Infamous Murder Defendants Covering and Hiding Eyes & Face…True or False Emotions?

Many criminal murder defendants cover, hide, or block their faces in an effort to hide their guilt and pretend to look sad or remorseful…especially when shown crime scene, bloody victim evidence, or hearing opposing witness testimony.

Jodi Arias Face Blocking
Jodi Arias Face Blocking
Casey Anthony Face Blocking
Casey Anthony Face Blocking

In recent cases, both murder defendants Jodi Arias and Casey Anthony covered their faces with long dark hair, hands, and tissues. Despite Arias and Anthony’s attempts to appear as if they were crying, their facial expressions and muscles did not support actual crying or remorse as shown in this next photo.

Body Language Face of Sadness
Body Language Face of Sadness

Specifically, there should be loss in facial muscle and one or more of the following facial expressions: 

  • Forehead: horizontal lines across
  • Inner corners of eyebrows:  Raised, upward into inverted V with vertical line in-between
  • Eyelids: triangulate with raised upper eyelids’ interior corners + drooping exterior corners.  Lower eyelids may appear raised
  • Eyes:  Downward narrower eyes in a near squint.
  • Cheeks:  Nasolabial Furrow downward corners of lips.
  • Mouth / Lips:  mouth dropped open, corners of lips are drawn downward and may tremble.
  • Chin:  Tip of chin (the Mentalis muscle) may wrinkle, get pushed upward, and tremble or quiver.

In their respective murder cases, Arias was convicted of killing boyfriend Travis Alexander, while Anthony was acquitted of murdering her toddler daughter Caylee Anthony. The only time Jodi Arias’ chin quivered was during the GUILTY verdicts from each of the 12 jurors.

Oscar Pistorius Face Blocking
Oscar Pistorius Face Blocking

Here, South African Olympic athlete Oscar Pistorius’ hands cover his face as he ‘faces’ premeditated murder charges of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp. This photo reveals noticeable redness and veins on the right side of Pistorius’ forehead and temple, along with wrinkling around the exterior corners of the right eye. The weight of his head and right check press down enough to leave an imprint from his righ thumb. Distress appears around the corners of his right eye and the area where the tips of his fingers are touching his face. These body and physiological signs indicate true emotions are being felt by Pistorius in the moment.

Specifically, his limbic, emotional brain:
(1) is overwhelmed with stimuli,

(2) is unable to rationally process the reality or consequences of his actions for shooting to death girlfriend Ms. Reeva Steenkamp; and

(3) is therefore instinctively blocking or protecting itself from perceived and real threats.

More will be revealed as his trial proceeds. Pistorius and his defense team claim that Pistorius thought he was shooting at intruder(s) who were in his locked bathroom door.

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