Criminal Justice Myths, Ctd

Jun 25 2011 @ 7:20am

Balko finishes off his series. On the reliability of eyewitnesses:

The criminal justice system has been disturbingly slow to embrace the established science on human memory. More than three of every four wrongful convictions overturned by DNA testing were in part the result of faulty eyewitness testimony.

Simple reforms would go a long way, such as making witness and photo lineups double-blind, where neither the officer conducting the lineup nor the witness knows which person is the suspect. Lineups should also include people that the police know are innocent. If a witness selects someone police know is innocent, police and prosecutors will then know that particular witness's memory isn't reliable.