by María Prada

When Facts Fail, Turn to Words: Interviews in the Context of Criminal Investigations

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Undoubtedly, among all the tools available to the criminal investigator, one stands out for its ability to reveal the best-kept secrets. In the absence of significant physical evidence at the crime scene, there still prevails a vital technique for gathering information, whose results depend largely on the expertise and skill of the professional: the criminal interview.


The techniques employed during interviews in the criminal field are based on a deep understanding of human psychology. Unlike a consultation with a patient, the criminal or related subject seeking to avoid condemnation, whether for oneself or an associate, will not usually volunteer the necessary information willingly. Therefore, the role of the interviewer is crucial in forcing such revelation.


Criminal interview has evolved as a discipline in its own right, within the framework of forensic sciences. Various techniques have been developed and debated, each designed to destabilize the subject. These include rapport techniques, focused on building a relationship of trust, and confrontation techniques, aimed at challenging a solidly constructed facade. Interpreting silences and body language also reveals crucial clues about the veracity of a suspect’s statements.


As important as knowing the various interview techniques is knowing when and how to use them. Adapting the interviewer’s behavior to that of the subject and understanding what type of approach is necessary, both based on the psychological profile and the emotions expressed during the interview, are skills as crucial as the method itself.


Therefore, if you aspire to develop yourself as a researcher in the field of crime or in any field where understanding human behavior is fundamental, learning about the art and science of criminal interview could be a key step in your professional growth.


At Evidentia University’s Continuing Education School, we are committed to helping you continue to enhance your capabilities and skills. Thus, we have created specific courses where you can delve into the power of the interview and its impact on criminal investigations.


We invite you to join our community and strengthen your skills in this crucial field.

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School of Continuing Education - Evidentia University