Email
Password
Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageOp-Ed: The Strange Case Of Rozita Swinton

By Johnny Simpson     Apr 24, 2008 in Crime
Insurance worker. Obama delegate. Kind and loving neighbor. To some, a hero. To others a curse. To Colorado, Arizona and Texas police, worse than a nuisance. My question is, what was at the root of all those hoax cries for help, psychologically speaking?
Rozita Swinton as Sarah, Sarah's Twin Sister, and Finally, Rose.
"The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well." ~ Alfred Adler (1870-1937), Austrian psychologist.
One key statement in the affidavit which led to the arrest and home search warrants of 33-year-old Rozita Swinton in Colorado Springs can easily be overlooked among the technical and legal jargon:
'The woman may also suffer from a multiple personality disorder,' the arrest warrant affidavit suggested.
So, who is Rozita Swinton, exactly? Is she:
A. an obsessed, maliciously mischievous hoax caller crying out for attention.
B. An over-the-top prankster with a grudge.
C. As the affidavit suggests, a modern-day Sybil, who can easily switch from one personality to the next as circumstances dictate.
D. All of the above.
E. None of the above.
There are very few pieces of the Rozita Swinton puzzle available as of yet, but you can be sure due to the magnitude of the legal, social, religious and possibly even constitutional conflagrations she set off with her hoax 'Sarah' calls that psychologists may be studying her for years to come. Definitely a few Master's theses in there somewhere.
And for as long as the FLDS legal battles are waged in Texas courtrooms, Rozita Swinton's presence will hang over the proceedings like a looming spectre. Every party to those hearings and trials will know they would not be there but for Rozita Swinton.
It all begs the question: Just who the hell is Rozita Swinton? And what compelled her to do what she did?
The psychotics and sociopaths among us rarely stand out as unusual characters. Most are actually quite socially affable and hide their mental illnesses well. For the most part. Until you hear the sensational news stories and the interviews of shell-shocked friends, co-workers, relatives and neighbors saying in disbelief, "he/she was the nicest, quietest, most sane person you'd ever want to meet.'
For example, serial killer Ted Bundy was handsome, charming and quite personable. He was a law student, and even worked for the re-election campaign of Washington's Republican Governor Dan Evans.
Evans was re-elected and he appointed Bundy to the Seattle Crime Prevention Advisory Committee, if you can believe it. Bundy's political future seemed secure when in 1973 he became assistant to Ross Davis, chairman of the Washington State Republican Party.
Perhaps the most eerie job Bundy ever held, in light of later events, was his work as an operator on the suicide hotline at the Seattle, Washington Crisis Clinic. Former Seattle policewoman and now famed author Ann Rule worked side-by-side with Bundy at the Crisis Center, even as she researched a book on the rash of unsolved murders of young women that plagued Washington State at the time.
It wasn't until much later she discovered her fellow crisis hotline volunteer was in fact the serial killer she had been researching. She recalled the story in her bestselling account, 'The Stranger Beside Me.'
That's how good Bundy was at fooling people. Until his sociopathic obsessions, and the law, finally caught up with him.
This is not to say Rozita Swinton is anywhere near Ted Bundy's league. Not even the same sport. But there are stark similarities, as there most always are with the mentally disturbed and obsessed. And it usually starts with whatever twisted obsession or traumatic life-changing incident possesses that person like a demon.
The Dallas Observer blog 'Unfair Park' raised the following question on April 18th:
'How does a mentally disturbed Colorado woman become aware of a secretive polygamist sect hundreds of miles away in Texas? More importantly, how does she get the phone number of Flora Jessop?'
You could also ask, how did she obtain very hard-to-get stacks of FLDS materials, names and phone numbers, which Flora Jessop stated the Texas Rangers found during their search?
That blogger, Jesse Hyde, obviously never had to deal with an obsessed person. Every woman who's ever had to deal with a persistent stalker, or psychotic ex-husband or boyfriend, knows exactly how resourceful an obsessed psychotic can be. Had we such possessed persons working on projects in the NASA program, we'd all be flying to Alpha Centauri by now.
Somehow she got the information, but Rozita Swinton's obsessions went far beyond the hoax 'Sarah' calls to the YFZ ranch, which continued long after the April 3 raid. Flora Jessop stated that 'Sarah' had called her AFTER she posted bail for last week's arrest, and finally admitted that her name was 'Rose.'
So as not to over old ground, I refer you to my recent DJ article, 'Phone Number in Polygamist Case Linked to Rozita Swinton.' Suffice it to say that Rozita Swinton repeatedly made similar hoax calls to authorities in multiple jurisdictions over a period of years, setting off large emergency responses that sometimes involved dozens of police officers.
But from the first calls to the last, there were always the same themes.
"I'm locked in a basement by my father/pastor."
"I've been drugged."
"I'm being sexually abused."
"Come help me, please! Quick!"
And almost always in a feigned baby or young girl voice. Like the 'Sarah' calls in the video above.
For the most part, the basements in which those 'abuses' took place were invariably a church, be it the FLDS churches in three states or the non-denominational New Life Church in Colorado Springs. In most instances the abuser was her father, whom she claimed also drugged her. In others it was a pastor.
Now I'm no psychologist, but are you getting the same weird feelings that I am about all this? Are you seeing the same trends? The same twisted thread that that runs through all these calls?
I'd be interested to know if her father was a preacher, priest or reverend. Or if there's been a religious father figure in her past. Might answer a lot of questions. Or you could go back to the Sybil aspect as stated in the arrest warrant affidavit.
Or, I could be full of crap on all counts. Wouldn't be the first time.
Maybe it's just as simple as she's a total head case. Maybe it goes back to fun she might have had making prank calls as a kid.
If that's the case, why not mix it up? Why does it always have be a drugged and sexually abused young girl locked in a basement? Why no variation from the theme from hoax call to hoax call? No breaking and entering? No fires? It's always the same. Like clockwork.
Like everyone else, I'll be waiting with baited breath to hear all the lurid details as they come pouring of any trials of which Rozita Swinton is the defendant. And they will come, too.
There is no doubt in my mind that Ms. Swinton's lawyers will first try to have their client declared mentally incompetent to stand trial, and 'Sarah' Swinton will no doubt provide the substance of their arguments, however painful that may be. Given her position in such a circumstance, the possibility of lengthy jail terms for her malicious misdeeds will seem a lot more painful by comparison.
So there you have her. The 'normal' Rozita Swinton: Insurance worker. Obama delegate. Kind and loving roommate and neighbor.
And on the Dark Side, perhaps the worst, most expensive and most damaging hoax caller this nation will ever see.
Do I know who she really is? I believe, based on the evidence, that's a question even Sarah, Sarah's Twin Sister, Dana Anderson, Jennifer, Suicidal Teen Mother, and God knows who else is inside Rozita Swinton would have a hard time answering.
More about Rozita, Swinton, Hoax