Common Interrogation Tactics Police Use

There are a variety of tactics that police use to secure confessions from people who have been arrested or accused of committing crimes. Whether police interrogate you in public or after taking you into custody, it’s important to know your rights to make sure you don’t fall victim to deceptive practices that law enforcement use to collect information, incriminating statements, and confessions.

The Reid Technique

The Reid interrogation technique relies on isolating the suspect from family and friends, claiming that police know the defendant committed the crime, and saying that no claims of innocence will be entertained in order to get them to confess or submit to a lesser charge. If police question you at the station, then you will likely encounter the Reid technique. Remain silent, avoid saying anything incriminating, and ask for a lawyer.

Informal Questioning

Informal questioning can happen during simple, seemingly minor interactions with police. If you are ever stopped by police and you are unsure why, then you need to assume that they want to get information because they suspect you committed a crime. In this situation, you can ask if you are being detained and whether you are free to leave. If police say you aren’t being detained, say you choose not to answer questions without an attorney present and immediately leave.


Don’t assume that police officers will never lie to you. There is no law or rule that says police officers can’t claim they are aware of certain evidence that doesn’t actually exits or that a co-defendant has confessed, even if their claim is false. In general, police can’t make threats and promises, however, what is considered impermissible threats and promises in terms of police tactics are vague. The best way to protect yourself from deceptive police tactics is to hire an attorney. Your attorney can investigate the case and determine if there is really any evidence against you.

Our Criminal Defense Team Will Fight for You

No matter what crime you have been accused of, it is important that you seek experienced legal representation right away. At Lessem, Newstat & Tooson, LLP, we are committed to using our superior legal knowledge and extensive resources to fiercely advocate for our clients’ rights both in and out of the courtroom. Whether you are being investigated, incarcerated, or charged, we are here to help you navigate each phase of the legal process. We are backed by over 35 years of experience and possesses the necessary tools and knowledge you need to fight back effectively.

For a case consultation with our legal team, please call (800) 462-7160 or fill out our online form.