Reaching a verdict

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  • Created by: devona
  • Created on: 14-05-13 19:14

Persuading a jury:Pennington & Hastie

Aim: to investigate if story order evidence effect final verdict and what extent on confidence

Method: lab experiment. 130 students Northwestern uni & Chicago uni, paid one hour.one of four conditions.39 evidence each from defence and precaution, story order chronological order and witness order, presenting witness first or last. All listen to tape recording of stimulus trial adapted for real- life case then responded to questions.seperated by partitions with no interaction they were asked to reach a verdict then rate their confidence on likert 5 point scale.  

Findings: story order persuaded more jurors of guilt, if defence present in witness order even more guilt. If positions reversed and defence had story order guilty rate drop to 31%

Conclusion: shows that presenting the case in story order has a persuasive effect 

Background info: psychologist now that how we receive information affects how well we  remember it. the primacy effect shown by Murdoch list, remember words from middle or end. recency effect words at the end "recent". apply to court room present your best witness first or last and how this will effect the memory of juorrs.



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Persuading a jury: Cutler

Aim: effect of expert witness on juror's decision-making.

Method: lad experiment.mock trial videotape 538 undergraduates, given extra  robbery(video) in groups 2 to 8. filled out questionnaire:verdict,memory and rating scale of confidence. 4 IV conditions,

1.WIC(witness identification condition) good or poor view of suspect.

2.Witness confidence- 80% or 100% 

3.Form of testimony- expert descriptive or percentages 

4.Expert opinion- in half opinion 0-25 scale of correct

Findings: verdicts- WIC good more guilty increase with expert give descriptive. 100% more guilt with good WIC.

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Persuading a jury: Pickel

Aim: look at role of judge's instructions when they were followed by a legal explanation.

Method: 236 Bali state uni.mock trial, independent measures fictional theft.introduced by accident by witness, judge either tell juror to disregard with explanation or without. audiotape then complete questionnaire : verdict,probable guilt and rating scale 10 of inadmissible evidence influenced them, credibility of witness.control group. 

Findings/conclusions: mock jurors ruled inadmissible with no explanation able to ignore, with explanation less likely to find defendant guilty. calling attention to inadmissible evidence makes it more important to jurors therefore paying more attention "backfire effect".

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Witness appeal: Castellow

Aim: hypothesis that an attractive defendant is less likely to be seen guilty

Method: lad experiment,mock trial,independent measures. 71 male & 74 female students,extra credit at east Carolina uni. Reading sexual harassment case, answer questions. With case attach photos of victim and defendant already categorised attractive and not by panel on 1-9. DV question about guilty of sexual harassment case, rate both defendant and victim on 11 point rating scale for bipolar.

Findings: Defendant attractive 56% guilty compared to 76% of unattractive defendant. when victim attractive 77% guilty compared to 55% of unattractive. 

Conclusions: mock trial, applied to real courtroom appearance does have an effect on verdict, supported by other research. A defendant would be advised to make the best of their appearance hen going to court. 

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Witness appeal: Penrod and cutler

Aim: examine confidence which jurors might consider when evaluating eyewitness identification evidence. 

Method: experiment, mock trial, independent measures undergraduates. Videotape of a robbery, witness testified either 80% or 100% after asked about guilt. 

Findings: 100-67% compared to 80-60%

Conclusion: jurors trust witness confidence and is undiminished even when advised to be wary of it.

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Witness appeal; Ross et al

Aim: use of protective shields and videotaped testimony increases the likelihood of guilty verdict.

Method: mock trial based on actual transcript of case, professions recorded different versions. first open court, shield and video link. 300 college students, white middle class. 100 assigned to each condition. Watch one of three versions 2hours, abuse of child's father as defendant.after participants gave verdicts and rated the credibility of the child witness story and defendant. 

Findings/ Conclusion: open court more guilty verdict of 51% compared to 49%, difference in gender more female find guilty verdicts than males.Supported by second experiment, child testimony interrupted straight after.The use of shield les likely to produce conviction for defendant. 

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