Jim Trainum photo

Jim Trainum


Detective Jim Trainum (retired) was with the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Department for a total of 27 years – the last 19 of which he was assigned to the homicide branch. During his career, Trainum worked on numerous local and federal task forces and joint projects.  He created and was the director of his department’s Violent Crime Case Review Project which oversaw the review of old homicide cases. Trainum is a member of the International Homicide Investigators Association, the Homicide Research Group, the International Investigative Interviewing Research Group and The Vidocq Society. Trainum has presented at universities, police academies, prosecutor’s offices, legislative bodies and conferences on various topics ranging from cold case investigative techniques, criminal profiling, avoiding investigative pitfalls, videotaping of interrogations, police reform issues and false confessions. He is the recipient of the Ethics in Law Enforcement Award, an honorary Professional Associate Professorship from Marymount University and the 2009 Champion of Justice Award from The Innocence Project. He is the author of the article “I Did It” – Confession Contamination and Evaluation that was published in the June 2014 web edition of The Police Chief magazine.   In 2014, he appeared on the NPR podcast Serial, where he discussed the investigation of the 1993 murder of Hae Lee by the Baltimore, MD police department. He is the author of the book How the Police Generate False Confessions: An Inside Look at the Interrogation Room.