How do you respond to false confession experts presented by the defense? (updated Nov '23)

Written By: Joseph P. Buckley
Oct 20, 2023

Over the years we have received a number of emails that have stated essentially the following:

I am an investigator with the (agency name). A few years ago a coworker and myself obtained a confession from an individual which was key in their conviction. He has recently filed a motion for post-conviction relief of his sentence due to ineffective counsel by claiming that they did not object to the Reid Technique being utilized. According to an expert hired by the defendant, the expert is claiming that using Reid to solicit confessions is a violation of his rights and a confession using this method should not be admitted as evidence because it is unduly coercive. They further argue that as of current, the only real use of the Reid method is to teach how to obtain false confessions. I would very much appreciate any assistance with defending your interview method to keep the defendant in custody as well as to protect your company’s reputation.

In response to these types of inquiries, and in the event that in your case you face a similar situation in which the defendant is using a "false confession expert" to challenge your interrogation process and the validity of the defendant's incriminating statement, we recommend that you (and your prosecutor) review the following entries on our website: (click on the article title to read the information)

and finally, since these “false confession experts” oftentimes misrepresent what the Reid Technique is……

Permission is hereby granted to those who wish to share or copy this article. In those instances, the following Credit Statement must be included "This Investigator Tip was developed by John E. Reid and Associates Inc. 800-255-5747 /" Inquiries regarding Investigator Tips should be directed to Toni Overman