This is an image of Scott Peterson - who was convicted of murdering his wife, Laci Peterson and his unborn son, Connor. It was taken from a video (during 9:11 in the video included below) captured during the early stages of the search for Laci. From a body language perspective, this image contains a profoundly valuable tell - so much so, that had we been there, or seen this video on the evening news - we would have immediately, and with very high confidence, made him the prime suspect.
Notice Scott Peterson's right arm. We can see from this camera angle that his upper arm (humerus) is parallel with the ground. This is extremely significant.
Note also the angle his upper arm makes with his torso. Imagine, for a moment, we were viewing Peterson from directly above. The angle his arm makes with his torso - is approximately 70° (with 0° being straight ahead and 90° oriented directly laterally). This angle is also critical.
When talking on a phone, the vast majority of people, the vast majority of the time - will position their "phone holding-arm" close to their torso, with the elbow pointed down toward the floor/ground.
However occasionally, when any of us hears good news - or when we assume an alpha/hyper-alpha role (e.g., reprimanding a subordinate) - scenarios which are both temporarily high adrenaline states - we will configure our arm in a manner similar to Mr. Peterson.
Yet there are some individuals who will talk on their phone a high percentage of the time with their "arm-holding phone" held in this same manner. When performed frequently, this behavior has a very high correlation with Narcissistic Personality Disorder and Impulse Control Disorder.
Moreover, men who display this phone behavior will also have a higher likelihood of inflicting abuse on their partners.
This association is even higher when the room is relatively small, relatively crowded, or when standing close to another person.
Summary: Scott Peterson's phone behavior, in the midst of actively conducting a search for his recently missing wife, indicates a high alpha emotional tone which is extremely out of context. This is a polar opposite display from a husband who normally we would expect to be worried, panicking, distraught, grieving, etc. Even a husband who is hopeful and "level-headed" would not be exhibiting this crucial nonverbal tell.
Group Appearances and One-on-One
Online Courses Available
Body Language Analysis No. 4064: The Murder of Laci Peterson - Part II - A Red Flag Conspicuous by its Absence
Body Language Analysis No. 4062: President Donald Trump meets with Senator Tim Scott
Body Language Analysis No. 4060: Ted Cruz's Default Facial Expression
Body Language Analysis No. 4058: Cara Mund - Miss America 2018
Body Language Analysis No. 4048: Lady Di - Ambassador of Empathy
Body Language Analysis No. 4017: Elisabeth Moss, Anthony Rizzo, and a Signal of Sincerity
Body Language Analysis No. 4016: Anthony Scaramucci - Faux Pas and Harbingers
Body Language Analysis No. 3976: Bill Conner bicycles 1,400 miles to hear his daughter's beating heart again
Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3922: Vladimir Putin and Michael Flynn in Moscow