You already know that interviews and interrogations are separate events.
preparation for both, however, is very similar.
There are basic elements of
information that are necessary to conduct either interviews or interrogations.
You need background knowledge about the incident (and the person interviewed) for
You need to know what questions you will ask.
You need to know if someone is telling the truth, lying, or just has the
Review the Circumstances of the Incident. Before you start an interview, discover
the circumstances surrounding the incident.
This can be from the investigation
files, physical evidence, the crime scene, and from talking to the initial
The circumstances of the incident involve two areas of
concern. These areas are the descriptions of the incident and the laws applying to
the offense under investigation. You must commit to memory all facts known about
an incident, especially details that are not public knowledge.
These facts or
elements of information include the who, what, when, where, why, and how of the
The facts may be drawn from physical evidence or from statements of
witnesses. The goal is to create as thorough a mental picture of the incident as
In addition, you must know about the laws that apply to the offense.
The laws influence the type of information and testimony you need from your
interviews and interrogations.
Acquire Background Knowledge of the Interviewee.
There are many reasons for
learning the background of the interviewee. You might want to have some facts in
order to check the truthfulness of the interviewee. You might want to impress the
interviewee with how much you know about the case already.
knowledge you have about an interviewee should include age, place of birth,
nationality, race, present or former rank, present duty and former occupations,
habits and associates, records of convictions and detentions, and records in the
local provost marshal's office and Crime Record Center (CRC).
The CRC will conduct a search of files to see if there is any information
Prior convictions may or may not be relevant to the incident you are
investigating. (Convictions themselves do not point to guilt.)
You can make a name check through coordination with the Military Police
Investigation Section or the local Criminal Investigation Command, both have access
Other facts, such as a witness's, victim's, or suspect's social, financial, and
medical status all may be relevant to a case. You will not know what facts may be
important until you talk with the person.
Therefore, you need to get as much
information as possible in your background check.