Interrogation Room

Topics: False confession, Interrogation, Confession Pages: 4 (1390 words) Published: January 16, 2008
Research Paper: Why do innocent people confess in the interrogation room?

An accused is found guilty because of his/her own confession that he/she made in the interrogation room. He/She spends many years in jail without saying anything. However, another person comes forward and accepts responsibility for that same crime a few years later. As it turns out, the person who initially confessed to the crime was innocent. So, why did he/she confess to a crime he/she did not commit? To answer this question, one has to go inside the interrogation rooms of Canada. First of all, the interrogators tell the suspects that the police have evidence against them. Second, the interrogators ask suggestive and leading questions that influence the suspects to believe that they are guilty. Finally, the confessions of the accused are obtained through coercion. Thus, there are three main reasons why innocent people confess to a crime: proof, suggestive questioning, and coercion. The first technique that interrogators use to obtain a confession is that they go into an interrogation room already assuming that the suspect is guilty. He/She fabricates fake evidence against the accused in order to get a conviction. This procedure is best described in the words of Witt: In the face of increasingly relentless interpersonal pressure, the suspect is pushed to account for the purported evidence. By training, the interrogator interrupts any denial or introduction of exculpatory evidence offered by the suspect (e.g., I wasn't there, I was at my brother's house), and insists that the suspect explain the facts (e.g., your fingerprints were on the gun). As the list of purported evidence grows, wrongly accused suspects develop some theory of what is going on. Some guess that someone has set them up by planting evidence. Others opine that they are being railroaded by the police—that the...
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