Reform of Eyewitness Identification Procedures

Pages: 235
Item #: 4318116
ISBN: 978-1-4338-1283-5
List Price: $69.95
Member/Affiliate Price: $49.95
Copyright: 2013
Format: Hardcover
Availability: In Stock
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For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories


In recent decades, nearly 300 U.S. citizens convicted of major felonies have been found innocent and exonerated. Along the way, forensic psychologists have played a key role in efforts to uncover and publicize the systemic issues that contribute to erroneous convictions.

In his previous book, Conviction of the Innocent: Lessons From Psychological Research, Brian Cutler surveyed a wide range of psychological factors contributing to erroneous convictions. Now, in Reform of Eyewitness Identification Procedures, he narrows his focus to the most important single factor underlying many innocent convictions: mistaken eyewitness identifications.

Top researchers in the field of eyewitness research present full reviews of the literature on key issues such as

  • the nature and composition of police lineups
  • the relative effectiveness of sequential vs. simultaneous lineups
  • the importance of double-blind lineup administrations
  • the effectiveness of lineups vs. showups
  • the slippery nature of eyewitness memory

In each chapter, authors turn research into practice by providing clear and practical recommendations for effective police and legal reform.

This book is an important milestone in ongoing efforts to make mistaken convictions a thing of the past.

Table of Contents



Introduction: Identification Procedures and Conviction of the Innocent
Andrew M. Smith and Brian L. Cutler

  1. Eyewitness System Variables
    Miko M. Wilford and Gary L. Wells
  2. Showups
    Charles A. Goodsell, Stacy A. Wetmore, Jeffrey S. Neuschatz, and Scott D. Gronlund
  3. Lineup Instructions
    Nancy K. Steblay
  4. Constructing the Lineup: Law, Reform, Theory, and Data
    Steven E. Clark, Ryan A. Rush, and Molly B. Moreland
  5. Presentation Methods
    Scott D. Gronlund, Shannon M. Andersen, and Colton Perry
  6. Double-Blind Lineup Administration: Effects of Administrator Knowledge on Eyewitness Decisions
    Jacqueline L. Austin, David M. Zimmerman, Lindsey Rhead, and Margaret Bull Kovera
  7. Eyewitness Certainty as a System Variable
    Laura Smalarz and Gary L. Wells
  8. Field Studies of Eyewitness Memory
    Daniel B. Wright, Amina Memon, Gary Dalton, Rebecca Milne, and Ruth Horry

Conclusion: Identification Test Reforms
Andrew M. Smith and Brian L. Cutler


About the Editor

Editor Bio

Brian L. Cutler, PhD, received his doctorate in social psychology in 1987 from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He is a professor in the faculty of social science and humanities at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), Oshawa, Ontario, Canada. Prior to joining UOIT's faculty, Dr. Cutler served on the psychology faculties at Florida International University and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Dr. Cutler has been conducting research on the psychology of eyewitness identification and its role in conviction of the innocent for more than 25 years. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation.

In addition to this volume, he has authored and edited five books and more than 60 book chapters and research articles about the psychology of eyewitness identification. His research has been cited in court cases, the media, other research, and psychology textbooks. Dr. Cutler has also served as editor of the journal Law and Human Behavior and president of APA Division 41 (American Psychology–Law Society).

In collaboration with his students and other eyewitness scientists, Dr. Cutler continues to maintain an active research program, focusing on eyewitness identification. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on various aspects of psychology, criminology, research methods, and writing for the social sciences.

Reviews & Awards
This book is well organized, informative, and heavily rooted in data-based scholarship that highlights current practices while informing future best practices to assist with the reduction of eyewitness identification error…Overall, the book is logically consistent and practical and therefore emerges as a significant contribution to the growing literature in the area.