Statement Analysis®

An Analysis of the Jessie Arbogast's Shark Attack Email


There are no synonyms in Statement Analysis. Every word has a different meaning even if it is only slightly different. For example, the word "gun" means one thing and the word "pistol" means something different. If a person is being truthful, his language will remain consistent. If he views a firearm as a "gun," he will always call it a "gun." He will not call it a "pistol" because to him it is a "gun."

Because a deceptive person is making up the story, he may not follow his personal dictionary. This may cause him to use synonyms throughout his statement. Because the gun did not exist and therefore is not in his memory, he may refer to it using several different words: gun - pistol - handgun - firearm. Changing the language is an indication of deception unless there is a justification for the change. For example, a person may call it a "gun" but once he fires it he then calls it a "weapon." This is a justifiable change in his language. The word "gun' means it is not being fired and the word "weapon" means it is being discharged.

Let's look at the writer's personal dictionary in regards to the attacking marine animal.


The Truth About The Shark Attack

To all my buddies and friends who have called me about the truth on the shark attack here on Pensacola Beach, the truth is coming out. There is a reason that the "hero" of the attack who wrestled that 7 foot shark to shore is not giving any interviews, and is hard to find. There is a reason that this 7 foot shark was in 2 feet of water, and there is a reason that the family is "acting funny" about taking money from those that want to help.....here it is.....hard truth.....Sit down......

THE UNCLE WHO WRESTLED THE SHARK ASHORE WAS FISHING FOR SHARKS, HAD IT ON A LINE AND HAD BEEN FIGHTING IT FOR TWO HOURS PLUS. The unidentified stranger who helped him also helped him fight the fish to shore. When the shark got into two feet of water, the kids all ran into the water in jubilation and the shark lunged from off the ground and hit Jessie Arbogast twice, took his arm off and bit into his leg.

The man had CHUM in the water, and heavy tackle built to fish for sharks. His nephew got bit because the entire family went into the water trying to wrestle the fish to land. There is big money in a shark that size.

The press has suppressed the real truth, because they are afraid that it will affect the contributions for Jessie and the uncle is so filled with guilt, he has tried to commit suicide once already.....Now it all makes sense. No man is going to wrestle a shark that large to shore in two feet of water, that is one powerful animal, and they had cut the cable, and hid the rods by the time the Medics got there. The ranger who shot the shark testified that the shark still had the hook in his mouth and "put up a big fight because his mouth was all bloody and torn up"....(that's why the shark had blood all over it's mouth in the TV photo's, it was it's own blood!!)

I am not lessening the horror of the event. Jessie did get an arm bit off and is going to recover, but I am tired of Pensacola Beach taking it in the shorts because of the "whole truth not being told"....The money, in my opinion would still come in, and the uncle will have to accept that it was a tragic accident and a mistake.

Thirteen times the writer refers to this animal as a "shark." Two times he calls it a "fish." If the writer saw this animal as a shark, then he should continually refer to it as a shark unless there is a justification for referring to it as a fish. When we look at his story we see no justification. He uses the same language when talking about the fish as when talking about the shark. "....wrestled the shark...." "....wrestle the fish...." This is our first indication of deception.

" ....the uncle is so filled with guilt, he has tried to commit suicide once already."

The word "once" tells us the writer believes the uncle will attempt suicide a second time. This we have to question since there is no indication the writer has close contact with Jessie's family and personal knowledge of how the uncle is feeling. Most people would state, "the uncle is so filled with guilt, he tried to commit suicide."

"The press has suppressed the real truth."

There is no such thing as the "real truth." It is like saying someone is really dead. Either it is true or it is not. Later on the writer talks about the "whole truth." This is an acceptable phrase because people will usually tell the truth but they may withhold certain information. As an interviewer we want all of the information; the whole truth. However, we do not seek the real truth. The writer should have stated "The press has suppressed the truth."

This story also has a very short ending consisting of just over four lines. Deceptive stories usually end very quickly. Deceptive writers will set the stage for their story. They will then spend most of their time telling us about the incident. However, since the incident didn't happen there are no emotions. Therefore, he will end the story very quickly because nothing happened after the incident since the incident never occurred. We must remember that in this case, the writer is not telling us about something that he experienced, he is telling us about something that someone else experienced. Therefore, we would not expect to see a lot of emotions.

When we closely examine this email, we see there are several indications this story is shall we say a little fishy. We would have to conclude that someone made up the story about the uncle fishing for sharks. The authorities investigating the attack maintain that Jessie was bitten by a shark that was swimming close to shore.

See Snopes for more information about this story.


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