Misleading police interviews?

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A judge in Canada slammed a police interrogation technique widely used in North America for leading to oppressive situations. Douglas Quan from the “Postmedia Group” discusses the case.
A judge in the Province of Alberta dismissed charges against a day care operator charged with aggravated assault after a child suffered a serious head injury. During questioning by the police the accused asserted 24 times that she wanted to remain silent. However, the police officer disregarded her right to remain silent and continued the interview for more than eight hours with lengthy monologues and persistent questioning. In the end the accused told the police what it wanted to hear, concluded the judge, and denounced the technique in the strongest terms. The technique used was the “Reid interrogation technique”, an accusatory interview which is guilt presumptive and employs psychologically manipulative elements. The technique has been repeatedly discussed as a source of false confessions. Some of its elements are forbidden in Britain and other European countries. In addition, Brent Snook, a professor at Memorial University, showed in one of the very rare empirical studies on police interrogation that its best practice is often not employed.
The issue is of interest because it highlights central problems of interviewing even outside the interrogation room. Although interviews are often roughly standardized, as in the present case they remain an art in which manipulative elements can play a major role. Training and supervision are essential in this area.