, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 39-40
Date: 23 Jan 2010

High-Risk Interrogation: Using the “Mr. Big Technique” to Elicit Confessions

Abstract

Kassin et al. (Police-Induced Confessions: Risk Factors and Recommendation, 2009) provide a detailed and thoughtful analysis of how police interrogation practices might elicit false confessions from innocent suspects. The purpose of this commentary is to provide a brief review of a relatively recent development in Canadian police investigation practice and discuss how this procedure may increase the likelihood of police-induced false confessions. The so-called “Mr. Big Technique” is a non-custodial interrogation tactic wherein suspects are drawn into a supposed criminal organization (actually an elaborate police sting) and subsequently told that to move up in the organization, they must confess to a crime. In this article, we describe this remarkable interrogation technique and discuss issues relevant to the potential induction of false confessions.

Commentary on: Kassin, Drizin, Grisso, Gudjonsson, Leo, and Redlich (2009) Police-Induced Confessions: Risk Factors and Recommendations