This expert report collects and describes cutting edge social science describing the problems with eyewitness identifications including: the effects of poor lighting and distance (p. 5); the effects of a quick exposure and the problem of witnesses’ overestimating the length of exposure (p. 5-6); problems with cross-racial identifications (p. 6); problem if witness previously viewed […]
Argument that using in-court IDs as the only identification in case is a violation of the Due Process Clause because they create a substantial risk of misidentification. Social science studies cited throughout, specifically supporting reliability concerns (pgs. 10-12) and policy arguments (pgs. 13-15)
In-court identifications are inherently suggestive because they imply to the witness that the prosecutor has confirmed the witness’ initial identification. This brief argues that such an identification is more suggestive than a show-up and that the witness’ sense of accuracy artificially increases during subsequent identifications.
Because of the inherently suggestive nature of in-court identifications, courts should (1) subject them to the same protections and scrutiny as suggestive pretrial identification procedures (pgs. 4-9 of brief); (2) update existing standards and law to align with social science and other, more protective jurisdictions (pgs. 13-22 of brief); and (3) recognize that in-court identifications […]