August 2013 Archives

Suppressing an Eyewitness Identification

Eye Witness Identification:  One of the most difficult areas of the law facing criminal trial lawyers is handling eyewitness identifications, both in and out of the courtroom.  There is no doubt that eyewitness identifications are often one of the most powerful pieces of evidence against a criminal defendant.  They are also extremely unreliable, especially when the identification is the result of a police "show-up."  A show-up is a procedure where a single criminal suspect is shown before a witness who is then asked to make an identification.  More often than not, the witness is brought by police to see the lone criminal suspect being held by the police and under circumstances suggesting that the police have captured the right man/woman.  There is often much pressure on the victim to identify the suspect simply because it will please the police.

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