We hypothesised that interrogators would perceive coercive interrogations to be fairer than suspects and observers. Participants (n = 179) read descriptions of an interrogation procedure, in which five factors were manipulated: Role (Police, Suspect, Observer), Procedure (Coercive, Non-coercive), Confidence of interrogator (High, Low), Accuracy of procedure (High, Low), and Outcome (suspects innocent, suspects guilty). Compared to suspects and neutral observers, police officers considered coercive procedures and the outcomes they would produce to be fairer, and were more satisfied with coercive procedures and their outcomes. Results are discussed in terms of their implications for procedural justice theories and police interrogation behavior.
Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychology-Law Society, San Antonio, Texas, United States, 04-07 March 2009