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How Often Do Police Lineups Identify the Right Suspect?

 Posted on February 06, 2020 in Bail Bonds

Doc's Bail Bonds

When police are on the hunt for a suspect, they will use several methodsto narrow down their search. One method that likely comes to mind is the use ofa police lineup. Although we have all seen lineups on screen, many do not knowhow they work in real life. There is also the question of how reliable theyare. How often do police lineups help identify the right suspect? We are goingto give you a quick lesson on how police use lineups to help solve their cases.Doc's Bail Bonds is hereto help DFW residents get out of jail so they do not end up in one of theselineups.

What Are the Types of Police Lineups?

There are three main types of lineups police might use in aninvestigation: simultaneous, sequential and multiple identification.


The image that likely comes to mind is called a simultaneouslineup. This type of lineup consists of several suspects who have similarphysical characteristics lining up to be looked at by a witness. The suspects lineup in a row and will usually speak or perform an action for the witness to see.The witness then tells the police which person they recognize as the suspectand make an official statement.


The sequential lineup has the suspects be viewed by thewitness one at a time. This method has been proven to be more effective thansimultaneous lineups because it decreases the chances of the witness makingcomparisons between the subjects.

Multiple Identification

Multiple identification is believed to be the best lineupmethod and takes place in steps. The witness first identifies facial pictures,then full body images, and sometimes voice recordings. This keeps the witnessfrom jumping to conclusions too quickly.

Why Might Police Use a Lineup?

Police might use a lineup during an investigation as asupplementary tool. It is unlikely that a lineup will be the deciding factor inan investigation, but the results can influence how intensely law enforcementlooks into certain suspects.

How Reliable Are Police Lineups?

The answer to the reliability of police lineups is still ahighly debated topic. Lineups have a track record of being tainted due towitnesses feeling pressured to make a decision. Despite their controversy,studies have shown that lineups have reduced the amount of mistakenidentifications of perpetrators. To help increase their reliability, somestates have changed lineup procedures to decrease the chances of falseidentification.

Doc's Bail Bonds: We Get You Out of Jail Fast in Dallas / Fort Worth

Films and television can sometimes cloud our knowledge of howthe legal system works, but the iconic image of a police lineup has somevalidity. Although police lineups are not going to make or break a case, theyare genuinely used to point police in the right direction. Different methods oflineups have developed over time, and they are only getting more effective withuse.

If you need to get out of jail after an arrest, you can turnto Doc's Bail Bonds to get you free and back with your friends and loved onesASAP. Call us at (214) 747-4110 or visit our website to find out more about our bailbond options. Sick of jailtime? Call the doctor; we'll get you out!

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