Higgins, Daniel P. Interviews and interrogations: a critical part of
the fire investigation. Firehouse. Vol 22 No 9 (September 1997). p 56+.
Abstract: This article discusses the differences between conducting
an interview and an interrogation and some of the procedures to be followed.
The author classifies the difference between an interview and an interrogation
as "a witness in interviewed and a suspect is interrogated." No
matter which is being conducted, preparation is critical.
The physical setting used is also a critical factor in regards to layout,
distractions, color, etc. The investigator must be comfortable and physically
and mentally prepared for the interview.
It is important for the interviewer to control the interview/interrogation
and to not let the subject dominate the process.
The intensity of the questioning is going to depend upon the circumstances
and the relationship of the subject to the incident being discussed. Custodial
versus non-custodial settings are key to how the subject is handled and
as to whether or not it is necessary to advise the person of their rights.
If it is determined that it is necessary to advise the person of their rights,
then there are other procedures that should be followed to ensure that whatever
is learned during the interview/interrogation can be used.
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