Changes to Police Lineup Procedures Cut Eyewitness Mistakes, Study Says

The New York Times:

The push for procedures to help overcome the weaknesses of eyewitness identifications gains support with a new study being released on Monday that sees significant advantages in techniques promoted by many experts and a growing number of police departments.

The new report, based on actual cases in the field, suggests that photographs presented one by one by a person not directly connected with a case significantly reduced identifications of fillers (people known not to be the suspect) from 18 percent in simultaneous lineups to 12 percent in sequential ones.

And while a 2006 study cited by opponents of the sequential technique suggested that witnesses make fewer selections over all in sequential lineups than in simultaneous ones, the new report showed that the sequential approach leads to just as many picks of suspects as do the simultaneous techniques if conducted as they commonly are in the field, with the witnesses getting an opportunity to view the images a second time if they request it.

Read the whole story: The New York Times

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