Hope all had a good Christmas. I read several books. Here is one: Spy the Lie: Former CIA Officers Teach You How To Detect Deception, from Philip Houston, Michael Floyd and Susan Carnicero with Don Tennant. It is the best book I have ever read on the topic. The one section that struck me was the interrogation by the L.A. police of O.J. Simpson. The book reminds us that Simpson came in for an interview, waived his right to an attorney being present, and that the interrogation lasted a little longer than 30 minutes. While the authors frame their opinion in graceful terms, the gist of it is unmistakable: a blown opportunity. The detectives asked an open-ended question right off the back:"When did you last see Nicole?" They later ask, near the end of the interview an even worse question: "What do you think happened? Do you have any ideas?" The authors point out that Simpson never lost control of the interview. Was there a better way? The authors argue that a presumptive question should have been asked at the start:"What happened at Nicole's last night?" and followed up with a baiting question: "O.J. We are interviewing all of Nicole's neighbors, is there any reason that any of the neighbors will tell us that they saw you there last night?" The first presumes he was there. The second would have made O.J. feel that it's in his best interest to allow for the possibility, so he admits something. The point being that the detectives control the interview and progress is being made.
My favorite quasi presumptive question: Can you Ms. Witness accept the fact that XYZ is (accurate or possible, etc)?" If she says "yes" we get the edge, and if she says "no" she looks unreasonable. My favorite baiting question: Any facts to point me to that your co-workers would not be honest about (fill in issue in dispute ― poor work performance, or stealing equipment etc)?
Great book. Give it a read.