“I feel your pain. Now let us ease the pain.”
When you are in control of things, you can say those statements.
It is cross-examination time. And you are all vulnerable. Blindfolded, in a darkroom, after a cold shower with noise all over the place. Then, you feel like snakes are crawling around you. It was done intentionally, As you entered the room, you passed by a cage full of several snakes, with the words “poisonous” written all over it.
You entered the room. You got blindfolded and handcuffed. But you can hear. It is intentional that you should hear. But you don’t know that it is intended.
The first man begs another tough man’s proposed ideas. Please do not bring those snakes to him. They are poisonous. Another says, no, this man deserves them. However, if he talks and saves our time, maybe we shall not give him the star treatment.
The men move closer. Your body is so alert that any slight noise is picked. Now that your sense of sight is disabled, the other senses go in overdrive. You can feel, hear and smell very well.
The first man asks: “did you steal the money.” Your answer is negative. “In your written statement, you said you were in Mbarara when the theft happened in Kampala, is that right.”
Yes, that is right.
“But we have a video recording showing that you were in Kampala, not Mbarara? How do you explain that? Why are you lying to us”
“Now that you are lying to us, let’s show you.”
You receive a bucket of cold ice water. It is so cold that you suddenly start shivering. Then loud music is played. You don’t even hear when the two men leave the room and close you inside. A few minutes later, the room is opened. Your eyes are opened. Only to see the case of snakes now with you in the room. The light is too much that you cannot open your eyes.
You are worried that you could be blind.
Before you test whether you can see, you have ideas of snakes, too much light. A cage with a lock open. And some snakes crawling out of the case to share the small space room with you.
All these ideas are in your mind as something crawling in the room.
In the middle of the confusion, a soft-spoken lady entered the room.
She unblinded the man and said: “I feel your pain. Now let’s ease the pain.”
She asked for a meal and drinks to be served to the man in the dungeon. She came close and sat. Speaking to him in a soft and lovely tone.
“Why subject him through this kind of treatment? He has rights. He is not a convict. He is just a suspect and he deserves respect. Please leave us alone [she politely asked the bad men out of the room].”
So, what happened? Where did you put the money? If you don’t tell these men, where the money is, they may remove your eyes. First, they had already released snakes into your room. I was told, they removed it just as I was about to walk in, they feared that I would find the snakes in the room and terminate them.
On hearing this statement, the man said, ‘they released the snakes. I felt something like a snake in the room. I was so worried.’
Ok, no worries.
So, how did you end up here?
The man slowly spoke explaining everything.
Note: this is a fictional scenario in my head. Torture as an interview technique is outlawed, and evidence obtained through torture is not admissible in courts of law. Put that in your medulla oblongata.
Copyright Mustapha B Mugisa, 2020. All rights reserved.