Police Interrogation

Bison code: L.28325

Police interrogation is one of the most frequently used techniques in crime research. During an interrogation, police officers (probably) receive crucial information from victims, witnesses or suspects. Together with the information based on crime scene research (or other police techniques), police researchers are able to reconstruct a criminal event. There are several studies which focus on interrogation techniques (e.g. Kop et al.), but most studies pay less attention to the physical conditions/ environment. Most of the police interrogations take place in a special interrogation room. Such places are scarcely furnished and practical/ safety issues are the most elementary aspects. In this study, we focus on the research question ‘Can the physical environment of an interrogation room influence the willingness to explain?’ Is it possible to influence the behaviour of victims, witnesses or suspects / willingness to explain by using different colours, sounds or odour? In commercial settings, the use of colours, sound and odour is more common and frequently used to influence behaviour (of customers) in a positive way.

Together with professional police interrogators and other police specialists (e.g. recherchepsychologen), we would like to explore in what way these techniques can (possibly) improve the willingness to explain during a police interrogation. The use of lights/ colours, odour or sounds in an interrogation room is an unexplored terrain. We’d like to measure the differences in willingness, by using remote sensing techniques – we have to develop this ourselves – and the emotion detection technique, developed by Vokaturi BV. For the interpretation of the sensors, we need to develop our own artificial intelligence technique and build up our own database. Besides this, we have to look to several ethical issues. For this study, we have to set-up different real-life experiments, build our own interrogation rooms and work very closely with several police specialists. Students need to sign a NDA.

Cluster: Security & Evidence 1