Reaching a Verdict - Persuading A Jury - Pennington and Hastie

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  • Created by: Majid
  • Created on: 28-12-12 12:33

Persuading A Jury - Pennington and Hastie

Pennington and Hastie

The only thing that should affect the verdict given is the evidence, but there are certain Psychological factors which influence the persuasion of a jury. One of these factors is the order in which the evidence is presented.

Aim: Investigate whether participants could be led to a verdict by the order of testimony.

Method and Procedure: Lab experiment;130 student participants; given evidence from a real-life trial on a tape recording;had to reach a guilty/not guilty verdict;presented in witness order/story order. Story order = natural order, easily construct a story about what had happened. Witness order = presented like it was in the original trial.

Results: 69% GV = Story Order 47% GV = Witness Order. So, when prosecution evidence was presented in an order that made a story easy to construct, participants were more likely to present a guilty verdict

Conclusion: The order of presentation of evidence can have a persuasive effect on the jury. Lawyers use the best witnesses first and the worst last...lawyers should consider presenting their evidence in s/o to secure more GV.

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