CRM/LAW C114 Lecture 3: Eyewitness Identification

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Eyewitness Identification
In CJ, among the most important, most used, and most trusted
o importance of seeing
o hearsay rules
trust in eyewitnesses
o view of memory as trace evidence
o view of brain as video recorder
o view of brain as active constructor of memories
unconscious transference (57)
from media
studies of eyewitness reliability
o classroom simulations
Franz von Liszt
Hugo Munsterberg
beginning of psychological study of legal problems
Modern Eyewitness Studies
o Buckhout
pioneered eyewitness studies
o Loftus
added academic rigor
o Wells
system (controllable) vs. estimator (uncontrolled) variables
System v. Estimator variables
o system variables
lineup procedure
biasing feedback
o estimator variables
findings of experimental studies
o generally low reliability
o lower reliability for cross-racial
o stress decreases reliability
o presence of weapon decreases accuracy
o confidence does not correlate with reliability
criticisms of experimental studies
o just college students
college students are among the best eyewitnesses in visual acuity,
memory, health, etc.
show-ups vs. lineups
o is this the guy?
at the hospital
in the police car
I recognize the hat but not the face
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