Can composite construction contaminate witness memory?

Turner, Jim; Briggs, Gemma; Pike, Graham and Brace, Nicola (2009). Can composite construction contaminate witness memory? In: The 8th Biennial Conference of the Society for Applied Research in Memory and Cognition, 26-30 Jul 2009, Kyoto, Japan.


Previous research has suggested that exposing a witness to a ‘misleading’ facial composite can affect identification accuracy. In practice it is the process of constructing a facial composite that may have the most effect on witness memory. In the present study, participants were asked to construct a facial composite but were actually presented with a pre-prepared sequence showing a ‘misleading’ composite being constructed. Participants were then shown either an immediate or delayed target-absent identification task, containing a foil similar to the misleading composite. The results of this study are discussed in terms of the malleability and durability of witness memory.

Viewing alternatives

No digital document available to download for this item

Item Actions