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True and False Police Interrogation Experiences Among ...

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INTERROGATING Offenders with Serious Mental Illness: THE PREVALENCE AND REASONS BEHIND FALSE CONFESSIONS
Allison D.RedlichiIIIRGConference,Stavern, NorwayJune 24, 2010
Police Interrogation Research
Large increase in research conducted on false confessionsSituational risk factors: certain techniques, length of interrogationDispositional risk factors: young age andmental impairmentOver-representation in the criminal justice systemOver-representation among identified false confessors
False Confession Research
Two problematic issues1. Knowledge is based on, or generated from, specialized subset of egregious cases [coerced-compliant]
Confession Continuum
VoluntaryCoerced
Confession Continuum
VoluntaryCoerced
Objectively Proven FCs
Almost all Coerced(police induced)92% Murder and RapeInnocent InsistersAppear to be rare
Majority are Voluntary(protecting true perpetrator)Property crimes, not violent or sexual offenses33% retracted and asserted their innocenceAppear to be more common
False Confessions
Subjectively Reported FCs
Study 1
Interviewed 1249 offenders with mental illnessAt 6 data collection sitesIn jail, at court, or in the communityRecently arrestedFor 90 minutes on a variety of topicsRedlich, Summers, & Hoover (2010). Self-reported false confessions and false guilty pleas among offenders with mental illness.Law and Human Behavior, 34,79-90.
Total Sample, n = 1249
Brooklyn, NY: n = 96Washoe County, NV: n = 104San Francisco County, CA: n = 264Santa Clara County, CA: n = 336Hennepin County, MN: n = 244Marion County, IN: n = 205
Sample Summary
61% menMean Age = 36.5 years12thgrade educationMost (86% or more) have a serious mental illnessAverage Number of Arrests is 16Average number of years offending is 16 yearsAlmost half have been arrested for a violent/ serious crime
False Confessions
Did you ever confess or admitto the policethat you did a crime when you really did not do the crime?If yes:Number of timesWhy (four choices plus ‘other’)Most serious offense
Self-Reported FC RatesYES to FC/Number in Sample
New York: 22/95 = 23%Nevada: 12/103 = 12%CA 1 (SF): 67/264 = 25%CA 2 (SC): 93/335 = 28%Minnesota: 62/242 = 26%Indiana: 18/204 = 9%Total: 274/1243 = 22%
Number of False Confessions
Zero times, n = 969 people, 78% of entire sampleOne time = 46%2 or 3 times = 34%4 to 10 times = 14%11 or more times = 6%
N = 274 (22%)
NATURE VS. NURTUREDISPOSITIONAL VS. SITUATIONAL
Number of Possible Events
How many times have you falsely confessed?How many times have you been arrested in your life?# of FCs/# of arrests
Self-Reported FC Events
NY: 33/836 = 3.9%NV: 17/1007= 1.7%CA 1 [SF]: 163/5613 = 2.9%CA 2 [SC]: 331/4387= 7.5%MN: 264/4942 = 5.3%IN: 33/2466 = 1.3%Total 844/19,251 = 4.4%
Self-Reported FC Events:Total Sample
Across 1243 individuals,Across 19,251 arrests,False confessions were self-reported as occurring 844 times or 4%
Most Serious Crime: FC
Person Crimes 33.2%Murder and Rape 3.3%Property Crimes 31.0%Drug Crimes 24.5%Public Order Crimes 8.8%
Reasons for False Confession
Protecting True Perpetrator: 53%Police Pressure: 48%Believed Did Do Crime: 26%Wanted to go home/ 65%stop questioning:

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True and False Police Interrogation Experiences Among ...