This past Friday, Nidal Malik Hasan, an officer and psychiatrist in the U.S. Army, was convicted in the premeditated murder of 13 people and 32 counts of attempted murder. The crime occurred on 5 November 2009. The original view of the photo is below, and a higher magnified view is shown above.
Nidal Malik Hasan gives a body language clue in this image which is a common one in those who perpetrate violence - that of contempt. Of course we all display contempt from time to time, however when displayed chronically or in the context of a photograph where most would be smiling, it is a signal which should not be ignored.
When you examine Mr. Hasan's mouth you will note that the left half is foreshortened. This is subtle but significant. It also is occurs simultaneous with a slight tightening and elevation of his "mustache area" between his upper lip and nose. Moreover and easier to detect here, Hasan's left nostril is dilated or flared. This nonverbal cluster is significant for contempt.
There were reportedly numerous behavioral comments and comments made by Hasan in the months and years prior to the crime. A person's body language should never be ignored when assessing for threat assessment and in screening for potential criminal behavior. Do you know the other common nonverbal warning signs?
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