Eyewitness testimony

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Abstract

Eyewitnesses have always played a fundamental role in the legal process. However, eyewitness evidence is not always as reliable or as accurate as one might hope, given the weight that decision-makers often ascribe to it. In this article, we review some of the many factors that can determine the reliability of witness testimony, including factors that are, and those that are not, within the control of investigative and judicial processes. In doing so, we consider how policies might assist in ensuring that witness testimony can play the most effective and informative role in the legal process as possible.

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Details

Publication date2015
Publication titleInternational encyclopedia of the social and behavioral sciences
EditorsJames D. Wright
Place of PublicationOxford (UK)
PublisherElsevier
Pages642-649
Number of pages8
Volume8
Edition2nd
ISBN (Print)978-0-08-097087-5, 978-0-08-097086-8
Original languageEnglish

    Keywords

  • beliefs, weapon focus, reliability, postevent information, misinformation effect, memory, Lineups, jurors, interview techniques, feedback, onfidence–accuracy relationship, cognitive interview, cowitnesses, calibration

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