chapter  15
18 Pages

Using Hypnosis for Investigative Purposes

WithNeil S. Hibler

Few investigative techniques have stirred as much controversy as the use of hypnosis to enhance the memories of those involved in criminal events. The critical importance of using hypnosis forensically lies in the potential to create false memories, information that is inaccurate but has the full confidence of the interviewee. The consequence is that there is no way for anyone to tell, on the basis of hypnotic recall alone, if the memory is enhanced or forever tainted. The process by which such contamination occurs is confabulation, complex psychological processes that supplant emotionally satisfying fantasy for weak, absent, or psychologically unacceptable recollections.