1.5 Hours | 1.5 CEs

This webinar on Confabulation and the Criminal Justice System: A Review for Forensic Professionals is presented by Jerrod Brown, PhD.

Confabulation is one of the most problematic memory phenomenon impacting criminal justice, forensic, and legal systems. This phenomenon occurs when an individual creates or backfills a gap in their memory with a fictitious or imagined memory that may be partially based on real events, but taken out of chronological context (e.g., believing the memory occurred yesterday when in reality the memory took place many years prior). Confabulation is done without intent or motivation to deceive or lie. This can range from a slight distortion of an actual event to the nuanced generation of an intricate event.

The causal origins of confabulation are unclear, but the combination of cognitive impairments of several disorders (e.g., fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, intellectual disability, schizophrenia, traumatic brain injury, and Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome) and a predisposition to suggestion could be integral in eliciting this phenomenon. Confabulation can also occur among individuals with no known history of neurocognitive impairment, resulting from an investigative interview or cross-examination by a legal professional. This can be particularly dangerous in the criminal justice and legal system because information elicited (and possibly confabulated) during police interviews and interrogations may be used to prosecute and convict a defendant. As such, training and education related to the impact confabulation has on criminal justice, forensic, and legal populations is a priority.

This webinar clearly distinguishes confabulation from other potentially related constructs (e.g., suggestibility, delusions, and malingering), reviews important background information and warning signs for confabulation, and identifies strategies and techniques to decrease the likelihood of confabulation during legal processes.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this webinar you will be able to:

  • Describe different types of confabulation (i.e., spontaneous versus provoked) and distinguish these constructs from other important topics (e.g., suggestibility, delusions, and malingering) that can impact the validity of information acquired from suspects, witnesses, and defendants

  • Analyze risk factors and warning signs for confabulation in criminal justice and forensic settings

  • Describe how to minimize the likelihood of confabulation during legal processes

  • Describe the latest empirical findings and discuss directions for future research on confabulation

Presented By

Jerrod Brown, PhD

Jerrod Brown, PhD, is the Treatment Director for Pathways Counseling Center, Inc., the lead developer of an online Master of Arts degree in Human Services with an emphasis in Forensic Behavioral Health from Concordia University, St. Paul, Minnesota, the founder and CEO of the American Institute for the Advancement of Forensic Studies (AIAFS), and the Editor-in-Chief of Forensic Scholars Today (FST) and the Journal of Special Populations (JSP).
  • Intended Audience

    This on-demand webinar is intended for mental health and other allied professionals.

  • Experience Level

    This on-demand webinar is appropriate for beginner, intermediate, and advanced level clinicians.

  • CE / CPD Credit

    APA, ASWB, CPA, NBCC Click here for state and other regional board approvals.

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