University of Twente Student Theses


The Effect of Guilt Presumption Within Police Interviews

Akkermann, S. (2023) The Effect of Guilt Presumption Within Police Interviews.

[img] PDF
Abstract:Almost 1% of the suspects in serious criminal cases are being wrongfully convicted and the number for less serious cases is even higher. The goal of this experimental study was to examine whether good questioning strategies of interviewers in investigative interviews can help avoid innocent people getting wrongfully convicted due to factors like guilt presumption and the halo effect To test this, mock interviews with participants, who played the role of the suspect in a fictitious crime scenario, were conducted with two different groups of randomly assigned participants, a Guilt Manipulation Group, and an Innocence Manipulation Group. The manipulation consisted of telling participants either about the high likelihood of the suspect being guilty or innocent. Furthermore, the participant had to fill in questionnaires regarding their guilt judgement before and after the interview took place as well as more questionnaires after the interview measuring the halo effect and the rapport between the participant and the suspect. The result showed no effect based on the different groups which could be due to the fact that the guilt manipulation seemed to have a very weak effect at best. Furthermore, there was no correlation between guilt presumption and rapport but a correlation between the halo effect and later guilt judgement. This study builds upon existing research in regard to investigative interviews and aims to improve these in order to avoid wrongful convictions. The results offer insights into variables that might influence these kinds of interviews and offer groundwork to further investigate these in future research.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology BSc (56604)
Link to this item:
Export this item as:BibTeX
HTML Citation
Reference Manager


Repository Staff Only: item control page