The effect of exposure to multiple lineups on face identification accuracy

Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, California, USA.
Law and Human Behavior (Impact Factor: 2.16). 05/2001; 25(2):185-98. DOI: 10.1023/A:1005697431830
Source: PubMed


This study examines the conditions under which an intervening lineup affects identification accuracy on a subsequent lineup. One hundred and sixty adults observed a photograph of one target individual for 60 s. One week later, they viewed an intervening target-absent lineup and were asked to identify the target individual. Two days later, participants were shown one of three 6-person lineups that included a different photograph of the target face (present or absent), a foil face from the intervening lineup (present or absent), plus additional foil faces. The hit rate was higher when the foil face from the intervening lineup was absent from the test lineup and the false alarm rate was greater when the target face was absent from the test lineup. The results suggest that simply being exposed to an innocent suspect in an intervening lineup, whether that innocent suspect is identified by the witness or not, increases the probability of misidentifying the innocent suspect and decreases the probability of correctly identifying the true perpetrator in a subsequent test lineup. The implications of these findings both for police lineup procedures and for the interpretation of lineup results in the courtroom are discussed.

Full-text preview

Available from:
  • Source
    • "Whether mere familiarity is enough to increase choosing rates or witnesses believe that the police must have narrowed the number potential suspects enough to get a perpetrator between mugshot and lineup is currently unknown. Likewise, how might a witness perceive the mugshot exposure, and does the reduction in accuracy operate any differently than presenting multiple lineups, which also show a steady decline overall accuracy (e.g., Hinz and Pezdek 2001)? As mentioned above, mugshot exposure will not be included for metaanalysis because only two studies have examined the effect and produced mixed results. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The current meta-analysis compared younger and older adult eyewitness identification accuracy and includes analyses designed to determine what witness and event factors might moderate any differences found. Results showed that, regardless of lineup type and perpetrator age, older eyewitnesses are reliably worse at making correct lineup decisions than younger eyewitnesses whether they are identifying perpetrators or rejecting perpetrator-absent lineups. Discussion of possible causes for this difference in identification accuracy is drawn from cognitive and social psychology literatures, and possible implications for future research and public policy are put forth.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology
  • Source
    • "A witness who has made a prior identification may show a commitment to identify the same person again, even when the identification is mistaken. There is a strong evidence for a commitment to a mistaken identification from a mugshot search (Blunt & McAllister, 2009; Brown, Deffenbacher, & Sturgill, 1977; Dysart, Lindsay, Hammond, & Dupuis, 2001; Gorenstein & Ellsworth, 1980; Goodsell, Neuschatz, & Gronlund, 2009; Haw, Dickinson, & Meissner, 2007; Hinz & Pezdek, 2001; Memon, Hope, Bartlett, & Bull, 2002), from a showup (Godfrey & Clark, 2010; Haw et al., 2007) and from a prior line‐up (Hinz & Pezdek, 2001; Pezdek & Blandon‐Gitlin, 2005). Another aspect of commitment has been observed amongst participants who reject culprit‐absent mugshots and were subsequently more likely to reject a culprit‐absent line‐ up (Brigham & Cairns, 1988). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: SummaryA live showup (known as a street identification in the UK) allows the perpetrator to be identified shortly after a street crime. If the suspect disputes the identification, a video line-up often ensues. Four experiments examined the reliability of live showups and their influence on a subsequent video line-up using realistic procedures and conditions. Similar proportions of culprits and innocent suspects were identified from live showups and video line-ups. Both culprits and innocent suspects previously identified were likely to be identified again in a subsequent line-up, with delays from a few minutes to a month. Only a weak effect of clothing bias was observed. There was strong evidence of commitment to a previous identification but no reliable evidence of source monitoring errors. The results suggest that a live showup is not less fair than a line-up, but the use of repeated identification procedures introduces an unfair bias against innocent suspects. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2012 · Applied Cognitive Psychology
  • Source
    • "Here, again, the procedure is highly suggestive to the extent that the witness can discern which person is common to both photo-lineups. Precisely these types of effects have been found in eyewitness identification experiments: Witnesses who encountered a innocent person's photo in an initial identification procedure were more likely to misidentify a different photo of him in a second procedure even if they did not misidentify him in the first procedure, but the effect is especially strong if they also misidentified the person in the first procedure (Brigham and Cairns 1988; Gorenstein and Ellsworth 1980; Hinz and Pezdek 2001; see meta-analysis by Deffenbacher et al. 2006). Although experiments have not directly tested the question of in-court identifications that occur after a pretrial lineup, our understanding of transference and commitment effects leads to the reasonable inference that a mistaken identification prior to trial is likely to be replicated during an in-court identification. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The U.S. Supreme Court's ruling concerning suggestive eyewitness identification procedures (Manson v. Braithwaite, 1977, 432 U.S. 98) has not been revisited by the Court in the intervening 30+ years. Meanwhile, scientific studies of eyewitnesses have progressed and DNA exonerations show that mistaken identification is the primary cause of convictions of the innocent. We analyzed the two-inquiry logic in Manson in light of eyewitness science. Several problems are discussed. Ironically, we note that suggestive identification procedures (determined in the first inquiry) boost the eyewitnesses' standing on three of the five criteria (used in the second inquiry) that are used to decide whether the suggestive procedures were a problem. The net effect undermines safeguards intended by the Court and destroys incentives to avoid suggestive procedures.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2008 · Law and Human Behavior
Show more