criminal psychology chapter 10 eyewitness testimony talbot kellogg community college

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Criminal Criminal Psychology Psychology Chapter 10 Chapter 10 Eyewitness Testimony Eyewitness Testimony Talbot Talbot Kellogg Community College Kellogg Community College

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Criminal PsychologyCriminal Psychology

Chapter 10Chapter 10

Eyewitness TestimonyEyewitness Testimony

TalbotTalbot

Kellogg Community CollegeKellogg Community College

The Importance of EyewitnessesThe Importance of Eyewitnesses What makes it important?What makes it important? What makes a good witness?What makes a good witness?

RaceRace GenderGender AgeAge

Availability to testifyAvailability to testify Ability to testifyAbility to testify Witnesses’ assertion of good memoryWitnesses’ assertion of good memory

Of virtually no importance.

Of the highest importance.

Problems in Eyewitness TestimonyProblems in Eyewitness Testimony(Visual Memory)(Visual Memory)

Memory Memory Consolidation Priming/ Redintegration Constructive Processing Misinformation Effect

The case of Ronald Cotton, The case of Ronald Cotton, Jennifer Thompson & Bobby Jennifer Thompson & Bobby

Poole.Poole.

The role of the Psychologist Applied Researcher/ Expert witness

System variables – Procedures and processes used by the police and other members of the criminal justice system which could negatively affect the accuracy of the accounts of witnesses.

Estimator variables – Environmental factors and internal characteristics of the person which could affect the nature and accuracy of their memory.

Trainer/ Educator to the Criminal Justice System

Police Consultant

Problematic Systemic Problematic Systemic ProceduresProcedures

Asking poorly constructed questions. Asking poorly constructed questions. Allowing one eyewitness to overhear the Allowing one eyewitness to overhear the

response of other eyewitnesses.response of other eyewitnesses. Taking “spotty” notes of witnesses’ answers.Taking “spotty” notes of witnesses’ answers. Failing to use any theory of a proper Failing to use any theory of a proper

memory interview (i.e. cognitive interview).memory interview (i.e. cognitive interview). Using interviewers who have little training or Using interviewers who have little training or

little understanding in the nature of memory.little understanding in the nature of memory.

Questioning Witnesses (Information Questioning Witnesses (Information Generation)Generation)

ProblemsProblems Limited TrainingLimited Training Overuse of close-ended questions v. Open-ended Overuse of close-ended questions v. Open-ended

questions.questions. Interrupting the witness.Interrupting the witness. Little or no assistance to enhance memory.Little or no assistance to enhance memory. Leading questions.Leading questions. Unconscious transference.Unconscious transference. Demand characteristics.Demand characteristics.

The Goals of Law-enforcement.The Goals of Law-enforcement.

How to Improve MemoryHow to Improve Memory

Slow down the rate of questioning.Slow down the rate of questioning. Utilize the cognitive interview.Utilize the cognitive interview. Tailor questions to the individual Tailor questions to the individual

witness.witness. Witness-centered rather than Witness-centered rather than

Interviewer-centered interview.Interviewer-centered interview. Be sensitive to the distinction between Be sensitive to the distinction between

correct and incorrect responses.correct and incorrect responses. Do not form premature conclusions.Do not form premature conclusions.

Use of Lineups/ Photo arrays

Suspect identification Identity Parade Photo Spread

Benefits of Identity Parade Information such as gate and behaviors.

Benefits of the Photo Spread Availability No counsel required

Common Errors

Implies the criminal is present. Demand Characteristic – Make a choice. Asking the eyewitness specifically about

the suspect and not the foils (confirmation bias).

Encouraging loose recognition. Leaking a hunch. Providing feedback to the witness to

increase confidence. Relative Judgment Process.

Proper Procedural Rules

Double - Blind Witnesses should be told that it is possible

that the true perpetrator may not be present and that the officer does not know who the suspect might be.

The suspect should not “stand out”. A clear statement should be taken from

the witness at the time of the identification.

Provide views of different suspects sequentially rather than simultaneously.

Expert Witness – What is reliable enough to testify about?

Box 10-4

Steps in the evaluative process

FBI’s Facial Identification Catalogue Identikit – 1896 & Dr. Alphonse Bertellin

Component Approach Holistic Process – face recognition in

which one considers the relationship of features and general appearance v. a piecemeal or component analysis.

Richard SpeckRichard Speck

19661966 ChicagoChicago Mass MurdererMass Murderer

8 nursing students8 nursing students

Steps in the evaluative process

FBI’s Facial Identification Catalogue Identikit – 1896 & Dr. Alphonse Bertelllin Holistic Process – face recognition in

which one considers the relationship of features and general appearance v. a piecemeal or component analysis.

http://stuffucanuse.com/j_mugshot1.htm

FingerprintingFingerprinting

The CrimeThe Crime On the 11 March 2004 thirteen bombs were loaded onto On the 11 March 2004 thirteen bombs were loaded onto

commuter trains at Alcala de Henares station, 40km outside commuter trains at Alcala de Henares station, 40km outside Madrid. Not long after, ten of them exploded killing 191 Madrid. Not long after, ten of them exploded killing 191 people and wounding more than 1,700. Using a fingerprint people and wounding more than 1,700. Using a fingerprint found on a plastic bag filled with detonators, the FBI, with found on a plastic bag filled with detonators, the FBI, with automated computer matching and experienced experts, automated computer matching and experienced experts, obtained and confirmed a positive identification with a US obtained and confirmed a positive identification with a US citizen, Brandon Mayfield. Mayfield, a recent convert to citizen, Brandon Mayfield. Mayfield, a recent convert to Islam, appeared to fit the bill perfectly and he was Islam, appeared to fit the bill perfectly and he was immediately arrested and imprisoned.immediately arrested and imprisoned.

Punishment?Punishment?

Nevertheless, two weeks later, Mayfield Nevertheless, two weeks later, Mayfield was released after Spanish police was released after Spanish police announced they had caught the real announced they had caught the real owner of the fingerprint. Mayfield was owner of the fingerprint. Mayfield was completely innocent, having simply been completely innocent, having simply been the victim of two misfortunes: firstly to the victim of two misfortunes: firstly to have a fingerprint similar to the bomber have a fingerprint similar to the bomber and secondly to already be in the US and secondly to already be in the US fingerprint database (currently totalling fingerprint database (currently totalling around 10 million entries). around 10 million entries).

OutcomeOutcome

FBI promises to review practicesFBI promises to review practices“The FBI apologizes to Mr. Mayfield “The FBI apologizes to Mr. Mayfield and his family for the hardships that and his family for the hardships that this matter has caused,” the bureau this matter has caused,” the bureau said in a statement. The agency also said in a statement. The agency also said it would review its practices on said it would review its practices on fingerprint analyses.fingerprint analyses.

How does fingerprinting work?How does fingerprinting work?

Complete prints are rare.Complete prints are rare. Partial prints are more common.Partial prints are more common. Partial prints are compared to Partial prints are compared to

suspects prints (by the human suspects prints (by the human eye and via technology).eye and via technology).

Top – Down Processing.Top – Down Processing. Percentage of accuracy is then Percentage of accuracy is then

determined.determined.

ResearchResearch

Initially, Dror, Peron, Hind & Charlton Initially, Dror, Peron, Hind & Charlton (2005) examined contextual effects in (2005) examined contextual effects in a student population. It was found that a student population. It was found that participants cued with emotionally participants cued with emotionally charged contextual information, such charged contextual information, such as gruesome crime scene photos, were as gruesome crime scene photos, were more likely to indicate a match more likely to indicate a match between ambiguous fingerprints than between ambiguous fingerprints than uncued control participants. uncued control participants.

Dror & Charlton (2006) actually re-presented Dror & Charlton (2006) actually re-presented experienced fingerprint experts with cases in experienced fingerprint experts with cases in which, five years previously, they had confirmed which, five years previously, they had confirmed positive matches. This was carried out covertly so positive matches. This was carried out covertly so the experts themselves were in their normal work the experts themselves were in their normal work environment, and were unaware they were environment, and were unaware they were examining prints they had previously analyzed. examining prints they had previously analyzed. Contextual information was then provided to the Contextual information was then provided to the experts in order to attempt to replicate the findings experts in order to attempt to replicate the findings of the earlier study in a naturalistic setting. In an of the earlier study in a naturalistic setting. In an admittedly small sample size (n=6), two-thirds of admittedly small sample size (n=6), two-thirds of the experts made decisions inconsistent with their the experts made decisions inconsistent with their own previous judgments.own previous judgments.

Is fingerprinting flawed?Is fingerprinting flawed?

Dr. Itiel Dror – “Clearly no”.Dr. Itiel Dror – “Clearly no”. Fingerprinting is a necessity and is clearly Fingerprinting is a necessity and is clearly

more accurate than even eye-witness more accurate than even eye-witness testimony.testimony.

Changes need to be made in application Changes need to be made in application and training.and training. Context should be removed from the experts Context should be removed from the experts

evaluation.evaluation. The application of points of match or rates of The application of points of match or rates of

probable match should be identified.probable match should be identified.