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Picket Fence

[Listen Carefully] Delmar England
Suspect Behavior Analysis
June 10, 2001



One of the most prominent pieces of evidence in the Ramsey case is the alleged ransom note. It is a critical element in many respects. A highly visible feature of the note is the spastic reactive construction indicative of absence of organization and absence of deliberate contemplation.

If you were going to write a note and try to make it appear authentic, would you not consider the probable viewpoint of those who would see and write accordingly? Do you see any indication of this in the bogus note?

Certainly, the intent was to convince others that the note is an authentic ransom note. Yet, it failed miserably. Few persons gave the note credibility. The writer did not even come close to achieving the goal. Why this horrendous failure? Why was this writer so incapable of doing a better job?

This is not just an instance of a novice making a few mistakes under extreme pressure, it reveals much about the personality and psychology of the writer that existed long before the note was written and in all probability still exists. It reveals the mode of thought, thus exposing the underlying belief and value system of said writer.

By general knowledge of other human beings, you can anticipate in large degree the probable response to something you are thinking of saying or doing. In closer interpersonal relationships with individuals, this is refined to a higher degree of anticipated reaction. This does not mean that you will correctly anticipate 100% of the time, but it does mean that you calculate the potential reaction and evaluate it in making a decision that involves these other persons. Its a mental habit.

This thought process and psychology is missing from the note. The note clearly indicates the writer made no attempt whatsoever to anticipate and write accordingly. The writer shows no empathy with the likely viewers. The note was written from a reactive personal perspective and presented from a personal viewpoint without the slightest consideration for the probable viewpoint of others. It is as if the writer's viewpoint is the only one that exists or can exist. It was presented from this psychology. The writer could not think and write from any other perspective because this is the fundamental psychology of the writer.

I do not wish to dwell on this, but just wanted to point out this absence of empathy and an isolation factor that appears to be a central element of the psychology of the note writer. The logical inferences of this are far reaching and potential explanation of related events.

What I am describing here as indicated by the note is an emotional isolation that in all probability you have never experienced. You may be accustomed to having warm, deep, loving and affectionate relationships with parents, children, friends, etc; and observing others doing the same, but the writer of the note is totally incapable of this.

It may appear differently on the surface, but its merely role playing at what the writer thinks is proper and socially acceptable. The actual emotions are non existent. There is no deep and close emotional connection to anyone and never has been. Any semblance of such a relationship is forced and temporary. In a brief period of time, the relationship disappears as it yields to the dominant underlying psychology of rejection and isolation.

There are, of course, many problems with the note, but there are just one or two items that I wish to call attention to at this time. What stands out in sharp contrast is the writer's warm attitude toward John's company and the overt hostility toward the person, John. In conjunction with this hostility, the note writer connects John as cause in regard to JonBenet. It is not presented as an accusation of direct actual cause, but more of "You made me do it" tone. There is an indication here of a suppressed anger toward John that was unleased when triggered by something JonBenet said or did. (A bit speculative, yes, but within bounds and consistent with the psychological profile of the writer as determined by the content of the note.)

Moving on to the main purpose of this writing, let's look at suspect behavior and how it provides a direct and clear insight into the truth. Visualize the morning of Dec. 26, 1996. The police have arrived. The multi page "ransom note" has been found. John and Patsy are giving information to the police.

The absurd note was the first clue that this scene is a set up; bogus from the git go. Suspect behavior soon clearly revealed this fact again and again. Yet, although there was some suspicion, the observers did not adequately read suspect behavior to be sure.

There was much suspect behavior inconsistent with the circumstance of a missing child believed to have been taken by a kidnapper. These inconsistences then and later were "excused" by reference to the stress of the moment and "panic." It has been repeatedly stated in conjunction that no one knows what he or she would do under such circumstance. Not true, Although one may under emotional stress and hasty conclusions commit error, one thing that does not change under any condition is that an individual will act upon what that individual believes to be true. Claims of truth may coincide with the actions, or claims of truth may conflict with the actions. If the latter, you can safely bet the person is lying.

Using yourself as a reference, imagine that your much-loved child is missing and you have reason to believe the child has been kidnapped. At this instant, your priority value becomes getting the child back safely. Drinking, eating, sleeping and all else is mentally pushed aside and recognized on in minimal requirement. Even if you try to force your mind away from for a brief release from the stress, you find it nearly impossible.

Did the actions of John Ramsey on the morning of Dec. 26, 1996 indicate that he believed JonBenet had been kidnapped? There were many actions that conflicted with the claimed belief. A very telling one was John going to the phone and calling in other persons.

What was his mind on then? How was this going to help find the alleged kidnapper and JonBenet? Were any of those called in knowledgeable about kidnapping and called in to assist? If they were not there to assist, why were they there? Could they be anything but a distraction and a hindrance to the investigation?

Yet, John called them in. Why? What truth in John's mind motivated this call? He valued them being there. For what purpose if not to assist in the investigation? They provided consolation and indication that he was believed. Assurance. They provided a buffer between John and the police just by their presence. They provided an emotional escape in a situation that had John on the verge of breakdown.

Although co-perpetrator, Patsy, was on the premises, John was pretty much alone in hostile territory. The hostile territory was in his mind as he knew there would be hostile action if the truth came out. The pressure was getting to him. He was about to lose it. He needed help in the form of friends who would believe, not question. This is what the phone call was about.

If the officer in charge had read suspect behavior, then had upon the arrival of the "guests" met them at the door and sent them away from the crime scene, it could have been a far different story than the long saga that is still being played out.

John knew the staging was poor. He originally held out little hope of getting away with it. On Dec. 26, 1996, he was waiting for the axe to fall. Suppose the officer in charge had after turning away the guest had turned to John and said, "O.K., John, I know there was no kidnapping. You know there was no kidnapping. Where's JonBenet?"

The shock of direct accusation with the expectation of being discovered would have most likely triggered the collapse of all defenses. I estimate that by this move there was a 90%+ chance of getting a confession and ending the matter then and there.

The failure of investigators to correctly observe suspect behavior and the invited "guests" provided John with a bit of a reprieve and a chance to compose himself a bit. Yet, the stress and fear was still very strong and reaching the point of intolerance. Something had to give.

John knew that sooner or later that the body would be discovered in the basement. Even worse, he feared it would not be discovered soon. The dread of what would happen after the discovery was so great that John wanted it over with. Again, John got a break. With the mention of searching the house again, John seized the opportunity and straightway "discovered" the body of JonBenet.

The tension was still there. It would not go away. Fear pervaded every thought. He wanted to run. He tried to run. He called the airport and planned to vacate the premises and the crime scene as soon as possible. He claimed this was out of concern for the safety of his family. Does anyone believe this?

The suspect behavior mentioned here is part of the pattern that is evidenced throughout this case from the start until present time.


Fundamentals: In the commission of a crime involving material items, the perpetrator has an emotional connection to the items and crime scene as well as a physical connection. Consciously and\or unconsciously, the perpetrator, not wanting to get caught, desires a disassociation from the evidence. Still, the truth is in the mind of the perpetrator. The truth is what the perpetrator does not want known.

The objective of the investigator is to identify the truth in the mind of the perpetrator with the unknowing assistance of the perpetrator. I.E., by suspect behavior. It is the words and actions of the perpetrator trying to achieve disassociation that often exposes the suspect's specific connection to the crime. Thus does the efforts of the perpetrator to hide the truth often result in the exact opposite of conscious intent. By properly reading suspect behavior, the perpetrator frequently becomes the very best witness, a witness against self.

All identifications are made by differential reference. You may not think in this terminology, but its something you do thousands of times a day. You identify a specific person by difference in physical and\or mental characteristics than those of another person. This is fundamentally true in the identification of relationships as well. I mention this now as a focal basis for what is about to follow and identification by difference as we look into suspect behavior.

First, let us establish a differential reference rooted in reality. The focus is upon the concept, ransom, and ransom note.

Suppose your child was kidnapped and a ransom note left. This ransom note is the link to your child. Taking things at face value, the fate of your child depends on the wishes of the kidnapper and your abiding by those wishes, or at least appearing to.

If the note says don't call the police, either you don't call the police or try to hide the fact from the kidnapper. You study the note in every detail trying to get every bit of information you can. You establish a specific relationship with the note as a link to the kidnapper.

Notice there are two relationships to the note. Your relationship to the note and the kidnapper's relationship to the note. The difference in the two relationship to the note establishes two different attitudes toward the note. They are opposites. This is our reference.

Your relationship to the note is as recipient. Your association with the note is open and known. You have no reason for it to be otherwise. What about the kidnapper's relationship and association? The kidnapper's relationship to the note is as creator, thus linking to the kidnapping. The kidnapper does not want this relationship known. The kidnapper wishes to dissociate himself from the note.

We have established here two differentiating attitudes, i.e., two emotional states and directives in relationships to the note. We have established that the creator of the note is the only one with motive to dissociate self from the note. Creator association with the note means guilty of the kidnapping and all that it implies. The desire to not be associated with the note as creator is very strong in the perpetrator. This desire is the director of words and action even is the perpetrator is not aware of it.

Keeping this in mind, let now have a look at the actual crime scene and the actual alleged ransom note. This note has been and still is a high tension object for the Ramseys. In an early interview, when the note was mentioned, Patsy quickly blurted out "I didn't...." The mention of the note by the interviewer did not ask if she wrote the note, but it appears she had the answer at the ready and wanted much to declare her dissociation.

The circumstance made it necessary to acknowledge the note to report it to the police. After this initial reporting, the real attitude was evidenced again and again. Without digging out exact quotes, the Ramseys spoke of the note in this general manner. "I didn't read it all." "I read it very swiftly." "I saw it said we have you daughter and I just couldn't....."

This emphasis was so strong that it created in my mind a visual of a physical pushing away of the note by the Ramseys. It was emotionally treated as pure poison and something to be avoided. The attempted dissociation was loud and clear and frequently repeated as you will find if you care to read the transcripts.

Who has reason, motive and emotional directive to dissociate from the note? As recipients, there would have been no emotional directive to dissociate from the note. Only as creators of the note can the words and actions of the Ramseys be explained in logical and definitive manner.

Moving on to the next item: In one interview, John Ramsey stated that JonBenet's wrists were tightly bound and he could not get it loose. The coroner's report and photos shows ties so loose that they barely can be called bonds. Thus is there a dissociation from the evidence of loose ties.

John repeatedly spoke of the garrote as "sophisticated" and "professional." As has been shown in an earlier post, the so called garrote is very amateurish. Thus is there a dissociation from the evidence of amateur.

The wrapped handle was prominently displayed on the internet and the knot called complex by John. As has also be shown in a previous post, this handle is also amateurish. Thus is there a disassociation from the evidence of amateur.

Last but not least, John repeatedly spoke of JonBenet's death as caused by strangulation while disregarding the head injury. In the pattern of dissociation, he has in effect identified the head trauma as the actual evidence of the crime.

Whether viewing item by item or the total in mutual support, what you observe in this suspect behavior is a detailed confession.


Copyright at Common Law, Delmar England, 2000. All Rights Reserved.


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