PSYC 2400 Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Central Park Jogger Case, False Confession, Electroshock Weapon

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Monday January 19, 2015
PSYC 2400
Week 3
Police Interrogations
Purpose of police interrogation
1. Obtain confession
2. Obtain information about a crime
Suspects of crime (not victims/witnesses)
North American interrogations
oUK – dropped word interrogations (negative connotation)
Peace model (suspect interviews)
Reid model – coercive environment
oBrown v. Mississippi (1936)
Whipped during interrogation
oStun gun and the NYC police (1980’s)
Stun guns used to intimidate/used during interrogation process
oR v. Hoilett (1999)
Arrested for rape, court dismissed confession (interrogation was not valid –
naked in a cold cell, high on drugs)
oConfessions that are extracted by violence are not help up in court
Are interrogations currently coercive?
Physical coercion is not prominent
oPsychological coercion – is it still problematic?
Lying/implying
Exaggeration
Co-suspects are played against each other
Threats (implicit)
Promises of leniency
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Moral justification – depends on the type of crime
Reid Model
Stage 1: gather evidence
oGather evidence – person’s involvement in crime
Stage 2: conduct interview
oConduct interview (BAI) – behavioural analysis interview
oGoal: determine if a person is lying
oAssumption: guilty person will react differently to questions than innocent people
Indications of lying: gaze aversion, fidgeting, slouching, anxiousness
Stage 3: interrogating
oConduct accusatorial interview – once person is deemed guilty
Confront suspect with their guilt
Develop psychological themes
Interrupt statement of denial
Overcome objections
Engage suspect
Show sympathy and urge truth
Offer alternative explanation/questions
Develop full confession
Obtain written confession
Not going to voluntarily confess
Canada – do not always follow Reid technique
oNeed a confession from someone who doesn’t want to give a confession
oNot given an alternative to interrogation methods
Permissible by the Courts
In Canada:
oBasic human rights cannot be violated
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