Can Cops Lie to You in Interviews?

By Jedidiah McKeehan

From time to time I will be contacted by someone who tells me that they have been contacted by law enforcement about some investigation that is being conducted into criminal activity they may or may not have conducted. Typically, that person will already have spoken with the police and tried (usually poorly) to explain their side of the story.

When these people contact me, they may tell me something like, “The cop was really nice. They said they understood and were just trying to get the full story.” That is almost always a lie.

The cops are contacting you because your arrest is something that they are considering. Individuals are under the impression that if they are just allowed to talk and tell their version of events they will be able to talk the cops out of possibly arresting them. This is inaccurate. Nothing you can say will help. Let me repeat. Nothing. Leave the talking to the lawyers.

I had a client call me recently who had received a voicemail from a law enforcement investigator asking him to come in for an interview. Fortunately, this client was smart enough to call me immediately. I called the investigator and asked for details and he kindly said that my client needed to be interviewed and it had to be in person at his office. I told him I would get back to him. I never called that investigator back and never heard from him again.

Now why would he be trying to get my client in for an interview? Quite simply, he was going to try to get him to confess to committing to a crime and then arrest him if he did, because he was already inside the police department.

I have watched a number of police interviews, and you may have seen some on TV that accurately reflect what occurs. The police sympathize with the person being interviewed. They may say they understand why the person did it. This is all untrue. All of this is done to try to get the person being interviewed to confess to having committed a crime.

This is not to say that the police are doing anything wrong. They are doing their job. Their job is to catch and arrest people who have committed crimes. However, if you are ever contacted by law enforcement and asked to come in and be interviewed so they can “get the full story,” or something like that, that is not true. They are going to ask you questions in the hopes that you confess to having committed a crime.

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