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  12/01/2014The Reid Technique - A Position Paper
As the world leader in teaching interview and interrogation techniques, The Reid Technique is commonly challenged by defense attorneys and interrogation critics. We have prepared a position paper that will provide you with information to respond to these challenges. In this paper we address the following topics:

  • The core principles of the Reid Technique
  • Best Practices
  • Why false confession experts criticize The Reid Technique
  • What the courts say about false confession experts
  • What the courts say about The Reid Technique
  • The best way to guard against false confessions
  • "Reid" testifying as interrogation experts
  • How do I answer the question, "Do you use The Reid Technique?"
    Click here to access this position paper.

  •   09/30/2014Legal Updates Summer 2014
    Legal Updates Summer 2014 The Legal Updates Summer 2014 column contains cases which address the following issues:
    • Investigator's statement that felony murder would receive a lesser sentence than premeditated murder did not render confession involuntary
    • Video of interrogation demonstrates that juvenile did not make a knowing and intelligent waiver of his rights
    • Confession rendered involuntary when defendant told he could not get a fair trial because of his race
    • Value of recording: Video of interrogation contradicts defendant's claims
    • US Supreme Court finds Florida test to determine intellectual disability as factor for eligibility for execution unconstitutional
    • Investigators operated at the "outer bounds of permissible conduct"
    • Confession was coerced when investigators threatened to have Child Protective Services take defendant's child away
    • Defendant claims statements were involuntary because he had been given morphine, hydrocodone and promethazine
    • Colorado Supreme Court examines 13 factors that should be considered in evaluating whether a confession was coerced
    • "the law permits the police to pressure and cajole, conceal material facts, and actively mislead"
    • PA Supreme Court rules that expert testimony of false confessions invades the province of the jury
    • Does interrogating a suspect in a police car create a custodial environment?
    • Confession voluntariness - lying about the evidence
    • Georgia Supreme Court rejects the idea that a suggestion that the shooting was an accident constitutes a hope of leniency
    • Court offers scathing rejection of false confession expert Dr. Allison Redlich
    • Electronic recording of the confession is not required
    • Bible in the interrogation room is not coercive

    Click Here to Review Updates

      08/14/2014Not so Fast - the Central Park Jogger case
    As everyone knows the Central Park Jogger case has become a high profile "false confession" case - highlighted by the documentary Ken Burns did about the case.

    Not so fast. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal sheds some very interesting light on the case. The story was written by Michael Armstrong who is of counsel at McLaughlin & Stern. He has served as Queens County district attorney and chief counsel to the Knapp Commission investigating corruption in the New York City Police Department.
    Click Here to View

      07/15/2014From Law and Order magazine: The Reid Technique Webinar - The Reid Technique Delivered Right to Your Training Room
    In the June 2014 issue of Law and Order magazine the editorial staff profiles the new online training program developed by John E. Reid and Associates for investigators. As the article states, "The three-hour Reid Technique webinar is an excellent summary of the 40-hour instructor led classroom course. It serves as both an introduction to Th4e Reid Technique and as a refresher to the course."
    Click here for the compete article.

      07/15/2014The Hunting Of Man: Lies, Damn Lies, And Police Interrogations
    Miller W. Shealy, Jr., Associate Professor of Law, Charleston School of Law, has just published an article entitled, The Hunting Of Man: Lies, Damn Lies, And Police Interrogations, in which he discusses and then support the use of deception by investigators during their interrogations. Here is the article's Abstract:


    The job of the police is to stop crime by stopping criminals. It is a real life, deadly cat-and-mouse game where the hunter and the hunted spar for advantage and success. To accomplish its goals, law enforcement can draw from a vast array of technologies, stratagems, and devices. One of the primary weapons in the law enforcement arsenal is deceit. Criminals, like most prey, are lured into clever traps set by police. The police create circumstances and situations that are designed to prompt the criminal suspect into revealing incriminating information. This is obvious in the use of confidential informants, undercover police officers, and other common police tactics. Suspects are "tricked" by police into revealing themselves. A controversial aspect of this kind of police "trickery" occurs in the interrogation context. What may police tell suspects to "trick" or prompt them into confessing? Can a police officer misrepresent the strength of the case against the suspect? Can an officer lie about the nature of incriminating evidence? Can an interrogating officer disguise his or her identity during the interrogation and pose as a family friend, priest, or someone friendly to the accused? This article will examine current police practices in the context of recent Supreme Court cases and social science findings. I will argue that certain deceptive techniques are appropriate in the interrogation context. If appropriately utilized, "trickery" of a certain type does not unreasonably increase the risk of false confessions and is an appropriate tactic in the hunting of criminals.
    Click here for the complete article.

      06/17/2014HumInt Collection: A look through noncoercive field questioning and screening of jihadist combatants
    Two of our senior instructors, William Schrieber and Philip Mullenix, co-authored a new article just published in the Marine Corps Gazette entitled, HumInt Collection: A look through noncoercive field questioning and screening of jihadist combatants. Here is the beginning of the article:

    Marines whose military occupational specialties (MOSs) include field questioning and screening of jihadist suspects must operate within the interrogation parameters defined in Field Manual 2-22.3, Human Intelligence Collector Operations (Department of the Army, Washington, DC, September 2006) ("the Manual").

    Field questioning (also known as tactical questioning) is defined in section 1-17 of the Manual as expedient initial questioning for information of immediate tactical value, generally performed by members of patrols. Screening as described within section 1-18 of the Manual is generally performed by experienced collectors, usually within a controlled environment, to identify the level of knowledge, level of cooperation, and placement and access of a given source relative to information of high intelligence value.

    As a human intelligence (HumInt) collector engaged in field questioning and/or screening, the Marine has a responsibility to adhere to the Manual's five phases of a HumInt questioning session: planning and preparation; approach; questioning; termination; and reporting.
    Click here for the complete article ("Reprinted courtesy of the Marine Corps Gazette. Copyright retained by the Marine Corps Gazette.")

      06/17/2014US Attorney General issues policy memo regarding recording interrogations
    In a Memorandum regarding "Policy Concerning Electronic Recording of Statements" dated May 12, 214 the US Department of Justice, Office of the Deputy Attorney General, stated the following:

    "This policy establishes a presumption that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), and the United States Marshals Service (USMS will electronically record statements made by individuals in the circumstances set forth below."

    "The presumption applies only to interviews of persons in FBI, DEA, ATF or USMS custody. Interviews in non-custodial settings are excluded from the presumption."

    This policy takes effect on July 11, 2014.
    Click here for the Memorandum.

      06/02/2014Legal Updates Spring 2014
    The Legal Updates Spring 2014 column contains cases which address the following issues:
    • Defendant is entitled to discovery of evidence relating to officer's alleged propensity to obtain confessions through coercive conduct
    • Standard questions that solicit from the custodial suspect basic identifying information do not require an advisement of rights
    • Video identifies improper interrogation - confession suppressed
    • Video contradicts defendant's claim he was too intoxicated to waive his rights
    • Court confirms that The Reid Technique consists of proper interrogation procedures
    • The criteria to be considered in determining custody for a juvenile suspect
    • Testimony of Dr. Deborah Davis on false confessions excluded by the court
    • Testimony of Dr. Allison Redlich on false confessions excluded by the court
    • Undercover agents do not have to advise a suspect of their Miranda rights
    • The value of recording an interrogation to demonstrate voluntariness
    • Value of recording to demonstrate the totality of circumstances and voluntary nature of incriminating statements
    • Investigator should not be allowed to testify about the defendant's credibility
    • Denial of juvenile suspect's request to see mother during interrogation did not render the confession inadmissible
    • Anatomy of a false confession case
    • Gudjonsson Suggestibility Scale found not to meet Fry test - there is not acceptance of the GSS in the forensic psychology community
    • Combination of assertion the defendant's daughter would suffer without an admission and an implied promise of leniency yield involuntary confession
    • Equivocal invocation of rights: "[t]he context of the recorded statement clearly indicates that [Piatnitsky] was willing to speak with the detectives, just not on tape."
    • Court should have allowed Dr. Richard Ofshe to testify in general about false confessions
    • Investigators did not follow suggested guidelines when interrogating mentally deficient individual as detailed in Reid training manual and text, Criminal Interrogation and Confessions

    Click here for Legal Updates Spring 2014

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