When minor children find themselves on the wrong side of the law, they face a terrifying and unsettling process that strikes fear in most adults. As they sit in an interrogation room, bombarded with questions and threats, some will believe and say anything just to make the fear stop.
In Colorado, electronic recordings of interrogations are not required. Police officers apparently use that loophole to tell falsehoods to young criminal suspects to secure equally false confessions.
Putting an end to deception
In response, the Colorado Senate passed a bill that would mandate recording all interrogations of juveniles. The legislation would also put an end to a particularly sinister “strategy” of deceiving young suspects that often results in them admitting to a crime that they may not have committed. Those tactics would become inadmissible in court if prosecutors could prove that the statement was voluntary.
The problem is not exclusive to the Centennial State. Other states have passed similar laws.
Opponents of the bill claim that deceiving suspects is vital to solving crimes. Others claim that the move would not be necessary as parents already can be in the interrogation room with their kids. Judges already hold power to throw out statements and confessions that come from effectively “tricking” the young person into a false confession.
When a minor claims to be responsible for a crime out of fear and outright trickery, legal representation from an experienced criminal defense attorney represents the first step in getting to the facts. The stakes are high as promising futures are suddenly caught short with a possible criminal record that will follow children well into the future as they apply for jobs, college educations, and places to live.