On Suggestive and Necessary Identification Procedures
University of Oregon - School of Law
August 4, 2009
American Journal of Criminal Law, Vol. 37, 2009
Despite the paramount importance of identification evidence in criminal trials, Supreme Court precedents on the subject have been confusing and confused. The result is widespread misapplication of proper constitutional doctrine: lower courts habitually admit evidence of suggestive identification procedures if they find such procedures to have been ‘necessitated’ by circumstances on the ground. Such reasoning misinterprets the governing Supreme Court cases and, in any event, makes little sense. Whether necessary or not, evidence of suggestive identification procedures, and any consequent in-court identifications, must be excluded from trial unless supported by sufficient indicia of reliability.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 16
Keywords: criminal procedure, due process, identification procedures, suggestive identification procedures, admissibility
Date posted: August 4, 2009 ; Last revised: March 24, 2010