NJ Supreme Court: Under current system, in-court eyewitness identifications are unreliable and fail to deter police misconduct

Today, in a unanimous ruling, New Jersey’s highest court ordered changes to the way eyewitness identifications are used in court, saying “the current system is not reliable enough, fails to deter police misconduct and overstates jurors’ ability to evaluate the evidence.”  According to the Associated Press, the court has required that a system be developed “to better explain to juries the potential flaws with eyewitness identifications.”  Read the AP article HERE.

In the 142-page decision, New Jersey Supreme Court Chief Justice Stuart Rabner wrote that “Courts must carefully consider identification evidence before it is admitted to weed out unreliable identifications, and that juries must receive thorough instructions tailored to the facts of the case to be able to evaluate the identification evidence they hear.”

 

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