Eyewitness Testimony and Memory Issues

When investigating and prosecuting crimes and other incidents, their can be a heavy level of reliance on eyewitness testimony to substantiate the facts that are suggested by other evidence and to fill in missing gaps in the story of the crime, accident, or other incident. This can be a problem, however, as two different eyewitness accounts of the same incident are likely to differ significantly in many ways, and even the same eyewitness can remember details differently at different intervals of time following the incident. This is due to the human function of memory: the differences between short- and long-term memory, the processes involved in creating and reinforcing memory, and various techniques that can be used to help bring out memories but are not always reliable. This paper will examine and explore many of the issues related to memory and eyewitness recall.

Short-term memory occurs...
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