Developing Rapport During Forensic Interviews with Adolescents: A Review of Evidence-Based Practices

Kamala London | September 10 | 9:00 - 10:00 AM | Room 2592

One of the most challenging issues in combating human trafficking is working with adolescent victims of sex trafficking. Lawn force meant and medical personnel often do not recognize them as victims, and no national standard exist on how to conduct initial forensic interviews. Police and prosecutors indicate that conducting this initial interview properly is critical to identifying these victims, prosecuting their predators, and assisting them in their recovery.


Most evidence – based work on forensic interviewing has given attention to cognitive issues involving the ability to recall events. Particularly with adolescent victims of sex trafficking, motivational issues may adversely affect their willingness to report events to authorities. In this talk, I will review the body of research on rapptor building during forensic interviews. I will highlight what we know, what we do not now, and what we need to know in order to create evidence based interviewing practices. While studies have begun to investigate rapptor building, few experimental studies exist. No scientific studies exist to date to provide guidelines for rapport building with adolescents suspected of being involved in sex trafficking. I will conclude by making recommendations for research and practice during forensic interviews with possible victims of trafficking

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