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Accuracy of Eyewitness Identifications in Showups and Lineups

A. Daniel Yarmey, Meagan J. Yarmey and A. Linda Yarmey
Law and Human Behavior
Vol. 20, No. 4 (Aug., 1996), pp. 459-477
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1394092
Page Count: 19
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Accuracy of Eyewitness Identifications in Showups and Lineups
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Abstract

Experiment 1 tested one-person and six-person photographic lineup identifications in field situations either immediately, or 30 minutes, or 2 hours, or 24 hours after a 15-second ordinary encounter with a target. Accuracy of performance was superior in six-person lineups than in showups over time. False identifications of a lookalike innocent suspect were significantly greater in showups than in six-person lineups, especially when the suspect wore the same clothing as the culprit. Experiment 2 followed the same research design as Experiment 1, except that only live showup identifications were tested and, in addition, a physically dissimilar innocent suspect was shown to witnesses. The dissimilar innocent suspect was consistently and correctly rejected in the target-absent showup. Hit rates for live suspects were relatively low over the 24-h retention interval. Correct rejections significantly exceeded false identifications only on the immediate test. The lookalike innocent suspect was readily rejected when different clothing was worn at the test. No significant differences were found in hit scores or in confidence-accuracy scores between live and photographic targets. Confidence-accuracy correlations were significant but low across experimental conditions.

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