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Interrogation Expectations: Individual and Race/Ethnic Group Variation Among an Adult Sample

Updated: Nov 9, 2020

Matthew B. Johnson, Kimberly Citron-Lippmann, Christina Massey, Chitra

Raghavan & Ann Marie Kavanagh


The U.S. Supreme Court has held that suspects in custody must be in-

formed of their rights (Miranda warnings) and that any waiver of such rights

must be done “knowingly,” “intelligently,” and “voluntarily” (Dickerson v.

United States, 2000; Miranda v. Arizona, 1966). Findings from several sources

(Kassin, 2005) indicate that approximately 80% of suspects waive their rights

and submit to police interrogation. Early research on the Miranda waiver

process focused on comprehension of Miranda rights (Grisso, 1980, 1981).

Grisso (1980, 1981, 1998, 2004) developed a four-part assessment instrument

to empirically assess various aspects of Miranda comprehension. The four

parts were Comprehension of Miranda Rights (CMR), Comprehension of Mi-

randa Rights–Recognition (CMR-R), Comprehension of Miranda–Vocabulary

(CMV), and Function of Rights During Interrogation (FRI). There was con-

cern that faulty comprehension was an obstacle to the informed exercise

of the privilege against self-incrimination and the right to counsel. Much of

the attention was focused on juveniles (Grisso, 1980, 1981) and their vul-

nerability related to limited knowledge, inadequate experience, and lack of


Johnson et al 'IE' 2015 journal version
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