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Police perceptions of interviews involving children with intellectual disabilities : a qualitative inquiry

Aarons, Natalie M., Powell, Martine B., Browne, Jan,

Academic Literature

2004

This study employed a qualitative method to explore the experiences of 20 police officers when interviewing children with intellectual disabilities.There are three main challenges to the officers when interviewing special‐needs children: police organizational culture, participants' perceptions of these children as interviewees, and prior information. Participants in this inquiry mentioned poor organizational priority within the police force for child abuse cases and children with intellectual disabilities, as well as inadequate support for interviewing skills development and maintenance. Participants also attempted to equalize these children by interviewing them in the same way as their mainstream peers. Finally, participants viewed interview preparation as influential in determining an interview's successful outcome, but recognized that preparedness could bias their interviewing techniques. The findings provide a basis for developing strategies to minimize such challenges.

Publication information

Journal/Publication : Policing and Society

Location : International

Domain/s: Safety and security, Transport and communication

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