Forensic Statement Analysis as an investigation technique.

The truth evades those who do not listen.



Forensic Statement Analysis (FSA) may not be a new investigative technique (Colwell et al) but it certainly been one of the most underutilised and definitively one of the most misunderstood techniques. FSA is also based on human behaviour thus requiring some understanding of psychology is required on the part of the forensic interviewer as it sets out to analyse the psycholinguistic behaviour of individual people to establish their truthfulness or deception (Adams 1996:2). This process thus, requires intense training for prospective forensic interviewers based on current research and available material in a field that requires additional extensive research and modification. Essentially FSA is based on psycholinguistic behaviour, which comprises of four components; speech parts, extraneous information, lack of conviction and the balance of the statement or structure and is utilised to detect whether a person is being either truthful or deceptive. Traditionally, any form of analysis of deception was purely focused on deceptive behaviour only and not truthful. This researcher has for approximately 10 years has had a self-interest in this topic and has had the honour of meeting Nathan Gordon one of the world‟s recognised leaders on the study of detection of deceptive behaviour.


DEFINITION Forensic Investigation Hans Gross who a century ago was regarded as the leader of criminalistics (the science of criminal detection), viewed each crime as a scientific quandary requiring the application of objective scientific analysis, the crime could be fully studied in order to individualise and identify the perpetrator involved supported by scientific proof (Marais 1992:1, Van der Westhuizen 1996:7, Swanson et al 1988:12). To place the forensic element in the correct order, Russel & Coetzee (2000:xiii), refer to a forensic interview as an interview conducted within the criminal context and a non-forensic interview has no relevance to the criminal context.


According to Reader’s Digest Illustrated Oxford Dictionary forensic is: forensic adj. 1 of or used in connection with courts of law; esp. in relation to crime detection. 2 of or employing forensic science [from Latin forensis] It further separates the term forensic and forensic science defining it as: forensic science n. the application of biochemical and other scientific techniques to the investigation of crime. Taking the criminalistic approach which distinctly separates the criminal investigation process into two concepts (Marais 1992:1 and Van der Westhuizen 1996:9) namely: Criminalistic Tactics; focuses on the aptitude and dedication of the investigator through surveillance, interrogation, observation, searching methods. Criminalistic Techniques; technical analysis of evidence through scientific

applications as listed above. It is important to note the investigation process seeks to discover both objective and subjective clues; Objective clues; is physical evidence that is either left behind at the scene of the crime or found in the possession of the perpetrator that is silent, indirect or circumstantial but has an objective explanation which associates the evidence with the perpetrator and the criminal incident. Subjective clues: is the evidence of people such as complainants, eye-witnesses, victims, perpetrators who are directly or indirectly involved in the crime. (Van der Westhuizen 1996:1 & 11, Marais & Van Rooyen 1994:17, Cloete & Stevens 1990:186) Therefore, forensic science is the criminalistic technique based on the applied sciences and generally lead laboratory analysis-type investigations, by example listed below: (Fish 2004:171, Dienstein 1974:234-240) Comparative Science: comparative methods used for the analysis of fingerprints, questioned documents and firearm evidence. Entomology: taxonomic identification of insects, methods of collection, and the importance to determination of time of death in murder investigations.


including surveillance and observation. Psychology: overview of the major psychological profiles. and prognoses of the homicidal offender. Serology: analysis of suspected body fluid evidence. Crime Analysts/Intelligence: collection. interpretation and distribution of criminal information and intelligence. Identification: the identification of persons either through visual observations. Forensic investigation (criminalistic tactics) could include the following disciplines: Auditing: financial auditing methods and techniques in the investigation of financial irregularities in fraud investigations. levels of motivation. Pathology: terminology and scientific techniques used in medico-legal investigations of sudden or unexpected deaths. evaluation.Medicine: anatomy and physiology of the human body with an emphasis on traumatic and unexpected deaths. Califana and Levkov (1978:5) support this notion as they claim criminalistics and forensics are the same issue. photographs. In the modern realm of investigations. documents. criminal investigators would achieve greater success in solving crimes if they are equipped with selected scientific knowledge that he is aware of what is to be done with a clue to extract the full evidential value of the clue. witnesses and suspects to obtain and determine the reliability of statements of witnesses and truthfulness of suspects. criminal profiling. The term "forensic" is effectively a synonym for "legal" or "related to courts" as based on the Latin term of forum. which entail a number of individual 4 . the tactics and techniques thereof make the forensic investigation process a field of multi-applications. there is a requirement for investigators not only to complete continued training but to become specialists in various fields of investigation as Marais (1992:1) with reference to Gross. Interviewer: the interviewing of victims. Crime Evidence/Scene: the search for and collection of physical evidence at a crime scene.

Forensic interviews relate to the investigation of crime Gordon (2004). Swanson et al. Dowling (1979:17. Their argument primarily differentiates that suspects are subjected to interrogations only. “entail the systematic questioning of any person who has knowledge of a crime and may assist in a criminal investigation” Dowling (1979:17). which may assist in the investigation of a crime. 3. and only those who are not suspects themselves rather victims. in interviewing the lack of personal knowledge could render the information as hearsay resulting in exclusions of evidence. In terms of criminal interviews. Marais and Van Rooyen (1991:164) submit interviewing is the questioning of people as a “face-to-face conversation” who have knowledge.(own emphasis) forensic specialists utilised dependent on the nature of the offence or crime under investigation to systematically collect. a job interview.29) also differentiates between interview and interrogation.g. (1998:123) supports this definition and includes the term “personal knowledge” which is important as forensic relates to the courts and litigation. which he describes as “primary purpose of obtaining an admission of guilt”. reliability and relevance. FORENSIC INTERVIEWING 3. analyse and present evidence. Marais and Van Rooyen (1991:173) in support of Van der Westhuizen (1996:80) cites a number of authors who agree with this synopsis. Gordon 5 . The fundamental difference between normal interviewing and forensic interviewing. these rules also being applicable to confessions made by suspects.1. complainants or witnesses. are defined as. Russel and Coetzee (2000:xiii) add the crime can be actual or suspected and non-forensic interviews still search out the truth with no links to crime e. ascribed as forensic interviews based on the definitions of forensic. Forensic interviewing is applicable to anyone with knowledge that may assist a criminal investigation and forensic relates to the courts and litigation process therefore subjecting the interviewing of any person to the rules of evidence in the litigation process in terms of admissibility.

Interrogations are loosing momentum as mentioned confrontational. The FAINT process is independent of the crime under investigation and the forensic investigator is not entirely privy to the physical facts whereas in the interrogation. he proposes the Forensic Assessment Interview Technique (FAINT) that includes an assessment of non-verbal behaviour. Notwithstanding. interrogations are confrontational with any amount of time available. there is no discussion relating to interrogation utilisation. The time is better spent on a forensic interview which in its own environment 6 . analysis of unwitting verbal clues and FSA.44-45). whereas a forensic interview is non-confrontational. Gordon and Fleisher (2002:89) which in sum establishes a parameter against which a witness or suspect is measured as to their truthfulness or deception.and Fleisher (2002:27) state the interview is an information gathering process and interrogation searches for the guilty to confess to their complicity in a crime. hostile and highly pressurised with forceful techniques applied in an attempt to for a person to tell the truth with interrogators spending too much time on endeavours to trap a suspect when he/she is not telling the truth or forcing them to tell the truth. in Gordon‟s submission for the requirements of a Master of Arts in Criminology. With developments in interview techniques there seems to be an apparent shift away from interrogations per se. an interrogator is dependent on the physical facts of the investigation that focuses on analytically extracting truth from any person. Validation of the Forensic Assessment Interview Technique. University of South Africa (UNISA) November 2004. In addition. In instances of a suspect offering cooperation with the intention of submitting a confession this can be performed within the forensic interview environment and suspects must be afforded the opportunity with the establishment of an environment to confess (Russel & Coetzee 2000:10-14. consider Gordon (2004). Buckwalter (cited in Van Westhuizen 1996:80) supports the view that the interview process takes place irrespective of a witness or suspect but rather dependent on the level of voluntary behaviour and cooperation which if not forthcoming the forensic interview can always be switched to an interrogation phase which is focused at uncooperative or hostile persons. free flowing and does not last longer than 60 minutes Gordon and Fleisher (2002:29).

This is interesting.2. Colwell et al (2002:289) quote Yuille “the goals of an effective interview are (a) minimize the trauma of investigation. which in turn will be beneficial when linked directly to physically evidence. and again considering Van der Westhuizen (1996:8) pointing to Gross that all investigators must be equipped with some scientific skills in order to achieve higher success rates in investigations rather than merely resort to interrogations techniques. the sum of the forensic investigation is required to discover the suspect‟s individual complicity not making the forensic interview less vital. what (own emphasis) the subject is telling the interviewer. 80-82) also support this notion. but it focuses to extract information. This process is critically applicable to the FSA objectives as will be later discussed. a bullet from a crime scene that requires ballistic testing handed to a Crime Analyst who may well be 7 . or a study of. Russell and Coetzee (2000:10-19. the result remains the same in that the suspect is not offering information and consider. no answer is also an answer (own emphasis). if they are lacking in interrogation or even basic interview techniques forensic or otherwise what are they left with? For this reason the forensic investigator must acquire higher levels of skill especially in his/her field of speciality to this end those that are trained to conduct forensic interviews should be conducting them . On the other hand the argument is presented in a case when a suspect is uncooperative and remains silent or bluntly refuses to discuss anything nothing will be discovered.persists with some form of pressure on the subject of the interview. (b) maximize the information obtained about the event(s). In such circumstances albeit under the traditional interrogation or a forensic interview process. (c) minimize the contamination of the memory trace by the interview. and (d) maintain the integrity of the investigative process”. Forensic interviews coupled to the description of forensic investigations in which Gross said that investigators should not solely depend on interrogations. Forensic interviewing is a specialist’s domain An aspect of interviewing is some understanding of human psychology and behaviour as described above and based on the forensic investigation description. modus operandi and obviously other statements such as witness accounts for example.

1987). The origins of FSA SCAN was developed by Avinoam Sapir who started teaching it when he arrived United Sates of America in the late 1980‟s. Colwell et al. Applying formal techniques to establish truthfulness rests upon the assumption that there are observable differences between the language behaviour of truthful and deceptive individuals. If valid. Gordon 2004:58). Sapir was trained in code breaking while in the service of Israeli Intelligence and later conducted extensive research into the psycholinguistic behaviour to distinguish between truthful and deceptive individuals (Gordon and Fleisher 2002:42. 4. Gordon 2004:59. and therefore a statement not based on a real 8 . FSA using the SCAN concepts finds a basis in Criteria-Based Content Analysis (CBCA) developed by a forensic psychologist Udo Undeutsch (Russell & Coetzee 2000:71. FORENSIC STATEMENT ANALYSIS 4. The results provide investigators with a means of analysing the statements of witnesses. deception is a cognitive demanding task to design and implement. (2002:290) is in agreement with Gordon (2004:55). The results of a FSA analysis highlight areas within a statement that requires clarification and so can be used to form part of an interviewing strategy to elicit more information from the individual (Sapir. victims and/or suspects to help ascertain the presence of deception (Adams 1996).1. 4. FSA and its objectives FSA is based on the Scientific Content Analysis (SCAN) (Adams 1996. Deception in a statement is not proof of someone lying rather it is a method to direct away from the to identify a type of weapon with an area of frequent robberies but would be hopelessly lost in individualising a firearm from which the bullet may have been fired. Schollum 2005:73) who Gordon (2004:55) submits. developed an operational hypothesis to determine the credibility of a statement. Smith 2001:iii) and Statement Verification Analysis (SVA) (Vrij 2002:3) but for the purpose of this discussion we will remain with FSA which is an analytical technique able to detect deception within the psycholinguistic performance of an individual.2. such a method can be usefully applied within an investigative context.

3. and 9 . 4. FSA and other forms of deceptive behaviour detection The essential difference between FSA and other deception detectors is that FSA is based on the analysis of psycholinguistic behaviour either written or verbal.situation or experience will not be rich in detail compared to a statement based on real events and to analyse the statement CBCA makes use of 19 criteria Vrij (2005:29) namely: a) Logical Structure b) Unstructured Production c) Quantity of details d) Specific contents e) Contextual embedding f) Descriptions of interactions g) Reproduction of discussions h) Unexpected complications during the incident i) j) Unusual details Superfluous details k) Accurately reported details misunderstood l) Related external associations m) Accounts of subjective mental state n) Attribution of perpetrator's mental state o) Motivation-Related contents p) Spontaneous corrections q) Admitting lack of memory r) Raising doubt about one's own testimony s) Self-deprecation t) Pardoning the perpetrator u) Offense-Specific Elements v) Details characteristics of the offense The criteria above will become relative as FSA is increasingly described in this research. where as other deception detectors are mechanical as they analyse physiological stress indicators.

Gordon & Fleisher 2002:7-9. These physiological responses or stress indicators are beyond the control of the individual being tested i. respiration and skin sensitivity known as Galvanic skin response. The polygraph is able to measure and calculate the level of stress an individual by analysing pulse. The Polygraph In the early 1920‟s the polygraph was developed and introduced in American police detective units. which are in the form of questions agreed to. What has not been included here is the FAINT method which is a non- mechanical interview technique utilising a combination of analytical applications a) body language b) Morgan Interview Theme Technique (MITT) c) Projective/Relevant/Comparison questions d) the written statement .the most common one utilised in the present days are polygraphs and voice stress analysis.e. blood pressure. by the polygraph examiner and the subject prior to commencement of the test. The responses based on stimuli. Dowling 1979:33. Later in this research question formulation will be discussed in detail. anyone can hold their breath for a given period but they are not able to increase or decrease their heart rate. All questions formatted to provide that the answer is a “Yes” or “No” answer are divided into the three types (Califana & Levkon 1978:238-240.FSA and e) afterinterview interview (Gordon and Fleisher 2002:89). Swanson et al 1988:177179): Irrelevant questions establish neutral ground for the subject as the questions are non-threatening and allow for the polygraph to record the emotional stress level of a person in lowered anxiety such as: Is you name John? Is there a door in the room? Relevant questions are formulated with issues under investigation such as: Did you commit that crime? Did you take the money? Did you assist anyone to take the money? Comparison questions are broader in nature and identify the truthful person: 10 . Russell & Coetzee 2000:73.

The Voice Stress Analyser (VSA) is able to detect the tremors.75. As with the polygraph the accuracy of the VSA remains under question and is not admissible in legal proceedings. This simple example is one of many that obviously has a bearing on the reliability of polygraph examinations which debate rages on Russell & Coetzee (2000:73) the results are not legally admissible and remain as an investigation resource. the VSA can be used in a covert role Russell and Coetzee (2000:76. which are involuntary especially during times of stress a response to deceptive behaviour. It must also be kept in consideration when framing a question the subject must be given the opportunity to rationalise an answer i.e. is able to then justify a truthful answer which would defeat the polygraph or use what Gordon (2004:40) describes as “personal coding” i.In your entire life did you take anything that did not belong to you? In your entire life did you damage anything? Between the age of 19 and 29 did you ever hit anyone? What is critical about the questions. will provide a false answer.77) such as recording an individual over a telephone and later analysing their speech. but in particular the polygraph as they can be the difference between a professional polygraph examiner and an inexperienced polygraph examiner more importantly accurate or inaccurate polygraph examination. (Califana & et al Swanson 1988:176. is incapable to “hear”. Due is relative uncomplicated operation.e. which causes tremors the human ear. Russell & Coetzee 2000:74. Voice Stress Analysers The human voice has two modulations when a person speaks the audible module and the inaudible module. Levkov 1978:241-243. Furthermore. The VSA then analysers speech either directly or recorded and further are not dependent on question formulation as stringent as the polygraph. whatever the matter is under investigation the question for instance relates to the actual criminal act but the question is directed at the motive. 11 . they are easier to operate with minimal training and do not require any attachments to be placed on the subject as with the polygraph. is the question formulation which is applicable to all forms of forensic interviewing.177).

omissions on a Curriculum Vitae where job applicant does not want to reveal a negative experience. The structure of spoken or written deception As with any form of investigation it is important the forensic investigator knows what to look for. that just about every person has at some stage of their lives. The reason that this must be understood within the FSA concept. did something that they are now ashamed of or cheated someone etc. The reason for this is that liars are reluctant to commit themselves to their deceptions. therefore it is important to know what the structure is of deception. Most forensic interviewers to avoid this problem attempt to establish a “base line” model of the subject as with the polygraph examination. told a lie about something important or to someone important. instead preferring to use conversational tricks to avoid damaging admissions. In addition. The focus of FSA as will be shown. As Gordon (2004:44) submits and this must be clearly understood. is it analyses the words in the statement and their inter-relationships. Of course this presents one of the most obvious pieces of evidence of an untruthful statement. Whether in a written statement or verbal statement which can be recorded and later analysed. they hedge. in FSA it is no different. and most people do not attempt to lie directly. and pretend ignorance. both children and adults can obscure what they imagined or what they actually experienced (Vrij 2005:29) again releasing signs of deception. feign forgetfulness. this is later compared to other areas of the statement to discover deception (Vrij 2005:31). this results in past issues suddenly becoming relevant and the honest person may begin to show signs of deception under the incorrect set of conditions which may be misinterpreted.4. 12 . the deceptive person is incapable of making a cold denial. however. the word and deception structure remains the same. omit crucial facts. the forensic investigator performing interviews will have to formulate questions or scenarios and these will test or even challenge an honest person. nonthreatening questions (control questions) or scenarios are established to discovery a neutral response from the subject. taken something when they did not have permission to do so.4. Blatant deception would be when someone says “I didn‟t do it” and they did do something that would be a 100% deception variable. Instead. at least 90% of statements made are truthful.

Furthermore. his. gives rise to bad relationship between the two. commitment is also linked directly to blame and therefore. However. have the same meaning to all of use (Russell & Coetzee 2000:25) and their improper use (Smith 2001:11) results in lack of consistent word usage and commitment to the statement (Gordon 2004:60). “I went to fetch him. every person both in written and verbal statements will construct their speech and this includes talkative people. their. we. the over usage the subject is being careful in the construction of his/her statement. my our. 4. On the other hand as Gordon states. once the normal introductions have been done of any person in the statement the use of “we” will be used correctly and flow with the context of the statement. Pronouns Pronouns I. her.4. this to avoid commitment and develops the theory of shared commitment. the incorrect usage such as “I” before another person is introduced in a statement e.1.26). The lack of the use of “we” (Russell & Coetzee 2000:27) requires further questioning as to what effected the relationship and why. my partner Stephen”. Gordon also argues “we” can be used in place of “I” by suspects. Therefore. she.g. Gordon illustrates that “we” indicates a good relationship between people or even togetherness and Russell & Coetzee (2000:26) describe it as “shared commitment” to a statement but also demonstrate that people do not live or operate in isolation and therefore. the accuser will say “we went into the room” there is 13 . Russell & Coetzee (2000:28) refer to false accusations particularly in rape offences.for this reason FSA makes use of set parameters to investigate the different aspects of speech (Smith 2001:25. to get the point of discussion in shortest possible way. they. The truthful person has no difficulty in forming a connection to their statement with the use of “I” and furthermore there would be a consistent pattern in terms of the usage of “I”. any statement containing a lack of “we” could indicate deception on the part of the author or orator. thus the departure from normal use presents a rise in suspicion and indicate deception in the statement (Gordon 2004:60.26). the correct usage of “I” shows the commitment being made to the statement as Gordon (2004:60) explains that less usage indicates an unreliable statement. Russell & Coetzee 2000:25. In addition. your.

g.2. As the example above nouns can add foundation to any aspect to relationship stability or instability as with the example above which indicated nothing more than an introduction. such as when “they” is used as reference to the group and later in the statement this changed to “we” this is evident in offence committed in a group environment such as robberies. To the left (X) saw two men walking towards the building. Nouns Nouns are the names for things. „X‟ (Gordon 2004:60) or similar must be inserted into the place where the pronoun would have been found e. it is paramount that the statement obtained is the first uncontaminated statement. when a husband and wife‟s relationship changes and in a statement the wife my describe the man as “husband” on several occasions and then suddenly without reason refers to him as “Mike”.g. “I left the building at about 12:30 and walked towards my car. people and groups of things. noun usage can be “sensitive” or “influenced” by contamination (Russell & Coetzee 2000:29) and therefore. 14 . this means the relationship has changed both in the statement and in reality the question now is why? Nouns also highlight “distance” between an object and the subject e. places. the norm would be “he forced me into the room”.4.g. Russell & Coetzee (2000:28) also warn us of changes in the use of “we” when it refers to a group of people. objects. a mark. When reading a statement and there is an incorrect usage of pronouns that they are missing. 4. (X)Walked back towards the building and they started to walk off. I turned around and went back to my car”.togetherness in this statement. (X)Watched as they stood at the door. “the guy” becomes “a pilot” after he introduces himself. “the car” which belongs to the subject was never described in statement in the statement as “my car”. this lack of ownership points to the subject attempting to place distance between him/herself and the car which may have killed someone in a hit and run accident. In addition. The critical factor about nouns usage they remain consistent in a statement and any change in the usage must be directly linked to an actual change in the context of the statement e. All other pronouns must be circled in the statement. the change to “we” by the author may indicate togetherness with the perpetrators thus shared commitment or involvement.

our.3. a subject is investigated in his involvement in the murder of his wife. “my money”. repeatedly made use of the term “my wife and I” instead of “we” (togetherness) indicates a difficult relationship as the literal measurement of “my wife and I” reflects the difficult relationship in reality. theirs and yours the usage of them should flow with the sequence or actual events within a statement and any change in them should be directly associated with the actual change of the statement‟s context. “my room” etc. Similarly during the investigation of a vehicle theft and the owner attempted to claim for a replacement from insurance his statement read: “when I arrived at the shopping 15 . mine. Smith (2001:13) has not correctly interpreted Sapir‟s theory of distance measurement correctly by describing it is “vagueness” or the “ambiguity” a subject socially introduces or talks of a person in a statement. his. the related “distance” rule simply determines the usage of pronouns or nouns correctly to reflect upon actuality (Russell & Coetzee 2000:29). “my” being a possessive determiner. it has been seen in theft cases where the subject claims to not know anything about an object such as money once again placing distance between themselves the disappearance of money. there is no such ambiguity. as shown above distance is also applicable to other nouns which refer to objects such a cars. “my car”. Included in this category is “my” a possessive determiner. He continues in his statement to say “I found Lauren shot in the car” indicating change in the noun of “wife” to “Lauren” and the additional distance notification of “the car” instead a truthful statement would have read “I found her shot in my car”.Distance (own emphasis) must always be searched for in a statement as it is evident in pronouns it is just as nouns (Russell & Coetzee 2000:29). Gordon (2004:74) offers the example of the subject talking of his dog as “my dog” and his son as “the baby” in the same context a distinctive change in the relationship with his son. notwithstanding. 4.4. Furthermore. Possessive Pronoun A possessive pronoun is a word such as hers. it is utilised and exposes a high level commitment and reduces the distance to zero such as “my wife”. enforcing acknowledgment to the person or ownership of an object being referred to. Gordon (2004:74) says “my” is possessive pronoun. if not they need to be investigated.

The exception is in missing person/murder cases it is normal to talk of the missing person in the present tense Russell & Coetzee (2000:30) who also refer to the Susan Smith case in America during which she described how her children had gone missing and she was later convicted for their murder. 4. woke. They are going to be home soon”. A narrative that occurs based on memory recall will consist of verbs (or doing words) in the past tense. exposes the relationship (Russell & Coetzee 2000:32) the subject had with the car as it supports the fact the subject was no longer in possession of the car at the time her cousin came to fetch her therefore the relationship had ended.” There is the obvious change from “my car” to “the car” and with this switch interestingly the ownership of the vehicle is given up fairly early in the statement meaning the subject no longer possessed the car at 19:00 when her cousin came to fetch her for dinner. A statement based on imagination is a story created in the current or present tense Russell & Coetzee (2000:30) and changes in tenses in the sequence of the statement will be a clear indicator of linguistic deception. kept on referring to the children in the present tense: “They are okay." The father of the children not having anything to do with their disappearance. looked. stood. At about 19:00 my cousin fetched me to go out to dinner and the car was parked in the garage. It would have made more sense if the subject said when she arrived home “the car was gone” as in a normal theft this would be logical sequence as she no longer owned the car as it had been stolen at this point. Adams (1996:1) quotes from Smith‟s statement to the press: "My children wanted me. I went into the shopping centre did some shopping and had a sandwich. watched. such as walked. drove etc. 16 . Verbs and Tense Smith (2001:13) cites the Sapir assumption of a statement that changes from the singular past tense to a passive tense would indicate deception.4. It furthermore. I arrived at home at around 16:30.4. At about 23:30 we arrived at my house my car was gone. They needed me. And now I can't help them. Afterwards I left the shopping centre drove back to my office to collect some files so that I could do some work at home.centre I parked my car on the forth level of the parking area.

In other cases the narrated statement will always be in the past tense such as “I walked to the bank and the money was in my jacket pocket. search my jacket take the money and run away. Gordon (2004:65) claims that the phrase “I don‟t remember” would not be significant 17 . therefore speaking in the present tense. Smith continues. means the subject does remember. As I turned the corner I see two guys standing there waiting for me. “to the best of my knowledge” which Adams describes these phrases as qualifiers as they serve to mitigate the phrase before it is communicated in so doing reduce the effect of what is actually said. this shows the subject does not want to commit to the statement being a lack of conviction. They both push me against the wall. Adams (1996) also cites Sapir and includes suspects show a lack of conviction with phrases of “I think”. They both pushed me against the wall. Smith (2001:12) cites Sapir as claiming a subject who is deceptive will not display conviction when relating to their version of events. “I believe”. as they were dead.” The deceptive version would be “I walked to the bank and the money is in my jacket pocket. Conviction Gordon (2004:65) submits the phrase “I don‟t remember” in an “open” statement (opened ended and uncontaminated statement). 4.4. When a subject is asked to describe how a robbery incident occurred “I saw the car with perpetrators pull to the front of the shop but I don‟t remember the colour or the type of car”. searched my jacket took the money and ran away.Adams describes when analyzing the parents statements independently the conclusion is the father had no knowledge of where the children were and believed them to be alive.5. As I turned the corner I saw two guys standing there waiting for me. the children no longer “wanted” or “needed” her. suspects may do this to avoid their own involvement in an incident and this would include statements that are incapable of recalling specific details in fear implicating themselves.” This type of deception is convenient as the subject has described exactly where and how the money was taken and with some more encouragement who took the money as it can be safely assumed that the “two guys” were acquaintances of the subject. While the mother had full knowledge and continually used the past tense and verbs simply put.

when a suspect places distance between themselves and another person together with the improper use of pronouns indicates deception. 4. Adams (1996) refers to a student who was allegedly attacked and raped by a masked man in her room at 03:30 in the morning and in her statement she makes use of the phrase “kind of startled” on waking up and realising a knife was being held to her throat. Russell & Coetzee (2000:32) refer to the reopening of the investigation into the Helderberg crash a South African Airways (SAA) aircraft into the sea off the Mauritius coast. Smith (2001:27) who attempts to test the reliability of FSA.4. And as (Adams 1996:5) points out the use of “we” contextually is the shortest way to refer to another person. This has been noticed in practise particularly in murder cases where the suspect makes a concerted effort to place distance between themselves and the victim with most obvious statement in the context of the death of a close relative as “the body”.6. “terrified” would be more appropriate. 18 . Smith (2001:13) cites Sapir in the context and in particular. it is unlikely that he does not have such a recall. Remaining with this submission Gordon (2004:60) also agrees with the lack of pronouns when introducing a person within the context of the statement indicates a negative relationship between the persons supports the distance theory. continues by citing a result of a group study of a victim who had submitted a statement in a rape case the group found she was truthful on the basis that she utilised the correct pronoun usage to place distance between herself and the suspect. Distance Through out the FSA structure analysis we have been discussing distance and this very aspect of deception is fundamental when utilising FSA as people want to place distance between themselves and deception (Russell & Coetzee 2000:15). a number of tapes with recorded conversations went missing but the official involved is unable to recall whether he ever was in possession of the tapes in the context of an aircraft crash resulted in the death of over a hundred people and had international attention. that being when the relationship is stable.if the subject was asked a specific question and applicable. if taken into context would hardly be the response of single young woman who had been raped.

it is an old gun. This is a red flag as deviation from the first person pronoun in a statement. This example illustrates the relationship between the subject and Morgan was not on a solid basis as Gordon describes a theory which Russell & Coetzee (2001:15-16) also subscribe to by substantiating that a subject depersonalizes the other person and as in the reference case they cite (Russell & Coetzee 2001:15-16) the depersonalization process is similar to reference to objects when ownership is relented (own emphasis).7. Adams (1996) claims that the truthful person will relate a statement in chronological order and concisely with The 19 .Consider the following example: I awoke at 7:30. The subject's subconscious is attempting to distance himself or herself by having others involved when no one else is. The use of the word “relent” is a descriptive word of the destruction of conviction in a statement where deception leakage is evident. I worked until about 5:00. the same situation applies. 4.e. I left the house about 8:15. XMet David Morgan for lunch and then returned to work about 1:30. indicates the subconscious attempting to distance one's self from any individual involvement. example often cited: I was cleaning my gun and it suddenly went off and the shot hit her between the eyes. ownership or personalization are components of conviction and as will be explained with the use of surplus information introduces distance. The subject did not use the first person pronoun "I" in his statement when he described meeting Morgan for lunch i. I arrived at work at 8:45. which was about 12:30. Surplus information and time sequence As with CBCA surplus information (criteria number 12) and out of time sequences are cited as possible deviations from the story (Vrij 2005:5). after the shot I dropped the gun. The switch from “my gun” to “it” and “the gun” relenting ownership. I worked until lunchtime.4. “I met”. I left work for lunch and drove to House of Coffees. When the pronoun "we" is used when it appears that the first person pronoun "I" should be used. which my father gave me. I drank my coffee and then showered and dressed. I read the newspaper. I don’t understand. I got up and made coffee.

e. activities and importantly time. Russell and Coetzee (2000:80) and Gordon and Fleisher (2002:43) makes reference to the truthful subject will offer 20 . based on CBCA. it is coherent and has details. quantity. repeating of questions. Vrij (2005:6) takes this further in identifying. Russell & Coetzee (2000:33 & 34) even though the surplus may not be logical to the interviewer/reader it must be accepted as it is important to the subject/writer/suspect. as deduced earlier the filter is created for the purpose of concealing actions. In addition. Colwell et al. a statement must have a logical structure i. manner and relevance this submission appears in another Colwell et al. Smith (2001:14) in citing Sapir submits that subjects may include information that is unimportant to the forensic interviewer but may be important to the subject. in that.any information not relating to the question is surplus. undated document page 4 and suspects will also become entangled with memory recall while experiencing both guilt and anxiety. Colwell et al. Rassin (1999:273) argues that “truth seekers” should focus on searching for signals of deception and within the context of surplus information as discussed here. Consistent throughout this theory of surplus information is the relation to the information. Gordon (2004:64) does issue caution on this aspect in stating the subject‟s story is not a chorological report but rather what is important to the subject will be related and where a statement commences is important. feigned lack of memory and repeated information that lacks clarity is a further distortion of the truth. The crux here is relevance (Gordon & Fleisher 2002:43). (2002:289) adds linguistic circumventions. (2002:288) further support this assumption within the cognitive interview parameter. its inclusion is an attempt to minimise the importance to the interviewer or reader. in stating the deceiver is in control of the release of information to avoid their detection and thus deceptive information will differ in the sense of quality. greater the surplus information (greater the filter) will steer the interviewer/reader away from the truth. It can be assumed that Smith in her analysis is describing a so-called filter. the greater irrelevant information (lack of details) submitted the greater the filter and the diversion from the truth. which include unnecessary connections. which if missing would obviously indicate deception. therefore.

“after that” and “a few minutes later” especially at the beginning or end of sentences increases the probability of deception leakage. means the subject does remember as it is an impossibility for one not to remember something if they do not remember unless they specifically asked a question about it.8. Surplus information (Gordon 2004:63) as discussed is a filter to disguise information that is sensitive to the subject/suspect which is confirmed by Smith (2001:14) in her citations of Sapir.specific details to focus a statement to pertinent points whereas the untruthful person will provide a lack of details and thus a lack of detail either through brief statements or containing a substantial amount of surplus information. As Vrij (2005:3) and Colwell et al.4. Smith claims that reference based on Sapir. Gordon (2004:64) argues the phrase “I don‟t remember” in an open statement which FSA is in the majority of instances. “sometime later”. Gordon (2004:62) puts it down to missing information (lack of detail) when words such as “shortly after” or “later on” is an aversion away from the truth in terms a lack of time connections and presents the theory of people being deceptive by omission (Vrij 2005:6) and this does not mean the statement will lack content. a statement obtained based on factual experience will differ considerably from a statement based on inventions and fantasy. a statement may be truthful but contains errors and these errors could be a perception 21 . it is the content that will lack detail. 4. will become vague in the statement (Adams 1996).24). Memory To obtain a complete understanding of FSA it is important the memory or the recall thereof is discussed. However. “the next thing I remember”. “shortly after”. Adams (1996) also claims the pretension of lack of memory recall with phrases such as “I don‟t remember” or “I can‟t recall” adds to the lack of conviction to the statement by the subject (Smith 2001:11. in practise this has been seen repeatedly and is another component of distance and conviction to the statement. This gives rise to missing time connections and Russell & Coetzee (2000:34) submit that words such as “later on”. (2002:288) point to the Undeutsch hypothesis. as Smith (2001:7) correctly points out that it is important differentiate between the detection of truthfulness in a statement versus the accuracies in a statement.

Trauma is not restricted to victims and witnesses. it was stupid of me to leave my door wide open because my wallet was clearly visible on my desk”). self-incriminating details: “Obviously. no. robberies and other traumatic incidents have no recall of specific facts and this does necessarily mean the subject/suspect is being deceptive. the analyst/interviewer/investigator will find: “spontaneous corrections (corrections made without prompting from the interviewer “He wore black trousers.” etc. sorry.” In the same vain Russell & Coetzee (2000:66) speak of three step phase as to how memory functions encoding.” “I am not sure. and pardoning the perpetrator (making excuses for the perpetrator or failing to blame him or her. While suspects being interviewed are selective in what they recall (Colwell 2002:290). raising doubts about one’s own testimony (anticipated objections against the veracity of one‟s own testimony: “I know this all sounds really odd”). sensed it but did not encode it for storage and obviously for later retrieval. self-deprecation (mentioning personally unfavorable. which in turn could interpreted as a deceptive. admitting lack of memory (expressing concern that some parts of the statement might be incorrect: “I think.of an actual event. but also suspects in situations as vehicle accidents where they were the driver and killed the occupants of another vehicle or in domestic violence cases when the wife kills the husband out of desperation may not have any recall of the incident. therefore it is important that the analyst/interviewer/investigator uses techniques to discriminate between truth and deception or discovering accurate and inaccurate versions. It has been seen in practice that victims of rape. such as a girl who says she now feels sympathy for the defendant.). storing and retrieval. Encoding is as information enters memory is encoded and stored. In practise this a common error amongst interviewers and interrogators. However as we all know failures do occur and the human mind is not able to raise information into the conscious mind and this may occur when the person was not interested sufficiently in a particular topic of the moment. To achieve this Vrij (2005:6) presents in truthful statements. they were green”). In cases 22 .” “maybe. in the stored state it can later be retrieved and remembered in the conscious mind.

two suspects were involved in a rape and murder of a victim. cognitive interviewing or forensic hypnotist (Swanson et al. Gordon and Fleisher (2002:12. 4.g. If the question is phrased “were you involved in the rape and murder of the victim” the suspect would answer “no” (the cold denial) as they were individually responsible for the one act but not the other and the question is seeking blame for both acts in one attempt.13) also present that lying by commission involves a number of conditions such as commitment. opposite to the 23 . invention and the increased risk as to been found in contradiction to previous statements that have been these they must be treated with utmost caution and best dealt with by a forensic psychologist. In other events a person‟s memory may be impaired by liquor or narcotic intoxication. In an open statement if denial is presented without hesitation and directly. “I didn‟t do it” is simple enough denial. a “pure” statement where the writer is afforded the opportunity to provide a version in their own words without the contamination of questions or other scenarios being a factor. the suspect will be able rationalise his denial (Gordon & Fleisher 2002:12). can lead to false confessions such as when an intoxicated person woke up with a gun in their hand and a body next to them that it can be assumed that they killed the victim. an outright opportunity for denial by a suspect being deceptive must not be offered e. Already discussed it is difficult for a suspect to make a cold denial that being and as will be illustrated in question formulation.g. Statement Structure In applying FSA is to obtain an uncontaminated or as Gordon (2004:59) puts it. (2004:299) submits that deception is a demanding act. 1988:127130). 4. denial would be when a subject denies outright that they have not done something e. In analysing the statement the above structural principals will be applied moreover it must be borne in mind. the one suspect raped the victim and later the other one murdered the victim. in these instances the question would be similar to “Explain everything you know about this incident and how it could have happened”. Therefore.4.4. the opposite can be true and person has no recollection of the events (Russell & Coetzee 2000:69).10. it is often an indication of a truthful statement.9. Denial As Colwell et al..

30% model which they describe as the statement‟s time-line which remains the same in both truthful and deceptive suspects. rape and molestation cases the truthful subject will relate to the investigative process and the embarrassment of the situation. and post event of 20%. which is roughly divided into pre-event of 20% main event 60%. who furthermore claim that deceptive subjects will have long pre-events which Schollum in utilising Adams and Jarvis‟ example is in agreement. how etc of the incident and the post event – the closing down of the event and statement which will normally include emotional information as to how a subject felt e.g. Russell and Coetzee (2000:37) make use of the same 20%. Gordon also submits that in false allegations e. This leads to the statement structure per se and not only the psycho-linguistic structure (the content) which is based on the logical information flow.who. truthful statement segments will be in almost equal parts i. the honest person will apply “editing” to their statement which will have a logical flow. Remaining with Schollum‟s citation above. 50 and 30 percentages and this is described as the statement‟s balance and any diversion from 24 . However. Schollum (2005:75) compares this statement structure with one of Adams and Jarvis. 2002:2). Therefore.g.all aspects leading up to the actual event.discussion of surplus information. should the statement structure actual event exceed 65% the content is becoming deceptive and naturally this variation will effect both pre and after event proportions.e. where. Schollum places the two statement structures into dispute and issues caution in the utilisation of information flow as an indicator of truthfulness or deception. they substantiate that deceptive subjects will make a fleeting reference to the actual event as this is where the sensitivity of the story is and the deception which is by omission. the actual event . 33. fear etc. what. Schollum (2005:73) cites Zulawski and Wicklander. 50% event and 30% post event. Gordon and Fleisher (2002:43) and Gordon (2004:59) statement structure is 20% pre-event. Smith (2001:13) in reference to Sapir makes use of the same 20.3% each and in deceptive statements they will have vastly different percentage proportions. Gordon (2004:59) long pre-event and short or no post event as there is nothing to relate to in reality as they created by imagination and not founded on memory (Colwell et al. that each statement will have 3 segments based on flow namely the pre-event . short actual events and small or no percentage of post event. 50%.

11. Gordon (2004:63) also cautions of this within the content i. The subjective time will be the amount of text taken by a subject to describe an event over a period time will equal the objective time in the statement if it is truthful. subjective times and real times Highlight superfluous (surplus) information or unnecessary information Underline all nouns 25 . 1 line or less per hour means a crime took place.e. Furthermore.e. where there is a beginning there must be and end. an indication of deception. This remains consistent with the statement structure (Russell & Coetzee 2000:38) and in some deceptive statements there is a minimal or none existing pre-event or after event. 4 – 7 lines per hour would be inconclusive and 8 and more lines per hour is an intentional attempt to slow down the statement and further claims in 85% of cases subjects will be deceptive later in their statements.93) criteria: Underline and link all changes in verb tenses i. Superfluous information. most statements are 1 to 1½ pages and between 25 to 37 lines.4. The Method Truth and deception has a descriptive structure the next step is to pull it together with the application of FSA analysis and in using the Russell and Coetzee (2000:35.this is the unbalanced statement.e. Gordon (2004:63) on the other hand also adds a “pace” to statement. 4. 3 lines per hour is the norm. If a subject describes a 1 hour event over 12 lines and subsequently utilises 6 lines to describe a 3 hour period means the subjective time and the objective time are not equal and therefore deception is at play. This further relates to what is known subjective time and objective time Smith (2001:14) based on Sapir should be equal. change from past to present tense Circle all pronouns and note missing pronouns in the margin Make a note of all times mentioned in the margin i. during the analysis of As described under the statement the analyst/interviewer/investigator must observe changes in time or lack of time connections.

Green highlight of any person mentioned in the statement. also applies to when a subject relates to leaving or departing from a place. which is rich in unnecessary information. Gordon (2004:59-63) cites Sapir as teaching a colour coded analysis technique: Circle all pronouns and place an “X” where a pronoun is missing and circle it Blue highlight of aspects where the subject explains why they did something or why something happened. this will allow for changes in language to be identified Pink highlight areas where there is missing information or missing time which may consist of phrases such as “after that”. “told”. but does not include “ask”. st nd issue) and 26 . Purple highlight for objective time Yellow highlight for all unimportant information.Bracket any words that show lack of conviction e. These areas of a statement reflect sensitivity and an attempt to slow the statement down. the actual event (main issue) and post event (2 note the balance. The truthful story will relate to incidents beyond those under investigation as they reliant on memory. this usually will indicate their hierarchy or importance in the subject‟s life Use a bold vertical line to divide the statement into 3 segments – pre-event (1 issue). and deceptive statements are based on imagination. “mentioned” etc.g. “someone” took the money Circle all the persons as they come into the statement. “later on” and “I don‟t remember”. A cluster of yellow and blue together means a sensitive area to the subject Orange highlight for any unnecessary links such as “said”.

” Lack of possessive pronoun: “The child…. 8 Flow of story proper.” Missing time: “Two hours later…. Of the two techniques presented. VERBAL INQUIRY – EFFECTIVE WITNESS (VIEW) Developed by Avinoam Sapir and according to Laboratory for Scientific Interrogation. the analyst/interviewer/investigator can assess the facts and reliability of information prior to any interaction the subject/suspect/interviewee. Smith (2001:10) makes reference to VIEW questionnaire as an alternative to 27 .. however. 5. Inc. it is in a “ready-to-use” format. past tense Deceptive Lack of details Deviates from the first person singular. Incorrect flow of story.” 5 6 No gaps in time. makes use of the exact same analytical process..” 4 Uses possessive pronoun: “My Improper introduction of the victim: “She….Gordon (2002:43) offers a psycho-linguistic behaviour evaluation table: Truthful 1 2 Rich in details First person singular. (LSI) web site and a company owned by Sapir. victims and suspects. Appropriate emotions in the right place (post-incident) 7 Will deny doing the crime before being asked. as LSI describe it. Only makes denials to direct question. VIEW is particularly effective when a large number of people are required to be interviewed or to establish their involvement in a crime or incident. It may be applied to witnesses.” No emotions daughter…. it must be said the Russell and Coetzee is less restrictive in practice.. VIEW is based on FSA directly. it improves the interview process dramatically as it does not require the interviewer to become involved with the subject/suspect/interviewee. past tense 3 Proper introduction of the victim: “My daughter…. Gordon‟s is thorough minimising opportunities of misinterpretations. as it consists of predetermined questions and takes the form of a questionnaire. the different being..

undetermined or inconclusive and –1 for deception. does not require the analyst/interviewer/investigator to become involved and therefore. in Gordon and Fleisher (2002:133-141) the Forensic Assessment Interview (FAINT) format is available and this is largely based on the VIEW concept other than FAINT is utilised as an interview strategy. Each answer is then scored +1 for truthful.the FSA technique but does not offer any particular detail other than referring to Sapir‟s work. formulation is discussed in greater detail in the next section. completed it established as basis for additional Once it has been with the interviews subjects/suspects/interviewees. VIEW may be utilised as a remote method i. but similar to the polygraph question development system. If the total score of the questionnaire is a negative score. Gordon in Gordon and Fleisher (2002) and Gordon (2004) does not make any specific reference to VIEW. VIEW also removes the confrontational or intrusion of a normal interview. the analyst also submits a short synopsis for the point scoring. The questions required in a VIEW questionnaire are varied from incident to incident. how much of the missing money would you pay back to have this investigation stopped? In your entire life have you ever stolen something? How do you feel completing this questionnaire? What do you think should happen to the person who has done this? 28 . The point scoring similar to that used by Gordon and Fleisher (2002:89-101). the subject/suspect is deceptive. 0 for neutral. Questions may include: Have you discussed this incident with anyone? How did you hear about this incident? How do you think this happened? Why do you think you have been included in the investigation? Did you take that money? Were you present when the money was taken? If you were asked. For each point awarded or deducted. VIEW on the other hand as described earlier.e. it may be faxed or e-mailed to the subjects/suspects/interviewees.

There are four types of questions irrelevant. The Question formulation. they would soon find that the answers they receive are of an improved quality and will offer vital clues to the investigation. are non-threatening and offer neutral territory for the subject who is under less stress and this provides the polygraph with a comparative basis of lowered emotional stress levels to when 29 . based on Gordon and Fleisher (2002:45). Even though a FSA statement only requires 1 general “open” question e. reason that question formulation is discussed is if every analyst/interviewer/investigator carefully formulated a question prior to asking it. relevant. 5.291) submits. which as Colwell et al.1. “tell me everything that happened here today”. (2002:290.1. In terms of VIEW and generally interviewing. Irrelevant Questions Is your name John? Is there a door in the room? Are you 27 years old? Is you residence situated in Mowbray? Irrelevant questions. the analyst/interviewer/investigator must still consider what content response he/she will receive as the example question differs considerably should it be amended to “tell me everything that happened?” The “today” has been left out. each question has a place but each is important (own emphasis). comparison and projective questions. In question formulation it is important that questions are utilised to recall and exhaust actual memory (truth) and create areas for unrehearsed deception (untruthful). the analyst/interviewer/investigator must formulate their questions to achieve the maximum response.g. they are also known as control questions. 5.Is there any reason that someone could name use as a suspect? Each questionnaire contains approximately 25 questions and the analyst/interviewer/investigator formulates them depending on the incident under investigation.1. will have minimal or no bearing on linguistic patterns of the truthful person and questions must not introduce new substance to the issue under question.

The subject/suspect/interviewee must be left in a mental “comfort zone”. Relevant Questions Did take the money from the draw? Did you stab that man? Did you force that woman to have sex? Did you commit that crime? Conspiracy crimes require adapted questions that include the potential involvement of the subject (Gordon & Fleisher 2002:46): Did assist anyone to take the money? Did you plan with anyone to commit the crime? Do you know who took the money? Were you in the room when the money was taken? In Gordon and Fleisher (2002:47) propose threatening words such as “steal”.2. but did not steal it.g. However. Comparison Questions Gordon (2004:42) describes the comparison question as “they are broad in scope and deal with issues similar. In practise it has been seen time again.1.3. robbery. the relevant issue”. General comparisons In you entire life did you do anything that could have resulted in you arrest? 30 . they understand the question while keeping the relevant question short and focused. “kill”. 5. Califana & Levkon 1978:238-240). Investigators then spend an inordinate amount of time attempting to convict an innocent person for theft based on incorrect relevant questions. but less threatening than. “rape” should be avoided and legal jargon e.1. in context the person is responsible for the loss of the money because they left the safe open. theft etc.they are raised due to responses caused by stimuli of the questions asked (Gordon & Fleisher 2002:22 & 45. the person answers yes and the polygraph confirms they are honest. 5. extort. a relevant question is phrased as “are you responsible for the loss of that money”. murder. which is the matter under investigation.

Gordon and Fleisher (2002:54) have identified that honest people will make use of strong terms and morals to condemn a crime whereas as the dishonest will 31 . 5.4. Projective Questions In the course of any investigation a truthful person and a dishonest person will have fundamental differences regarding the outcome of an investigation. This is known as the Backster Comparison Question.1.. whereas the guilty person in an incident will not be effected as the comparison question does not relate to the incident under question and therefore their answer to a relevant question will be the threat which is the opposite for the truthful person. In addition. what is important in the utilisation of projective questions. as this will continue to place the truthful person under stress but will not contaminate the answer of a guilty suspect on the relevant question. Gordon and Fleisher (2002:50. all subjects/suspects must be asked exactly the same questions in exactly the same order. Projective questions are formulated to highlight these differences.Theft comparisons In your entire lift have you ever stolen anything? Arson comparison In your life did you ever intentionally burn anything? Homicide comparison Between the age 25 and 34 did you ever hit anyone? Sex comparison In you entire life did you ever lie about anything sexual? Gordon (2004:44) argues that the comparison question will threaten the truthful person as it forces them to admit something they have actually done. in that the honest person will want the investigation to be successful in identifying the culprit of the incident under investigation and the dishonest will want the investigation to fail (Gordon 2004:45).51) cite Cleve Backster in a recommendation instead of utilising “In your entire life….” reverse the subject/suspect/interviewee‟s life by two years and commence the question with “In the first 21 years of your life……”.

How is it used in the forensic investigation process? 6. becomes deceptive about the weapon. Forensic investigation indicators As illustrated above through the FSA process. and Pistorius (2005:411) recommends it when performing criminal profiles of suspects. FSA in the investigation of crime FSA may be used in all criminal scenarios with some exception with serial offenders (see Pistorius 2005) where it would be advised that the forensic interviewer has sufficient experience and is supported by a forensic psychologist. 6. do you think they deserve a second chance? Why do you think you are being interviewed? What do you think should happen to the person who did this? How do you think this happened? Why would anyone names you as a suspect? 5. where a body was found and not the weapon however. it is equally useful when performing FSA but only by a trained comparatively less determined in their condemnation and will attempt to place distance between themselves and the incident. The forensic investigator trained in FSA may utilise the statement and physically visit these areas of deception i. the statement may be truthful in the sense of the murder of the victim it however. FSA the investigation of written statements.1. the deception occurs in specific areas of a person‟s statement almost similar to inhibitors.2. once they back to the truth. is graphology utilised in the process? Graphology is the study of handwriting to determine a person‟s character.2. the information flow increases smoothly. Examples of projective questions: What will you say if the investigation identifies you as a suspect? The person who has committed this crime. a murder suspect is returned to the scene. 6. the deception at the physical scene 32 .e.

3. Advise the subject of the lesser consequences of telling the truth The interviewer must be prepared to follow through i.3.2.g.4. 33 .3. do not make false promises in e. and the suspect remains none committal to confess they should be „moved‟ towards making a confession.g. Notify the subject an apology will be made if the analysis showing deception is incorrect: In making this statement the interviewer must be sincere The attitude held – is searching for the truth 6.3. 6. 6. offering bail or release from detention etc. Appreciation for any truth must be shown 6. Interrogation and the truth Once deception has been detected and analysed.3. Ask the subject for the truth. the matter of increasing the possibility of eliciting confessions offers cause to another research topic will be discussed briefly within this context (Russell & Coetzee 2000:42-48): 6.5.e. The subject must be told that he/she is not being truthful. The interviewer must provide a clear summary and reasons of the deception Summary must be to the point and sharp The interviewer is to have a calm demeanour Caution the subject of the consequences of continuing with the deception The interviewer must not display any exaggeration with threats of punishment Again the interviewer must be prepared to follow through with threats of action e.can be linked and the weapon located through either actions or omissions in the suspect‟s linguistic behaviour. continued detention or refusal for bail etc.

With deception detected may be sent to a FSA analyst. There does remain a need for specialist Forensic Interviewers who have included in their repertoire FSA analysis.e. in obtaining the original statement (written) it remains to hold some legal questions and further avoidance has to be taken not to entrap the subject in making a statement not knowing its purpose or being appropriately warned. CONCLUSION FSA in its current format is a complex subject and requires extensive training and understanding of human behaviour. in the future it could be shown as circumstantial evidence when substantiated correctly. currently it has no legal standing however. FINDINGS The use of FSA in forensic interviews can be highly effective. 8. it is only conducted by a few however. therefore. 34 . as recommended additional research should attempt to identify a less complex point matrix (though there are some they are not frequently used) for the investigator out in the field to utilise to detect deception but not analyse it. Despite this. but it is an involved process of systematically seeking for points in the subject‟s psycholinguistic behaviour indicating either deception or truth. In addition. It is not well known in the courts and when used it is often provided in testimony by Forensic Psychologists or Profilers where there is reference to the suspect‟s overall deceptive behaviour rather than focusing on FSA. this may in addition lead to legal admissibility and challenged evidence.7. Conversely the investigator may record the subject with the use of a tape recorder. Therefore. will certainly expedite investigations as the analyst could provide a result in a relative short space of time. this being in the ideal context when one considers the amount of statements that are processed on a daily basis by the police. either covertly or overtly. the advantages of FSA in that it can be used “remotely” i. the statement is obtained in one location and is sent (e-mail or fax) to the FSA analyst in another.

Henmar Publications. Michlik P. Halfway House Colwell K. Califana & Levkov. Cape Town nd 35 . Truth Extraction. Oxford Marais C. Spearhead Press. Hiscock C. Profiling Serial Killers and other crimes in South Africa. Presented to the Central California Psychology Internship Consortium Diestein W 1974. Criminal Investigation.wiley. Criminology. Criminology Master of Arts. Silverton Pistorius M. 1991. Kluwer Acdemic Publishers. Effective Interviewing and Interrogation Techniques. C 2000.interscience. 2005. Yaeger H. Springfield. Elsevier Butterwoth Heineman. Validation of the Forensic Assessment Interview Technique. M & Coetzee. 2002. Wierda Park Marais C. 1990. Johannesburg Rassin E. Memon A. Southern Book Publishers. Criminalistics for the Law Enforcement Officer. Illinois Dowling. Department of Psychology. New York Du Preez G. New York Cloete M & Stevens R. Promedia Publisher. Netherlands Russell. (ed). Statement Analysis: What do Suspect’s Words Really Reveal?. 2002. University of South Africa Gordon N & Fleisher W. In Forensic Criminalistics. Technics for the Criminal Investigator. Hiscock C. Memon A. Sjerven E. 1996. McGraw-Hill Book Company. Criminal Investigation. Expert Evidence 7. J 1979. Interviewing Techniques and the Assessment of Statement Credibility. University of Texas at Tyler Colwell K. Applied Cognitive Psychology 287–300 (2002). Heinemann. Published online in Wiley InterScience 11 February 2002 (www. 2 edn. Strategies of Impression Management Among Deceivers and Truth-Tellers: How Liars Attempt to Convince. 1978. Van der Westhuizen J. 2004. 265-278. 1992. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. 1999. Physical Evidence in Criminal viewed on 16 March 2006 Colwell K. & Van Rooyen H. Criteria Based Content Analysis: The Less Scientific Road to Truth. Malingering and Deception. Charles Thomas. Crime Investigation.References Adams S 1996. Johannesburg Gordon N. Penguin Books.

New Zealand Police.Smith media/n2v6e3yyuk2yqjplequy/contributions/t/0/4/2/t0426707q2146jw2. viewed 16 March 2006 Swanson C. Chamelin N. 2 nd th edn. Police Research Series Paper 135. Territo http://0-www. 2001.springerlink. 36 .uk/rds/prgpdfs/prs135. Criminal Investigation. viewed 9 March 2006. 1988. 1996 Forensic Criminalistics. Schollum M.govt.oasis.1. Police and Reducing Crime Unit Heinemann.unisa. Johannesburg Vrij A. New York Van der Westhuizen J. American Psychological Association Vol.police. Home Office. www. 3-41. Random House.pdf. 11. No. 4 edn. 2005. Reading Between the Lines: An Evaluation of the Scientific Content Analysis Technique (SCAN). Investigative Interviewing: The Literature. Criteria-Based Content Analysis.pdf viewed on line 6 March 2006.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful