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Eyewitness Identification

There have been numerous studies showing that eyewitness identification is faulty.

There have also been numerous studies showing the methods used by cops to obtain identifications bias the witness against the person they’re asked to identify.

Eyewitness identification is the single greatest cause of wrongful convictions. Eyewitness identification is faulty because contrary to popular belief:

1. People do not make better identification closer to the time of the incident.

2. People are influenced by phenomena like gun focus (where they look at the gun and not the person).

3. Cross-culture identification is weak. People can’t identify those not in their ethnic group. “All ______ look alike is true in this case.”

4. People as witnesses want to help the police and are susceptible to suggestion.

5. A person’s confidence in his identification has NO relation to it’s accuracy.

6. The act of identification corrupts the witness’s memory.

7. The person identified usually has little relation to the person initially described by the witness.

8. The mind doesn’t work as a camera. Identification is more like putting pieces of a jigsaw together. Some of those pieces are what the person “reasonably looked like.”

The process cops use in eyewitness identification is horribly flawed.

Cops usually rely on ‘show ups’,where they take the witness to observe the suspect. Usually the suspect is in custody, and this creates a bias. Because the cop takes the witness to the suspect, it creates an aura that the cop believes the person is guilty. Cops sometimes rely on photographic six packs. These are two dimensional representations where resemblance error is exaggerated.

In cases where eyewitness identification is important to your case, you need someone with the knowledge and experience to use it to your ultimate advantage. I have successfully dismissed cases and won trials based on improper identification.

I know what’s at stake for you.
And I will use all my skills to make sure the eyewitness identification is used to your advantage.
Call me to set up a consultation at (213) 479-5322.

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