Dear Ms. Jerome,
I would like to point out a number of issues that you neglected to mention in your article, Interrogation tactics, errors in justice system lead to false confessions, lawyers say.
Kennedy explained that Canadian courts have said to stop using the Reid technique and that the PEACE model comes out of the U.K.
"In the Netflix series, Making a Murder Part 2, the interrogation of Brendan Dassey is discussed by Attorney Steve Drizen and Attorney Lauara Nirider during the first 15 minutes of Episode 2. (Attorneys Drizin and Nirider represent Dassey in his appeals).
The two attorneys are shown on screen giving a presentation to lawyers at Northwestern University Law School, discussing the Brendan Dassey interrogation. During their presentation they reference John E. Reid and Associates as the benchmark for proper interrogation practices and procedures. Specifically, they state that Reid and Associates teaches that using deception or false evidence "should be avoided when interrogating a youthful suspect with low social maturity or a suspect with diminished mental capacity."
They then again refer to Reid and Associates as teaching that investigators should not reveal all of the case information to the subject during the interrogation so that the investigator can use the disclosure of that information by the subject as an indication of the authenticity of his confession.
Furthermore, in Oickle, the Court of Appeals concluded that the police improperly offered leniency to the suspect by minimizing the seriousness of his offense. The Supreme Court again disagreed stating, "Insofar as the police simply downplayed the moral culpability of the offence, their actions were not problematic."
3.We teach the P.E.A.C.E. Method: In 2019 we will be presenting 2 courses in Canada entitled, Reid PEACE Method of Investigative Interviewing, in Niagara Falls and Calgary.
Do not make any promises of leniency
Do not threaten the subject with any physical harm or inevitable consequences
Do not conduct interrogations for an excessively lengthy period of time
Do not deny the subject any of their rights
Do not deny the subject the opportunity to satisfy their physical needs
Withhold information about the details of the crime from the subject so that if the subject confesses the disclosure of that information can be used to confirm the authenticity of the statement
Exercise special cautions when questioning juveniles or individuals with mental or psychological impairments
Always treat the subject with dignity and respect
The confession is not the end of the investigation � investigate the confession details in an effort to establish the authenticity of the subject�s statement
In the future, when you are doing a story referencing the Reid Technique, you should contact us for our comments on the issues you are discussing so as to present a balanced story.
- Always conduct interviews and interrogations in accordance with the guidelines established by the courts
- Do not make any promises of leniency
- Do not threaten the subject with any physical harm or inevitable consequences
- Do not deny the subject any of their rights
- Do not deny the subject the opportunity to satisfy their physical needs
- Always treat the subject with dignity and respect
2."the RCMP has implemented a more conversational style based on the UK's PEACE (Preparation and Planning, Engage and Explain, Account, Closure and Evaluate) model
We teach the P.E.A.C.E. Method - Click here for a flyer describing the content of our course. We have two courses scheduled in Canada this year: April 16-17, 2019 in Niagara Falls, Ontario and October 8-9, 2019 in Calgary.
3. Sure, Darren. What is the goal of an interrogation?
To learn the truth.
It's not about incriminating someone?
That's the problem with the old Reid model. It�s very guilt presumptive.
Factual analysis consists of reviewing the case facts and evidence in an effort to identify the potential scope of suspects, the probability of the offender's characteristics, and what their possible motive may have been.
As part of the investigator's review and analysis of the case facts and evidence, they should identify what specific details about the crime they can use to corroborate any confession that is made in the case. There are two types of corroborating evidence - dependent, which refers to details about the case that the police know but choose to "hold back" - to conceal from the media and the suspects that they question so they can be used to assess the credibility of a subject's confession. These details may include how the victim was killed; how and where entry was made into the building; where the accelerant was poured, etc.
The second type of corroborating evidence is referred to as independent - this refers to details of the crime that only the offender knows - details that the police do not have; such as where the murder weapon is located; how and where the subject disposed of their bloody clothes; the location of the stolen property; etc.
In the process of analyzing the case facts and evidence the investigator should develop a description of the of the crime scene; the way in which the crime appears to have been committed and the known details of its commission, i.e., implement used, place of entry or exit, any special knowledge required (such as a safe combination); and, the presence of any incriminating factors against a particular subject; etc.
Once the investigator has reviewed and analyzed the case facts and evidence, they should prepare an interview strategy, including a list of issues that should be discussed with each subject, and a list of possible questions that need to be asked of each subject, including the victim, any witnesses and any suspects.
The Investigative Interview
At the outset of the interview the investigator must be sure to comply with all legal requirements, such as the appropriate advisement of rights. It is imperative that throughout the interview, the investigator maintains an objective, neutral, fact-finding demeanor.
The investigative questions will deal with the issue that is under investigation. One of the first things the investigator should do is ask the subject an open-ended question that invites the subject to tell their story. If it is a victim, what happened? If it is a witness, what did they see or hear? If it is a suspect, what were their activities on the day in question? After the subject relates their initial story or version of events the investigator will then ask a series of questions to develop additional details and to clarify the who, what, when, where, why, and how of the incident under investigation.
During this segment of the interview the investigator would explore for any precipitators that may have provoked the incident, or for any procedural or policy violations that may have contributed to the situation. The investigator should attempt to resolve any inconsistencies or contradictions that may have surfaced from the interviews of other subjects or from the investigative information. If the subject offers an alibi for the time period in question, every effort should be made to substantiate the alibi.
In our book, Criminal Interrogation and Confessions, 5th edition 2013, we devote several chapters to the topic of Investigative Questions.
The third type of question that we utilize in the interview is called a behavior-provoking question (BPQ). BPQs are questions which most truthful individuals answer one way, while deceptive individuals oftentimes answer in a completely different manner. The investigator will present these questions as casual inquiries.
At the conclusion of this non-accusatory interview the investigator will evaluate the investigative and behavioral information developed during the interview, as well as the information, facts and evidence developed during the investigation up to this point, and then make one of several possible decisions: the investigator may eliminate the subject from further investigation; the investigator may determine that the investigation of the subject should continue; or the investigator may decide to initiate the interrogation of the subject. Everyone in an investigation may be interviewed, but very few are interrogated.
The purpose of an interrogation is to learn the truth. In most instances this consists of the guilty suspect telling the investigator what he did regarding the commission of the crime under investigation. The obvious reason for this outcome is that interrogation should only occur when the investigative information indicates the suspect's probable involvement in the commission of the crime.
However, there can be several other successful outcomes:
the suspect may reveal the fact that he did not commit the crime but that he knows (and has been concealing) who did
the suspect may reveal that while he did not commit the crime he was lying about some important element of the investigation (such as his alibi � not wanting to acknowledge where he really was at the time of the crime), or
the investigator determines the suspect to be innocent
We recommend that investigators should never use the interrogation process as the initial means by which to assess a subject's credibility - in other words, we recommend that after the initial non-accusatory investigative interview and the collection of evidence only those subjects should be interrogated whom the investigative information suggests are most probably involved in the commission of the crime.
For additional information se our document entitled, Clarifying Misrepresentations About Law Enforcement Interrogation Techniques.
In the future when you write an article that discusses the Reid Technique you should be sure to talk to us so you get a full understanding of the issues.