How Justin Barber’s Crocodile Tears Gave Away His Guilt After Shooting Wife Dead
| Last updated
We've all seen enough true crime documentaries and eerie Scandinavian dramas to know that covering up a murder is sometimes doable, but by 'eck it looks stressful.
But while many murderers often get caught out by tiny traces of DNA found in incriminating places, there are also much simpler other ways to prove someone's guilty - and apparently that includes body language, which was what gave the game away for Justin Barber.
Anew documentary called Faking It: Tears of a Crime, which airs at 10pm on Friday on Investigation Discovery, experts in psychology, body language and speech have analysed TV appeal footage and police interviews with Barber to highlight the tell-tale signs where he gave away his guilt after killing his wife, April.
In August 2002, Barber claimed he had tried to stop his wife's murder at a remote beauty spot on a Florida beach, late at night. He said they'd been out for a romantic stroll along the shore, which was when he and his wife were shot at by someone.
Barber was then filmed when he took police back to the scene of what happened, and appeared on TV appealing for help for his wife's murder - playing the victim while hiding the truth that he had actually shot and killed his wife, before shooting himself as part of his cover story.
Body language expert Cliff Lansley reveals the moment where Barber's body let the truth slip, commentating on the footage to explain he's faking his sadness, saying: "He's not feeling sad here, he's faking it... he's squeezing the eyeballs with his thumb and his forefinger. We see this so often, when people want to create some tears on their cheeks"
The documentary's experts argue that there were several key indicators giving away Barber's pre-meditated murder.
Firstly, in the aftermath of the shooting, Barber feigned shock and surprise by putting on a quivering voice. His contorted facial expressions also present fake signs of sadness, and he creates fake tears by squeezing his eyeballs as he performs for the cameras.
Barber's over-extended head shakes apparently negated the words he was saying, while similarly over-emphasised speech also underlined his deception.
Computer records were also found that helped link Barber to his wife's death - including the sinister download of a Guns 'N' Roses song called 'I Used To Love Her But I Had To Kill Her', which was deleted the day before he handed the computer over to the police.
Forensic Psychologist Kerry Daynes argues that this was all part of his preparation for killing April: "He wants to get himself in the zone, he wants to G-himself up and get in the mindset, the mindset for a murder."
Barber was sentenced to life in prison without parole in 2006.