Barry Pollack was quoted regarding a new directive by the Department of Justice (DOJ) that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) and other federal law enforcement agencies begin recording interviews of suspects in custody. The new initiative, which reverses a longstanding policy, addresses concerns from civil rights groups and defense lawyers who argue that written statements leave the possibility of ambiguities in suspects' statements. "I think it is a tremendous step forward by the department in recognizing that having an accurate record of what is said in the custodial interrogation is helpful, both to the government and to the defense," Pollack said, explaining that one of the leading causes for false confessions is not having an accurate understanding of the context in which the statement was made. However, he noted that the change is still narrow in scope since it applies only to interviews with suspects who have already been arrested or are in custody.
This article was reprinted in the Washington Post, the Washington Times, ABC News, BBC News, and the Daily Mail on May 22, 2014.