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The Psychology of Eyewitness Recollection: Preparing for Eyewitness Failure in Internal Investigations and Trials

Speaker(s): Florina Altshiler, Margaret B Kovera, Ph.D.
Recorded on: Jun. 16, 2020
PLI Program #: 302620

Florina Altshiler is a Partner with Russo & Toner LLP, specializing in labor law, premise liability and medical malpractice defense litigation where she handles matters through jury trial to verdict in the State and Federal Courts across New York State. She is licensed in NY, NJ and Alaska.

Ms. Altshiler is also the exclusive Legal Analyst for WKBW ABC News. She has been quoted and published throughout the country, including the Miami Herald, Chicago Tribune, the Daily Beast, the New York Law Journal, the Buffalo Law Journal, and BBC.  She has appeared on both national and local television broadcasts. She has traveled to offer CLE presentations across the country and frequently presents locally for the Buffalo Claims Association, Defense Trial Lawyers Association, and the Erie Institute of Law, among others. She continues to serve as an instructor at Columbia University in the City of New York, Buffalo State College and Daemen College. Her courses include trial advocacy, legal research and writing, torts and neuroscience and the law; she was previously an adjunct instructor at St. John’s School of Law in New York City.

Prior to relocating to Buffalo, Ms. Altshiler served as a prosecutor for the State of Alaska, Office of the Attorney General, based in Anchorage, where she handled the prosecution of all levels of crime through trial to jury verdict and also served on the sexual assault response team and the homicide response rotation. She successfully prosecuted dozens of cases through verdict, including violent felonies and sexual assaults. In 2013, she received an Alaska State Legislature Citation for her work with the Anchorage High School Mock Trial program.  She also continues to volunteer for the Alaska Network on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.

Ms. Altshiler continues to serve as an arbitrator for the Civil Court of the City of New York where she started in 2009 and she is also a Certified Federal Court Mediator with the Western District of New York. She was selected as a Harpur Law Council Steering Committee Appointee for the 2016 – 2019 term and has renewed for a second term through 2021.  She serves as a Board Member of the Defense Trial Lawyers Association; she previously served three-year terms as a Board Member for Journeys End Refugee Services. Crisis Services and New York Legal Assistance Group.

Ms. Altshiler’s distinctions include selection as a Top-Rated Civil Litigation Attorney and a Rising Star by Super Lawyers magazine in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020; a perfect 10.0 rating by Avvo; and Above the Law’s Lawline Top 20 Female Faculty on 2016 and 2020.



Margaret Bull Kovera is a Presidential Scholar and Professor of Psychology at John Jay College, City University of New York. Her research, much of it funded by the National Science Foundation, examines eyewitness identification accuracy and legal decision making in a variety of contexts. Kovera has received the Saleem Shah Award for Early Career Achievement in Psychology and Law, the Outstanding Teacher and Mentor in Psychology and Law Award, and 2018 Book Award from the American Psychology-Law Society for her book, The Psychology of Juries. She is a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, the American Psychological Association, the American Psychology-Law Society, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, among other academic societies.  Dr. Kovera is the former Editor-in-Chief of Law and Human Behavior and a Past-President of the American Psychology-Law Society. She regularly serves as an expert witness in cases involving eyewitness identification.  She is a co-author of the American Psychology-Law Society’s recommendations for best practices in the collection of eyewitness identification evidence.