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J Exp Psychol Appl. 2004 Sep;10(3):139-47.

Eyewitness identification accuracy and response latency: the unruly 10-12-second rule.

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  • 1School of Psychology, Flinders University, Adelaide, SA, Australia.


Data are reported from 3,213 research eyewitnesses confirming that accurate eyewitness identifications from lineups are made faster than are inaccurate identifications. However, consistent with predictions from the recognition and search literatures, the authors did not find support for the "10-12-s rule" in which lineup identifications faster than 10-12 s maximally discriminate between accurate and inaccurate identifications (D. Dunning & S. Perretta, 2002). Instead, the time frame that proved most discriminating was highly variable across experiments, ranging from 5 s to 29 s, and the maximally discriminating time was often unimpressive in its ability to sort accurate from inaccurate identifications. The authors suggest several factors that are likely to moderate the 10-12-s rule.

(c) 2004 APA, all rights reserved.

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