The “Reverse Line-Up”
by Jamison Koehler on May 8, 2014
“The interrogators sometimes are instructed to induce a confession out of trickery . . . In the identification situation, the interrogator may take a break in his questioning to place the subject among a group of men in a line-up. The witness or complainant (previously coached, if necessary) studies the line-up and confidently points out the subject as the guilty party. Then the questioning resumes as though there were now no doubt about the guilt of the subject. A variation on this technique is called the “reverse line-up”: The accused is placed in a line-up, but this time he is identified by several fictitious witnesses or victims who associated him with different offenses. It is expected that the subject will become desperate and confess to the offense under investigation in order to escape from the false accusations.”
— Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S. 436, 453 (1966)(internal citations and quotations omitted).