Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology

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Volume 3 Issue 2 (June 1993), Pages fmi-fmi, 87-172

The changing face of police interrogation (pages 101-115)


This paper discusses some of the apparent changes in interrogations following the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 and the introduction of tape recorders into police stations. These reforms are believed to have had several marked effects on interrogations. For example, the use of persuasive questioning is believed to have declined, as has the number of suspects making admissions. The evidence for these hypotheses is discussed. It is suggested that the apparent fall in confessions can be explained by methodological differences between studies and that the confession rate has in fact remained almost constant. Although there does appear to have been a change in the types of persuasive questioning employed during interrogations, it is difficult to establish whether or not the use of such questioning has declined. There is some evidence that persuasive questioning is now being carried out away from recording equipment.

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