How much can you read into the Celis 911 tape?
Experienced investigators say don't draw conclusions based on how calm or agitated someone seems Video by kgun9.comvideo
Many posters to KGUN9's Facebook page are suspicious about how calm Sergio Celis is on the 911 call
A few posters caution against judging Sergio Celis based on his call
Former police detective and child advocate Kathy Rau cautions against misinterpreting the words and tone heard in a 911 call
Many Tucsonans find Sergio Celis' behavior in his 911 police call unusual and suspicious.
Reporter: Craig Smith
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The release of 911 recordings from the morning Isabel Celis was reported missing has led to a lot of speculation.
Her mother Rebecca Celis sounds almost hysterical, while her father Sergio strikes some people as so calm it's cause for alarm.
But how much weight do professional investigators give to that sort of behavior?
In the 911 recordings, Isabel's mother Rebecca sounds so distraught, the 911 operator tried to calm her down.
Rebecca: "She's only 5, only 6, can you please hurry and get someone over here!"
911: "Officers are already on the way ma'am, we are just getting more information."
By the time Rebecca Celis called Sergio Celis had already been talking to 911---and doing it so calmly his manner has surprised some listeners.
Sergio: "Hello, I need to report a missing child, I believe she was abducted from my house."
911: "How old?"
Sergio: "6 years old."
911: "Is it your daughter?"
To a lot of our viewers the father seems more cold, than calm.
On KGUN9's Facebook page, Cinda Christiansen said, "The father joked and laughed when he was speaking to the 911 person. How would one do that when their child is missing."
Most opinions posted are similar. There are exceptions like Jon Jon Caceres who says leave the analysis to the professionals. "He says, "I believe he is a strong individual who is maintaining composure for the sake of his family."
When viewers comment on the father joking, it's based on this part of the call.
911: "Is mom there also?"
Sergio: "She just left for work, I just called her and told her to get her butt home (laughs)."
Kathy Rau was a TPD Detective for about 25 years before she retired to lead the Southern Arizona Children's Advocacy Center.
She doesn't see Sergio Celis little laugh as an automatic cause for suspicion. Rau says, "Sometimes we see mannerisms that may seem inappropriate such as chuckling, or giggling but many people when they're nervous exhibit that type of behavior."
Rau is not involved in the Celis case but in years of investigations has seen everything from hysterics, to calm, disciplined focus.
"Just kind of the person is trying to keep it together until the crisis is over. So it's very dangerous to try to predict or assume that we know how someone should react to that situation."
KGUN9 reporter Craig Smith asked: "So someone may be saying, everyone around me is hysterical, I'm going to keep my head and focus toward the greater goal here?"
Rau: "Exactly. I'm the person that's responsible for getting this information out."
Kathy Rau says if you know someone well, you're certainly better qualified to know whether they're behaving in character when they're in crisis.
If police are interviewing someone they don't know, they try to spend enough time observing someone and talking to them to establish what they call a baseline profile that defines their typical behavior, then they can see if questioning makes them behave abnormally.