Prioritize Interviews with Statement Analysis

Investigators are often confronted with cases involving many possible suspects. Say for instance a theft of a laptop computer occurred within a local business or within a school, and that there were 20 people or students who had access to the area during the time of the theft; where do you start the interview process? You can start interviewing everyone, but that can several hours and even several days. Also, during that time, some of the people who were interviewed may talk with those who have not yet been interviewed, thus possibly contaminating the interview process. This can waste time, money and also compromise the integrity of the investigation. However, an investigator trained with Investigative Statement Analysis will be able to hand everybody a piece of statement paper or a pad and simply ask them to "write down everything that happened from the time you came in until you ended the day."  By doing so, the investigator will obtain an account of everyone's activities on the day of the theft. If the person who stole the laptop computer provides an account of their day, they have to lie, alter information, limit what they write, or in some way manipulate or leave out some of the facts of what really happened during the day (or at least part of the day) in order to cover up their crime. The innocent people don't have to do that because they can simply convey the information about their day. This difference between the innocent and guilty mindset is revealed within the words people use, and this insight will help investigators focus on the most probable individual(s) first. Also, the investigator GAINS information first before any interview, and if some of the people were not available when gathering this initial information and they ask someone who was, "Yo dude, what did the cop ask you, man?" all they can say is they asked me how my day was! :-)

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