John E. Reid and associates, which is the company that developed the police interrogation technique used in a scene from ‘When They See Us’ series, has filled a law suit against Netflix and Ava DuVernay, who was the director of the hit series.
Netflix and Ava are being sued for defamation in the series about the Central Park rape case.
John E. Reid and Associates developed the Reid Technique in the late 1940s, and it has continued to offer training materials and courses to law enforcement since then. According to the company, it is the most widely used interrogation method by police agencies worldwide. But critics have alleged that its approach can result in false confessions.
The interrogation technique was used in the fourth episode of the series on Netflix. In the episode, NYPD detective Michael Sheehan is accused of coercing a confession out of a suspect in the Central Park Five case by using the Reid Technique. A character in the scene says, “The Reid Technique has been universally rejected.” John E. Reid and Associates takes issue with this characterization of the Reid Technique, which was originally developed by John E. Reid, a former Chicago police officer.
In the Netflix series, the character says, “You squeezed statements out of them after 42 hours of questioning and coercing, without food, bathroom breaks, withholding parental supervision,”
The character went on to say “The Reid Technique has been universally rejected.”
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But the company has come out to say the technique is actually not coercive or rejected universally.
The company has based their law suit on this deformation of the technique that was portrayed in the Netflix series.