Lineup member similarity effects on children's eyewitness identification

Ryan J. Fitzgerald, Brittany F. Whiting, Natalie M. Therrien, Heather L. Price

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Abstract

To date, research investigating the similarity among lineup members has focused on adult eyewitnesses. In the present research, children made identifications from lineups containing members of lower or higher similarity to a target person. In Experiment 1, following a live interaction, children's (6–14 years) correct identification rate was reduced in higher-similarity relative to lower-similarity lineups. In Experiment 2, children (6–12 years) and adults watched a video containing a target person. Again, higher-similarity lineup members reduced children's correct identifications; however, similarity had no effect on adults' correct identification rate. Although children benefited from lower-similarity lineups when the target was present, lower-similarity lineups generally increased misidentifications of an innocent suspect when the target was absent. Thus, increasing similarity in lineups for children had a cost on target-present lineups and a benefit on target-absent lineups.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-418
JournalApplied Cognitive Psychology
Volume28
Issue number3
Early online date26 Feb 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

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