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Police Department's new policy to place strict interrogation rules

Here, some of the rules the police department's policy will place in effect Jan. 1.

THE PHILADELPHIA Police Department's new interview and interrogation policy - a copy of which was obtained by the Daily News - lays out numerous rules.

Although many of the stipulations were already in practice, they had not officially been part of a written policy.

Some of the rules include:

* Witnesses, crime victims and even potential suspects who are brought in by police for "noncustodial, nonaccusatory" questioning are to be told that they can stop and leave at any time.

* Detectives need approval from a supervisor to question a suspect for more than 12 hours if criminal charges aren't filed, and no suspect can be held for more than 36 hours.

* Detailed logs must show when interviews begin and end, and note that detectives advised individuals being questioned that they were free to leave when they wanted.

* Supervisors are required to check on the well-being of people being interviewed by police at least once during their shift.

* Investigators are prohibited from using physical force of any kind, or making threats of any kind, including deportation, against a potential suspect or against the person's relatives.

* A suspect can invoke his Miranda rights - and immediately end any interrogation - by presenting a letter from an attorney stating that he can't be questioned without the attorney present.

* Photos of a potential suspect must be shown to a victim or witness one at a time - rather than in a collage - and cannot be shown by a detective working the case.

* Authorized interpreters must conduct interviews of victims or witnesses who don't speak or fully understand English.