SECTION 1. The General Laws are hereby amended by inserting after Chapter 41, Section 98G, the following new section: -
1.The Massachusetts State Police, the Transit Police of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and the police department of any city or town serving a population of two thousand residents or more shall have a written policy consistent with the model policy on eyewitness identification developed by the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association and the Massachusetts State Police and promulgated by the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS).
2.The model policy shall include the following minimal elements consistent with general accepted science and evidence-based practice:
a. A show-up should not be conducted more than two hours after the witness’s observation of the offender;
b.The Department shall not employ multiple identification procedures featuring any one suspect with the same witness.
c.Any lineup or photo array shall be conducted by an administrator who does not know the suspect’s identity or shall be conducted in a manner that prevents the administrator from knowing which member of the array is being viewed by the eyewitness at any given time.
d.In addition to the suspect, there shall be at least four non-suspects in any live lineup and at least five non-suspects in any photo array. All non-suspect photos or individuals in an array or lineup shall match the description of the perpetrator provided by the eyewitness. No photo or lineup member shall stand out.
e.Each witness shall be instructed that the perpetrator may or may not be present, that the investigation will continue regardless of whether an identification is made, and that the administrator is not aware of which lineup or array member is the suspect.
f.At the time an identification is made, the eyewitness shall be asked to articulate in his or her own words, the level of certainty he or she feels in the identification. This statement shall be documented verbatim.
3.Each written policy shall include the minimal elements identified in Section 1(2) and be submitted for approval to EOPSS to ensure conformity with the model policy.
4.The model policy shall be revisited biennially by the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association and Massachusetts State Police and, if necessary, modified to ensure its consistency with jury instructions related to system variables issued by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.
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