The interview is often the most complicated part of the process — and I believe it is the most important part of the process because it is often what the other parts of your investigation stem from.Carrie Hull
Listen to the podcast
Our Director of Certification, Carrie Hull, was a recent guest on the Circle of Insight Podcast with Dr. Carlos Vasquez to talk about trauma-informed interviewing, the FETI Methodology, and more.
Specific topics from the podcast include:
- What the FETI Framework is and how it works (1:50)
- The limitations of traditional interview methodologies (and why they aren’t all that methodological) (4:44)
- Why terms like “victim,” “suspect,” and “witness” should never be used in a FETI (or any) interview (5:55)
- What Hull got wrong as an interviewer early in her career (8:22)
- The damage that occurs when framing a situation as “he said/she said” (13:08)
- Why “the interview MUST be separated from the investigation” (15:25)
- Why FETI is not therapy and how body movement is cued during an interview (23:00)
- What it means to “collect the dots, not connect the dots” (25:16)
- Why deception detection should not be practiced during an interview by a practitioner, and why documenting provable lies is part of any good investigative process (28:33)
The goal of a FETI interview is to provide OPPORTUNITIES for the participant to share as much as they are ABLE TO about their experience and then document accurately.
Too often, however, interviewers get in their own way, limiting both the quantity and quality of the information they can collect, without even realizing it.
Most interviewers — whether they are in law enforcement, government, higher education, or other professional interviewing roles — don’t receive in-depth training and practice on how to collect information from a participant in an interview. Traditional interview tactics, such as leading and paraphrasing, may introduce bias or increase the anxiety of the person being interviewed.
A skilled interviewer recognizes that no two interviewees (participants) are the same. An effective approach to interviewing is one that provides options to the participant, avoids assuming what their needs are, and actively looks for opportunities for information collection.
About Carrie Hull
In addition to being FETI’s Director of Certification, Carrie Hull is the Executive Director for the You Have Options Program (YHOP), and offers private consulting through her firm, Carrie Hull Consulting. During her tenure as a law enforcement officer, she worked as a forensic interviewer of children and was a participating member of the Jackson County Major Assault and Death Investigation Unit, the Jackson County Sexual Assault Response Team, and the Jackson County Child Abuse Multi-Disciplinary Team.
To find out more about FETI and the path to certification, visit our Training Overview page.