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Response Latency in Eyewitness Identification

An important issue for the police and courts is the extent to which an eyewitness's decision about a lineup can be trusted as accurate. Consequently, psychologists have searched for variables associated with the witness's decision that help distinguish correct from incorrect decisions. One such variable is response latency (or response speed). Response latency is measured as the time elapsed from the witness's first view of a lineup or photo array to their indication of a decision. A consistent relationship has been identified between the response latency and accuracy of positive identifications, but not of lineup rejections. Thus, fast identifications are more likely than slow identifications to be correct, while rapid and ponderous lineup rejections are equally likely to be accurate.

The rationale behind the investigation of ...

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