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“I Think He Had A Tattoo On His Neck”: How Co-Witness Discussions About A Perpetrator’s Description Can Affect Eyewitness Identification Decisions.

Eisen, Mitchell; Gabbert, Fiona; Ting, Rebecca and Williams, Joseph. 2017. “I Think He Had A Tattoo On His Neck”: How Co-Witness Discussions About A Perpetrator’s Description Can Affect Eyewitness Identification Decisions. Journal of Applied Research in Memory and Cognition, 6(3), pp. 274-282. ISSN 2211-3681 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This experiment was designed to examine the effect of misinformation imparted through co-witness discussions on memory reports and line-up decisions obtained after varied retention intervals. Two-hundred and eighty-nine participants viewed a simulated car-jacking and then heard co-witnesses describe their memory for the event. Confederate accounts included three plausible and three implausible pieces of misinformation. Memory for the event was assessed after five-minutes, 50-minutes, two-days, or one-week. In addition to examining free-recall memory, we also looked at how misinformation about the perpetrator’s appearance affected recognition memory by obtaining identifications from culprit-present and absent lineups. One of the confederates falsely described the perpetrator having a tattoo on his neck, and one lineup filler had this feature. Results revealed that mistaken identifications of the tattooed filler increased significantly at the longer retention intervals, while recall for the misinformation decreased at the longer intervals. Also, as expected, plausible misinformation was recalled more often than implausible.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jarmac.2017.01.009

Keywords:

Eyewitness identification, Suggestibility, Witness conformity

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Psychology

Dates:

DateEvent
6 March 2017Published Online
16 January 2017Accepted
1 September 2017Published

Item ID:

19754

Date Deposited:

31 Jan 2017 10:54

Last Modified:

09 Jan 2020 15:27

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/19754

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