Statement and Behavioral Analysis – Trista Reynolds June 4, 2012 Phone Interview

by Grace4Ayla on November 21, 2012

On June 4, 2012, Trista Reynolds gave a phone interview with Chelsea Hoffman, in which she generously offered previously unshared information about the disappearance of her daughter, Ayla Bell Reynolds. Here is my statement and behavioral analysis of that very revealing interview.

Immediately after Ayla was reported missing, Trista Reynolds came out with guns blazing for Justin DiPietro, then she promptly did an about face claiming she didn’t think he had done anything to Ayla and was a good father (see previous article). Now, after eleven months and no clues as to the whereabouts of her daughter, she is apparently once again holding him responsible for Ayla’s disappearance.

Analysis of an Interview

Here is a link to the entire interview. I will only be posting the questions and Trista’s answers for analysis.

When was the last time you tried to speak with or see your daughter?

“On the 15th of December [(two nights before Ayla Reynolds was reported missing)] Justin would not let me talk to her. He said she was watching Home Alone 3 and couldn’t come to the phone.”

Rookie reporter mistake, asking a compound question. It gives Trista the opportunity to choose which question she will answer, except she doesn’t exactly answer either. If she doesn’t say she called Justin, we can’t say it for her.

All she says is on that night Justin wouldn’t let her talk to Ayla. We know that Justin was in Portland late that night picking up things from his previous apartment, which he said he did “after Ayla went to bed.” If Trista was with Justin in Portland, perhaps he wouldn’t call Ayla for her? We know she did not have her own cell phone at that time, often borrowing the phones of family and friends.

What do you have to say about the life insurance policy taken out on Ayla? What other details do you know about this? Does it seem shady to you like it does many in the public?

“Justin tricked me into giving him Ayla’s social security number. He told me that his mother [Phoebe DiPietro] needed it so she could open up a bank/savings account for Ayla. Come to find out the bank account was never opened. Instead, Justin used her social security number to get the life insurance policy on her. He also tried to claim her on his taxes this year, but said that ‘they’ wouldn’t let him.”

What does Trista have to say about the life insurance policy?

Remember, order is important. The first thing Trista wants us to know is that:

  • Justin tricked her into giving him Ayla’s Social Security number. She wasn’t asked this question, making this extra information and so doubly important to us. Deception detected.

I believe this means Trista gave Justin Ayla’s Social Security number so he could purchase life insurance on her, which he did, the day of the team meeting, when Trista and Justin succeeded in placing Ayla with him, despite Jessica and Becca’s desperate attempts to keep her away from him.

  • He told – told indicates tension – Why would that be a difficult conversation? If all he was doing was explaining that his mother wanted to open an account for Ayla, that would be a sweet thing to do. Deception detected.
  • Come to find out – Trista doesn’t say she came to find out, so she is not owning this statement.
  • He also tried to claim her on his taxes this year, but said that ‘they’ wouldn’t let him. This statement strikes me as odd for two reasons. One, she is giving us extra information about Justin to make him look bad. Second, in order to claim Ayla on his taxes, he would have had to have Trista’s permission before he could file. So, unless Trista is claiming that he forged her signature on his tax forms, ‘they’ would have told Justin you can’t claim the child without the mother’s permission. But that is not what Trista says Justin said to her. This sounds like it was a much more pleasant conversation than the one about the savings account, how odd is that?

As a former tax preparer, this sounds very much to me like Trista and Justin were trying to commit tax fraud. Trista does not work, so she doesn’t have anything to file and can receive none of the free money (Earned Income Tax Credit or EITC) that gets handed out in January and February each year to eager recipients. Justin only had Ayla for two months before he lost her, so he wouldn’t have qualified to claim her anyway, unless he could prove he provided more than half of her support for the entire year. Since he was behind on his child support payments, I doubt it was because he was too broke from supporting Trista, Ayla and himself in Portland. Again, claiming he supported Ayla would mean a signed affidavit from Trista.

Do you buy Justin’s story that he “fell” while carrying Ayla, resulting in her arm being broken?

“No, not anymore. I saw her medical records and Justin told me a different story from what he told the doctor. He told me that it was raining and he was carrying Ayla and groceries when he fell in his mother’s kitchen. He told the doctor that he fell because it was dark in his mother’s house when he was carrying her, but there wasn’t anything about rain mentioned.”

This is a strange statement since she attended both of Ayla’s doctor’s appointments with Justin, according to her timeline. Surely she would have heard Justin tell the story of how he fell with Ayla multiple times, from the call letting her know he was taking Ayla to the ER, to both doctor visits. Deception detected.

Do you think Justin DiPietro and his family members are hiding the truth?

“Yes. He’s hiding something.”

I don’t think Trista could be any more blunt than this. What is the something Justin is hiding? The body of Ayla Bell Reynolds. She could have said he is hiding the truth about what happened, but she didn’t.

  • She said something, hiding the identity of what she knows he is hiding.

Can you clarify on the suspicion of child abuse regarding Ayla visiting her father?

“My mother warned me to not let Ayla spend so much time with the DiPietros. Justin was a new father and did not know how to handle her. She was very hyper. She would com back from them injured every time. When Ayla’s arm was broken, it was Phoebe who told Justin not to take her to the hospital. She seemed to control the household even though Justin is the parent and should have taken her to the hospital that night.”

  • Trista does not answer this question, making it sensitive to Trista, and we know why.

Trista has vacillated all over the place with this issue, from asserting that Ayla returned home from every visit injured (without directly blaming him) to telling Justin “I know you loved Ayla”, and “U are a good dad” and “I know you wouldn’t hurt her” in text messages to him. She instead tries to place suspicion and blame on Phoebe DiPietro.

  • Notice that she is subtly derogatory towards Ayla, placing blame on her being very hyper as well.

Do you know what items were found in the Kennebec River over the past few weeks?

“I don’t know. Nobody has told me, and when I have asked I was basically told not to worry about it. I would like to know if the items are Ayla’s. I want to know what they found.”

The number one lie is I don’t know.

  • She states nobody has told her but the only people who would know would be the police and the person who put the items there.

Does this mean she asked both? Who told her not to worry about it? This is the exact thing Justin told her on the steps of city hall about the blood.

  • She would like to know, but she doesn’t want to know if the items belong to Ayla? Is this because she already knows they do?

She claimed in the email leaked by Jeff Hanson on May 31, 2012 that LE told her that “because of the items in the river and the amount of blood…Ayla was deceased.” So she knows they belong to Ayla, but she wants to know what they found.

Still, according to Jeff Hanson on his website:

Answers4Ayla says:
August 3, 2012 at 7:42 pm

ananumus, Every other week MSP has told Trista that they would show her photos of the items found in the damn for her to identify… And that has not happened to date.. After recent draining and searches of the Kennebunk river, these items apparently did belong to Ayla and whatever DNA was on them is cause for their case.. so they are guarding the items for that purpose..

Why would they still need Trista to identify the items at this late date when clearly in May they had decided the items did indeed belong to Ayla and proved she was dead? Who is calling who every other week? It makes no sense that the police would call her repeatedly only to deny her the information they keep telling her they are going to show her! More deception detected.

Can you tell me anything about your suspicion of the family?

“The last time I visited Ayla was at the DiPietro’s house and Phoebe, for whatever reason, told me that she has a gun in her house and people keeping constant watch of their home. I thought it was strange and don’t know why she would even tell me such a thing. It is something that has made me nervous since, especially since people in the neighborhood claimed to hear a loud noise in the middle of the night before Ayla was reported missing. The sound was loud like a gunshot at around 3:00 a.m., on the 16th of December.”

“I am worried because I don’t know what happened to her. I don’t know what they are hiding, and I don’t know why he [Justin DiPietro] just won’t talk to me or tell me what happened. Are they going to try to cash out that life insurance policy now that it’s believed Ayla is dead?”

We covered this a little in the previous post. Trista clearly states on her timeline that the last time she was with Ayla it was at the doctor’s appointment she attended with Justin DiPietro and Ronnie Reynolds. Other reports were that Becca Hanson and Ron Reynolds, Sr. attended as well. We can only assume from this statement that after the appointment, Trista and whomever went to the DiPietro house in Waterville.

Here, Trista accuses Phoebe of lying again. In her television interview, Phoebe used the words “it is a very creepy feeling to think that somebody had been casing your house, that they had been watching the family’s activities.” She did not own her statement.

  • However, Trista tells us that Phoebe has a gun and people watching the house. If Phoebe said to Trista, “Don’t worry about your little girl, I have a gun and people keeping constant watch on my home,” then she is taking ownership of each, meaning she owns the gun, and she asked the people to watch her house.

If this is true, where were those people the night of Ayla’s disappearance? Were they off watching Phoebe wherever she was? Why wouldn’t Phoebe own the statement if she herself asked others to watch her house? Seems to me it would be a very familiar feeling.

  • Next, Trista gives us extra information outside the scope of the question, making it doubly important to her and to us. What does Trista want us to know?

Order is important.

  • First, she is worried because she doesn’t know what happened to her. Giving us an explanation further red flags this statement. If I were the mother of a missing child, I would be frantic at this stage, not merely worried. In the beginning she didn’t want to know what happened, only where Ayla was. Now the most important thing that worries her is what happened.

This is because she knows that no matter how badly decomposed Ayla’s body is, if Justin severely abused her, the experts will be able to tell.

I believe that Justin put evidence of Ayla in the river to lead detectives to believe that Ayla is dead, but not enough of her for them to be able to tell cause of death. This is the reason Trista is constantly calling the police in order to find out what was in the river. She wants Ayla declared dead so she can collect on the life insurance policy. Without the body, they will not do so. It will be a long wait and, in June, Trista was getting impatient.

  • Trista then goes on to tell us what she doesn’t know, although I believe she does know the answers to these questions.
  • I don’t know what they are hiding – She knows perfectly well what they are hiding – the body of Ayla Bell Reynolds. She just doesn’t know where.
  • And I don’t know why he won’t talk to me or tell me what happened – In order for Justin to tell her what happened, he would have to talk to her, wouldn’t he?

What Trista wants to know is, is the plan still on and if not, why not? She wants to know if the body is too damaged to be found, since the river scam didn’t work. She says so in her very next sentence. The plan was to have Ayla declared dead and cash in the life insurance policy, and that hadn’t happened. Perhaps Trista thought she was guiding them with this statement?

Anything you want to add for those who are reading this or to the family of Justin DiPietro?

“Elisha DiPietro spoke recently about a window being open in Ayla’s room, but it feels like she is just making up an excuse and that they staged this abduction.” (Trista said)

  • But – behold the underlying truth – it (what is it, Elisha’s comment? If Trista doesn’t say, we can’t assume)
  • feels like – Giving others opportunity to feel different.
  • and – missing information
  • they – hiding identity –  Trista is being asked directly about the family but she cannot commit to naming any of them.

“I would never wish this on anyone, but I am touched that my daughter has gotten so much support in this community and all over the country. It’s touching and it helps me stay strong for my son and my family. I have to keep myself busy and I try not to think too hard about things because it hurts so much, but when I think of how much everyone loves her I smile, and I smile when I think about her beautiful face. I just want justice for Ayla. Justin Dipietro made a bad choice and I don’t know how he can call himself a father. He’s a coward and a pansy.”

  • I would never – future tense, unreliable
  • but – behold the underlying truth (she is telling the truth here)
  • my – change of pronoun – Early in the investigation Ayla was referred to consistently by Trista as our daughter, but now she has become my daughter.
  • try – meaning she fails
  • because – giving us explanation, extra information, so important
  • just – minimizing – This is not the most important thing she wants, because she knows true justice for Ayla will include her imprisonment.
  • choice – minimizing – (She later calls him names, but she still will not accuse of him of anything directly. What is the bad choice she is talking about? Bad seems minimizing here as well.)
  • father, coward, pansy – Here we see Trista viciously strike out at Justin just after minimizing his actions as choices.

She is very angry about his choice of what to put into the river is what this is telling me. If he had chosen better, perhaps Ayla could have been declared dead. Instead all they got was a “likely deceased” and the reward money being taken off the table. The reason Trista has had to use the more public venue of a not-so-mainstream media outlet was because at this particular time in history, Jeff Hanson was busy merging two blogs and embroiled in a blog war with yours truly. If you would like to see what happened, take a look at Its a wild ride, but I think you will get the picture. If you have questions, just use the contact page, I will be glad to answer them.

“I also don’t understand why the other kids haven’t been taken from the home even though Ayla was supposedly abducted and wasn’t safe in their home. How come I lost my daughter and these people who are not being truthful still have their kids in the home? [about Elisha DiPietro and Courtney Roberts.]”

  • don’t – Here again Trista is telling us something she doesn’t understand, making it important to her and us, which is why the other children haven’t been taken.
  • Note she says Ayla was supposedly taken, giving room for doubt, but wasn’t safe, which seems more concrete, and yet still does not directly accuse Justin DiPietro of anything.
  • Also note the pronoun change in relation to the home. It starts out as the home when referring to the kids but their home in relation to Ayla, back to the home with the kids. We would expect to hear the words child or children if Trista were truly concerned that they weren’t safe, which is not what she says anyway. She knew Ayla wasn’t going to be safe in that house because she intentionally sent her to their home to be killed, explaining the change in reality.
  • Next, she continues to minimize the actions of those in the home to not being truthful instead of ‘withholding information of the whereabouts of her daughter’ or any number of ways she could have stated that, which she obviously feels isn’t dangerous to the kids in the home.

“Justin DiPietro is a monster. He and I used to talk about everything and tell each other everything, and now he won’t even tell me what happened to my daughter. Was it an accident? Did he hurt her? I just don’t know. I was very close with Lance DiPietro (Justin’s brother) and I’m worried that he would be involved. I thought I knew these people, and I guess I was wrong. You can know someone your entire life and they can surprise you like this.”

After all of the minimizing Trista finally calls Justin a monster. But not for what he did to her daughter, simply because “he won’t even tell me what happened to my daughter.”

  • She asks two questions, but then answers in the negative I just don’t know – the number one lie. She knows exactly what happened to her daughter, she just doesn’t know where she is.
  • She minimizes again and goes back to being worried and now tries to throw Lance DiPietro under the bus, but she uses a future tense, indicating deception.
  • Her last statement, reminiscent of Phoebe DiPietro, is one Trista doesn’t even own. She uses the pronouns you and they, also hiding the identity of the person you can know all your life who can surprise you.

She hasn’t known Justin DiPietro or Lance DiPietro all her life, so who has surprised her? I believe she has surprised herself.

More to Follow

My next post will highlight and interpret the many messages Trista and Justin have sent each other through the media and public blogs, including the latest one which may, in fact, be the nail in the coffin of this case. Stay tuned!

(Statement Analysis® is a registered trademark of Mark McClish.)

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