Eyewitness Identification Reform in Nebraska

Nebraska enacted a statute requiring all law enforcement agencies that conduct eyewitness identifications to adopt a written policy and submit it to the Nebraska Commission on Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice. The policy shall include the minimum standards developed by the Commission relating to the following: (a) standards which describe the administration of a lineup, (b) procedures governing the instructions given by a peace officer to an eyewitness, and (c) procedures for documentation of the eyewitness’s level of certainty of an identification.

The Commission approved minimum standards and a model policy that includes the ‘core four’ evidence-based practices: blind/blinded administration of the lineup, instructions to the eyewitness that the perpetrator may or may not be present, use of non-suspect fillers that generally match the eyewitness’s description of the perpetrator and do not make the suspect noticeably stand out, and eliciting a statement of confidence from the eyewitness immediately after an identification is made. Statute effective: 2016; Policy adopted: 2016.

Read the statute and read the Commission’s model policy.