• Detecting truth in suspect interviews: the effect of use of evidence (early and gradual) and time delay on Criteria-Based Content Analysis, Reality Monitoring and inconsistency within suspect statements

      McDougall, Alice Jennifer; Bull, Ray; University of Leicester; University of Derby (Taylor and Francis, 2015-01-03)
      The strategic use of evidence in interviews with suspects has been shown to increase the ability of interviewers to accurately and consistently distinguish truthful from deceptive accounts. The present study considers the effect of early and gradual revelation of evidence by the interviewer, and the effect of shorter and longer delay on the verbal quality of truth-teller and liar statements within a mock crime paradigm. It was hypothesised that gradual disclosure of evidence (1) in terms of inconsistencies (a) within statements and (b) between statements and such evidence and (2) of the criteria of Criteria-Based Content Analysis (CBCA) and of Reality Monitoring (RM) would emphasise differences in the verbal quality of truth-teller and liar statements. Forty-two high school students took part in the study. The use of statement-evidence and within-statement inconsistency appears to be a robust cue to deception across interview style and delay. This indicates that gradual disclosure in interviews may increase interviewer accuracy in veracity decisions by eliciting statement inconsistencies. However, gradual revelation and delay affected the ability of CBCA and RM criteria to distinguish the veracity of suspect statements.
    • The effect of co-offender planning on verbal deception

      Chan, Stephanie; Bull, Ray; Home Team Behavioural Science Centre; University of Derby (Taylor & Francis, 2013-09-13)
      Previous deception studies have mainly examined individual mock perpetrators and their deceptive behaviours during interviews, but not all crimes are committed by single perpetrators. In the present study, 48 mock perpetrators were individually interviewed after carrying out a mock theft in pairs. The time available for co-planning prior to the interview was manipulated so as to examine its effects on participants’: (1) verbal cues to deception; (2) cognitive load; and (3) attempted speech control during the interview. Having time available for planning was associated with greater statement immediacy, plausibility and within-pair consistency, but not with cognitive load or attempted control.
    • An exploration of perceptions of real-life suspects’ from the Asian Muslim community relating to the police interviewing practices in England

      Minhas, Rashid; Walsh, Dave; Bull, Ray; University of Derby; International Policing and Justice Institute, One Friar Gate Square, University of Derby, Derby, UK; International Policing and Justice Institute, One Friar Gate Square, University of Derby, Derby, UK; International Policing and Justice Institute, One Friar Gate Square, University of Derby, Derby, UK (Taylor and Francis, 2017-09-11)
      In England and Wales, the ‘war on terror’ has been argued to impact adversely on existing race relations policies. New legislation (such as wide discretionary powers of stop and search and arrest under the Terrorism Act (TA) 2000, the extension of pre-charge detention of 28 days (TA 2006), and the use of control orders to detain without trial), policing, and counter-terrorism measures may cast Muslims as the ‘enemy within’. The current research concerns real-life Asian Muslim suspects’ perceptions and experiences of police interviewing practices in England. This study involves semi-structured interviews with 22 people who had previously been interviewed as suspects throughout England. Around two-thirds of participants reported perceiving the demonstration of various stereotyping by police officers during interviews, half of whom indicated that the interviewers demonstrated racial/religious stereotypes via discriminatory behaviour. Given the potential and serious consequences of such racial/religious stereotypes and discriminatory behaviour, further training of police officers seems necessary to improve both interviewing performance and community cohesion.
    • Exploring the disclosure of forensic evidence in police interviews with suspects

      Smith, Lisa L.; Bull, Ray; University of Leicester; University of Derby (Springer, 2013-07-02)
      Despite many years of empirical research focusing on investigative interviewing and detecting deception, very little research attention has been paid to the various types of evidence which feature in police interviews with suspects. In particular, the use of forensic evidence in the context of police interviews has not been previously considered, although in recent years the availability of various types of forensic analyses has dramatically increased. In the current study 398 experienced police interviewers from various countries completed a questionnaire about their experience of using various types of forensic evidence in interviews with suspects, as well as their perceptions regarding the strength of various sources of forensic information and how this may affect their interviewing strategy. The results indicated that although the participants have forensic evidence available in a large proportion of their interviews with suspects, the vast majority of police interviewers have received no training about how to interpret or use such forensic information. However, the perceived strength of forensic evidence was reported by some participants to affect their interview strategy and specifically the timing of the disclosure of such evidence during an interview. These findings are discussed with reference to police training and interview techniques, and suggestions for further research are offered.
    • Helping to sort the liars from the truth-tellers: The gradual revelation of information during investigative interviews

      Dando, Coral J.; Bull, Ray; Ormerod, Thomas C.; Sandham, Alexandra L.; University of Wolverhampton; University of Derby; Lancaster University; Department of Psychology; University of Wolverhampton; UK; School of Law and Criminology; Derby University; UK; Department of Psychology; Lancaster University; UK; et al. (Wiley, 2013-04-20)
      Research examining detection of verbal deception reveals that lay observers generally perform at chance. Yet, in the criminal justice system, laypersons that have not undergone specialist investigative training are frequently called upon to make veracity judgements (e.g., solicitors; magistrates; juries). We sought to improve performance by manipulating the timing of information revelation during investigative interviews. A total of 151 participants played an interactive computer game as either a truth-teller or a deceiver, and were interviewed afterwards. Game information known to the interviewer was revealed either early, at the end of the interview, or gradually throughout. Subsequently, 30 laypersons individually viewed a random selection of interviews (five deceivers and five truth-tellers from each condition), and made veracity and confidence judgements. Veracity judgements were most accurate in the gradual condition, p < .001, η2 = .97 (above chance), and observers were more confident in those judgements, p < .001, η2 = .99. Deceptive interviewees reported the gradual interviews to be the most cognitively demanding, p < .001; η2 = .24. Our findings suggest that the detection of verbal deception by non-expert observers can be enhanced by employing interview techniques that maximize deceivers' cognitive load, while allowing truth-tellers the opportunity to respond to evidence incrementally.
    • Jail inmates’ perspectives on police interrogation.

      Cleary, Hayley M. D.; Bull, Ray; Virginia Commonwealth University; University of Derby; Department of Criminal Justice, L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA, USA; Department of Law, Criminology, and Social Sciences, University of Derby, Derby, UK (Taylor and Francis, 2018-07-26)
      Few studies have examined police interrogation strategies from suspects’ perspectives, yet assessing suspects’ views about interviewer approaches could provide important insights regarding confession decision making. The current study is the first American survey to assess a diverse sample of adult jail inmates’ views on police interrogation tactics and approaches. The study explored US jail inmates’ (N = 418) perspectives about how police should conduct interrogations. Potential dimensionality among 26 survey items pertaining to police tactics was examined using exploratory factor analysis. Group differences according to demographic and criminological variables were also explored. Four factors emerged, conceptualized as Dominance/Control, Humanity/Integrity, Sympathy/Perspective-Taking, and Rapport. Respondents most strongly endorsed Humanity/Integrity and Rapport strategies and were unsupportive of approaches involving Dominance/Control. Gender differences emerged for Dominance/Control and Humanity/Integrity, and Black respondents were more likely to value strategies related to Sympathy/Perspective-Taking. Suspects endorsed interrogation strategies characterized by respect, dignity, voice, and a commitment to the truth; they reported aversions to the false evidence ploy and approaches involving aggression. Overall, results from this incarcerated sample suggest that interviewees may be more responsive to rapport-building, non-adversarial strategies.
    • Police strategies and suspect responses in real-life serious crime interviews

      Leahy-Harland, Samantha; Bull, Ray; Bournemouth University; University of Derby (Springer, 2016-09-13)
      This research focuses exclusively on real-life taped interviews with serious crime suspects and examines the strategies used and types of questions asked by police, and suspects’ responses to these. The information source was audio-tape-recorded interviews with 56 suspects. These recordings were obtained from 11 police services across England and Wales and were analysed using a specially designed coding frame. It was found that interviewers employed a range of strategies with presentation of evidence and challenge the most frequently observed. Closed questions were by far the most frequently used, and open questions, although less frequent, were found to occur more during the opening phases of the interviews. The frequency of ineffective question types (e.g. negative, repetitive, multiple) was low. A number of significant associations were observed between interviewer strategies and suspect responses. Rapport/empathy and open-type questions were associated with an increased likelihood of suspects admitting the offence whilst describing trauma, and negative questions were associated with a decreased likelihood.
    • Self-disclosure and self-deprecating self-reference: Conversational practices of personalization in police interviews with children reporting alleged sexual offenses

      Childs, Carrie; Walsh, Dave; University of Derby (Elsevier, 2017-11-06)
      This article examines how police officers ostensibly reveal personal information about themselves in investigative interviews with children reporting their being victim of alleged sexual offenses. We identify two practices of personalization. First, we show how, during the opening phase of interviews, officers engage in clear, unambiguous self-disclosure and how these self-disclosures are designed to elicit expressions of affiliation from witnesses. Second, we identify instances of self-deprecating self-reference as in ‘I’m going deaf that's all’. These self-references are delivered to manage trouble responsibility in environments of repair. We show how they manage the conflicting demands of rapport building and the requirement to make interviewees feel as if they are being listened to and understood, on the one hand, and the need for effective evidence gathering, on the other. The present study extends understanding of how officers personalize the investigative interview, as recommended by best practice guidelines.