The Third Degree and the Origins of Psychological Interrogation in the United States

Part of the Perspectives in Law & Psychology book series (PILP, volume 20)


On August 1, 1930, Christine Colletti was murdered and left lying on the side of an abandoned road with five bullet wounds (e.g., Leo, 1994). Shortly after learning of his wife’s death the next day, Tony Colletti, an 18-year-old Cleveland resident, accompanied plainclothes detectives to police headquarters for what he was told would be routine questioning. During the car ride to the station, Detectives Corso and Welch told Colletti that they knew “what really happened,” instructing Colletti to “come clean” and tell them about the murder. Colletti responded, as he would continue to do many times over the next two days, that he did not know what the detectives were talking about, explaining that he had last seen his wife the night before and was as surprised as everyone else to learn of her murder.


Police Interrogation Criminal Suspect Interrogation Method American Police Interrogation Tactic 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Criminology, Law and SocietyUniversity of California, IrvineIrvineUSA

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