Public Act 12-111 required that not later than February 1, 2013, the Police Officer Standards and Training Council and the State Police develop and promulgate unifrom mandatory policies and appropriate guidelines for the conducting of eyewitness identification procedures that shall be based on best practices and be followed by all municipal and state law enforcement agencies. That policy can be viewed at the POST website.
It also mandated that a standardized form be developed for use by all law enforcement agencies when conducting an identification procedure and making a written record thereof. A sample form can be viewed by clicking here.
The Act also provided that by May 1, 2013, each police department adopt procedures for the conducting of photo lineups and live lineups that are in accordance with those policies and guidelines.
To view two thirteen minutes video clips from the CBS show "60 Minutes," discussing a case and the role that the eyewitness identification played in the erroneous conviction of the defendant, click Part 1 and Part 2. Note: it may take a few minutes to download the video files depending on your connection speed.
Eyewitness: means a person who observes another person at or near the scene of an offense;
Photo lineup: means a procedure in which an array of photographs, including a photograph of the person suspected as the perpetrator of an offense and additional photographs of other persons not suspected of the offense, is presented to an eyewitness for the purpose of determining whether the eyewitness is able to identify the suspect as the perpetrator;
Live lineup: means a procedure in which a group of persons, including the person suspected as the perpetrator of an offense and other persons not suspected of the offense, is presented to an eyewitness for the purpose of determining whether the eyewitness is able to identify the suspect as the perpetrator;
Showup: means a procedure in which a single person suspected as a perpetrator of an offense and maybe others are presented one at a time, to an eyewitness for the purpose of determining whether the eyewitness is able to identify the suspect as the perpetrator. Showup is also known as a Field Identification and/or One on One Identification. Showups typically occur shortly after the commission of a crime and/or when a suspect is apprehended at or near the crime;
Field View: means a procedure wherein the eyewitness views a group of people in a public place on the theory that the suspect may be among the group. A field view differs from a showup in that it may be conducted well after the commission of the crime and may be conducted with or without a suspect in the group;
Identification Procedure: means a photo lineup, a live lineup or a showup;
Filler: means either a person or a photograph of a person who is not suspected of an offense and is included in an identification procedure;
Sequential Photo Line-up or Live Line-up: means whenever a specific person is suspected as the perpetrator of an offense, the photographs included in a photo lineup or the persons participating a live lineup shall be presented sequentially so that the eyewitness views one photograph or one person at a time;
Double Blind Procedure: means that the identification procedure shall be conducted in such a manner that the person conducting the procedure does not know which person in the photo lineup or live lineup is suspected as the perpetrator of the offense;
Blind Administration (other than Folder Shuffle, below): means the conduct of an identification procedure in which the administrator of the procedure is unaware of which photograph the witness is viewing during the procedure. This procedure is intended to ensure that the eyewitness does not interpret a gesture or facial expression by the officer (administrator) as an indication as to the identity of the suspect;
Folder Shuffle Method: means that when the conduct of the Double Blind Procedure is not practicable, the photo lineup shall be conducted by inserting each of the required photographs into separate, unmarked folders, shuffling them and allowing the eyewitness to remove the photographs, one at a time to view them. A computer program in which a software program is used to administer any lineup, wholly or in part, shall comport to the procedures contained within this policy. If the eyewitness is able to make an identification of a photograph that person should sign and date the identified photograph;
Lap: means a single completed cycle to view all the photos in a photo lineup or all persons participating in a live lineup;
Confidence Statement: means a statement from the victim/witness, in his or her own words, on how certain they are of the identification which is taken immediately after identification is made. The Confidence Statement should be recorded in writing and signed by the victim/witness or otherwise memorialized;
Policy – Photographic Lineups and Live Lineups:
Policy – Conduct of Lineups:
Policy – Written Standard Identification Form and Record:
Policy - Procedures and Best Practices:
When implementation of the Double Blind Photographic procedure is not practicable due to lack of manpower resources, limited number of officers on duty, a major crime where many officers are aware of the identity of the suspect or any other such circumstance, a Blind Folder Shuffle must be used.
To view a seven minute video clip illustrating the folder shuffle procedure, click Folder Shuffle. Note: it may take a few minutes to download the video files depending on your connection speed.