Psychology Discussion Post Responses

Post #1:  believe that there should be a double blind administration of all IDs of suspected criminals. This will help alleviate some of the bias that is inherent in these types of proceedings. We can often get it wrong because we want to helpful, and we inherently want to help solve the crime, so we justify our results and project upon what we are seeing. The bias can also extend to the investigating party, and be projected on the victim; because they are working off of personal assumptions, not facts. 

Also, we aren’t always the best equipped to make the judgement based on our natural limitations. It has been proven that we are notoriously awful and recognizing faces from other ethnicities. The study concludes that some of the reasons for this are because we can relate another person’s facial features to our own, if within the same ethnicity. In the case study even though the victim was vigorously working to remember features she was at a huge disadvantage and was unfair to the falsely accused in the case.

Blinded Administration

Blind administration, where the officer administering the lineup is unaware of who the suspect is, can prevent suggestive statements or unconscious gestures or vocal cues that may influence the witness, thereby reducing the risk of a misidentification. For the small police agency with work force constraints, a method called the “folder shuffle” can be utilized to effectively blind the administrator.

Lineup Composition

“Fillers” (the non-suspects included in a lineup) should resemble the eyewitness’ description of the perpetrator. Further, the suspect should look similar to the fillers (for example, he should not be the only member of his race in the lineup, or the only one with facial hair). Eyewitnesses should also not view more than one identification procedure with the same suspect.

Instructions

The person viewing the lineup should be told that the perpetrator may or may not be in the lineup and that the investigation will continue regardless of the lineup result. This reduces the pressure on the witness of feeling like they have to pick a perpetrator. The witness should also be told not to look to the administrator for guidance.

Confidence Statements

Law enforcement should elicit and document a statement from an eyewitness articulating his or her level of confidence in the identification made at the time that the identification is made.

Recording

Identification procedures should be videotaped and/or audiotaped whenever possible.

Post #2: Ah, this is an interesting discussion here. Memory plays a big part in all of us, and can range from remembering the smallest of details (like where did you last place your keys) to remembering something important (the license plates of the person who hit your bumper). After reading the text about the five procedures, I am not too sure if that would work 100% of the time. Why? Because simply, out of those 100% maybe… 45 to 65 percent would answer calmly and accordingly. While the other some percent might be nervous and end up stumbling. There’s a difference in seeing the perpetrator in person rather than a blurry, grayscale photo – your mind tends to play tricks on you and you begin to question your own memory “wait, did this happen? No this happened”. And then you end up completely forgetting from stress that you forgot a vital information.

I can’t say I can recall another way to prove false identification, but anything that involves using ones brains should be accounted for with thewho witness is and what is their personality like, so the officer or jury can effectivly get the information out of that person without forcing them or having them guess.

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