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  • Concerning interrogations

    I'll start this post by saying I've never been in this situation myself, nothing more than a traffic ticket in my life. I would like to be informed by the folks here gain clarity because most of what I know about this is probably wrong because like the majority of Joe Public my "education" about law comes from distorted cop and lawyer shows. They tend to make cops look like rogues, hotshots, etc. and lawyers as artists (whereas I think many of them are con artists!).

    Anyway, on the shows, and from what I could find in a quick online search ( http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/script...=394&invol=731 ) cops are allowed to lie or use trickery with the person being interrogated in order to gain information and/or a confession. Am I wrong on this and possibly misread the court case? If not wrong, how far does this go, what are the limits they can use? I know the crap I've seen on Miami Vice (understatement) and other shows isn't real... so what is?

    The reason I posted here instead of ask a cop is I'm not a student trolling for term paper (I'm a middle aged man with kids), I'm not in legal trouble, etc. so I'm not looking for concrete information just from cops, but rather looking to clear up some of the junk pseudo law I've seen on the boob tube.
    The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground." - Thomas Jefferson

  • #2
    I'm not LE but I'm pretty sure I'd be safe in saying that they can and do use whatever they need to to get as much info from suspects as possible. I'm sure witnesses and victims(when possible) are questioned first so they have enough info to haul them in under suspicion. If it was as easy as t.v. depicts,and quick also,it'd be great,but I'm sure you know it isn't. I don't know that they'll reveal what they have to do or do to get the criminal and they have reasons for doing so. You're getting an uneducated guess here from me but I figured I could relate my experience from the victims point of view. I've been told the show The First 48 is fairly close to real.

    When my case against the people who committed aggravated assault against me was still being investigated,the county attorney told me that he was going to use a plea agreement with one girl and even if she didn't agree to it he was going to tell the other girl she did so the other girl would cave in and admit her part in the attack.

    Now that wasn't the police doing the interrogating but I live in a very small community where things are done a little differently I imagine. They were already under arrest and in jail so the situation could have changed hands by then from due process. He was obligated to ask me if I was willing to accept a plea bargain etc,etc.

    In my opinion,whatever it takes to get the offender off the streets works for me. Usually an innocent person is just that and the guilty ones ask for a lawyer! LOL!
    I'm old......that's all.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
      I'm not LE but I'm pretty sure...
      "These Are Private Forums for Law Enforcement. We Reserve the Right to Remove Non-LEO Members, Anti-LE or Inappropriate Posts and Users Without Warning."

      Once again, you've ignored this warning.

      To answer the question, yes, we can lie to get a confession. This usually entails suggesting evidence exists that may not.

      Comment


      • #4
        The short answer is "Yes" we can lie, and the courts have upheld the practice. There is ample case law to sustain the practice of deception, contrary to what some defense attorneys might have you believe.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
          I'm not LE but I'm pretty sure I'd be safe in saying that they can and do use whatever they need to to get as much info from suspects as possible. I'm sure witnesses and victims(when possible) are questioned first so they have enough info to haul them in under suspicion.
          The question should have been posted in the "Ask a Cop" section. FWIW: The police cannot, "...use whatever they need to get as much info from suspects as possible" (as suggested by this non-LEO forum member).

          We're allowed to detain suspects and make arrests according to constitutional restraints that serve as guidelines for our conduct. Failure to obey the law (ie: using unlawful or inappropriate interview and interrogation techniques and tactics) will render those statements inadmissible in court. We do have the right to mislead suspects (using a "ruse") to some degree, but tactics that are likely to illicit innocent persons to confess to crimes they didn't commit are strictly forbidden.

          Threats or promises likely to induce a false confessions usually result in statements that are inherently unreliable and the courts take a dim view of them. Generally, if officers use a ruse to "trick" a suspect into making admissions against his/her self interest, they need to obtain independent evidence that corroborates the information provided. An example would be if officers told a suspect his prints or DNA were found at a crime scene and the suspect said he "did it", getting information only the real perpetrator would know or having him provide physical evidence to verify the statements is essential. Using death threats or even the suggestion of unlawful force to obtain statements is strictly prohibited.
          "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by pulicords View Post
            The question should have been posted in the "Ask a Cop" section. FWIW: The police cannot, "...use whatever they need to get as much info from suspects as possible" (as suggested by this non-LEO forum member).

            We're allowed to detain suspects and make arrests according to constitutional restraints that serve as guidelines for our conduct. Failure to obey the law (ie: using unlawful or inappropriate interview and interrogation techniques and tactics) will render those statements inadmissible in court. We do have the right to mislead suspects (using a "ruse") to some degree, but tactics that are likely to illicit innocent persons to confess to crimes they didn't commit are strictly forbidden.

            Threats or promises likely to induce a false confessions usually result in statements that are inherently unreliable and the courts take a dim view of them. Generally, if officers use a ruse to "trick" a suspect into making admissions against his/her self interest, they need to obtain independent evidence that corroborates the information provided. An example would be if officers told a suspect his prints or DNA were found at a crime scene and the suspect said he "did it", getting information only the real perpetrator would know or having him provide physical evidence to verify the statements is essential. Using death threats or even the suggestion of unlawful force to obtain statements is strictly prohibited.
            I should have been more clear in my response. Thanks puli !!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by jakflak View Post
              "These Are Private Forums for Law Enforcement. We Reserve the Right to Remove Non-LEO Members, Anti-LE or Inappropriate Posts and Users Without Warning."

              Once again, you've ignored this warning.

              To answer the question, yes, we can lie to get a confession. This usually entails suggesting evidence exists that may not.
              This is the general LE topic forum. I'm allowed to answer here. What did I do wrong? How was I anti-LEO or having an inappropriate post? I didn't realize I did something wrong.
              I'm old......that's all.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by pulicords View Post
                The question should have been posted in the "Ask a Cop" section. FWIW: The police cannot, "...use whatever they need to get as much info from suspects as possible" (as suggested by this non-LEO forum member).

                We're allowed to detain suspects and make arrests according to constitutional restraints that serve as guidelines for our conduct. Failure to obey the law (ie: using unlawful or inappropriate interview and interrogation techniques and tactics) will render those statements inadmissible in court. We do have the right to mislead suspects (using a "ruse") to some degree, but tactics that are likely to illicit innocent persons to confess to crimes they didn't commit are strictly forbidden.

                Threats or promises likely to induce a false confessions usually result in statements that are inherently unreliable and the courts take a dim view of them. Generally, if officers use a ruse to "trick" a suspect into making admissions against his/her self interest, they need to obtain independent evidence that corroborates the information provided. An example would be if officers told a suspect his prints or DNA were found at a crime scene and the suspect said he "did it", getting information only the real perpetrator would know or having him provide physical evidence to verify the statements is essential. Using death threats or even the suggestion of unlawful force to obtain statements is strictly prohibited.
                It probably should have been in the Ask A Cop section but it wasn't and the op even stated he wasn't looking for concrete info just from cops. You took what I said out of context and meaning. I apologize if I used a wrong word but it certainly wasn't meant as you took it.

                You can and do use deception and lies which is whatever it takes to get what you need from the criminal. I never implied that anything illegal was being used. As LE I guess I can see how my wording sounded wrong and I apologize. I'm not as accustumed to catch exact wording as you in LE are and am going to make mistakes no matter how hard I try. I had to read it over and over to see where you are coming from before I understood.

                Wrong section to post or not,I had the right to answer. Other civilians may not have worded it right or been close to the truth. Please understand I did not mean it how it was taken or any disrespect.
                I'm old......that's all.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
                  This is the general LE topic forum. I'm allowed to answer here. What did I do wrong? How was I anti-LEO or having an inappropriate post? I didn't realize I did something wrong.
                  Maybe its best if we don't reply in all of the threads, and not the ones where we don't have the answers. I don't know what LEOs can and can not do while interrogating and I guess you know just as much as I do. I only know what I have seen on TV and some things I have been told but I usually get the stories about the funny or crazy calls. Sometimes our opinion is not the kind of post needed and this thread is looking for facts not opinions.

                  A time or two I read something I didn't agree with so I kept my opinion to myself, I am allowed to be a member and want to be welcome here, at times silence is golden.
                  It's not that liberals are ignorant. It's just that they know so much that isn't so. Ronald Reagan


                  TSA, I would rather be felt up than blown up.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It's not lying, it's investigative deception.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
                      This is the general LE topic forum. I'm allowed to answer here. What did I do wrong? How was I anti-LEO or having an inappropriate post? I didn't realize I did something wrong.
                      It's at the top of the page you're reading right now. I'm not going to debate it with you again. I don't care if you think that you should be able to post here. You can't. So stop.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
                        You can and do use deception and lies which is whatever it takes to get what you need from the criminal. I never implied that anything illegal was being used. As LE I guess I can see how my wording sounded wrong and I apologize. I'm not as accustumed to catch exact wording as you in LE are and am going to make mistakes no matter how hard I try. I had to read it over and over to see where you are coming from before I understood.
                        "False Confession Experts" (lawyers who've never conducted a single interrogation) frequently accuse investigators of using "whatever it takes" to get statements. We don't. The law and ethical conduct provide some very good guidelines about what is or isn't acceptable practices. Even if they aren't "unlawful", not all forms of ruse are acceptable means of obtaining statements. The quality and believability of the statements obtained frequently depend on the investigative tactics that are used. Anyone can be made to "confess", but using some types of deception to obtain truthful statements is what real investigators do on occasion.
                        "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by jakflak View Post
                          "These Are Private Forums for Law Enforcement. We Reserve the Right to Remove Non-LEO Members, Anti-LE or Inappropriate Posts and Users Without Warning."

                          Once again, you've ignored this warning.
                          Actullay if you look at where it is posted she can post her opinion. General Law Enforcement Topics is under the Public Forum.

                          Originally posted by pulicords View Post
                          The question should have been posted in the "Ask a Cop" section. FWIW: The police cannot, "...use whatever they need to get as much info from suspects as possible" (as suggested by this non-LEO forum member).
                          Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
                          This is the general LE topic forum. I'm allowed to answer here. What did I do wrong? How was I anti-LEO or having an inappropriate post? I didn't realize I did something wrong.
                          No you did nothing wrong.

                          Originally posted by Justsaying View Post
                          Maybe its best if we don't reply in all of the threads, and not the ones where we don't have the answers. I don't know what LEOs can and can not do while interrogating and I guess you know just as much as I do. I only know what I have seen on TV and some things I have been told but I usually get the stories about the funny or crazy calls. Sometimes our opinion is not the kind of post needed and this thread is looking for facts not opinions.

                          A time or two I read something I didn't agree with so I kept my opinion to myself, I am allowed to be a member and want to be welcome here, at times silence is golden.
                          You are welcome here it is a public forum area.

                          Originally posted by jakflak View Post
                          It's at the top of the page you're reading right now. I'm not going to debate it with you again. I don't care if you think that you should be able to post here. You can't. So stop.
                          It says, " Forum - Public Forums - General Law Enforcement - Topics Concerning interrogations.
                          Pete Malloy, "The only thing black and white about this job is the car."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by OneAdam12 View Post
                            Actullay if you look at where it is posted she can post her opinion. General Law Enforcement Topics is under the Public Forum.


                            It's written at the top of the page, directly above the part you quoted.


                            No you did nothing wrong.



                            You are welcome here it is a public forum area.



                            It says, " Forum - Public Forums - General Law Enforcement - Topics Concerning interrogations.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by wyofirebirdbaby View Post
                              This is the general LE topic forum. I'm allowed to answer here. What did I do wrong? How was I anti-LEO or having an inappropriate post? I didn't realize I did something wrong.
                              Read more post less you'll be amazed at how much you learn, and could possibly get the majority of your questions answered.

                              Comment

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