Applying the STAMP Safety Model to Prevent False Convictions Based on Eyewitness Misidentifications

33 Pages Posted: 18 Feb 2021

See all articles by Boaz Sangero

Boaz Sangero

Sapir Academic College; Western Galilee College

Date Written: December 9, 2020

Abstract

In many criminal law systems, eyewitness identification of a suspect is sufficient to establish that they are the perpetrator of the crime in question, without any need for additional corroborating evidence. But this lofty legal status stands in contrast to the undisputed assertion in the professional literature that an erroneous eyewitness identification is far from rare, with many scholars holding it to be the most common cause of false convictions. On this background, this Article offers ways of reducing the rate of false convictions based on eyewitness misidentifications. The Article argues for the creation and application of a safety theory in the criminal justice system, specifically regarding eyewitness identifications. Therefore, after the Article connects between the modern theory of safety, which is well developed in other areas of our life, and the new theory of safety from false convictions; and after a deep discussion of one of the most serious hazards in criminal law — the hazard of false convictions based on eyewitness misidentifications — a specific safety model shall be developed, based on these discussions and on the innovative STAMP safety model. The substance of the suggested rules is based on both the psychological research and the legal literature. The high rate of false convictions is not an inevitable fate.

Keywords: Eyewitness Identification, False Conviction, Safety, STAMP, Evidence

Suggested Citation

Sangero, Boaz, Applying the STAMP Safety Model to Prevent False Convictions Based on Eyewitness Misidentifications (December 9, 2020). Albany Law Review, Vol. 83, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3745708

Boaz Sangero (Contact Author)

Sapir Academic College ( email )

Hof Ashkelon, 7916500
Israel

Western Galilee College ( email )

P.O. Box 2125
Acre, North 24121
Israel

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