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La Plata & Waldorf Criminal Defense Lawyer
The Charles County Criminal Defense Firm Hablamos Español 301-259-3488

What Happens In The Interrogation Room? Don’t Expect Honesty


What is more intimidating than being locked in an interrogation room at the police department?  If things have gone well, you’ve been Mirandized and have suffered no abuse at the hands of officers.  You know you have the right to remain silent now, but you’re under a lot of pressure to tell what you know about a crime under investigation—and perhaps you even feel compelled to make a confession. That might be because you are the subject of some devilishly potent psychological strategies designed to extract information.  And yes, part of that strategy probably involves deception.

What’s Allowed 

Believe it or not, law enforcement is allowed by law to misrepresent what they know.  It is not uncommon for them to make assertions that seem to be incriminating.  No, they cannot lie about your legal right, nor can they misconstrue the fact. What does that mean, exactly?  While any confessions given under physical duress or because of threats could eventually be thrown out of court, they are allowed to make up things that they think would compel you to confess.  For example, they could say that your DNA was found at the scene even if that’s not true, or they could claim to have a witness that puts you at the scene. That’s why it’s always best to remain mum until your attorney arrives.

Assume the Worst 

If you’re being questioned by law enforcement, assume they consider you a suspect.  Whether it’s in the interrogation room or an informal chat on your front porch, understand that they are fishing for information that can get them a conviction.  Always ask if you are free to go, and if you’re not, reveal nothing until you get your attorney’s okay.

The Reid Technique 

Police frequently use what’s known as the Reid Technique to get a confession out of a suspect. It’s a coercive tactic that is used often, and with success, whether or not the confession is sound.

  • They Isolate a Suspect: The aim is to make individuals feel isolated so they panic.
  • They Play Good-Cop/Bad-Cop: The “bad cop” overloads you with “facts” that make you look guilty, and gloats about the air-tight case they have against you.  Then the “good cop” enters, sympathetic to your reasons for committing the crime, offering charges of lesser offenses—or even the chance to go home—in exchange for a confession.

We’ll Say it Again… 

Again, we cannot stress how important it is to exercise your constitutional right to remain silent until your La Plata & Waldorf criminal defense attorney from The Law Office of Hammad S. Matin, P.A. arrives to assist you in navigating the interrogation.  We will fight for the best possible outcomes for you!  The Supreme Court has ruled that you must clearly state that you want a lawyer, so if you are arrested, tell the officer you will not be making a statement and you want your lawyer present.  If you say “I think I want a lawyer” that is not good enough! Contact us today to discuss your case.



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