Fourth
Lineup

Eyewitness Identification Research Laboratory
At the University of Texas at El Paso

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Sure! It's number 4! Not hard was it?

We asked 101 participants from the UTEP campus to examine the lineup and try to pick the suspect. The expected ID rate per lineup member is 16.8. Here are the results:
12 1 2
77  6 3

Bias: .76 / .168

Size: 1.67

The bias figure means that 76% picked the suspect, in relation to 16.83% expected by chance (1/6). If the suspect does not stand out then people who know only the verbal description should not be able to pick him out at better than chance rates.

The size figure means that the lineup effectively contains only 1.67 people: the suspect plus 2/3 of an alternative! There are supposed to be at least 5 "fillers" in this photo lineup and all of them should be appropriate alternatives to the suspect. However, there is no other member who is a fully appropriate alternative to the suspect. The risk of false identification for an innocent suspect is nearly 100%. The fillers in this lineup fail in their role as a safeguard against false identification. Not hard to understand - only one has anything approaching "small, squinted eyes".

The investigators in this case chose to use a photo of the suspect in which he blinked for the camera. The investigator actually had other photos he could have used. For example, look at this lineup. Remember, the witness's description was this:

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