New Jersey: Report of the Special Master on Eyewitness Testimony is Released

Retired New Jersey Appellate Division Judge Geoffrey Gaulkin released his report in State v. Henderson today June 21, 2010. . The New Jersey Supreme Court appointed judge Gaulkin in May 2009 to serve as special master and to hold hearings and issue a report “to test the validity of our state law standards on the admissibility of eyewitness identification.” According to news comments, the report suggests that eyewitness testimony should be treated more like physical evidence and be subjected to pretrial hearings to assess how reliable it is.

According to a June 21, 2010 New York Times article ” Use of Eyewitnesses in New Jersey Courts Needs Change, Ex-Judge Says” by Richard PÉREZ-PEÑA, the report recommends that”Courts should do more to gauge the accuracy of witnesses to crimes, and to let juries know how flawed their testimony can be, according to a former appellate judge assigned by the New Jersey Supreme Court to review the matter….In particular, [judge Geoffrey Gaulkin] wrote, judges should assess factors that might limit a witness’s reliability in picking someone out of a lineup, either in person or in a photo array…”

Click on the link below the see the complete report:

Click here to view the report at NJ

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