Originally Posted by Caligram
If SA was the only one home behind the locked door when DD arrived, I wonder what caused him to delay opening letting DD in.
Did he think that it was LE pounding on the door. Having a guilty conscience, that could have scared the crap out of him.
Was he in Hailey's bedroom watching her (maybe planned to be his) new tv?
Was he carrying out some fantasy in Hailey's newly vacated room?
Was he hiding something incriminating that he retrieved later, and disposed of it when he was not in the house?
Did he remember that when he carried a sedated Hailey out of her room that he forgot to bring her shoes with him when he took her somewhere else, did what he did, then disposed of her. Perhaps he was "really reluctant" to return to that disposal site to place the shoes with her. Perhaps he had done such a clever concealment that there was no way to later add a few forgotten items. Maybe not even the shoes but something else that should have been with Hailey.
I think it would have had to be something connected with a criminal act for him to not answer the door. I wonder if there was any way he could have seen who was pounding away. Had he known it was only DD I bet he would have waited till DD went off to his room and then continued with whatever he had been interrupted/intercepted doing.
Maybe he had not prepared an answer yet when DD asked where HD was. (Maybe DD was accustomed to not seeing HD in the house when only SA was there. Hopefully, she had managed to avoid being alone with SA for two years.)
I agree that any of your possibilities are more likely than these, but still, a NON-criminal reason could have been:
Had headphones on listening to very loud music
Was in a very deep, sound sleep and wakes very slowly
Had television on so loud he didn't hear the knocking
Was in the shower and running water obscured the knocking
On the phone with someone and so focused he didn't notice knocking
In drugged stupor along with any of above
Any of these could have him shocked/frightened to see DD suddenly, since he hadn't HEARD the knocking, knew the doors were locked, and didn't expect him to be inside the house, causing "deer in headlights" look.
Of course, my best guess is none of the above. I think he was probably up to no good, almost caught, and hence the "look". If that was DD's first, pure, unfiltered, gut-level, knee-jerk intuition, I'd tend to give it considerable credence.
BUT, it could also be an entirely innocent thing. (don't think so)