Penrod and Cutler

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  • Created by: Steff06
  • Created on: 06-05-16 18:20
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  • Penrod and Cutler
    • Aim:
      • To examine several factors including confidence that jurors might consider when evaluating eyewitness identification evidence.
    • Methodology:
      • An experiment using a mock-trial scenario. Independent measures design.
    • Participants:
      • Undergraduates, eligable and experienced jurors.
    • Procedure:
      • A videotaped trial of a robbery was presented in which eyewitness identification played a key role. Witness testified she was either 80/100% confident she had identified the robber.
      • 9 other variables all at both high and low level were introduced into the film, 4 of which are suspect in disguise, weapon focus, retention interval and witness confidence of identification.
      • Participants experienced either the high or low condition variables on a random basis and after watching the film they were asked to decide whether the robber was guilty or not.
    • Results:
      • Witness confidence is the only statistically significant effect of those listed variables under the conditions of the mock trial.
      • In a further 9 studies, Cutler looked at the relation between confidence and accuracy and weak correlations were found.
    • Conclusion:
      • The evidence in the field is consistent in showing that confidence is a poor predictor of witness accuracy.
      • It also shows jurors' trust in it undiminshed, even if the judge advises the juryto be wary of it in summing up.


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