Saturday, November 5, 2011

#LisaIrwin : Mike Thompson Witness Analysis

Joe Tacopina wants police to focus upon Mike Thompson, who claimed he was eye witness he saw a man carrying a baby at 4AM.   Do you believe him?  You might want to read the analysis before you vote.

Police are no longer doing daily searches, but continue to search based upon tip information.  The costs, manpower, etc, are prohibitive, and a single anonymous call, perhaps from a disconnected cell phone, would bring Baby Lisa home for a proper burial in under an hour.  

As readers become familiar with analysis, it is important to frequently pause and remind all that analysis, like communication, is fluid, and is not done well in a box.

There is a tendency to want to say "well, is he deceptive or not?" and put a black hat on the bad guy, and a white hat on the good guy.

Reality isn't always so simple.

"Stop hedging, is he lying?  Why do you say the witness is "unreliable"?

When a witness is deemed "unreliable" it means that for the investigators, there are problems with the witness that, even in points where he may be truthful, other points that he is not truthful will cause consternation for prosecutors.  By dismissing a witness as "unreliable", it is an indication that the witness is deceptive, and if he or she really did see something, they may not testify truthfully, as the witness may have motives that conflict with justice.

When a witness is deemed "unreliable", it means his testimony is tainted and he is being deceptive.  For some, the desire to input himself or herself into a case is a powerful draw.  For others, there may be a strong empathy with the victim.  We saw this in the case of missing Texan David Hartley, who was reported to be shot by "Mexican Pirates" where the woman who was said to be an "eyewitness" violated the principle for reliability in an eye more