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Expert Witness Explains Racial Predispositions for Eyewitness Testimony

Certain racial predispositions could affect eyewitness testimony for cases where a person is facing criminal prosecution or civil litigation and a victim exists. An expert witness is often part of these claims or cases, and he or she may need to explain the predisposition and how it colors the testimony in either negative or false details.

Racial predispositions may associate the person with certain traits, weaknesses or different aspects that could affect eyewitness testimony. Much of these circumstances draws from both psychological and emotional issues with racial discrimination and racism against the ethnic or national origin of the person. Some courts are unable to connect the witness with the testimony provided because of the race of the witness. Others may not attribute the person with what he or she says to retain truth due to racial discrimination. Many jury panel members are not part of the proceedings if discovered to have racist beliefs.

Racial Predispositions Explained

The factor of racial predispositions affects cases based on the individual rather than the entire race. However, some witnesses already have a predisposition to certain factors such as poor eyesight, remaining
at home, taking care of the elderly and even how they see or hear things. The predisposition could lead to racial discrimination with others, it could color testimony or add or remove certain elements that the courts may need, and it could harm the testimony of specific witnesses based on how they speak or explain the situation. The opinion of the witness may change as well based on these racial predispositions regarding the person.

The Expert Witness Explanations

When the expert witness becomes part of the case, he or she will need to assess the case and all witnesses and evidence. He or she may need to interview the witnesses for the side he or she will represent and determine if any racial predispositions will negatively affect the case or claim. Even if the lawyer coaches the individuals through testifying, the expert may notice certain aspects that color the testimony in a certain manner. These could involve fears, how the person reacts to other ethnicities or races and if any racism or discrimination appears.

Some witnesses will provide testimony that is skewed by personal opinion. This could also predispose the individual to thinking that someone walking down the street has ill intent. Similar issues arise that may demonstrate to the courts that the witness is racist or will discriminate against another person based on his or her gender, age or national origin. When the person acts a certain way, holds certain attitudes or acts in certain manners to or against others of a different race, it could negatively impact the testimony. Then, the expert witness will need to explain this to the courtroom. He or she may also need to discuss how the predisposition may harm the witness’ testimony.

The Expert in the Courtroom

The hired professional that explains racial predispositions may need to explain and discuss multiple aspects of how an eyewitness testimony is unreliable or harmful to a case. If the defendant of either a civil or criminal proceeding faces a witness from the other legal team that engages in racial discrimination or has racial predispositions that affect the case, the jury panel or judge may not understand the full measure of what occurred at the scene or in certain transactions. In racial matters where one subject is a different race than the other, the witness may color the testimony against the person he or she does not
generally like or like the look of.

The expert will need to provide additional details about why certain witnesses are either unnecessary or could negatively impact the character of the defendant. The primary concern in the courtroom is to either seek justice or a remedy to a civil matter. With an expert explaining the racial predisposition to think in one way, react in another way or to expose certain conditions of a person, it is possible to inform the judge or jury and remove confusion about the matter.

The Expert Witness in Racial Matters

With rampant racism affecting the United States, it may require the understanding of an expert witness to expose the matter or to clear up confusion and false statements some eyewitnesses may express. In the cases where the expert is necessary, the judge or jury may need the additional details to understand the testimony of the other witness after certain statements create confusion.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer.

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