Recording Raises the Likelihood of False Confessions—FALSE!

A popular myth that recording a victim’s testimony will raise the likelihood that he or she will make a false confession continues to be debunked. Recording not only helps close cases more quickly, but the right equipment also provides hard evidence that can be saved, retrieved easily at a later date and shared with entire teams. Learn more reasons why your investigative team will only become stronger with the right recording tools.

Did you know that according to the Innocence Project more than 1 out of 4 people wrongfully convicted and later exonerated by DNA evidence had made a false confession or incriminating statement which led to their conviction? Learn more specifics about this by clicking here.

The Innocence Project is a national litigation and public policy organization which is dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted individuals through DNA testing and reforming the criminal justice system in order to prevent future injustice. The story behind the project came about after a 1996 case in which Damon Thibodeaux ended up being sentenced to death and spent 15 years on death row and 16 in prison before DNA testing was able to prove his innocence.

How is it that innocent people like Thibodeaux come to give a false confession or make an incriminating statement? The proceedings that ended in his exoneration unpacked a multiple factors. Factors such as: exhaustion, long interrogations, psychological vulnerability and the fear of the death penalty—all of which came into play in his case. Read the whole case here.

Experts have proven that even the innocent will confess to a crime they did not commit and that much of this is linked to the specifics of a police interrogation, highlighting the importance of digital recording to keep police accountable, protect anyone being interviewed, and speed up the time to trial for cases like these and countless others.

What the Innocence Project has helped experts identify:

“In some false confession cases, details of the crime are actually inadvertently communicated to a suspect by police during questioning. Later, when a suspect knows these details, the police take the knowledge as evidence of guilt. Often, threats or promises are made to the suspect off camera and then the camera is turned on, resulting in a false confession. Without an objective record of the entire custodial interrogation, it is difficult to gauge the reliability of the confession.”

Furthermore, they have discovered that law enforcement agencies who record interrogations actually are able to:

  1. Prevent disputes about how a suspect was treated
  2. Create a clear record of a suspect’s statements
  3. Increase public confidence in the criminal justice system
  4. Deter officers from using illegal or devious tactics to secure a confession

Invest in the Equipment—Be a Part of the Solution

Knowing the advantages of recording in police department, getting your system into place seems like a given. We understand the process is more than just saying yes to the equipment and protocol—which is why we’d love to talk to you and see where your law enforcement agency is in the readiness spectrum. Why not reach out to us today and see what it would take to get your interview room up to par? Contact us or fill out this form to get in touch!

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