Inadvertent hypnosis during interrogation … by Richard Ofshe

Inadvertent hypnosis during interrogation: False confession due to dissociative state: Mis-identified multiple personality and the satanic cult hypothesis.

Ofshe, Richard J.
International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis, Vol 40(3), Jul 1992, 125-156. doi: 10.1080/00207149208409653


Presents the case of a 43-yr-old man who, after induction of a dissociative state followed by suggestion during interrogation, developed pseudomemories of raping his daughters and of participation in a baby-murdering Satanic cult.

The pseudomemories coupled with influence from authority figures convinced him of his guilt for 6 mo. During this time, S, the witnesses, and all the evidence in the case were studied. No evidence supported an inference of guilt, and substantial evidence supported the conclusion that no crime had been committed.

An experiment demonstrated S’s extreme suggestibility. It was concluded that the cult did not exist and S’s confessions were coerced internalized false confessions. During the investigation, 2 psychologists diagnosed S as suffering from a dissociative disorder similar to multiple personality. Both psychologists were predisposed to find the involvement of satanic cult activity.

Related links:

Defending The Innocent: Interrogation and False Confession


Leave a comment


  1. avalon111

     /  08/15/2012

    Not just S.M.A.R.T remain convinced that the fantastic allegations made by Ingram’s daughters and a ‘confession’ made by Ingram himself should be taken on face value.

    Some folk have had to go to extraordinary lengths to determine it is all true and not implanted/false memories, though skipping the discussion over the time-travel/teleportaton bit.

    Karen A. Olio & William F. Cornell contributed “The Facade of Scientific Documentation: A Case Study of Richard Ofshe’s Analysis of the Paul Ingram Case” in vol. 4, issue #4 (pages 1182-1197) of the American Psychological Association journal Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, which is an official law review of the University of Arizona College of Law and the University of Miami School of Law.


    Basically trying to determine Ofshe didn’t use a ‘scientific’ method. Presumably those who opposed the Salem witch trials didn’t ‘use a scientific method’.

    Recovered memories of satanic ritual abuse is probably the most difficult area for recovered memory advocates to navigate around.

    The likes of the ISSTD and Freyd have a simple approach; all recovered memories, however bizarre, however impossible, have to be true and accurate and taken at face value. No chink in the armour of recovered memory theojry (the idea that the most oppressive and painful memories are the ones we forget immediately) must be allowed to peek through – to admit the possibility of some memories being false brings the whole pack of cards down – therefore every single memory garnered by a ‘survivor’ must, by default, be true.

    Which is whyin modern times, lay people will go ‘eh?’ And this core problem ensures that belief in recovered memory therapy and the idea that only Western white middle-class females are able to forget the most painful experiences utterly until later in life, 8is restricted to a relatively small core of religious fundamentalists, feminists and somewhat wealthy therapists.


    • that’s a good link you provided. Lots of info to plow through. Since there is alot of information about these issues “to plow through” as I just said, could that be a reason why proponents of MPD & DID theories choose to adhere to their own theories instead of reading widely? It sure makes sense. There is so much information out there it is intense (difficult to read ) and is very time consuming.

      I appreciate that so many different people come here with different perspectives and points of interests to them Trying to get through the info available would leave little time to live one’s life.


  2. avalon111

     /  08/15/2012

    Can’t recommend ” Remembering Satan” by Lawrence Wright enough.

    The Paul Ingram Scandal is still going-on, his family and career destroyed, and incredibly he still has to live under the guise of being a registered sex offender, though the offences he was accused-of were both physically impossible for him to perform, and should have left extremely-telling physical injuries on his accusers. In addition the alleged offences challenged the known laws of the physical universe (requring a belief in time-travel and teleportation).

    Somewhere there is a probation officer and perhaps social worker who have Paul Ingram on their list of registered clients. I wonder what they make of him and the case that was presented against him?

    The Scandal continues to destroy the myth that ‘recovered memories’ can’t be induced, or that certain individuals aren’t particularly vulnerable to suggested ‘recovered memories’.

    Incredibly there are some that try to present the Ingram Scandal as being a cast-iron proof of satanic ritual abuse and DID (after all they say, he did originally confess to incredible satanic crimes, so they must be true). These include notably, Neil Brick of S.M.A.R.T web site fame, though “Michelle Remembers” is also presented as being cast-iron proof of satanic abuse and evidence that satan arrived on earth in a sleepy Canadian town in the 1950s (many US and UK feminists continue to believe “Michelle Remembers” is absolutely true even in 2012).

    Although many MPD/DID advocates get seriously annoyed at the constant association of DID/MPD with the satanic ritual abuse myth (belief in DID/MPD really took off thanks to feminist and religious fundamentalist believers being convinced that it was being caused by satanists) the association is still being routinely made by key individuals in the UK, US and Australia.

    In the US the ISSTD is still obsessed with SRA – typified by the attendance of witch-hunter Dr. Ellen P. Lacter at the forthcoming ISSTD 29th Annual International Conference, Dr. Lacter is chair of the ISSTD’s Ritual Abuse Task Force. She will attending to discuss ritual abuse.

    In the UK David Icke and the crank psychotherapist/conspiracy theorist Valerie Sinason (also attending the ISSTD 29th Annual International Conference with Lacter) constantly push the SRA-DID/MPD line. Sinason writes that you can’t believe in DID/MPD without believing in satanic ritual abuse and that the vast majority of DID/MPD ‘survivors’ have been victims of satanic ritual abuse.

    For the skeptic community it is difficult to ignore the pleas from many in the DID/MPD community, particularly from therapists like Sinason that DID/MPD should ALWAYS be linked to satanic ritual abuse. The community does little to silence such folk and if anything actively encourages them in conferences. Occasionally this blog will get the odd DID/MPD sufferer who complains about the perceived weight given to discussing SRA – but unfortunatley the DID/MPD community, particularly the therapists, just can’t rid themselves of their obsession with it. Many who share that belief regard skeptics and doubters as being paedophiles, satanists, government CIA agents, aliens or all five.

    An example would be the British charity DID/MPD-SRA Mth advocacy charity PODS (Postive Outcomes for Survivors, previously ‘Partners of Dissociative Survivors’) who absolutely believe in the connection, and provide a listing of Satanic Ritual Abuse/Mind Control books in a listing at . Perhaps not surprisingly the listing includes ‘classics’ from Sinason, British colluder-with-fundamentalists and feminist Sara Scott (‘The Politics And Experience Of Ritual Abuse’), Colin Ross and all the usual nutty far-right conspiracy theory books such as ‘Ritual Abuse and Mind Control’ published in association with The Bowlby Centre.

    Rachel Livermore

    Dramatis Personae – an Indexed History of Child Protection & Family Justice – coming back online soon in a new and improved form!


    • Thank you Rachael for the synopsis.

      I didn’t know Ingram still had to register as a sex offender. That is ludicrous. Dr. Ofshe did a lot of work to prove Ingram was unknowingly making up the alleged abuse of his daughters after hours and hours of unrelenting interrogation. There must be a YouTube out there, I’ll see if I can find one.


  3. Steve

     /  06/22/2011

    I’m almost certain that this refers to the Paul Ingram case.

    Ingrams daughters began accusing him and he finally determined that he might have commited the crimes but repressed the memory of them. Ofshe was able to get Ingram to produce memories of events that Ofshe completely fabricated, simply by describing the events in detail to Ingram and telling him that his daughters had reported the events to authorities, which wasn’t true.

    If you want to read a great book on this case google on ” Remembering Satan” by Lawrence Wright. Definitely worth the read.


    • When Dr. Ofshe disclosed to Paul Igram that he had elicited from him memories that were not true, Igram defended his new/false memories. Quite a telling tale. Ofshe set out to prove that Igram’s confession was false and coerced – and he did so. Took years, though.

      Thanks for the link and info.

      Ofshe is a sociologist, rather than psychologist, and has done outstanding work in this area – I don’t think his work gets the attention it rightly earned.



What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: