International Developments in Investigative Interviewing - Deepstash

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PEACE Philosophy

The intention of the PEACE philosophy is to move away from the 'questions-and-answer' format previously employed in interviews with suspects, and to use a more interviewee-led format. In this way, interviewees are given an opportunity to put across their version of events, and the information gathered is likely to be much more useful in terms of points to prove.


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About Open Questions

The use of open questions (Tell me everything that you did on that day') is more likely than a closed question to lead to more detailed answers (if the interviewee is not interrupted by the interviewer), with information being in the interviewee's own words (Griffiths and Milne 2006). The interviewee is challenged at a later stage in the interview when appropriate.


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About Leading Questions

As well as encouraging the use of open questions and appropriate closed probing questions (why, what, where, when and how types of questions that aim to probe further into issues already raised by the interviewee), it is also important to avoid leading questions, as these can not only increase the risk of false confessions with vulnerable interviewees but also taint any subsequent information given by the interviewee.


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The Ethical Interviewing

The ethical interviewing of witnesses is thus as crucial as in those interviews involving suspects; not only can witnesses disclose essential information in the investigation - which therefore needs to be accurate and thorough - but they also need to be treated in a manner that will maximise the likelihood of witnesses coming forward for future investigations and ensure that their experience is not a negative one.


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The Witnessing

The witnessing of a crime can be a very stressful event for most people; then to become involved in the Criminal Justice System because of this is an extra burden on the individual, and this pressure needs to be recognised.


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