Monday, March 28, 2016
Today, someone tweeted me a link to a thread discussing the possibility that Adnan's January 31st call to Nisha was the real "Nisha Call." The argument in the thread is interesting, but another comment in the thread is even more interesting because it greatly increases the chances that the call during which Nisha talked to Jay took place while Jay was working at the adult video store and not on January 13th.
This is testimony we likely all recall from Serial, with Nisha explaining that the Jay call occurred "towards the evening" while Adnan was visiting Jay at his job at the adult video store, a job that Jay didn't start until the end of January. Given the timing of Jay's hiring, it would seem impossible that the Jay-Nisha call occurred on January 13th. That said, Not Her Real Name Cathy said the following in her police interview:
Now, there are some obvious issues with this statement. First, Cathy seems to be thinking that someone was coming to pick up Jay and Adnan on January 13th, despite no one mentioning anything of the sort anywhere else. Second, Cathy is saying that Jay and Adnan were going to meet up with Stephanie on January 13th, with no one else saying that this ever was planned or occurred.
That said, some have speculated that Adnan had an elaborately planned alibi that consisted of (1) claiming that Jay and he were visiting a video store on the afternoon of January 13th, i.e., at 3:32 P.M.; and (2) also claiming that Jay and he were visiting a video store after going to Cathy's apartment, i.e., at 6:30ish or later. Then, luckily for Adnan, Jay later started working at an adult video store, distorting Nisha's memory and making her think that Adnan and Jay's fake visit to a video store on January 13th was actually Adnan visiting Jay at his adult video store job.
This theory never held much water for me, but a related argument was that the notes for Nisha's interview in April 1999 merely indicated that the Jay call took place after Adnan had just gotten to "Jay's store":
This argument wouldn't help the claim that The Nisha Call took place on January 13th because Jay didn't have any job until January 25th, when he started work at F&M. That said, the argument that Nisha could have been confusing Jay's jobs was somewhat convincing for me, and it lead to a theory (which I don't think I've posted about) that the real "Nisha Call" could have been Adnan's February 1st call to Nisha that was place while Jay was working at F&M and that was followed by a call to Stephanie.
That said, the comment on the thread today noted the following two-question redirect examination of Nisha by Urick (page 36):
This is huge. At trial, Nisha shows a clear recollection of Adnan telling Nisha that he was visiting Jay at his pornography store "before he walked in." And this isn't an answer fed to her by defense counsel; she freely gives it in response to an open ended question by the prosecutor.
Now, Urick is clearly trying to establish that Nisha has no way to verify that Adnan was actually visiting Jay at his adult video store, meaning that Adnan could be lying. And he's clearly doing this because Jay's own version of "The Nisha Call" took place at the Forrest Park Golf Course after "The Patrick Call," a claim belied by Adnan's call log,* Jay's timeline,** and the cell tower pinged by this outgoing call.***
Of course, this claim makes little sense given that Jay wouldn't start that adult video store job until the end of January. Now, the same goes for the claim that Nisha learned about Jay's adult video store job at a later date and retconned it into her memory of a call that actually took place on January 13th.
It's still possible that this happened. Anything is possible. But Nisha herself says, under oath, that she has a recollection of Adnan telling her he was visiting Jay at his adult video store "before he walked in." This moves the claim that the Nisha/Jay occurred on January 13th from the "unlikely" column to the "implausible" column.
*The Patrick call is at 3:59 P.M.; the call to Nisha is at 3:32 P.M.
**Jay claims he didn't even get the Best Buy call until after 3:45 P.M.
***The Forrest Park Golf Course is up by "Grandmother's House" in this map of the 3:32 P.M. ping.