Eye Witness Testimony

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  • Eye Witness Testimony
    • Leading Questions
      • Loftus & Palmer(1974)
        • experiment 1: 45 people watched clips of car crashes. they filled in a questionnaire with filler Qs and 1 critical one
          • the question was "about how fast was the car going when it_____ into the other"
            • the blank was filled in with either: smashed, collided, bumped, hit or contacted
              • the more severe the verb sounded, the faster the people said the car was
        • why do leading questions affect eye witness testimony?
          • Response Bias- people are unsure so the leading question bias' their results
          • Substitution explanation- the leading question changes the persons memory
          • Experiment 2: similar to experiment 1, but with 150 people and the groups smashed, hit or no question (as a control)
            • a week later they were asked "did you see any broken glass?"
              • double the amount of people in the smashed group said yes, compared to the other groups. this means substitution is correct
    • Post Event Discussion
      • if witnesses are allowed to discuss what happened they can contaminate their own testimony
      • Gabbert et al (2003)
        • people are paired and watch a video of the same crime but from different angles, some things could be visable from only one view
          • they then discussed what they saw and did a recall test on their own
            • 71% of people recalled something they hadn't seen (but gained through discussion)


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