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If You’ve Been Interviewed by The FBI, Chances Are You’ve Been Misquoted!

A picture of the FBI official seal.
The FBI interviews people regularly, but the note-taking process is very informal, which is fine until those notes are typed up months later as a formal document.

Have you ever taken notes while listening to someone talk? Perhaps you were sitting in a lecture hall at college and your professor was expounding on something you knew would show up in a test. Or maybe you were at a work conference and what was being covered was relevant to the direction your company was planning to move in, so you knew you’d need to remember the details. But later, when going back over your notes, you wonder if you missed something. Perhaps a sentence you didn’t catch all of, or a point you missed because you simply couldn’t write fast enough…

FBI agents take informal notes during interviews

FBI agents do it all the time just like most cops. Note-taking, that is. They sit in interviews with suspects and witnesses, talking to them and jotting notes down on what’s being said. Those memos written down by federal agents during interviews are later formalized in a document called an FB-302, which an FBI agent types up using their notes as a source. The catch is, the formalizing of those notes doesn’t happen right after the interview when the info is fresh in their head. It could be a day later, a week later, or even a month later. And as you can imagine, a lot gets forgotten as time goes by.

A lot can change in your memory over time…

So why does that matter? Why would it be a big deal if an agent types up their notes from an interview and misses a word or two here or there, or forgets to include an important point about something. It matters because almost no one can write as fast as someone else can talk. Which means that vital information is going to be lost. Not every word will be recorded as it was said. And a single word can change the meaning of an entire sentence. And the fact that FBI agents rely on their memories to fill in the gaps is even more problematic. Because no one’s memory is perfect. Which means details grow fuzzy, information is lost, and things will be recalled incorrectly.

An agent’s informal notes become formal investigative documents

It matters because once those notes have been transferred to that FB-302 document, they’re now considered to be a formal interview on record. Which means they can be used as evidence in court cases. A 302 counts as the official record of an interview. The FBI doesn’t keep their notes once they’ve been typed up, so there’s practically no way to prove it if there’s a discrepancy between the original notes and the final document. And since FBI agents aren’t required to document everything that’s said in an interview, there’s a good likelihood that data and details will be lost. The criminal defense attorneys at The Kronzek Firm always prefer an audio or video recorded version of the interview because they are accurate. 

Battling federal criminal charges requires a lot of experience and skill!

Taking on the feds is a daunting task. The federal government has an expansive budget and almost limitless resources when prosecuting alleged crimes. Which means, if you’ve been charged with a crime by a federal prosecutor, you’re going to need help from an aggressive and fearless criminal defense attorney who is licensed to practice in a federal courtroom. So don’t settle for second best. Call The Kronzek Firm at 866 766 5245 right now and make sure your team is made up of winners. Our top criminal defense team is available for emergency consultations 24 / 7 by calling 1 866 7NoJail.  

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