For those of you curious as to what my take on this case might be, please read the first three posts on this blog -- links can be found in the intro, just above. But please don't comment under those posts, as they are already much too cluttered. If you have questions, post them here.]
See below for the long-awaited 911 "enhancement"
I just saw part one of "The Case of: JonBenét Ramsey" on CBS, as I feel sure everyone reading here did -- at least those of you living in the USA. It's late, so I won't be going into any details for now, but I plan on adding more thoughts in this space from time to time, so please stay tuned.
For now, I'll just share a few thoughts:
1. I have to admit I was wrong about the head blow. Their demonstration convinced me that Burke could have delivered such a blow after all. Dr. Spitz's analysis of the wound is also convincing -- looks very much like the blow was delivered with the Maglite.
2. I remain extremely skeptical about all the emphasis on statement analysis and linguistic analysis, which strikes me as extremely amateurish, and reveals the bias of these investigators from the start. Their attempt at analyzing Patsy's phone call is rife with confirmation bias. Clearly they've convinced themselves ahead of time that she was putting on an act so her every word is seen in the light of that assumption. It would be interesting to do a statement analysis of their language, to determine the degree of bias in what they have to say.
3. The notion that one can determine with reasonable certainty whether a document such as the ransom note was written by a man or woman strikes me as doubtful in the extreme. The "expert" cherry picks a couple statements that strike him as typically feminine and ignores all the many references to the type of movies that appeal mostly to men, and also certain terms, such as "monitor," "deviation," "execution," "law enforcement countermeasures and tactics," that I, for one, would associate with a male writer.
Here's a website that, so I've been told, has an 80% success rate in identifying the gender of any text: Text Analytics: Deception Detection and Gender Identification from Text You'll need to scroll down a bit to get to the gender test. If you insert the ransom note, as I have, you'll see that it's identified as Male. So whose verdict do we accept?
Now what if their "expert" happened to agree with this website and declared the note to be written by a man and not a woman? Why that would have stopped them in their tracks! If the note were written by a man, and, as we "know," John was ruled out, then the case they're clearly building would crumble into dust. The note would have to have been written by an intruder. Unless, just maybe, John should not have been ruled out -- but obviously they aren't prepared to deal with that possibility, which isn't even mentioned.
More tomorrow . . .
Well, here it is tomorrow, so I'll continue. First on the agenda is that famous 911 recording. The "official" enhanced version is still not available, so they did an enhancement of their own, using "today's technology," which one would presume to be superior to that of 1997. Here's the relevant clip:
(I hope this works for you. If not then hopefully the show will be available soon on youtube.)
And, just as I suspected, what we hear in the "enhanced" portions is ambiguous, to say the least. I have to laugh when the lady says "this is huge," because her eagerness to hear what she wants to hear (aka confirmation bias) is exposed for all to see. What I hear in those enhanced portions is so garbled it could be interpreted in a thousand different ways, depending on what you've programmed yourself to listen for ahead of time. I suspect that what we're hearing, in any case is crosstalk. I found a good definition here, online:
Crosstalk is a type of interference. Interference can come from just about anywhere - e.g. RF interference from all sorts of things emitting radio waves (including, but not limited to, radio transmitters). Interference can also come from coupling from other devices. In the case of a phone system, this could be hearing humming from a power line or music from the local AM radio station on the phone line. Generally crosstalk refers to interference from an 'adjacent' signal - be it in a wire, radio channel, etc - leaking into the 'victim' signal. In the case of a phone system, this could be in the form of being able to hear your neighbor's phone calls on your line because the two lines are routed next to each other on the telephone pole.