Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Rob Lowe's Nanny

First, I just have to say, I really couldn't care less whether or not these allegations in either direction are true. The only reason I read the article and watched the video was to satisfy my curiosity about the nanny's credibility as a witness. I often read transcripts of trials but seldom see them (or even video of them) and I'm always curious about the difference between how a witness comes across in text and how they come across live. So I read the article, then I watched the video.

My take on it - from the article, I really didn't have any take - I really didn't get any sense one way or the other, but watching the video, I didn't believe a word the former nanny said. She seemed like she was smiling or smirking, like she hit the jackpot. Or maybe she just seemed smug. Maybe that was nervousness in front of the camera. I don't pretend to be an expert on reading people. I'm probably pretty bad at it, to tell the truth. But in this case, if I were on a jury and I had to judge credibility (as I'd have to as a juror) she'd be losing this suit. Maybe she'll be different in deposition or on the stand. This after all was a rather limited viewing opportunity.

So I'm curious - anyone else get that sense from the video? Again, I really don't care about the underlying case. I'm just curious from the perspective of witness credibility. After watching the video, all I could think of was that I'm watching someone who was trying to cash in. Her demeanor just did not seem to match her alleged story of fear and abuse for seven years.

(And I also wonder, if what she said was true, why she did not seek to press criminal charges. But that is a separate issue from judging her demeanor. While one could say that she was intimidated and afraid to do so, that just does not make sense given that she's filed a civil suit.)

The link to the article and the video in question is here.

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