Sunday, April 15, 2018

April 21 - Understanding Eyewitness Evidence and Confession Evidence in Criminal Cases: A Sensitive Skeptic’s Guide

Presented by Martin A. Safer, PhD,
Emeritus Professor of Psychology,
The Catholic University of America 

Inaccurate eyewitness testimony and false confessions are two of the most common reasons for wrongful convictions in criminal cases.  Using an actual case, Dr. Safer will illustrate why eyewitnesses may be inaccurate.  However, it is wrong to presume that all eyewitness testimony is unreliable.  Dr. Safer will present research on how to improve the quality of eyewitness evidence.  Legal professionals around the world, as well as ordinary citizens, are relatively unaware of both the flaws and potential strengths of eyewitness evidence.  Dr. Safer will describe the Interview-Identification-Eyewitness Factors (I-I-Eye) educational aid which helps sensitize individuals to judge more appropriately what is likely to be accurate versus inaccurate eyewitness evidence.

Dr. Safer will also present research regarding confession evidence in criminal cases and will describe the Before-During-After educational aid for assessing the quality of confession evidence. It is hoped that learning about these educational aids will help audience members become more sensitive skeptics about good versus poor quality eyewitness and confession evidence.

Professor Safer is Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the Catholic University of America, where he taught for more than 35 years. He has more than 70 peer-reviewed publications, primarily in the areas of emotions and memory, including publications on eyewitness evidence and confession evidence. He has also served as an expert consultant on eyewitness evidence in criminal cases.

Saturday, April 21, 2018
1:30 pm

B-CC Regional Services Center
4805 Edgemoor Lane
2nd Floor (West Room)
Bethesda, MD


 FREE admission – Everyone welcome, members and non-members