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Published:June 2nd, 2010 14:52 EST
The Twin Dynamics of Tas and Jas-Real Motive for Mother`s Murder?

The Twin Dynamics of Tas and Jas-Real Motive for Mother`s Murder?

By John G. Kays


Nikki Whitehead had confided to her friend, Yucca Harris, shortly before she was murdered, "If anything happened to her, the kids did it." Nikki had also told her friend and boss, Petrina Sims, owner of Decatur`s Simple Unique salon, where Whitehead worked, that she suspected the rebellious teenage girls were up to something.

Tas and Jas II

I wonder why Nikki Whitehead wanted her twins back so soon? They had assaulted her six months before and were living with their elderly great-grandmother, who also seems to be estranged from Nikki. The great-grandmother`s name has not been disclosed, nor has her exact placement in the family been given, by the police or the media.

One thing that I`ve just learned, is that one of the twins actually said in the courtroom, when Nikki was awarded custody of Jasmiya and Tasmiyah (just 8 days before she brutally murdered in her own home), that she would be killed. The twins vehemently rejected moving back in with their mother. Nikki had disclosed this chilling fact to her friend Petrina Sims in the courtroom that day.

It`s inconceivable that the judge would return the twins to their mother, when one of them threatens their mother in open court? Maybe the court thought these were hollow words? But once they did return to their mother`s home, Nikki had to call 9-11 on two different occasions. The exact nature of these disturbances has not been disclosed, but Nikki would not have called the police if it was not serious. Clearly, the return home was not working!

For me, the most difficult challenge is assigning a motive to the vicious killing. I have read all the reports, which there are very few of, and watched and recorded the television coverage. The only reason given by friends and family of Nikki, is that the girls were wild and just wanted to be free. All adolescents experience a rebellious phase, but they don`t go out and kill their own mother. The unruliness and disrespect is most exaggerated in this case, but why?

I believe the real motive lies with the difficult condition of being twins. Did they not conspire with one another to kill their mother? Premeditation is strongly suggested, in the way they acted like they had just stumbled upon their mother`s body, after returning home from school.

And when they returned home in January, one can only conjecture how great their anger and rage truly was? Their free and easy days were gone, and now they were stymied by their mother`s discipline, but they would get her back.

Again, I sense that the key to the twins` motive lies in the psychological interplay between the two. One was the aggressor, while the other played a more passive "yes role` in this nefarious conspiracy. With the Menendez twins, I believe it was Eric as the aggressor and Lyle in the passive role. I will venture a guess that it`s Tas as the aggressor and Jas in the go-along role. Looking at their mug shots, Tas looks defiant, while Jas looks sad and regretful.

But how in two years time, could these twin girls go so far south? Their grades dropped, they stole money, and they stayed away from the home doing who-knows-what? In stark contrast, earlier in their lives, they had been involved in girl scouts, ballet, playing musical instruments and their grandmother, Lynda Whitehead, even said they aspired to go to Yale or Harvard. I wonder if they may have met some bad kids at school who were in gangs or maybe into doing drugs? What can account for this complete about face, this Jekyll and Hyde behavioral swing?

As far as the psychological dynamics between the twins, it seems a little odd that Tas was starting to come back around to visit her mother. Tas had attended a Sweet 16 party that Nikki had given for the twins, but Jas was nowhere to be found. Jas seems to have had a more negative attitude towards her mother. I theorize that when the two got together, a third personality emerges that is the motive for murder. The motive is really fictitious, it is created out of the blue by an "injured communication` between the two. It`s a cancer!

Friends already knew after the murder that Tas and Jas were responsible. They knew of the fights and disturbances caused by the twins. Suspiciously, at the funeral and the wake, the twins would not even approach the casket. This was alarmingly cold behavior for two girls who had just lost their mother.

True, we know very little about the case of Nikki Whitehead and her troubled twins at this point. I`m most anxious to see exactly what physical evidence the police have linking the girls to their mother`s murder. And my curiosity is even greater regarding the motive of these twins. I`m looking for a deeper, interior motive, besides just teenage angst.  Criminal psychologists may be able to expose idiosyncrasies, or the unusual communication dynamics between Tas and Jas.