A meta-analytic review of the timing for disclosing evidence when interviewing suspects

Simon Oleszkiewicz*, Steven James Watson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

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This meta‐analytic review examines the most fundamental question for disclosing evidence during suspect interviews: What are the effective options for when to disclose the available evidence? We provide an update to Hartwig and colleagues (2014) meta‐analysis of the efficacy of the late and early disclosure methods on eliciting statement‐evidence inconsistencies from guilty and innocent suspects. We also extend these analyses to include studies comparing gradual disclosure to early and late disclosure when interviewing guilty suspects. Finally, we test whether a gradual disclosure leads to greater provision of novel investigative information when interviewing guilty suspects. Overall, we find that guilty suspects provide more statement‐evidence inconsistencies than innocent suspects, and that both a late and gradual disclosure result in more statement‐evidence inconsistencies than the early disclosure when interviewing guilty suspects. However, there are indications of small study effects that warrant considerable caution when interpreting the size of some of the identified effects.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)342-359
Number of pages18
JournalApplied cognitive psychology
Issue number2
Early online date27 Nov 2020
Publication statusPublished - 22 Mar 2021


  • Strategic use of evidence
  • investigative interviewing
  • Police interrogation
  • Police Interview
  • Meta-analysis


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