Eliciting Maltreated and Nonmaltreated Children's Transgression Disclosures: Narrative Practice Rapport Building and a Putative Confession

15 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2015

See all articles by Thomas D. Lyon

Thomas D. Lyon

University of Southern California Gould School of Law

Lindsay Erin Wandrey

University of California, Irvine

Elizabeth Ahern

University of Cambridge

Robyn Carbone Licht

University of Southern California

Megan Sim

University of Cambridge

Jodi Quas

University of California, Irvine - Department of Criminology, Law and Society

Date Written: 2014

Abstract

This study tested the effects of narrative practice rapport building (asking open-ended questions about a neutral event) and a putative confession (telling the child an adult “told me everything that happened and he wants you to tell the truth”) on 4- to 9-year-old maltreated and nonmaltreated children’s reports of an interaction with a stranger who asked them to keep toy breakage a secret (n = 264). Only one third of children who received no interview manipulations disclosed breakage; in response to a putative confession, one half disclosed. Narrative practice rapport building did not affect the likelihood of disclosure. Maltreated children and nonmaltreated children responded similarly to the manipulations. Neither narrative practice rapport building nor a putative confession increased false reports.

Suggested Citation

Lyon, Thomas D. and Wandrey, Lindsay Erin and Ahern, Elizabeth and Licht, Robyn Carbone and Sim, Megan and Quas, Jodi, Eliciting Maltreated and Nonmaltreated Children's Transgression Disclosures: Narrative Practice Rapport Building and a Putative Confession (2014). 85 Child Development 1756 (2014); USC CLASS Research Paper No. 15-38; USC Law Legal Studies Paper No. 15-40. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2705596

Thomas D. Lyon (Contact Author)

University of Southern California Gould School of Law ( email )

699 Exposition Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90089
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213-740-0142 (Phone)
213-740-5502 (Fax)

Lindsay Erin Wandrey

University of California, Irvine ( email )

Campus Drive
Irvine, CA 62697-3125
United States

Elizabeth Ahern

University of Cambridge ( email )

Trinity Ln
Cambridge, CB2 1TN
United Kingdom

Robyn Carbone Licht

University of Southern California ( email )

2250 Alcazar Street
Los Angeles, CA 90089
United States

Megan Sim

University of Cambridge ( email )

Trinity Ln
Cambridge, CB2 1TN
United Kingdom

Jodi Quas

University of California, Irvine - Department of Criminology, Law and Society ( email )

2340 Social Ecology 2, RM
Irvine, CA 92697

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