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NCJ Number: 168328 Find in a Library
Title: Some Boundary Conditions for Bystander Misidentification
Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior  Volume:24  Issue:3  Dated:(September 1997)  Pages:370-390
Author(s): M R Phillips; R E Geiselman; D Haghighi; C Lin
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 21
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study tests and evaluates the reliability of uncorroborated eyewitness identification evidence.
Abstract: Expert testimony concerning the reliability of eyewitness identifications is generally restricted to factors believed to affect a significant percentage of witnesses. This study explored evidence for one such factor that has been labeled unconscious transference. This phenomenon occurs when an eyewitness identifies a person as having perpetrated a crime when, in fact, the witness encountered the person as a bystander or under circumstances unrelated to the crime event. For the study, 650 undergraduate students viewed a videotaped, simulated robbery. Participants were significantly more likely to select a bystander from a photoarray than the actual perpetrator, and they were more confident in their misidentifications. Participants who were shown a photoarray without the bystander present were over six times more likely to select the perpetrator than observers who were shown an array that included the bystander. The significant misidentifications of the bystander were eliminated when the event was restaged to show both bystander and perpetrator for a few seconds in the same frames of the video. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Courts
Index Term(s): Behavioral science research; Evidence identification; Eyewitness memory; Eyewitness testimony; Facial Recognition/Recall; Science and Technology; Suspect identification; Witness credibility; Witnesses
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