Interviews & Interrogations

Interviews are classified as 'meetings' in which information is shared voluntarily by two parties, except that one party (the interviewer) holds more cards than the other (interviewee). The purpose of an interview is to obtain information from a person voluntarily, without the use of force from any party.

There are several interview techniques suitable for different approaches, circumstances and to achieve very specific results. These include

1. behavior-based interviewing or BBI. These interviews help assess how an individual will act in a given situation or how the individual acted in the situation in question. The interviewee is asked to describe the event in detail and present their own account. This may not be an effective technique for people who know which cues to hide/display and when. In many instances, behavior can be manipulated and, therefore, impact results.

2. Case interviews involve presenting the interviewee with a situation similar to one they are suspected of and asking how they would handle it. There is a very thin line between case interviews and interrogation, and because of the up close and personal nature of this interview, it can trigger a stand-off-ishor fight response in the interviewee if pushed too hard. There is no right or wrong answer to case interview questions, and the goal is to see if the interviewee becomes fluttered or overwhelmed.

3. Stress interviews are where interviewees stay just below the interrogation line, pushing on the candidate as hard as possible while following interview guidelines. The interviewee is stressed, and their responses are analyzed. The goal is to increase the fight or flight response in the interviewee. If the person is stressed, it is more likely that their response will be truthful and impulsive. However, there is also a chance that the interviewee shuts down completely and doesn't cooperate at all.

The best way to prepare for an interview is to rehearse and line up questions. Even when asking questions, the slightest sign of hesitation may give the interviewee more power over the interviewer, which is when the interviewee gets a chance to change their overall outlook to an artificial one.

When conducting an interview, you must adhere to the following legal considerations to avoid legal liability.

• Every question must pertain to the end goal of the interview.

• Ask personal questions within reason. Do not strong-arm your way into the interviewee's life.

• Do not make physical comments

• Taboo topics must be avoided

• Questions about an ongoing legal case of which they are a part of

• Questions about religious observance, unless necessary for the role.

• Do not ask about bank balances, accounts, and other similar information

Interrogations involve questioning individuals formally and systematically, pressuring the individual into submission. During interrogations, security guards can accuse individuals and pressure them into telling the truth. By this point, it is established that the individual is guilty, and the goal is to get a confession.

Even during interrogations, individuals can be proven innocent. If security guards aren’t sure about the individual’s guilt, they must tread lightly as interrogations often involve being rude and can potentially ruin the organization’s image.

For example, police interrogations have been known to depreciate the level of trust that individuals place in the system and can create an environment of distrust. There should always be an observer present during interrogation.

To properly prepare for an interrogation session, you should carefully review and analyze the suspect's profile and the case profile. Make sure there is nothing you can say or do that would tell the suspect where you are in the investigation. However, it is important to know when a little peek in the investigation process can help aid the interrogation process. You should also maintain a clear sense of direction, i.e., things that need proving and thingsthe interviewee can use to get out of the interrogation.

Some legal considerations to keep in mind when interrogating include:

• Individuals have a right to counsel

• Individuals must not be forced to become witnesses against themselves

• Individuals have the right to remain silent.

• During confession, the interviewer must remain silent unless clarifying something for the record.

• Individuals should be given a chance to defend themselves

• Miranda laws must be observed, particularly when it comes to abuse.