronoun and "G"

end of part 1