The Accuracy Of Eyewitness Testimonies

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Throughout the history, children testifying in court has always been a debatable question. Canadian legal system viewed children as inherently unreliable and made little effort to accommodate them. Justice system’s view on child witness has been changed dramatically over the years. Since early 20th century, researchers have found that children are easy to lead by the suggestive questioning and difficulty distinguishing reality from fantasy (Whipple, 1911). Eyewitness is often connected with a person’s level of emotional arousal, which children may have trouble control and adjust their emotion.(Heuer and Reisbery, 1990). Although, many researchers started to research on children’s abilities regarding eyewitnesses, and techniques for interviewing …show more content…
When children experience a traumatic and stressful event, their ability to accurately recall the event becomes impaired. Stress and trauma can also create other problems in eyewitness testimonies such as repression. Repression has an impact on eyewitness testimonies because if a child goes through a stressful or traumatic event they will sometimes repress their memories. According to Freud 's theory on repression, a repressed memory is the memory of stressful event where it affect conscious thought and action. As a result, children will have trouble recalling this information. If a child who has witnessed a traumatic event is used as an eyewitness, they will have difficult time remembering the event because of the memory repression. In addition, children who experienced the incident, and the recall the incidence may cause them to have higher risk of getting post-traumatic disorder. Kilpatrick, Litt and Williams (1997) concluded child witness are vulnerable to post-traumatic disorder, which will lead to many other symptoms, such as behavioural , adjustment and emotional disturbance, withdrawal, hyperactivity, aggression and

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