Is THIS Casey Anthony’s motive, timestamped, in her own words?

On June 21 2011, the New York Post provided coverage of the Casey Anthony trial, and 25-year-old Casey’s “mostly sullen façade [during] the first weeks of testimony.”

By now everyone who knows this case knows that after her two-year-old daughter Caylee disappeared on June 16th 2008, Casey “went on a bizarre, monthlong partying spree while lying to everyone that Caylee was still alive.”

During that time, almost everything Casey said was a lie. Almost everything. On June 21st, Casey scrawled the following entry into her personal diary.

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When the New York Post quoted this excerpt it was condemning as it was, but it was incomplete.

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Here’s the full version again with the parts left out of the article in bold, even though the diary page speaks for itself:

I have no regrets, just a bit worried. I just want for everything to work out okay. I completely trust my own judgement & know that I made the right decision. I just hope that the end justifies the means. I just want to know what the future will hold for me. I guess I will soon see.  This is the happiest that I have been in a very long time. I hope that my happiness will continue to grow.  I’ve made new friends that I really like. I’ve surrounded myself with good people.  I am finally happy. Let’s just hope that it doesn’t change.

In that simple paragraph the word happy or happiness comes up three times. She herself clearly anchors her happiness to “good people” which we now know was a new group of friends she made in early June. She also locates her happiness contemporaneously. We see that according to her she wasn’t only happy that night in June, but had been unhappy for a period of months prior to that weekend.

Although she’s happy, it’s coming out of a period of misery which is why she hopes it will continue to grow. Who or what is the source of that misery? Well, whatever it was that prevented her from having nights like these, experiences like these.

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The Post describes the diary entry as being from June 21 2008 and a wider angle of the diary appears to show the number ’03 in the upper left corner. If it was written five years earlier then Casey was around seventeen-years-old and still at school when she wrote it. Caylee wasn’t even more.  In 2009, when the information first surfaced ABC reported:

Hundreds of pages of newly released evidence from prosecutors in the investigation into the murder of Florida toddler Caylee Anthony contribute to a growing body of circumstantial evidence against the child’s mother, but reports on a key detail against Casey Anthony are being vigorously challenged by representatives of the jailed mom.

Anthony’s representatives insisted that a seemingly damning diary entry prosecutors allege she penned was written before the child was even born — not in 2008, as has been reported.

Calls to the prosecutor’s office were not immediately returned.

A representative for Casey Anthony, Marti Mackenzie, told ABC News that the entry was written in 2003, before the Caylee was born.

The Post also cites prosecutors saying they believed the diary was from 2008.

On a blog posted in 2009, two years before this evidence was led at trial, there is some mention that the specific diary Casey used wasn’t on the market until 2004.

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We know Caylee disappeared on June 16th, and probably died that day too. Five days later, clearly, Casey felt no regrets, and was hoping “everything would work out okay”.

When we look into the timeline, we see June 20th, the day before Casey wrote in her diary, Casey was at a Hot Body Contest at the Fusian Ultra Lounge with many of her friends, as well as her new boyfriend.

Casey won the Hot Body Contest that night, then spent the rest of the weekend with her boyfriend. This time there were no real babysitters to worry about, no curfew to obey, no rap songs kicking off her phone from Momma cussing her, and calling her home.

This was “happiness at last” for the real Casey.

The clip below is from acandyrose.com.

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Why did Mark Minnie go to Theescombe on the morning of his death, and what does it mean?

Either Mark Minnie went to his friend’s home in Theescombe to commit suicide, or he went there on Monday morning for some other reason. To figure out which is the most likely is simply a matter of lining up what he was doing in the days and hours before that fateful last day of his life – Monday August 13th.

Our best source in terms of these questions is from Minnie himself. What was he doing? What was he saying? In the last days of his life where was his head at, what was weighing on his heart?

Thanks to Media24’s Maygeen de Wee we have an extended peek into Minnie’s interiority via a lengthy 8 hour interview held on Friday August 10, from 11:00 onward.

Although the article says the interview was conducted “3 days” before Minnie’s death, it was actually closer to two. The interview began at 11:00 and ended at around 19:00. Minnie died Monday morning relatively early, based on a farmworker who reported hearing a gunshot.

Did much change over the 48 hours between his interview that ended Friday night and his death on Monday? Did Minnie have a change of heart overnight essentially?unnamed (1)

The suicide and suicide note suggest that Minnie felt he had completed his work, was “tired” and, having published the book and reached the finish line, he felt like he wanted to rest permanently. Really?

There are two reasons this scenario doesn’t gel.

  1. Both Minnie and Steyn had been investigating several leads that have cropped up since the book was launched but had been careful to not publicise what they had since unearthed.
  2. Minnie was totally paranoid and didn’t want people to know that he had already returned to South Africa from China months ago. I had to give him my word that I wouldn’t tell anyone.Finally, after he had checked out my background, he agreed to meet me.Upon our return to Port Elizabeth he mentioned that he feared for his life, even if only a handful of people knew that he was back in South Africa. He also said that people on social media had tried to find out where he was. 

If Minnie felt he had completed his work, why was he still investigating leads? If he felt it was mission accomplished, at least for himself on Monday, why was he out and about with journalists for hours on end on Friday night investigating leads? Does that sound like someone tired of life?

This clearly shows he didn’t feel he was done, even if the suicide note said that he was. There have also been plenty of comments by the authors that their book was only “the tip of the iceberg”. That doesn’t suggest their work was over by any means, does it?

There’s also this from Marianne Thamm, the woman who wrote the foreword to Minnie’s book, and so, had to have known of this directly:

I know he was terrified for his life and that there are many who lurk in the shadows who would benefit from his death. During my meeting with him in Cape Town last year, he informed me he feared for his life and that the book would stir [up] a hornet’s nest.

And this, published hours after his body was discovered:

Minnie met a source on Friday and was meant to meet another one on Monday. Both authors had been concerned about their safety and were reluctant to appear in public.

In terms of Minnie fearing for his life, why would you fear for your life if you planned to commit suicide? Why would you be paranoid about your safety 48 hours before planning to shoot yourself? Why would you set up an interview but shoot yourself before doing it?

If anything, if it was going to be over soon, wouldn’t you be more reckless? If you were going to die anyway, wouldn’t you publish files and photos you were carrying around with you? If you’d gone to so much trouble to stir up a hornet’s nest, why wouldn’t you go out with a bang in the sense of releasing your most compromising and dangerous stuff with your suicide note?

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I believe Minnie went to Brent Barnes’ homes for two reasons. Firstly to keep a low profile. He was giving interviews around the clock, but he wanted to be careful about where he was staying and where he could be found. This caution is also not the sign of a tired heart or mind. He wanted to be away from where he was staying, and figured Theescombe was sufficiently rural that anyone looking for him wouldn’t find him. Secondly, his friend Brent Barnes is also an ex-cop. Minnie probably figured he’d be safe near Barnes.

There is a possibility that Barnes left his gun lying around and Minnie saw it, had a sudden mood swing, and decided on the spur of the moment that it was all too much for him. If that was the case, wouldn’t Minnie have made sure everyone knew his friend hadn’t killed him? Wouldn’t that be in the note? Wouldn’t he have left a message at the house where his body was, to save a search for him and Barnes’ becoming an obvious initial suspect? As a cop, Minnie would be painfully aware of how crime scenes appear, and so to not be clear that he’d taken Barnes’ weapon raises flags.

If this was a hit, it means someone knew Barnes had a gun, used this to shoot Minnie and left it at the scene. Who would know Barnes had a gun? Barnes is now being investigated for negligence surrounding the firearm.

Now consider the mismatch between investigating Barnes for negligence, but not needing to investigate Minnie’s death.

And far from Minnie not coping with stress, it seems he was. According to News24:

[Minnie] laughed when I asked him why he smoked so much. “It’s the only way I can cope with the stress.“…He was also excited about the first official launch of the book in September.

“Will I see you there [at the launch]?” [Minnie] wanted to know.

“Absolutely,” was my response.

So much work goes into a book, so much blood, sweat and tears, so much teeth-gnashing frustration, there are few authors who would abandon those efforts after publication and prior to the glitzy and glamorous launch that makes it all worthwhile.  The recognition, the reward, the chance to talk about your work. Why would you write a book, promote it and then not launch it?

Did Minnie really have a change of heart between Friday night and Monday morning about his book? This was a book he’d quit his job over, moved from China to South Africa in order to get it done. Those are long term plans, life changing shifts. Also, Minnie himself was molested as a youngster. He’d lived with that knowledge for decades. It was deep-seated. It was part of his identity. So why would any of this suddenly bother him between Friday night and Monday morning?

On Monday morning, the same morning he died, Minnie also had another interview planned.

We also know that after his interview on Friday, Minnie continued to maintain contact on Saturday and Sunday with other folks.  Minnie’s publishers for one. Tersia Dodo for another. Minnie had told Dodo if he died, that she must know it wasn’t an accident.  On August 16th, Dodo told SABC:

I spoke to a couple of my cousins today and to all of them, he expressed that his life was in danger, and that if anything did happen to him, we must know that it was done to him, not by himself,” Dodo said.

It would be good if all those who received messages could come forward to establish a continuity of messages or emails they received. This is important if only to show cogency in Minnie’s state of mind throughout the weekend, not that there’s any real doubt about that.

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About two weeks after his death, News24 published this update:

Maryna Lamprecht, commissioning editor at Tafelberg Publishers, confirmed Minnie’s death and added that the publishing house was “sad and devastated” by the events.

“We are proud to have had him as an author and we’re in contact with his son, who is in China.” She said Minnie was excited about the publishing of the book and the leads it had brought up. He was adamant that he wanted to investigate the matter further and had been working closely with a number of people who had come forward.

“He was very proud of the book,” Lamprecht said.

Fullscreen capture 20180901 000140Curiously, Minnie’s cell phone disappeared the same day he died. If Minnie was killed, then his cell phone would be of crucial importance, especially to see what was being said on it, and with whom. It would also be necessary for Minnie to be alive so that his killer could “unlock” it.

Didn’t Minnie’s vehicle also disappear? If he committed suicide, how could he drive off with his own vehicle afterwards?

What was surprising was that by August 14, the day after Minnie’s death [and he was only found shortly before 21:00 on August 13] the media were already presenting the position of the police:

“At this stage no foul play is expected.”

He meant to say suspected. Or perhaps he said it right from the beginning – don’t ever expect this case to be about foul play.

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Ode to the Cheek Pinch

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The cheek pinch is a weird one. It resembles a sucking in of the cheeks, but it’s not. It also resembles pulling in the lower lip and pushing it against the upper lip towards the nostrils to create a sort of upside down coathangar shape to the mouth. It’s not that either.

What it is – when it matters – is that the cheek muscles are forcibly clamped down on the smile muscles, as they begin to exert an involuntary tug and lift on the corners of the mouth. The reason it’s used in true crime is to stop the criminal from smiling, especially when a smile is completely inappropriate to the question. The crushed cheek expression often helps the suspect appear more serious, stoic and unemotional than they are.

Here’s an example from a Ted Talk referencing the infamous Diane Downs. Watch until 15:52.

Here’s another example of what happens when the cheek pink fails to engage. Have a look at the corners of Knox’s lips, and how quickly and easily they tilt upwards.

The example below from an interview with Diane Sawyer has Knox in a more somber mood. She has to be, because Sawyer is a woman, and Sawyer is taking her there, addressing her morals as another woman. In this instance we see a few cheek pinches, and then one more immediately followed by a telling smile.

Sometimes a smile can build up but it can be held back. Sometimes it can’t. Repeated cheek pinches can also be a sign of giddy anxiety from a potential suspect. A particular psychology is at work. It’s activated in their minds. And extended exposure to an idea of themselves can be amusing, especially if there’s more to tell and the public can’t know.

So is the cheek pinch a smoking gun? Like so many things in true crime, when smoke forms part of a pattern, where there’s smoke there’s usually fire. A cheek pinch doesn’t mean guilty of murder necessarily but it can reveal deception at a telling juncture.

That said, the cheek pinch is idiosyncratic. Some, during interviews and in court, use it all the time, almost like a default fall-back expression. Some almost never use it.

Sometimes it’s used almost automatically by ordinary folk to express pique, or small levels of irritation or impatience. That’s not what we’re talking about here.

The cheek pinch is specifically useful as a true crime clue when tactical or direct questions are asked, questions with huge and telling implications. And because of this, the cheeks are used to clamp down on a smile that’s trying to leak through. It’s trying to hide the fact that I’m wanting to smile…I’m trying not to smile. See, I know something important but I’d rather not say what it is…and that’s amusing to me.

That amusement may seem so-what, but it’s actually a potential indicator of sadism. Where there’s elevated sadism there’s almost always murder.

By stretching the lips, which is what the cheek pinch does, they suck in the lips which tilts the edges down. This can neutralize an involuntary smile muscle that’s starting to engage.

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Through the course of studying dozens of high-profile cases in meticulous detail, I’ve not paid that much attention to the cheek pinch. That changed when I attended the Rohde trial. When I encountered the accused [accused of murdering his wife, he claims she committed suicide by hanging herself from a hook inside a hotel bathroom while he was sleeping in the same room] in court, I was surprised by how expressive he was in court. When he was on the stand facing questions, he shrugged constantly. A single response sometimes caused him to shrug several times every few seconds.

Besides the shrugging, Rohde did the cheek pinch to excess. Now in Rohde’s case the cheek pinch is closer to a sneer than clamping down on a smile. It’s almost a contemptuous response to something that he could never possibly know. Clearly Jason Rohde’s not always trying to stifle a smile, so what is he trying to do?

In court [the case is still sub judiceRohde’s admitted to being a liar, and to lying often. He’s said, shrugging, that he may be a liar but that doesn’t make him a murderer.

True, but murderers need to a lie a lot, and their lives are lies. To view a brief illustration of some of Rohde’s ticks, visit this link.

The strange thing with Rohde is that he has a slew of microexpressions that are seemingly beyond his control. Even when he’s not on the stand he’s constantly blinking in a sort of pinched stutter – with his eyelids. These nervous twitches are not something you’d expect from a multimillionaire CEO. And what I noticed with them, he’d pinch his eyes when nothing was happening, but crucially, the pinch would invariably be there right when it did too.

Think of it as someone who stutters. They stutter when they’re nervous, but they stutter even more when their nervousness increases. Does that make sense?

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Now obviously the cheek pinch isn’t necessarily a flag that only sits on the murderer’s cake. Any time in a true crime scenario, especially where witnesses are in court testifying about crucial information, you want to look out for the cheek pinch.

Some pinches may be incidental pique, but others might not be.

To test your ability to pick it up, watch the testimony below of Anthony Lazarro, Casey Anthony’s boyfriend at the time her daughter Caylee disappeared and died. A lot of the questions are neither here nor there. Lazarro happens to be very expressive too. Perhaps because of his youth he’s not that great at camouflaging his emotions. The clip below starts at the moment in the testimony he starts to do cheek pinching to excess.

QUESTION: Did she ever talk with any specificity about say, what the babysitter’s name way?

LAZARRO [Glances upward for inspiration]: Uh…at that point it was…Zanny [cheek pinch].

Lazarro keeps his cheeks pinched for a few more seconds until he’s asked a follow-up question.

QUESTION: Did she tell you where Zanny lived?

LAZARRO: No. [The cheek pinch is back with a vengeance now].

QUESTION: Did she tell you if Zanny had any relatives?

Now Lazarro’s got his cheeks pinched in permanently, even when he answers. So they’re pinched in before the question, there’s an answer, and they’re still pinched in when he says “No”.

QUESTION: Did she tell you if Zanny cared for any other children?

He’s still got his cheeks pinched in.

There’s a slight pause, then one more.

QUESTION: Did she ever discuss, when you first met her, what she paid Zanny?

Here Lazarro sucks in his lips audibly, making a squishy kissing noise. The kissy lips look absurd under the circumstances. Anyway, he hunches up, shrugs and finally smiles as he says, “Don’t remember.”

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If there is something to the cheek pinch, this guy seems to be hiding something that has to do with a Nanny called Zanny. It’s funny to him, even though he’s sitting in court addressing accusations of murder towards his former questions. If he’s trying to stop himself from smiling, what’s he trying to hide, and why’s it funny?

 

Chris Watts Stoic During His Arrest – just like Scott Peterson, WTF?

Chris Watts looked chirpy when he gave his infamous press conferences from his porch. Although that was a stilted performance, he was expressive with his hands, his eyes and even flashing a few surreptitious smiles.

When he was arrested, he was like why bother with an act? The cops processing him were reportedly surprised by how emotionless he was. According to a police source Watts showed zero emotion “the entire time”. And it is surprising. You’re being charged for triple murder of your own flesh and blood, your freedom is being forcibly taken from you, you’re experiencing a social death from which you’ll likely never recover – and you’re not overwhelmed? You’re not sorry? You’re just going through the motions?

There is method in the madness, however. To us this seems twisted and weird, but to a murderer he knows his emotions have given him away, and it was his emotions [whatever they were] that caused him to commit murder in the first place. Strong emotions.

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Now, facing punishment, facing the full might of the law, it’s only natural that a guilty person would clam up and reveal as little as possible. Emotions have compromised him, and he is emotionally compromised. The lesson then is to batten down the hatches – reveal nothing.

SPOCK: I can tell you, I just lost my planet. I am emotionally compromised. What you must do is get me to show it.

On his face, in his words, in every way possible. And we can see him already backtracking to minimize the damage. He killed his wife, sure, but she killed the kids. So maybe he was justified [is how he’s already arguing his defense case in his mind].

It would be illuminating to see his confession, assuming the Colorado cops recorded it.
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Was Chris Watts having an affair with another man? UPDATED

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There seems to be a little corroboration to support the Gay Man Mistress scenario. However, one wonders whether the man’s description of Chris Watts’ car and home didn’t simply come from watching the news or snooping on Facebook. Something similar happened with John Mark Karr in the JonBenet Ramsey case. His “inside knowledge” turned out to be not so inside at all – it turned out anyone who’d been paying a lot of attention to the media would have known what he knew. The same could be true here.

Here’s People’s latest tease on the whole idea:

Chris’ alleged ex-lover, whom HLN said had been sought out by their team, said that he and Chris were allegedly in an approximately 10-month relationship after meeting online last June.

They saw each other off and on through the spring, ending things in March or April, the man said.

His story has not yet been independently corroborated by news outlets, including PEOPLE, but his account of an alleged relationship with Chris does contain details about Chris’ life that are not readily available online and in public documents. Identifying information about Chris’ truck and his home matches PEOPLE’s reporting.

A source close the investigation tells PEOPLE that Chris has had relationships with both men and women outside of his marriage.

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If this part is right, then Chris Watts shares the same trait with Scott Peterson. Peterson was cheating on Laci since even before they were married, and then throughout their marriage. Laci appeared either unaware of it, or pretended not to know if she did.

It’s hard to imagine Shanann would have pretended not to know, especially if the affair involved another man. Perhaps she found out, or perhaps she was murdered before she could find out. Perhaps part of who Chris Watts felt he needed to be involved not being married and not being a father.

According to the Daily Mail “the other man” and Watts met after chatting via dating app MeetMe just a short time before Shanann. Celeste and Bella were murdered.

‘He reached out to me and messaged me,’ the man alleged. ‘It was small talk. He told me his age. He had two daughters. 

‘He told me he was looking for a relationship in the long run. I asked why his profile said straight. He said he was not out and not ready to be out as far as sexuality.’

‘We had many conversations,’ the man told Banfield. ‘I asked him to make sure he’s not bisexual cause he had two children. He told me he didn’t know. At that moment he was attracted to me as a male.’

The bombshell allegations even state that the man spent time with Watts’ family.

With the anonymous person speaking to Banfield, telling her Watts lied about his relationship status and reassured the man that he and Shanann ‘didn’t have sex anymore’.

‘Bella made a comment… She asked if she could sleep with him and mommy,’ he said. ‘That’s how I found out he was married. I asked why he lied to me. He told me he knew he wouldn’t have a chance with me if he told me he was married. He told me what I wanted to hear. He knew I had good morals.’

And then here is where it gets dodgy and in my view, less than credible:

According to the interviewee, Watts told him his spouse [Shanann] was ‘verbally and emotionally abusive,’ that ‘he didn’t love her’ and that ‘she didn’t love him’.

At this point it’s very early, it’s just hit the media. Trent Bolte is the man in question.

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Bolte [whose twitter feed is protected] describes himself as Nurse, MUA, beauty guru, boy who loves makeup. I like dancing, jenga, cheddarwurst, and inspirational speaking. My passion-EVERYTHING.

He also appears to be an ex-stripper based on his bio hashtag.

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Since Shanann worked in a children’s hospital, it’s possible she met Bolte through her work.

The Twitter profile is located in Casper, Wyoming, which makes the claim feel like a stretch. Casper is about 270 miles from Frederick, Colorado, or 4 hours drive.

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A guy on Reddit was saying the caller interviewed by HLN was very hesitant in his answers, and had to be prodded repeatedly. He says his gut instinct is this is a con.

Another post on Reddit:

He posted on fb about the affair, stating that it’s a witchhunt to find watts mistress

Is it a rumor or is there substance to it? Is it a guy just wanting attention? What does your gaydar say?

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Chris Watts is definitely very well groomed and appeared in shape when interviewed.

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In terms of True Crime Intertextuality, there’s the Shrien Dewani case. Dewani was engaged to a beautiful Indian bride and was murdered on her honeymoon. Although Dewani was implicated he was ultimately acquitted. It later transpired he was a closet bisexual. Read about that here.

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Further reading on this topic: 

Chris Watts: Bisexual or Not?

Chris Watts: The Psychology of Bisexuality

#ChrisWatts Why does it fascinate us?

It’s important that we look and pay attention and listen for the family dynamics beyond the sensational headlines and forensic evidence in the Chris Watts case. Authentic family dynamics aren’t always easy to see, especially not by outsiders, and especially when there’s a scenario of keeping up appearances as there are here.

Family dynamics are the key to understanding what happened here. To address that, we must listen to the why of the thing, the human desires that are there but hidden. If we do, and if we learn to see and recognize these impulses that are not so different from our own, then that’s something that can be salvaged from this awful end to a mom and her innocent children.

But what is it we’re supposed to see exactly?

Part of how we begin to see those human desires in others is to understand our own. Why are we interested in this case to begin with, and not any other case? How does our wiring work, and what does it tell us about us? About human nature?

As part of intertextual research on the Casey Anthony case, specifically along the lines of why parents intentionally harm their kids, I came across a truly despicable crime. Heather Jones didn’t only torture her 7-year-old stepson over a period of months, she posted selfies of herself doing so on Facebook. She documented her abuse, apparently enjoying the approval of a private group of Facebook pals.

Those images stored on her iCloud have since been made public, and they’re truly heartbreaking. Over a period of weeks filled with pain and suffering, the light gradually went out of that little boys eyes.  And then the father bought pigs and fed the child’s body to them.

When the cops were called on a domestic dispute, Heather – trying to implicate her husband who’d fired a gun at her – told them to search the property. She said they’d find human remains. It took them more than a day, but eventually the police did find remains, a few small bones. It would take weeks to prove that they once belonged to a little boy who’d not been seen for several weeks.

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As horrible as the Jones Case is, it’s somehow horribly predictable as well. The parents lived in a pigsty, they acted like pigs, they expressed themselves in a vulgar way, and so clearly, they weren’t living in a fairy tale. So when things turned ugly, even macabre, it’s shocking but it also feels inevitable, even familiar.

If true crime voyeurism is based on horror alone, this grisly story ought to be a favorite.

What fascinates us about true crime is the same thing that troubles us, and truly terrifies us. It’s when we realize how close to home a crime can be to our lives that we become truly uncomfortable.

It’s when we see a fairy tale, a beautiful couple, the sort of setup we all want, and then realize it’s not real and we’ve been duped that we begin to wonder about or own lives, and our own attachments to our very own fairy tales, don’t we? Beneath the fairy tale these people with perfect lives have somehow been living a lie.

And this is how that lie ends. It’s shocking, but it’s also a warning sign.

All of us have our own fairy tales, and they’re important to us. They’re an idea about the world, and how we wish it to be, and how beautiful and happy and loved we wish to be in it. It’s about belonging, shining, thriving and living life to the full. It’s about living the best life. It’s about the good life. But what is the good life? And why is it that right next to good things and fairy tales are evil things and monsters?

The bigger and better the fairy tale, the more lavish and picture-perfect the homes and neighborhoods, the more handsome the man and beautiful his wife, the more adorable the children the more difficult it is to reconcile when a nightmare unfolds inside of it, or perhaps because of it.

This is why the JonBenet Ramsey case is still so deeply unsettling and compelling more than 20 years later. It’s why Madeleine McCann, the sweet 3-year-old daughter of two attractive well-to-do doctors who vanished in Praia da Luz Portugal while on holiday, still disturbs Britain more than ten years later.

Chris Watts and Shanann looked the part of a fairy tale. The smiles looked real. The colorful photos looked happy. But none of it was. Those patches on the arms in so many photos suggest something wasn’t quite as it seemed, even when everything else looked just right. And what that does, is it asks us to look at what was really going on there, and then dares us to look at our own lives. Is any of that stuff in our lives? If it is, beware. Re-examine your fairy tale. Make sure it’s real and realistic, and not just for you, for those you share your living space with.

Below clip is from this article.

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Learn the lesson of what happened here or it could happen to you.

 

 

12 Similarities Between Mark Minnie’s Suicide Note and Dave Allen’s

It would be useful to study the original note to determine a few basics: the overall length. The type of paper used and where he got it. The pen used, and where he got that [and where the pen is now]. Also, the fingerprints on the note. And finally, to have a look at Minnie’s habit – was he in the habit of writing notes [by hand], and if so, what did that look like? That can be compared to other post-its, if available. Also, did he write letters to his children? How did he usually communicate?

Then there’s the broader question. It addresses the entire hypothesis.

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Do you think it’s the realm of conspiracy theory that suicide notes aren’t staged – or can’t be? In the archive of high profile true crime cases, there are countless examples of writing masquerading as something that it isn’t: fake diary entries [Jodi Arias], bogus Ransom Notes [JonBenet Ramsey], counterfeit prison diaries [Amanda Knox, Casey Anthony], a fake suicide message painted on a door [Rebecca Zahau].

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Below is an excerpt of the alleged suicide note of Bird Island co-author Mark Minnie. Do you think it’s genuine?

“The pitiful cries of the lost boys of Bird Island have haunted me for the past 31 years. At last their story is out. Chrissy, don’t give up now. You are almost home. No government officials preventing you from investigating this time round.”

And here’s the alleged suicide note of Dave Allen from 1987:

“I have committed suicide. There is no one to blame for this. I have suffered incredible back problems since a motor accident many years ago and I have decided to end things.” 

If you’re unfamiliar with this story, and want to find out how Allen’s alleged suicide and Mark Minnie’s alleged suicide are related to one another, read this article.

12 Similarities

  1. Indirect despair. In the Minnie note, a reason is given for committing suicide. Minnie is “haunted” by the suffering for others. He’s not haunted by his own experience of childhood rape. Anyone who doesn’t understand true crime will fail to see the difference, but there’s a big difference in being in a car accident, and being aware of someone else being in one. The trauma is completely different. Imagine saying you were scared to drive because you read in a newspaper about a car accident? Compare that to being injured in a car accident, and then being too afraid to drive. In the Allen note it’s the same. Incredible back problems are given as a reason for despair. An authentic reason would cite pain and difficulty moving around, the actual experience of it.
  2. Indirect timing. Suicide is premeditated murder. There may be a precipitating tension, a driving force, but also a trigger. One is emotionally compromised, one is vulnerable, and then something pushes one over the edge. So what’s the trigger here? Both the Minnie Note and the Allen note reference the same word: years. But what’s changed in all this time? Surely the best time to commit suicide is right in the beginning, not after years of recovery, and in Minnie’s case, even recovering enough to write a book, which in itself requires enormous willpower and resilience.
  3. “Many Years.” Both notes invoke long periods of time. Suicidal people are caught in a bubble. A precipitating event causes them to despair, and to lose hope in dealing with their problems. They’re overwhelmed. Just as suicidal people can’t imagine suffering in any other way besides being interminable , they can’t look beyond the moment that’s consuming them either into the future, or into the past. In short, there’s too much savvy perspective for someone at the end of their rope.
  4. Handwritten. The Allen suicide note can be forgiven for being written by hand, seeing it was the late 1980’s. Even so, why write I note by hand and then head outdoors and risk the note being lost or soiled by weather? If you don’t want to kill yourself at home, why not in your car? Why outside? The handwritten note and the outside element are a mismatch. Ditto the Minnie note. It’s even less likely that someone who has written a book, and has the use of a smartphone and email in the early 21st century, wouldn’t make use of these tools. If he’d written a book, and a note, and fielded dozens of interviews just prior to the “suicide”, then you can be sure it would have been uppermost in his mind that the note would be scrutinized, and could help get the message out regarding the book he’d toiled on. So why not do that? Why not send a group email to friends and a group email to the media [Minnie’s note is separated into a message to his co-author] and a message to family? Why not communicate directly to his family? Why not communicate directly to his partner?
  5. Too self-evident, and probably not true. In the Minnie note the words “you are almost home” are too self-evident, ditto “I have decided to end things” in the Allen note.
  6. Hinging. Both notes have a hinge where something is set up, and then dramatically relieved. In Minnie’s, he’s haunted, he’s struggled, but that’s okay, Chrissy – it’s up to you now. The problem is stated. The problem is solved. In Allen’s, no one is to blame and that’s hinged on himself who has decided to end things.
  7. Have. Without seeing the full Minnie note, it’s difficult to make an accurate call on this. The word have is often used in bogus 911 calls. Patsy Ramsey: We have a kidnapping. It’s the wrong word for an emergency situation, because it suggests the situation is under control, especially in the mind of the person reporting it. The Minnie note is just too clear on how haunted he is. It’s not the boys haunting him either, or his own suffering, it’s the pitiful cries. In the Allen note the word features three times. I have committed/I have suffered/I have decided. Compare that tohave haunted me.
  8. Similar cadence. Consider these two sentences.  I have committed suicide. There is no one to blame for this. It could also be written: I have committed suicide, there is no one to blame for this. Compare that to: Chrissy, don’t give up now. You are almost home and Chrissy, don’t give up now, you are almost home.
  9. Wrong Tense for a Suicide Note. I have committed suicide, there is no one to blame for this. As soon as it’s one sentence, what feels glaringly wrong is he hasn’t committed suicide yet. The letter’s already written in the past tense. Wow. That’s a lot of perspective for a suicide note, thinking about how the reader will be seeing it when he reads it. Chrissy, don’t give up now, you are almost home is less on the chin, except it’s also intuiting Chrissy’s response, and soothing her.
  10. Veiled threat. If both these notes are staged, then someone has gone to a lot of effort. Staging involves sadism. The Ramsey Ransom Note is replete with a taunting tone. There may not be explicit taunting here, because the priority is to pass the note off as a suicide note. But there does seem to be subconscious taunting. Think of these words: Pitiless cries…their story is out…don’t give up now…you are almost home. No government officials preventing you from investigating this time round…In the Allen note There is no one to blame for this is just as ironic as don’t give up now. Seen otherwise, of course someone is to blame for Allen’s death, whether it is Allen himself or someone else. Ditto, of course Chris Steyn should consider giving up, irrespective of whether Minnie has really committed suicide or not.
  11. An Afrikaans Speaker? The entire Minnie note just feels slightly stilted. Pitiful cries...It’s not a word that’s commonly used, except to express contempt. [That’s pitiful! That’s a pitiful attempt!]. I know what is trying to be communicated, but if these boys were abused and tortured, then something more personal, more intimate, more charged would be more appropriate. But Minnie was never there to hear them? A stronger way of communicating it would be to leave out the pitiful cries completely and simply say I’m tortured by their suffering… In Allen’s note he refers to a motor accident. Perhaps he spoke that way in general. Most of us would say a car accident, or a car crash. There’s also this in the Minnie note: You are almost home. No government officials preventing you from investigating this time round. Would English-speakers say: You are almost home. Imagine someone running the Comrades and at the finish line, with seconds left on the clock, a slow, staccato: YOU ARE ALMOST HOME. It’s a  colloquial expression, and Minnie’s a colloquial, rough-around-the-edges guy: You’re almost home! No government officials preventing you from investigating this time round. It should read: No government officials are preventing you from investigating this time round. The fact that the are is missing elevates the are, and turns it into a question: Are government officials preventing you from investigating…? The word “preventing” is also very formal for an ex-cop. Why not just say: No one can stop you now! That’s how you would say it, but when you do, it doesn’t like that’s really the case, does it, even if Minnie did kill himself.
  12. Minimum Safe Distance. The biggest giveaway in both notes is the inherent distancing. It’s not just the words, many of them self-evident, it’s what’s not there. There’s no emotion. In the Minnie note the only hint of an emotion in terms of himself is in the word haunted. There’s residue in him telling his partner not to give up. Haunted is hardly a motion driving one to despair. In the Allen note the back problems are elevated to “suffered incredible back problems”, because the author knows back problems on their own won’t cut it, they need to be incredible, and saying where they came from also helps. In the Minnie note, the author is just as explicit saying where his suffering and problems came from: The pitiful cries of the lost boys of Bird Island have haunted me…

Ironically I think there is a kernel of truth in both notes that the writer perhaps didn’t intend to leave. Both these statements, I believe, are true and remain in effect:

The pitiful cries of the lost boys of Bird Island have haunted me…

There is no one to blame for this.

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