A Good Interrogator






The suspect was troubled; his face reflected the distasteful concept of confession. However, a good interrogator controls the physical environment, from the moment that suspect is dumped into that small cubical, left alone to stew in a sound proof isolation, where fear of the unknown patrols the heart. It’s there when it is difficult for any suspect to ponder their legal status. They light cigarettes to calm themselves as they wait, staring abstractedly at four stained cinderblock walls, and a dirty tin ashtray on a plain table, a small mirrored window and a series of water stained loose tiles on the ceiling. The suspect ponders the thought of being arrested and his attempt to get through to the interrogator was so strong that his questions were scraped in his throat.

Control was the reason a suspect was seated farthest from the interrogation room door, and the reason the room’s light switch can only be operated with a key that remained in possession of the interrogator. Every time a suspect has to ask for a cigarette, water, coffee or a trip to the bathroom was a reminder that he has lost control.

The thrill of control radiated through the interrogator, and she almost laughed with the sensation. This clandestine behavior was marvelous entertainment. She wanted to heighten the control, let the situation become more and more nerve wrecking. A good interrogator has two goals in mind: first, to emphasize her complete control of the process; second, to stop the suspect from opening his mouth. If a suspect was able to blurt out his desire for a lawyer, if he was able to ask for counsel definitively and declined to answer questions until he gets one, it’s over. To prevent that, the interrogator must allow no interruption of her soliloquy.

“My name is Detective Renee Taylor, and I want to tell you that this is some serious shit you got yourself involved in and I’m here to help you sort it out.”

“Listen, I don’t…”

“Don’t speak, just listen,” she cut him off. “You may say something that I know will be a lie, and trust me. There is a shit load of people who lied to me in this very room who are now on death row.”

Control, a good interrogator has to maintain it. She had to say whatever in order to maintain it. She had to keep talking until it was safe to stop, because if the suspect thinks for one moment that he can influence the conversation, he may just demand an attorney.

She kept talking until a grim mood began covering the suspect. A confession was about to form from his lips, but she held her hand out to stop it. She wanted panic to set in. He had to confess with desperation. The real truth comes out when you’re trapped like a caged animal. She played the suspect so well.

She seemed to harden, if only on principle.

There was a touch of panic coming from the suspect. The interrogator was sure she saw it. The suspect was cloaking it with fidgeting motions, but the uncertainty was there. The inability to speak, or answer her questions was disturbing him.

She wanted a confession, but the confession had to be with substance. The confession needed to be with the presence of fear, and with the absence of lies.

The interrogator then allowed the suspect to answer all of her questions. The questions were asked in rapid fire succession. The questioning started off with height, weight, name, nick names, parents girlfriends, this acclimated the suspect to the idea of answering questions before the direct interview began.

Even if the suspect asked for a lawyer, he must at the very least according to the most aggressive interpretation of Miranda ask definitively: “I want to speak to a lawyer and I don’t want to answer questions until I do.”

Anything less leaves room for a good interrogator to maneuver. The distinctions could be subtle and semantic.

The suspect was way past that. He just wanted it to be all over. He confessed verbally and in written form that he shot and killed his friend over a twenty five dollar debt.

Being a good interrogator, she came close to real tears as she touched his hand and said sometimes bad things happen to good people.

The interrogator then leaves the room feeling that the confession has been successfully negotiated.




#

© 2013 Frank Atanacio

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Comments 37 comments

FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

This was a seasoned interrogator who sure knew what they were doing. And you sure know what you're doing. I could imagine this as a book chapter.


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

You put us there in the room Frank and have us wondering if she will really achieve her goal. Pleased she did! ^ and shared.


MG Singh profile image

MG Singh 3 years ago from Singapore

Nice hub. I underwent the interrogation course in Air Force.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Flourish, for stopping by and you too Jackie.. oh and yes she did :)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks MG, I bet it was similar, yeah?


Cyndi10 profile image

Cyndi10 3 years ago from Georgia

That was really good. I imagine the interrogator has to be really sure the suspect is the right one.

The writing felt as relentless as an interrogator must be. I felt the force of her conviction that this is the one. Well done. And yes, there could be a few more chapters surrounding this one. Take care.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much Cyndi :)


Jodah profile image

Jodah 3 years ago from Queensland Australia

Great story Frank. I felt myself in the suspects shoes....was dying to ask for that lawyer and refuse to answer any questions...lol....but she got him.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks for the comment Jodah :)


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean

All in a day's work for a good interrogator. You seem to understand all the various roles of the people who work with crime. You do a good job of educating your reader. Thank you.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

Thank you MsDora always good to see you :)


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

A Good Interrogator so well explained and to the point as an Interrogator must be. A useul and informative hub. Voted useful and interesting.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you I think :)


SandCastles 3 years ago

This is very interesting; I love your writing style. I find myself not liking that interrogator though because she liked having power over the suspect and that bothered me. She sounded like a sadist; she likes her job way too much. But at least she got the confession from the guilty party.

I remember reading a true story about a psychopathic man (the title of the book was called "No Remorse: A Father's Murderous Rage"") who was being interrogated after he killed his two kids. He wouldn't admit that he killed them and said things to the officers like, "You just want to get a promotion". He planned his killing watching mystery murder TV shows and he kept saying that he wasn't guilty if they couldn't find the bodies. He finally relented when they brought the suspect's friend into the interrogation room. The man said something along the lines of, "I taught you carpentry. You can at least tell me where you left the bodies of your children so they can have a proper burial". And then he finally confessed. What a hateful man. He took his kids deep into the forest and stabbed them to death.

The mother knew this man was dangerous. The man was always harming the boy. Supposedly the girl was his favourite-words are cheap. His favourite thing that he could easily discard. He had access to the children and was supposed to take them swimming. The mother was haunted because the kids didn't want to go (from what I read). The boy, I believe, looked pleadingly at the mother before they left.

During the trial, after he was sentenced, he made a point of looking at his wife, probably to see her pain. The police called him the coldest son of a b-tch they'd ever seen. Thank you for another excellent hub!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Sands for sharing that story with me and us :) bless you


Storytellersrus profile image

Storytellersrus 3 years ago from Stepping past clutter

Frank, I am listening to a book on tape called Burial Rites. Your story reminds me of the Icelandic magistrate's desire to control everything and to be right no matter the facts. I find it interesting that interrogators are actually like this- control dominates. I wonder how often they force an inaccurate confession or distort the truth, just to be right? You were in law enforcement, you know these things, right?


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

well story.. control is important in this modern day of technology, but still today most Suspects as well as Witnesses know their rights.. so keeping control becomes a task.. hope you enjoy Burial Rites... Frank


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

Hi Dear Frank,

Don't know how I almost missed this one! Excellent storyline. Yes, once the interrogator loses control, that's it! Your creative writings always take one right into the scene ... a sign of a great writer, YOU!

Up and more and sharing

God bless you, Faith Reaper


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

Oh dearest Faith you are way too kind :)


Valleypoet 2 years ago

Interesting to read the psychology of interrogation that you have portrayed...perhaps a little disturbing too. Excellent writing my friend:-))


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much again Valley :)


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 2 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

Psychology in action...good result, interesting and brilliantly done.


Anna Haven profile image

Anna Haven 2 years ago from Scotland

You certainly know your stuff.

This was tense and suspense building. Very well written. You had us there, in that dirty room sweating with the suspect and yet also plotting with the interrogator.

You must have been a detective in a previous life!

Anna :)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you tobusiness and Anna for reading my shorts


Genna East profile image

Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

“If a suspect was able to blurt out his desire for a lawyer, if he was able to ask for counsel definitively and declined to answer questions until he gets one, it’s over. To prevent that, the interrogator must allow no interruption of her soliloquy.” Very true! Good detectives/interrogators are like good salespeople…you can’t get in a word edgewise…until they want you to. Excellent write, Frank. :-)


AudreyHowitt profile image

AudreyHowitt 2 years ago from California

So have you thought about writing a book Frank? This does sound like it could be a chapter


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

Genna thank you lol a salesperson..yeah..LOL... and Audrey always good to see you... no but thanks anyways Audrey


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 2 years ago from Close to Heaven

Great work Frank! You haven't lost your touch.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Caroline :)


thelyricwriter profile image

thelyricwriter 2 years ago from West Virginia

Just a portrayal of your raw talent and God-giving abilities Mr. Frank. You know I wish you success in all that you do Frank. When you have a GREAT talent like this, make the most of it. Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thelyricwriter thank you so much bless you bro :)


pochinuk 2 years ago

Frank,

I've been perusing your hubs and read this one: A subject here I have usually seen acted out- like in "The Talented Mr. Ripley"; a movie about a sociopath. There is a short scene where he has to be asked questions.

To read about someone experiencing this, in the way you write is enjoyable reading.

I will continue to peruse your hubs and see what else I can find...keep writing!

-pochinuk


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

That is so kind thank you so much Bless you :)


ubanichijioke profile image

ubanichijioke 2 years ago from Lagos

I wanna join you school for tutorials.

this was helpful even as a writer...


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks Uban :)


DrBill-WmL-Smith profile image

DrBill-WmL-Smith 2 years ago from Hollister, MO

Excellent writing. Very real to life. You evoked the appropriate motions... even the comments show that. Neat! Well done! Thanks for sharing! ;-)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks Drbill-Wml for stopping by :)

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