DPP: Use police line-ups before video footage

Tuesday, November 5, 2019 - 12:45

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Roger Gaspard, believes identification through police line-up should be the first form of identification for a suspect, instead of the use of video footage.

He made the recommendation at today’s meeting of a Special Select Committee of Parliament, examining the Evidence Amendment Bill 2019.

DPP Gaspard said it gives the police and the witness a broader scope and a better chance at pinpointing a suspect.

He explained to the Special Select Committee that depending on how the video medium is used, it wholly excludes the prospect of the witness asking the officer conducting the procedure to have the suspect or the persons in the video medium walk, talk, bend, stretch—that is, do other things which may lend themselves, by way of confirmation, of a positive identification.

“At the ID parade, it is well settled that a witness may ask the ID parade officer to have the suspect, and by extension all the suspects on the parade say a particular word; make a particular motion; walk or raise their hands, etc.” the DPP said. “With the video medium, you would lose all of that.”

DPP Gaspard acknowledged that police may struggle to get people to agree to be part of the identification parade, and says when that happens, video footage will be the next option.



Story by NEWS DESK