December 19, 2013

Former Department of Justice Attorney and Traliant’s Chief Strategy Officer, Michael Johnson cited in New Yorker article on interviewing techniques

Former Clear Law Institute CEO, Michael Johnson is cited in a New Yorker article entitled,”The Interview: Do Police Interrogation Techniques Produce False Confessions?” The article notes that scientists and legal scholars increasingly have criticized common American law enforcement interviewing techniques, which rely on questionable methods of spotting deception and can sometimes result in false confessions.

As an alternative to these interviewing techniques, the article notes that in Britain, a government appointed commission of detectives, academics, and legal experts has developed an interview method that reflects up-to-date psychological research. In the PEACE method, instead of trying to obtain a confession, investigators are taught to “ask open-ended questions to elicit the whole story, and then go back over the details in a variety of ways to find inconsistencies.” The article notes that “Michael Johnson, a former civil-rights attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, teaches a PEACE-inspired course to private industry.” The article appears in the December 9, 2013 edition of the New Yorker.



Elissa Rossi