Tonya Reiman

Experts: Drew Peterson’s body language says a lotNov. 15, 2007, 10:05 AM EST / Source: TODAY contributor
By Mike Celizic

Drew Peterson’s behavior and words during interviews with TODAY and NBC News did not match up with what would be expected from someone whose wife had abandoned him and his children for another man, two analysts said Thursday.

Body language expert Tonya Reiman and NBC analyst and former FBI profiler Clint Van Zandt reviewed the tapes of Peterson talking exclusively to TODAY’s Matt Lauer on Wednesday and saw a man sitting back with legs spread wide in a position of arrogance. They said they also saw a man who showed no anger or frustration or concern for his children, who have been left without a mother since the Oct. 28 disappearance of his fourth wife, Stacy.

“Just indifference, pure indifference,” Reiman told Lauer after analyzing the tape. “[Peterson’s] wife is missing, and you notice that there’s really nothing going on with his expressions. You don’t see any remorse, you don’t see any anger, frustration.”

She and Van Zandt were most struck by Peterson’s response when Lauer asked what he’d say to his missing wife. 

“Come home,” the former Bolingbrook, Ill., police sergeant had responded with a laugh and a shrug. “Tell people where you are. That’s all I can say.”

“Where’s the ‘I’m-in-trouble-right-now-’cause-you’re-missing’?” Reiman wondered. “Where’s the anger, where’s the frustration? I would be pleading as opposed to laughing.”

Van Zandt wondered why Peterson showed no apparent concern for his children. He has two teenage sons from his third marriage to Kathleen Savio, who was found dead in her bathtub four years ago while she was negotiating a divorce from Peterson. 

Originally ruled an accidental drowning, the investigation into her death has been reopened after Stacy Peterson disappeared. He also has two sons, ages 4 and 2, by Stacy Peterson.

A person worried about those children, Van Zandt said, would have begged a missing spouse to at least send a message to those children. 


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“They’re scared to death, they’re frightened, they’re not sleeping at night. Do this for the sake of the children. I’ll give you the divorce tomorrow,” would have been the expected response, Van Zandt said.

Finally, some emotion

In a later interview on Wednesday with NBC News, Peterson had gotten emotional about his children, but only in response to a question about what would happen to them if he is charged and found guilty with killing either Savio or Stacy Peterson. 

He briefly choked up when saying, “If my kids are OK and provided with, I’m OK with anything that comes. If you’re trying to get me to cry, you’re close.”  

“This is a guy, we’re told, who wouldn’t leave his wife alone. He followed her to college, he monitored her cell phones, he knew who she saw socially,” he said. “Number one, he ought to be able to say, ‘Here’s her cell phone records. Here’s the name of her boyfriend.’ Number two, he can’t give us one name, one example of who this mysterious person she may have run off with is.”

Then there’s the question of opportunity, Van Zandt continued, saying, “Nobody yet has raised a hand and said, ‘This woman who’s raising four children, going to college, keeping a household, being followed everywhere by her almost stalkerlike husband, would have time to develop a boyfriend.’”

Stacy Peterson’s uncle, Kyle Toutges, confirmed that observation in a separate interview on Thursday from Chicago with TODAY’s Meredith Vieira. 

“None of us knew of another man,” he said, speaking for her family. “Her husband, Drew, was on top of her all the time, there was no way she had time to be with another man. He knew where she was every minute.”

Asked for his reaction to Peterson’s laughing request to his wife to come home, Toutges said, “He knew where she was, and he knew she ain’t coming home, that’s what it said to me.”by Taboola
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Experts: Drew Peterson’s body language says a lot

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