This is the next in our series on Lauren Salzman and her testimony in the trial of Keith Alan Raniere.
Here we learn a little more about Lauren’s incredible insensitivity and total disregard for anyone other than herself.
We have already learned that Lauren looked at Daniella’s imprisonment as a chance for her to prove she was fit to be a good mother to Keith’s avatar child. She had taken the assignment to be manager of her captivity because Keith had told her that one day kidnappers might come and snatch their avatar child and that this would be a chance to understand how psychopaths think.
She actually already had a long education on how psychopaths think being in love with one, and quite possibly being one herself.
In this fascinating excerpt from her testimony, we see Lauren at her most insensitive and psychopathic. Of course, she dismisses it all, much like the Nazi guards at the gas chambers, “I was just doing what I was told.”
AUSA Tanya Hajjar is examining Lauren. Let’s listen to her babble of how she had almost no personal responsibility.
It’s the old “The Devil made me do it,” excuse.
The background is the ongoing imprisonment of Daniella, the Mexican woman in her early 20s, who was confined to a room in her family’s house for 700 days – until she healed her ethical breach – kissing a man.
Q Ms. Salzman, did there come a time where Daniella requested medical care?
Q Can you explain that to the jury?
A She requested that she needed to go to the dentist. She started complaining that she was having a problem and wanted to go.
Q What happened after that?
A I went to Keith to ask if I could take her — or if she could go to the dentist and he said he would think about it. And it took six weeks for him to decide that she could go and I mean, part of her tooth broke off before it was okay to take her.
Q During those six weeks did Daniella tell you that she was in pain?
A Yes, she was telling me that she needed to go to the dentist.
Q Why did you wait six weeks before she went?
A Because I wouldn’t take her unless Keith said that it was okay for her to go.
Q Was she eventually permitted to go to the dentist?
A Yes, I did take her.
Q Was she permitted to go alone?
A No, I took her. I picked her up, I took her to the dentist, I waited while she saw him. I took her to my family dentist. And then I drove her home and she went back in the room.
Q Did she show you her tooth before she went to the dentist?
Q And could you see that it was broken?
Q Do you know who paid for the dentist, the dental care?
A I don’t recall.
Q Did there come a time where Daniella was permitted to use a cell phone for a period?
A Yes. When we went to Vanguard Week, the whole family left [Daniella]s family] and went up to Lake George and I left as well. So she was permitted to have a phone to communicate with me while I was gone in case of an emergency.
Q Was she left alone during that period of time?
A Yes. But her family came home periodically throughout the trip.
Q And you said it was for V Week. Is that the celebration — the annual celebration of the defendant’s[Raniere’s] birthday?
Q How did — did you communicate with Daniella while you were away?
A I did, yes.
A Via e-mail or texting through a phone.
[AUSA Hajjar shows Lauren emails between her and Daniella which was admitted into evidence as an exhibit. The emails were written during V Week, – August 2011.].
Q … is that Daniella that writes to you, “from Keith I have once again taken his time and resources with the problems I create, essentially in taking your time”?
Q Can you describe just generally what the content of these e-mails were to the jury?
A This one she was lifting the effect that – the negative effect that she had created on the people in her life, her family, myself, Keith. She was also suggesting ways to address those problems. And I was responding, communicating with her.
Q Okay. Just looking at Pages 77 and 78 of Government’s Exhibit 908, the bottom e-mail, Ms. Salzman, when was that sent?
A On October 1, 2011. [About a month after V-Week ended].
Q What time was it sent?
A 3:22 in the morning.
Q … Who sent that e-mail?
A I did. I sent it to Dani.
Q Okay. Can you read the text of your e-mail?
A Yes. “The whole e-mail you sent this morning was very prideful. If you don’t turn this around immediately I will cut contact with you for 24 hours. I refer you to my previously e-mail from September 19th. If the next time you communicate with me you demonstrate any blame, any more game-playing or any further prideful, bratty or self-indulgent behavior, I will cut contact with you for 24 hours.
“If after the 24-hour period is up and upon reestablishing contact, you must demonstrate a massive turnaround of attitude and behavior or I will make a formal recommendation to Keith that you go back to Mexico.
“If there’s any infraction beyond that point, I have the authority to end this entire program and you will just go back to Mexico. I am being generous in giving you an extra chance to rectify this. By 7 p.m. today send a responsible/nonprideful answers to my questions and measurable output of work in the vein that I am requesting. If you do not do this, I will cut contact with you in response to your prideful behavior and game-playing of this morning.
Q When you write, “If there’s any infraction beyond that point I have the authority to end this entire program and you will just go back to Mexico –”
Q — was that true?
Q Why were you writing that to her?
A Because whatever had happened earlier in the morning I checked it with Keith and he told me to tell her that. “Tell her that you have the authority to end the whole thing and that you’re going to make a formal recommendation to me that you just go back to Mexico.”
A Why what?
Q Why did you convey that to her? What was the purpose of saying that to her?
A To address whatever she had done and get her to turn it around.
Q What were you trying to get her to do?
A I was trying to get her to do — to not demonstrate whatever was being perceived as blame, gameplaying or being prideful or self-indulgent.
Q Were these things that the defendant told you —
Q — about her behavior?
A Yes. And things that through my interaction with him I came to see as that.
Q The e-mail below that, that you read earlier [from Daniella], can you just read Paragraph 2?
A “I don’t have an answer for this. It is not laziness, I just have nothing else to do.”
Q And turn to Page 79 … Can you read the e-mail you sent [in reply]?
A Yes. “I am cutting communication with you. At the point in time when I reestablish it, I expect a dramatic turnaround with all items I’ve requested complete, including your list of effects and how you plan to address and rectify each one and also how you plan to structure your days to make healing a higher priority than laziness and comfort. If you do not have this complete, I will make a formal recommendation to Keith that you go back to Mexico. If I see any further evidence of pride, blame, abnegation of responsibility, setting boundaries on what you will and will note do or any game-playing, I will discontinue your program and you will no longer be permitted to stay here.”
Q Can you explain this e-mail?
A Yes. I discussed it with Keith and he told me to tell her that if she didn’t do a dramatic turnaround with all the items that were requested and structure her day to make healing a higher priority than laziness and comfort, then I would make the recommendation to Keith that she would go to Mexico and she wouldn’t be permitted to stay here.
Q What does it mean that you would make a formal recommendation to Keith?
A It doesn’t really mean anything, but it was what he said to tell her. Like that somehow if I recommended to Keith formally or informally but in this case formally that she should go back to Mexico that Keith would know – would listen to me and that would be what would happen.
Q Did you believe you had the authority to determine when and if Daniella would be sent to Mexico?
A No, absolutely not.
Q Who had that authority?
A Keith. And I don’t believe Daniella believed that I had the authority.
Q At some point, Ms. Salzman, was a surveillance camera installed?
Q Can you explain that?
A Keith called me and told me that Daniella was sneaking out of the room or there was reason to believe she was and that I should call Adrian [Daniella’s brother] to help set up a security camera. And so I did call Adrian and the two of us went over to the house together and set up a security camera.
Q And prior to the defendant telling you so, did you have reason to believe that Daniella was leaving the room?
Q What happened when you contacted Adrian?
A He came and he brought — Adrian was part of the video team, so he had, I guess, the technology or the know-how to get the technology to install a camera. And I went with him over to the house and while he set it up, I went into the room and talked with Dani and then I came out and the two of us found a place where we wanted to set it up or we thought would be a good place for it.
Q Was the surveillance camera footage checked?
A Adrian checked it and he showed me parts of it one time. He said that he didn’t find anything on it.
Q What does that mean?
A No evidence of Dani leaving the room.
Q Are you aware if Adrian spoke to the defendant about the surveillance footage?
A I believe he did, but I don’t recall specifically.
Q Do you recall how the surveillance — where the surveillance camera was and how it was positioned?
A Well, I was reminded through the — through this case that we put it behind a clock.
Q Prior to Daniella being in the room, were you aware of a romantic relationship between Daniella and someone other than the defendant?
[AUSA shows a picture of Ben Myers to Daniella]
Q. Do you recognize this photograph?
Q Who is it?
A It’s a photograph of Ben Myers.
Q At any point did the defendant express negative views towards Ben Myers to you?
Q Can you explain that?
A Ben later — so after Dani went back to Mexico I learned from Karen Unterreiner that Ben and Dani had had a relationship. And after that time Ben started dating my sister, and frequently — and later became her husband but frequently Keith would tell me that he thought that the relationship between Ben and my sister was destructive or that the two of them would never grow because it was too dependent and that my mother was promoting this relationship and it was bad for my sister, bad for Ben, bad for my mother, and that ultimately, Keith was going to be the one who was going to end up supporting Ben and Michelle’s children if they ever had any because Ben and Michelle would not be capable of doing that on their own.
Q At some point, Ms. Salzman, did Daniella leave the room?
A Yes, she did.
Q Can you explain what happened?
A I believe that Cami called me and told me that Dani had come out of the room and that she said she that wanted to go back to Mexico. And I don’t recall all the things that followed, but I did go over to the house to see her before she left and say good-bye to her.
Q What happened after that?
A Her father and Kristin Keeffe drove her down to Mexico and Kristin said that she watched her cross the border and that she had been given an assignment that if she completed it during a certain period of time, which was relatively soon after she was dropped across the border with only – with like $200 and with her father’s accountant. If she completed the assignment, which was to do book reports, that is she would have her immigration documents sent to her so that she could return to the U.S.
We have learned a lot from this excerpt from Lauren’s testimony.
Daniella needed dental care. It took six weeks for Keith to approve it. Lauren does not seem to have pushed too hard for it either.
Despite Daniella constantly complaining of pain, as Lauren said, “I wouldn’t take her unless Keith said that it was okay for her to go.”
Similarly, she wrote to Dani what Keith told her to write, threatening to cut off contact with her captive in solitary confinement.
While Keith told her perhaps what to write, the language seems to be in their joint language of righteous idiocy, inarticulate blather and arrogant malevolent authority.
Lauren writes to Dani, “If the next time you communicate with me, you demonstrate any blame, any more game-playing or any further prideful, bratty or self-indulgent behavior, I will cut contact with you… If there’s any infraction beyond that point, I have the authority to end this entire program.”
Lauren calls Dani’s solitary confinement a “program”.
Lauren arrogantly continues, “I am being generous in giving you an extra chance to rectify this. By 7 p.m. today send a responsible/nonprideful answers to my questions and measurable output of work in the vein that I am requesting. If you do not do this, I will cut contact with you in response to your prideful behavior and game-playing of this morning.”
And she writes, “I expect a dramatic turnaround … and how you plan to structure your days to make healing a higher priority than laziness and comfort.”
Can you imagine? Lauren calling Dani on her “laziness and comfort.” Dani was confined to a room 24/7 for months with nothing to do all day. And I doubt she was comfortable.
There comes a time when personal responsibility should have kicked in – even for a Lauren “I Want Your Sperm Keith” Salzman.
There comes a point where you have to stop and become a human.
Just the opposite, Lauren writes, “I will make a formal recommendation to Keith that you go back to Mexico. If I see any further evidence of pride, blame, abnegation of responsibility, setting boundaries on what you will and will note do or any game-playing, I will discontinue your program and you will no longer be permitted to stay here.”
Pride, blame, the abnegation of responsibility, and game-playing – these are the hallmarks of Lauren’s Salzman’s entire adult life.
Perhaps my favorite part of this testimony is how Daniella’s brother was happy to help keep his sister in captivity.
The rascal hopped over to install a camera hidden behind a clock so Keith and Lauren could spy on his sister. I understand he is now suing Nxivm, but when, oh when, does personal responsibility for one’s own actions ever commence?
Knowing that his sister was in confinement day after day, month after month, did this soyboy have one manly bone in his body?
One protective bone that said “Wait, scoundrel, Vanguard. I will rescue my sister! Damn you!”
No, the rascal was too busy working with the video team.
My other favorite gem is the sum of money Daniella’s father, Hector, left her with when he dropped her at the border without her papers.
Her father is not poor. He owns a successful mining tool company and if he’s not a millionaire, he is damn close.
What does he leave his daughter to live on and get a new start – leaving her to fend for herself without ID – $200.
$200 fucking dollars. This man should be horsewhipped.
Yet, through it all, even after learning why Keith punished Dani [for kissing a man] and that Keith slept with all three of his daughters, and that he forced Dani and her sister Mariana to take a naked nap together with him and how he took naked pictures of Cami, his 15-year-old daughter – when Keith went to trial, Hector wanted to testify in the case – for Keith!
He would have testified too, except that the Feds were going to charge him with conspiracy if he came to the US for his role in the captivity and document servitude of his own daughter.
Nice to know that while he took Keith’s side over his own daughter, he took his own side over Keith.
Just like Lauren did when confronted with machine guns or with prison. She turned faster on the rat bastard than anyone.
Finally, the insanity in this excerpt would not be complete if we did not give special notice to Keith’s denigration of Ben and Michelle.
Keith told Lauren that he thought the relationship between Ben and Michelle, Lauren’s sister, was “destructive… that the two of them would never grow because it was too dependent and that my mother [Nancy Salzman] was promoting this relationship and it was bad for my sister, bad for Ben, bad for my mother, and that ultimately Keith was going to be the one who was going to end up supporting Ben and Michelle’s children if they ever had any because Ben and Michelle would not be capable of doing that on their own.”
Keith won’t be supporting anyone’s children, not even his own. The taxpayers will be supporting him for decades to come – if he lives that long.
This is pure Keith, trying to break up couples. The great cult leader, always denigrating everyone yet demanding his followers never speak with dishonor about anyone and always speak of him with gratitude, honor and tribute.
This study is much larger than Keith and how a crazed man can dominate so many so destructively for so many years.
It is a study of his followers. They are as important as Keith. For it is a fact that [sub human] beings like Lauren do exist in this world.
And without his demons, Keith would have been nothing.