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1 Book Cover Here Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Chapter 6 INTERVIEWS Obtaining Information from Witnesses (Acquiring information from People) Criminal Investigation: A Method for Reconstructing the Past, 7 th Edition
2 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Questioning People Interviewing vs. Interrogation Interviewing – Who? What? When? Where? Why? How? – Modus Operandi Acquiring the Facts (Forms!) – Describing the Offender – Describing Stolen or Lost Property
3 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Questioning People The victims and eyewitness(es) are first; next are those whose identities develop in the course of the investigation – Some people furnish complete and candid information – Some are less cooperative or will deliberately mislead authorities – Some need to be coaxed to come forward
4 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Interrogation vs. Interviewing Interrogation (4 th & 5 th Amendment application) – Applies to a suspect. Interrogation techniques may apply to suspect’s family, friends, or associates (suspects) — people who are likely to withhold information or be deceptive. Interviewing – Applies to victims or eyewitnesses who can reasonably be expected to disclose what they know.
5 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Acquiring the Facts Complaint report / Investigation report – Designed with questions framed to ensure that vital information is not overlooked Three-Step Interview process. Frame-by-Frame Analysis (FFA) Detailed Analysis, focuses on very specific details of a statement.
6 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Dealing with the Reluctant, Fearful, or Unaware Witness Securing Cooperation The Reluctant Witness The Fearful Witness Generating Long-Term Cooperation The Unaware Witness Canvass * * Indifferent Complainants
7 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Canvass A neighborhood canvass may be undertaken (to discover the offender) or unaware witness. – Difficult in large cities. (Breakdown within blocks or neighborhoods.) – People may be willing to give information when faced by a police officer, but would otherwise be unwilling to make a call. – Good to do in most all crimes (not just homicides).
8 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Indifferent Complainants At times a complainant may display indifference or claim that s/he is too busy to be questioned. Why? Re-examining the alleged facts and the physical evidence may reveal that the crime was simulated. (“Victim” perpetrated.) Interrogations might have greater success.
9 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Behavioral Analysis Interviews Bridges the gap between interrogation and interview – To develop investigative information – To develop behavioral information – To determine whether person being interviewed committed the act under investigation Assesses Three Levels of Communication 1.Verbal channel (What is said – word choice) 2.Paralinguistic channel (How it is said; tone/pitch) 3.Nonverbal channel (Behavior)
10 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Behavioral Analysis Interviews Follow-Up Responses suggestive of guilt require follow- up: – By surveillance – Seeking an informant – Tracing the weapon – Questioning associates
11 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Hypnosis Must independently verify information Not recommended for suspects – Admissions / Confessions Concerns: – Potential for psychological trauma? (Reliving the event.) – Suggestibility! Future of Hypnosis Rules of Evidence in Calif. “Witness Competency” (Next Slide)
12 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Eyewitness Evidence Competent Witness: - Ability to Perceive - Ability to Recall - Ability to Communicate - Ability to know to Tell the Truth The Role of Perception and Memory – Sensory Input – Memory – Information Retrieval
13 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Witness Errors Perception and Memory - Perception is based on Experience. - Bias / Prejudice / Stereo Typing Environmental Conditions - Distance - Lighting - Sound Personal Factors - Any impairment to the senses Credibility
14 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved The Cognitive Interview Memory-Event Similarity Focused Retrieval - Start at the Beginning – Go Forward Extensive Retrieval - Start at the End – Go Backward - Start at the most memorable – work each direction Witness-Compatible Questioning
15 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Witness-Compatible Questioning Interviewers are better able to ask questions if they can place themselves in the witness’s frame of mind They should try to place themselves in the witness’s situation and then frame the questions on the basis of what was likely to have been observed at the time This means adjusting to the witness’s perspective rather than having the witness adjust to the investigator’s
16 Copyright © 2014, Elsevier Inc. All Rights Reserved Conclusion Solid interviewing skills separate the novice from the professional Cases are frequently made or lost based on interviews Need to overcome personal communication problems
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