True Crime Analysis, Breakthroughs, Insights & Discussions Hosted by Bestselling Author Nick van der Leek

Meet Thrive LeVel founders Jason Camper & Paul Gravette

Fullscreen capture 20190227 234100
p8l9jb00k2h11 (2)


  1. Sylvester

    I wonder where these guys really came from. And how they teamed up. A used car lot I suspect. Their formula for success is not new to MLM companies – “do what you do best and let someone else do the rest.” Get someone to mix up the medicine, make it colorful, sign up, then sign up others. Also they are inventing slogans as they go along – what is derma fusion technology, structural gaps and sequential delivery systems. Dunno – but it sounds important! And scientific! They said something truthful in all of it – that they are mostly concerned with the car earners and trip winners – because those are the ones pulling in the most people that ultimately line their pockets. The message here is “you’re saving the world.” In otherwords, you, by joining LeVel and bringing in others, are up to something amazing, transforming the health and well-being of a whole world. But really you aren’t, but their young demographic as they call it, don’t know the difference.

    • JC

      That “interview” is so poorly staged and scripted it’s comical. Are they in a fellowship hall at a Lutheran church? A school cafeteria? Why the floated furniture in the background? Are they sitting on white plastic lawn chairs? Seems like 2 really bad actors trying to role play intelligent, important CEO’s, and then they say a whole lot of nothing in the first 3 minutes. Just couldn’t watch all of that, but I do hope it picked up some steam.

  2. Sylvester

    Thanks JC – I just noticed the surroundings. Looks like they are in a basement or a warehouse. Knocking over a colander full of Starburst candies is shoddy theater. The audience was dressed like Starburst candies. But I guess the most shocking of all are the testimonials – that Shan’ann would be celebrating with her children in heaven. My God, they’re dead.

  3. KerryA

    I am familiar with scientific terms and I believe they are making a lot of these terms up for marketing purposes. For example, ‘dermal.fusion technology ‘ is nothing more than putting something on your skin. Skin is a barrier and some things will be absorbed to an extent and some things will not. I don’t believe putting a sticker with vitamins on your skin is the best absorption method for vitamins and in fact, is probably detrimental as vitamins are better absorbed in the digestive system and the stickers can irritate skin with repeated use. Using their logic, lotion from a drugstore is also using ‘dermal fusion technology ‘! As well, there is nothing exceptional in their vitamin formula as far as I can tell There is a good article on the website ‘Lazy Man and Money’ about Thrive vitamins in which he says Costco Kirkland brand multivitamins will cost you around $14-15 per year which is essentially the same formula as Thrive (which will cost over $700 for the same amount of time). This really seems like a predatory business to me which is marketing to those who can least afford to spend exorbitant amounts for basic vitamins and minerals (most of which are provided in a balanced diet anyway).

    • nickvdl

      This is worth reading also in terms of medical practitioners warning users to be cautious or steer clear:

    • Clean Queen

      Hi Kerry, I stated in a recent post that i ordered a 7 day Thrive “experience” to do a little research of my own. The patches (a.k.a. DFT’s) did make my skin really itchy the first time I put one on. It was kind of a struggle to push through it, but I did. I do have really sensitive skin, but most instructions online recommend moving the patch to avoid irritation. This seems pretty suspect to me, especially for something that is supposed to be so beneficial for your health. Needless to say, the “experience” did nothing for me. I truly felt no difference using Thrive. As I stated previously, the only “benefit” was that the shake served as a meal replacement or snack, similar to Slim Quick, etc.

  4. mitzi2006

    Those side effects are scary. I have a hard time believing a doctor was ok with using these while pregnant. I believe I saw that she or someone said it was cleared by her doctor but I can’t remember where and I cannot find it. There are doctors that would probably just go by a patient saying they’re just vitamins, a good doctor would either go on the side of caution or ask for the material that lists what’s in it

    • JC

      I noticed the products contain absolutely no Iron. Any doctor worth their salt would strongly recommend a prenatal vitamin and be wary of any unregulated dietary supplements. So I’m with you, mitzi – fairly safe to assume that those assertions weren’t true. Think of all the customers Shan’ann would lose for 9 months during their pregnancies.

  5. edebitetto

    Did I miss something? How is her team getting a dead woman to 200k in sales? Correct me if I’m wrong here too but it appears these Thrive sellers and now using SW as a catalyst for income. Lord……

    • Shannon

      Correct. Pity and money. Hoping people will buy the scam. Shanann’s family selling also.
      If they only realize it’s one of the reasons she’s dead.

      • mitzi2006

        Actually Chris’s parents were too, before she privatized the heck out of her Facebook Cindy had a pic of herself “I love thrive too” and her patch on. Think Chris’s sister was using it herself. That’s what bugs me the most with these marketing scams, goal is to get everyone you know on it or pester them till they block you

  6. Sylvester

    I think in true crime, and elsewhere there is a failure to connect the dots. That is why I’ve enjoyed being here because you Nick are very good at connecting the dots. If I hadn’t of read here I would not have anywhere the knowledge on this case that I do now. So if this site goes away I just wanted to say thank you for educating everyone as long as you have, and making us think. And I just wanted you to know that the ones that have stayed here appreciate you very much.
    I doubt that anyone in Shan’ann’s group sees a connection between LeVel and her death. The connection is she took her mind off nurturing her relationship with her husband and instead threw her all into marketing and selling a product. Unlike many other jobs where there is a set time for work – 8-6, or even building your career with extra hours and work (I doubt artists and writers and musicians have set hours but they do know when to stop and take breaks and not to answer their phones when it’s family time or personal time) MLM ‘teers take calls and pitch products 24-7. This likely took a huge toll on her marriage. She also took over his facebook. One of his co-workers said there were all kinds of posts on Chris’s facebook that didn’t look like he posted them. So LeVel, indirectly, steals people’s privacy – she stole his right to be left alone if he wanted to be. Because of her participation in LeVel she was likely spending more than she was taking in. Expensive day care is another cost that has to be factored in to the cost of doing LeVel business. If anyone brought this up to her she would be taught by her MLM (at the seminars and training trips) to disregard those comments as negative, or naysayers, trying to bring her down. Because she took her eye off her marriage, he looked elsewhere. I’m not condoning it, at all. But she didn’t seem to notice, perhaps, that he was becoming disengaged – until the end. So the dots to me are LeVel fervor, marriage breakdown, financial breakdown and sadly in this case, death. And yet all of those people who have now pushed her group to 200K won’t get that until it takes some toll on them. I’m going to take a guess that if Ron and Cindy Watts signed up for LeVel, they dropped out some time last year and were never in to it.

    • SRC

      A lot of reading, a lot of thinking, a lot of appreciation for all who have contributed to this forum, and for Mr. Van der Leek for allowing us the opportunity as well as leading the dialogue with fascinating concepts. A learning experience that goes well beyond the boundaries of a simple case study.
      Sylvester, do you think Chris Watts was also caught up in the LeVel wave? He attended some of those company sponsored getaways with her that must have been full of the Thrive campaign and he was benefitting physically from his use of the products. Maybe one of the reasons he allowed himself to believe in Shanann’s promises of that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow was because he was hearing all the rah rah, too, and seeing his own results.
      He probabably bought into the spiel as much as she did so was willing to enable her to make her videos, pitches, and other related activities. It seems to be that the intersect was in how to spend what she made. His salary seemed to be for whatever they needed. Her salary seemed to be for whatever she wanted. Since her income was based on her commitment to it, she could outspend what she made and promise herself she could make up for the difference by working harder. Only working harder meant less time for him, more time on her phone, less time to do household chores, more dependence on Chris to pick up the slack. All for what?
      In reality, to make those two schmoozers in the videos above the fat cats.

      • Sylvester

        Exactly SRC – for the fat cats. Chris was using the product and it did wonders for him – physically. He transformed his body. But selling it wasn’t his thing. I doubt he felt one way or another about the razzle dazzle of it. I don’t think he was much of an ambitious sort anywhere he went – Longmont Ford, or Anadarko. He had been at Anadarko for some time to not work his way up and beyond what he was, a field technician. He became Lead – which is mostly just a slight increase in pay- opportunity. I think he really wanted to be involved with Nascar – that was what he really wanted to do, and for some reason he didn’t fulfill on that dream.

  7. Shannon

    Hire a good PR firm to Sell, sell, sell.
    Wonder where products made and tested?
    Unfortunately people have to do things in life, to Learn from their mistakes. Along then comes Wisdom and Knowledge.
    You can’t tell everyone not to. How will they we/ learn.

    • thetinytech2018

      Shannon, I’m not sure if you’re in the US, but in this country you can skate by FDA regulations if you label something a supplement and make it known on the packaging that the product at hand “Is not intended to treat or cure any diseases”. The FDA does not have authority to regulate anything marketed as supplements, and as such, that responsibility is left up to the manufacturers (in this case, LeVel) and/or distributors to make sure the product is safe.
      This is from the website:
      The manufacturers and distributors of dietary supplements are responsible for making sure their products are safe BEFORE they go to market. Unlike drugs, supplements are not permitted to be marketed for the purpose of treating, diagnosing, preventing, or curing diseases. That means supplements should not make disease claims, such as “lowers high cholesterol” or “treats heart disease.” Claims like these cannot be legitimately made for dietary supplements.
      So by LeVel marketing these products as supplements they don’t have to do clinical trials or spend years tweaking the formula to get FDA approval (which doesn’t come cheap, manufacturer pays all the costs associated with this). They’re free to go to market and there’s no governing body to regulate their snake oil or their garbage pseudo-scientific terms and claims (pro- sequential technology, anyone?). What’s worse, these so-called “reps” (or coaches, depending on the terminology that particular MLM uses) aren’t educated at all on what they’re selling, so lots of times on Facebook and other social media, you’ll see them making outrageous claims that the FDA would never allow. You can report the rep to the MLM, but most of the time they won’t even get a slap on the wrist for their bad and outright dangerous claims. Each rep is considered an independent contractor – not an employee. That’s why the MLMs can get away with not paying them a minimum wage and in turn, the reps get the “freedom” to make their own hours and other small liberties. The whole thing is very underhanded, and since people have begun to catch on, lots of times they’ll advertise on legitimate career sites like Monster, Indeed, Linked In (which is garbage at this point) as “advertising agencies” and whatnot. Only after you get to the interview do you realize you’re at a cheap “fly by night” operation.
      There have been stories of people dying because an uneducated MLM hun sold their snake oil to an unsuspecting person, telling them it will cure whatever issue they’re currently dealing with. Last summer there were a few cases where mothers where stopping their young children’s asthma medication in favor of essential oils – yes you read that right. One particular essential oil MLM has an entire line of overpriced oils aimed at kids, one called “breathe” that’s supposed to support a healthy immune system. Huns were claiming it would cure their kids ailments, everything from autism to asthma and because of this, kids were using it instead of their actual rescue inhalers and steroids. If the child had an asthma attack, the hun would grab for her useless essential oil roller ball instead of a rescue inhaler, and the child would go into respiratory failure as a result.
      It’s surpassed stupid and went right to downright criminal at this point.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *