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Day 1 & 2 – Investigative Interviewing Training for Fire Investigation Professionals

2018-FIAA-FALL seminar-final.pdf

Interviewing of persons involved in a fire is central to the successful resolution of an investigation. As a result, the highest standards of investigative interviewing should be upheld. Without the information from those who have witnessed an important event, other sources of material such as CCTV images, source of ignition evidence, fingerprints, and forensic material – although extremely important – may have little value. In some cases, the first on-scene fire fighter may have been the only person to encode details about the scene. Physical corroboration may be entirely absent – thus making investigative interviewing (of witnesses, but also fire fighters) even more important while investigating fires.

This two-day training will cover fundamental investigative interview practices to maximize the quantity and quality of information from witnesses. This course is designed for both private and municipal fire investigators, insurance adjustors, and others who work in this field.

The training will be facilitated by Dr. Sarah MacDonald. She is a Forensic Psychologist and published author who specializes in Memory and Investigative Interviewing in Calgary, Canada. She conducts forensic interviews on request for complex, serious cases of sexual assault for police members from the Calgary Police Service, RCMP, and other organizations in Southern Alberta. Dr. MacDonald provides education and training to Law Enforcement in Alberta, Judges, Prosecutors, Physicians, among others. She has conducted and published research, including a book chapter, examining cognitive processes underlying investigative interview techniques, psychological-based investigative practices, deception detection/credibility assessment, and memory. Dr. MacDonald has presented her research internationally and is a TEDx speaker. She was trained in Advanced Cognitive Interviewing in the U.K. and has developed and taught this course (the first of its kind in North America) to Canadian police officers in Major Crime who interview significant witnesses and victims of crime.

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