Are Police Simultaneous Lineups Constitutional ?
In New York the preferable manner of conducting an identification procedure is a lineup ( People v. Fletcher, 178 AD2d 776, 777; People v. Thomas, 147 AD2d 510, 512; People v. Garcia, 115 AD2d 617, 618; see also, Stovall v. Denno, 388 US 293, 302).
New York courts have described the word "lineup" in terms of a simultaneous lineup ( People v. Adams, 53 NY2d 241, 249).
By making the lineup the preferable manner of conducting an identification procedure and using that term to refer to a simultaneous lineup, the courts are stating that a simultaneous lineup is constitutionally permitted. the court takes judicial notice of the numerous decisions upholding the validity of lineups, which were conducted simultaneously.
Although the courts have not specifically addressed the simultaneous aspect of the lineup, the inference is that simultaneous lineups are constitutional.
The court finds that a simultaneous lineup is constitutional.
The courts that have considered sequential lineups have similarly held that sequential lineups are constitutional (State v. Armstrong, supra, 110 Wis 2d, at 577-578, 329 NW2d, at 397; People v. Blue, supra, 165 Misc 2d, at 1002-1003).
The court is thus faced with the issue whether it has the power to direct the People to use one constitutional method above another constitutional method.