Eyewitness Testimony

Texas resident Larry Fuller was officially pardoned in 2007 for a rape he did not commit and for which he spent 19 years in prison—one of more than 200 erroneous convictions overturned by DNA evidence in the United States since 1989. In at least 75% of these cases, as in Fuller's, eyewitness error contributed to wrongful conviction. Partly to understand such errors, eyewitness scientists have built on 100 years of memory research in psychology to develop principles of perception and memory specific to the eyewitness experience. In the process, memory myths frequently held by both professionals and laypersons have been challenged. For example, research findings during the past three decades contradict the common belief that memories for traumatic events lie hidden in pristine and recoverable ...

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