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Identification on the street: A survey of police use of street identification and other identification procedures

Identification on the street: A survey of police use of street identification and other identification procedures

Davis, J.P., Valentine, T., Memon, A. and Roberts, A. (2010) Identification on the street: A survey of police use of street identification and other identification procedures. In: British Psychological Society Annual Conference 2010, 14 - 16 April, 2010, Stratford-upon-Avon.

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Abstract

Objectives:
Following a crime report, the police in England and Wales may use a street identification (showup) to obtain evidence when there is insufficient evidence to arrest. This may involve encouraging a witness to view an individual, or to conduct an area search of the vicinity. The aim of this research was to survey police use of street identifications, comparing outcomes with alternative visual procedures and to extrapolate national estimates of use.

Design:
Case data involving identification procedures were obtained from four police forces. These included street identifications, familiar suspect identifications, CCTV evidence, ‘mug shot’ images, facial composites and video lineups.

Methods:
Three types of data were collected. Firstly, diary studies of robbery squad officers provided details of 701 cases involving an identification procedure and their outcomes. Secondly, data of 37 cases in which positive street identifications were followed by a video lineup of the same suspect. Finally, data of 80 cases in which an area search was conducted with or without a witness present in a police vehicle.

Results:
A street identification was attempted in approximately 25% of robberies and was the most frequently used identification procedure. Approximately, 12% resulted in a suspect identification. The majority (66%) were later charged or cautioned, particularly if a witness identified the same suspect in a subsequent video lineup.

Conclusions:
The police rely on street identification in the investigation of street robbery. Despite a modest success rate, it is more likely than any alternative procedure to result in a suspect being charged.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Paper)
Additional Information: [1] This paper was presented during Symposium AC10170 entitled Facial identification in an applied setting convened by Allan McNeill of Glasgow Caledonian University
Uncontrolled Keywords: identification, police, street
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Health & Social Care
School of Health & Social Care > Applied Psychology Research Group
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:13
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/5201

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