Investigator Tips

Current Investigator Tip

Principles of Practice: How to Conduct Proper Investigative Interviews and Interrogations

Apr 25, 2022

Principles of Practice: How to Conduct Proper Investigative Interviews and Interrogations

Since 1947 John E. Reid and Associates has been conducting investigative interviews and when appropriate, interrogations.

Since the mid 1970's we...

Previous Tips

The Importance of Context Within Behavior Symptom Analysis

Mar 01, 2012

Consider the following written note left for my son: "Ryan, call Mom's cell." If the note was written this year, he would dial her mobile phone number. However, if the note was...

Innocent Suspect’s Response to Interrogation

Jan 01, 2012

The process of interrogation is reserved for suspects whose guilt is reasonably certain. This assessment may be based on a combination of forensic or testimonial evidence implicating the suspect in the crime...

Word Games Deceptive Suspects Play

Nov 01, 2011

Properly socialized people do not enjoy lying. None of us invite the feelings of guilt, fear or anxiety associated with telling a lie. On the other hand, we also don't like to...

Good vs. Bad Liars

Sep 01, 2011

Earlier this year the nation was transfixed by the trial of Casey Anthony, a young woman accused of murdering her two-year-old daughter Caylee. During the course of the investigation...

What Exactly is the Reid Technique of Interrogation?

Jul 01, 2011

Part One

Despite the availability of specific information in books, training manuals and on our web site about the Reid Technique of interrogation, it is routinely mis-characterized. The following description...

Interviewing Witnesses

May 01, 2011

A witness is anyone who possesses direct information pertinent to an investigation. Sometimes witnesses are forthcoming and fully cooperative, other times they are reluctant to get involved and occasionally they are deceitful...

The Danger of Threatening Inevitable Consequences During an Interrogation

Mar 01, 2011

A recent Frontline episode dealt with interrogation techniques and false confessions.1 The presented case involved the 1997 rape and murder of Michelle Bosko from Norfolk, VA. The following is a synopsis of...

Research Review: The lie, the Bluff and False Confessions

Jan 01, 2011

One of the most controversial aspects of criminal interrogation involves the use of trickery and deceit. While Federal and State Supreme Courts routinely uphold confessions that were obtained from interrogations during which...

Investigating Attention- Motivated Fabricated Crimes

Nov 01, 2010

Every year there are a dozen or so incidents involving fabricated crimes that make national headlines because the motive behind the reported crime fascinates the general public. Recently a woman in...

Using Baseline Behaviors to Establish "Truthful" Responses.

Sep 01, 2010


During our training seminars, participants have asked about the value of identifying a suspect's truthful behavior by asking questions to which it is known that the suspect is telling the...

Documenting Field Confessions

Jul 01, 2010

Documenting Field Confessions[i]

Following a successful interrogation the investigator will convert the oral confession to a court admissible document. This document may be handwritten by the suspect, a...

Responding to Defense Experts' Characterization of Interrogation

May 01, 2010

In 1998 David Lykken wrote a book titled, "A Tremor in the Blood: The Uses and Abuses of the Polygraph Technique". In it, he advocated the use of his own "Guilty Knowledge...

Designing an Interview/Interrogation Room

Mar 01, 2010

I recently taught at a newly constructed police department. The architecture was beautiful featuring a massive open community room. The detective's work area was equally impressive with state of the art computer...

The Esteem-Motivated Offender

Jan 01, 2010

It is human nature to seek acclaim and recognition. Given the choice, most people would rather be well known and respected than an obscure outsider who is unimportant and ignored. Typically, this...

Civil Liabilities Associated With False Confessions

Nov 01, 2009

Civil Liabilities Associated With False Confessions

Training in the field of interrogation teaches investigators not only how to conduct effective interrogations, but also the legal aspects of obtaining admissible confessions...

Incongruous Behaviors

Sep 01, 2009

A fundamental principle of behavior symptom analysis is that truthful suspects send the same message on all three channels of communication.* Deceptive suspects may send different messages...

Motives For False Confessions

Jul 01, 2009

To date, the innocence project has freed in excess of 200 individuals from prison based on DNA evidence.* These innocent defendants were found guilty of serious felonies such as murder and...

Behavior Symptom Analysis During Roadside Interviews

May 01, 2009

Many serious crimes have been solved as a result of a traffic stop or chance encounter with a police officer:* A vehicle is stopped for running a red light and it...

The Psychopathic Suspect

Mar 01, 2009

The Psychopathic Suspect

March-April, 2009

Imagine what it would be like to make everyday decisions without caring how your choices affected others and to live...

Evaluating Exaggeration Within a Response

Jan 01, 2009

During a recent congressional hearing a CEO of one of the big three auto makers was asked, "Isn't it true that you have been trying to sell your company for several...