Witness – Are you really confessing?

Witness – Are you really confessing?

IDK if you ever got a chance to watch the Guantanamo Interrogations?
Or the CIA tapes

But that is for terrorists you’d say, and considering what they’d do to us maybe not so bad? Well actually they weren’t terrorists, they were SUSPECTED terrorists. How long would you hold up to their techniques before saying anything you thought they wanted you to?

But how bad would it be if a police officer was doing the interrogation? Would they go to such lengths?
the Reid Technique
ACLU That’s a good question. No suspect has ever been disappeared or been bruised while in police care, have they?
ACLU – community paper

The research is being gathered on what can be ethically done to solicit a confession and what has to be done to verify the ‘facts’ gathered. And the researchers have serious concerns about whether confessions should be used at all.

…… resources

  • Accusatorial Interrogations
  • Information-Gathering Interviews – need of verifiable data


  • accusatory questioning often provoked false confessions.
    Factors such as mental impairment, youth, and substance addiction make people quicker to doubt their own memory and, under pressure, to confess,
    “persuaded” confessions in which a suspect, worn down by hours of interrogation, goes into a fugue and begins to believe their own guilt. The problem is especially pronounced among adolescents like Burton, who are both impressionable and cowed by authority.
    Kassin and several colleagues from the United States and United Kingdom wrote an American Psychological Association white paper warning about the risk of coercion. They suggested several reforms, such as prohibiting lying by police, limiting interrogation time, recording all interrogations from start to finish, and eliminating the use of minimization. They also said the practice of seeking confessions was so inherently damaging that it might be necessary to “completely reconceptualize” the tactic and come up with something new. source


individuals with high human and social capital (e.g., income, employment, intimate partner, and children) have more at stake and, therefore, have more to lose in confessing a crime.

Regarding the suspect’s criminological characteristics, several studies revealed that a confession was more likely to be obtained from a suspect without a criminal background. Offenders who have had prior contact with the criminal justice system would be less likely to confess because they have some knowledge of their procedural rights. Other studies reported the opposite finding.

Contextual factors might influence the offender’s decision to confess have mainly focused on the role of legal advice, the strength of police evidence, and the offender’s sense of guilt at the time of interrogation.
The suspect’s perception of the strength of police evidence has been emphasized as one of the most important factors influencing the suspect’s decision to confess to police. source


Compared to adults, youth are particularly vulnerable to providing false confessions . Characteristics associated with typical adolescent development may be related to this enhanced risk, including, for example, heightened suggestibility, susceptibility to social influence, and immaturity of judgment. Furthermore, adolescents tend to weigh immediate rewards more heavily than the potential long- term negative consequences of their actions. When combined with police use of psychologically manipulative and high pressure interrogation techniques, these characteristics may lead some youth to make false confessions. source


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