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Creating Language Crimes – How Law Enforcement Uses (and Misuses) Language - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Creating Language Crimes: How Law Enforcement Uses (and Misuses) Language

Roger W. Shuy


This book describes and illustrates eleven powerful conversational strategies used by undercover police officers and cooperating witnesses who secretly tape-record targets in criminal investigations. Twelve actual criminal case studies are used as examples. These strategies creating illusion of guilt include the apparently deliberate use of semantic ambiguity, blocking the targets’ words (by creating static on the tape, interrupting them, speaking on their behalf, and manipulating the off/on switch); rapidly changing the subject before targets can respond (the “hit and run” strategy); contamin ... More

Keywords: conversational strategies, undercover police operations, language power, tape manipulation, deception, murder, solicitation to murder, bribery, stolen property, business fraud

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2005 Print ISBN-13: 9780195181661
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195181661.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Roger W. Shuy, author
Georgetown University (Emeritus)
Author Webpage

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