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Join the conversation! There are now 14 comments on this chapter's page 3. Minds Slam Shut. What are your thoughts?
  1. Jason says

    I love the imagery of the jurors’ thought processes. It’s very interesting to see how people portray something as abstract as thinking.

  2. I can already see where this is going; your going to start talking about how false confessions can be brought out of coerced suspects, aren’t you?

    That’s when the police intimidates someone into saying they did something when they didn’t folks. Risks of interrogation.

    • And one of the reasons all interrogations should be videotaped, from the moment the suspect/witness steps into the room until the moment they leave.

    • It does happen. Interrogations put immense pressure on you, can be frightening, and a lot of times people will simply take the path of least resistance to get out of the situation, which is to do what the police want and confess. While we’re here thinking we’d never let ourselves confess falsely, that’s not the case with several people who are ignorant of the law, or may have a language or cultural barrier working against them (in many countries, you don’t have the rights we take for granted in the US, and the police are pretty terrifying)

    • Many police interrogations have little or no intimidation involved. Generally the cop in there will be your best friend, bring donuts and drinks and totally sympathize with you. By far the most efficient method discovered so far for getting confessions. My guess is this is going in another direction, he whacked her, went to bed and a burglar came in and killed her afterward.

      • If you’re talking. Try telling them you don’t want to talk anymore, and see how quickly the situation changes.

  3. Justice Robert Jackson, Nuremberg Prosecutor, Supreme Court Justice: “Any lawyer worth his salt will tell the suspect in no uncertain terms to make no statement to the police under any circumstances.” Watts v. Indiana, 338 U.S. 49

    • I don’t think real life is that simple. The police aren’t huge fans of people who make their lives harder, and frequently have the option of overlooking small stuff or dragging you in and making a fuss over it. Also, it’s a lot easier to suspect someone who won’t talk to you; I suspect if after a murder you’re the only one to refuse to speak to the police, you will find them all up in your business.

      Even ignoring the issues for society if we never speak to police, I think clamming up will frequently hurt on an individual level.

      • Perhaps true if the police didn’t suspect you of wrongdoing otherwise. But once they do, they are not your friends anymore; it is their job to get you behind bars, and they will use any tactics the Constitution and law allow.

        Also, we haven’t covered hearsay yet, but generally the only parts of an interrogation that can be used in trial are the parts that work AGAINST the suspect. If you tell them you were miles from the scene of the crime, the only part of it that the prosecution will or can bring up is “defendant knew where the scene of the crime was.”

  4. Andrew Farrell says

    Are we going to talk about jury selection in Advanced Criminal Procedure?

  5. Jean says

    I keep hearing lines from “My cousin Vinny” playing…
    Interrogation time, the kid is reacting to what the cops say, “I SHOT the CLERK?”

    Trial, the pig says, “He said to me, “I shot the clerk, I shot the clerk!”” (Play with the emphasis, I???!!!! shot the clerk? vs. I SHOT!!! the clerk.)

    Literally true – morally reprehensible to present the statement that way, though. Amounts to Testi-lying (Perjury through intentional fabrication).

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