Glenn Foster Weekly Tip #3 The Deceptive Subject's entry to the interview room | Law Enforcement & Security Consulting

Glenn Foster the father of the Kinesic Interview Technique offers some valuable information in this weeks tip  The Deceptive Subject’s entry to the interview room. Glenn’s focus is on interview and interrogation and he is the best I have personally ever seen at indentifying deceptive behavior.

Keep in mind that the observation-orientation-decision and action cycle (Boyd Cycle) functions in the interview setting as well as the street.  The tips Glenn provides here are of great value as you approach subjects on the street as well once they know you are coming. I got tip 3 up late so its here in its entirety be sure to sign up for the tips at 

Stay Oriented!


The Deceptive Subject’s entry to the interview room

The way a subject approaches and enters the interview room can deliver important information about their intentions of being either truthful or deceptive.
Here are some of the telling behaviors to watch for:

  • Their walk: You may get the sense that the way they’re walking does not look entirely natural.  Rather it appears slightly clumsy and uncoordinated.
  • They’re keeping their arms close to their sides and not swinging them in rhythm with their legs as people usually do.  This is done subconsciously to make themselves appear smaller and not draw attention.
  • They are walking close to the wall coming down the hallway and taking slightly shorter steps.  Again, this is done to discourage attention being drawn to their presence.
  • One shoulder starts lifting slightly higher than the other. 
  • The right hand is hidden inside a pocket.
  • The fingers of their hands are close together, straight and stiff, with the thumb pointing out rigidly as they walk towards you.  The arms may be by their sides or could be in front of the body or even crossed over their chest.  One arm may be down by the sides with the hand of the other under the armpit – but watch for the fingers to be formed as stated above.  This shows they have made up their minds that they will not change their position and will not allow themselves to be swayed, no matter what you say to them.
  • They start buttoning up and gathering in their clothing as they get closer and closer to the interview room door.  They are battening down the hatches and securing themselves aginst the coming interview.
  • They clutch whatever they’re carrying (purse, folders, etc.) up tight to their chest in an unnatural position.  This subconsciously forms a barrier or a shield against you.
  • Their head stays stationary but their eyes are shifting constantly.  They are checking for anything out of the ordinary in the surroundings.  I call this behavior “Snake Eyes” and will go into it further in a later Weekly Tip.
  • Continual yawning.  This behavior in a subject under 25 years of age indicates they are in a very high state of fight or flight – far greater than the normal stress reaction over an interview.
  • A frozen look where the one expression is held for more than 10 seconds.  If this occurs as soon as they see you it indicates they’re displaying a false emotion and therefore hiding their real feelings for some reason.

While there are many types of behavior that indicate simply that the subject is stressed or anxious at the prospect of the interview, I’ve observed that these particular behaviors indicate a high probability that the subject intends to be deceptive and therefore has something to hide.

I hope you’ve found these tips useful.  If you’ve found any particularly helpful email us your experience – but only include any information you’re happy to have published.

Stay dry.

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