Is Pi eeping because she thinks that she won’t get a conviction without the show up? Or is she just embarrassed that she forgot to ask how confident the witness was in his I.D.?
I’d bet the first eep was embarrassment at her forgetfulness, and the second was at the weakening of her case.
So both, really.
If the prosecution did ask the witness, how confident would the witness have to be for judge to allow the testimony? Or would it not really matter considering the other factors?
Why would confidence of the eyewitness matter at all?
That seems remarkably subjective.
“I dunno maybe it was some kind of brown? I didn’t get that good of a look at the car. I just noticed that it sped by after hitting that kid on his skateboard.”
“It was a light sandlewood hatchback station wagon, late 80s or early 90s. I’m sure of it, I remember watching it come down the street thinking, “Wow, that car seems to be going really quickly. I wonder where they’re off to?””
That is less a difference in certainty than it is a difference in detail.
Maybe it’s, “That’s HIM!” as opposed to, “That’s… him?”.
A better example would probably be:
“I think it was a white Jeep SUV? I was too busy helping the guy that was hit to get a close look before it drove away.”
“It was a white Jeep SUV. I’m sure of it. Why? There’s a car very similar to what that one looked in last night’s episode of Walking Dead. It totally reminded me of that. I love Walking Dead. Do you watch Walking Dead? Zombies are awesome.”
That second one doesn’t tell me that your memory is accurate. It only tells me that you associated it, rightly or wrongly, with something that you care about. Such an association makes it harder for you to forget the memory once it is established. But it doesn’t make your memory more likely to have correctly formed in the first place.
No, but it does make you more certain of what you saw.
Perhaps, but that very certainty may be a bad thing in this context. If you associate something with something else that you care about, it’s much more likely that you’ll incorporate other elements from that outside thing into the matter at hand.
To use the white Jeep SUV from Y. Exeter’s example, it’s great that the memory of Walking Dead helped the witness remember the type of car, but what if the actual car is more of an off-white and the witness is remembering it as the cleaner white from the show’s car? What if they remember a cracked windshield, when it was actually the Walking Dead SUV that had the cracked windshield? Mental association may make you certain of something, but it can all-too-often make that memory even less reliable.
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