Eyewitness Misidentification Essay

1214 Words 5 Pages
Abstract Eyewitness misidentification is one of the leading causes of wrongful conviction. The correlation between confidence and memory, effects of stress on memory, and the accuracy of identification have been proven to be false. Research studies indicate that misinterpretation can occur in one of three stages of the memory process acquisition, retention, and retrieval which are not exempt to that of an eyewitness. This paper will speak on the validity of eyewitness testimonies in the judicial system.

Eyewitness testimonies can have an impact on a jury, which are the persons/people that take on the role of sorting out credibility and making judgments based on witness statements on whether or not they are being truthful.
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There have been several stories broadcasted via the media about individuals being found innocent and released after they had been incarcerated based upon an eyewitness statement. Even, though the evidence may not have been overwhelming convincing itself the statement of the eyewitness held a lot of weight in the cases for individuals to be convicted. In 1979 Cornelius Dupree was convicted for a rape and robbery and spent over 30 years incarcerated for a crime that he did not commit based upon the statement of an eyewitness. With evolving DNA testing and capabilities he was freed just as Derrick Williams of Florida who was also freed due to DNA evidence being presented after 18 years of incarceration based on being misidentified by an eyewitness statement. Such cases have continued to emerge over the years and have since exonerated several …show more content…
Jurors can also give more credit to witness statements than they should. However, they are not alone the criminal justice system has to minimize circumstances that may come into play when corrupting an eyewitness statement and then the information has to be reflected towards a jury in order for the evidence to be assessed in a correct manner. Once a witness has stated their facts as they identify the suspect, they are unable to the reconstruct the details and interactions of their memory. When a witness identifies a person in a line-up, they are more than likely going to continue to identify that same person in a later line up if given the option. This can be done even when the person that they have identified is not the actual suspect. Jurors and those that make determinations and decisions that use the reliability of eyewitness recognition, they are typically unaware of the risks of inaccurate

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