The Case of the Young Eyewitness

Topics: American films, English-language films, Lie Pages: 1 (296 words) Published: December 3, 2011
The purpose of this paper is to assess your ability to understand various elements of life span psychology, sensation, perception, consciousness, memory, etc. Imagine you are a lawyer defending a man accused of shooting someone outside a nightclub. The only eyewitness is a 16 year old girl, and she has identified your client as the shooter in a line up at the police station. Her statement to the police reads as follows:

It happened a few months ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday. I know that's the guy because he kept watching me while I was on the dance floor and he was making me nervous. There were lots of girls dancing, but he was always staring at me. Yeah, I used a fake ID to get some beers, but I wasn't drunk. I went outside because the bright lights were making me dizzy. As soon as I go out the door, I saw him and his buddies arguing with somebody, and then I saw the flash of the gun in the dark and heard the shot. I'm sure it was him that had the gun and not one of the other guys, becuase he looked like a white supremacist skinhead. He was bald, had a bunch of weird tattoos, and dressed all in leather. Of course, it didn't surprise me that he was packing a gun and ended up shooting someone.

The girl has passed a lie detector test, so it appears she is telling the truth. But you client insists he is innocent. Describe at least five reasons, based onpsychological theories or principles, why the eyewitness could be mistaken. Refer to the relevant theories or principles specifically and explain exactly how they apply in this particular situation
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