Although a lot of us who watched the Senate hearing with M’am Janet are convinced that Mrs. Napoles was alternating between being evasive and lying through her teeth, it’s interesting to rewind (in our minds) what we saw earlier… and draw conclusions against these “signs” and standards shared with me by an uncle who used to be a US Customs police officer.
Body Language of Liars:
• Physical expression will be limited and stiff, with few arm and hand movements. Hand, arm and leg movement are toward their own body the liar takes up less space.
• A person who is lying to you will avoid making eye contact.
• Hands touching their face, throat & mouth. Touching or scratching the nose or behind their ear. Not likely to touch her chest/heart with an open hand.
Emotional Gestures & Contradiction
• Timing and duration of emotional gestures and emotions are off a normal pace. The display of emotion is delayed, stays longer it would naturally, then stops suddenly.
• Timing is off between emotions gestures/expressions and words. Example: Someone says “I love it!” when receiving a gift, and then smile after making that statement, rather then at the same time the statement is made.
• Gestures/expressions don’t match the verbal statement, such as frowning when saying “I love you.”
• Expressions are limited to mouth movements when someone is faking emotions (like happy, surprised, sad, awe, )instead of the whole face. For example; when someone smiles naturally their whole face is involved: jaw/cheek movement, eyes and forehead push down, etc.
Interactions and Reactions
• A guilty person gets defensive. An innocent person will often go on the offensive.
• A liar is uncomfortable facing her questioner/accuser and may turn her head or body away.
• A liar might unconsciously place objects (book, coffee cup, etc.) between themselves and you.
Verbal Context and Content
• A liar will use your words to make answer a question. When asked, “Did you eat the last cookie?” The liar answers, “No, I did not eat the last cookie.”
• Liars sometimes avoid “lying” by not making direct statements. They imply answers instead of denying something directly.
• The guilty person may speak more than natural, adding unnecessary details to convince you… they are not comfortable with silence or pauses in the conversation.
• A liar may leave out pronouns and speak in a monotonous tone. When a truthful statement is made the pronoun is emphasized as much or more than the rest of the words in a statement.
• Words may be garbled and spoken softly, and syntax and grammar may be off. In other words, her sentences will likely be muddled rather than emphasized.
So did you enjoy your CSI moment? Use your newfound knowledge for the next hearing – that is, if there’ll ever be another one.