Unit 3 - Criminal Psychology

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Definition of criminological psychology

  • study of the mind and behaviour applied to criminals
  • provides a psychological explanation for crime
  • looks at problems with EWT
  • suggests treatments for offenders
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Definition of key terms

  • Crime = behaviour that violates moral values, religious beliefs and legal boundaries (changes with time and  culture)
  • Anti-social behaviour = behaviour likely to cause alarm, harassment or distress to public
  • Recidivism = rate of criminal reoffending
  • Stereotyping = classifying members of social group as if all the same and treating individuals like no other characteristic is important
  • Token economy = treatment involving giving tokens for desired behaviour which can be exchanged for rewards
  • Modelling = way of learning behaviour by observation and imitation of role models
  • Eye witness testimony = statement given by witness about event or crime experienced
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Describe and evaluate methods

Lab. experiment

  • tightly controlled envrionment
  • IV directly manipulated by researcher
  • e.g. Loftus and Palmer
  •  control extraneous variables = results reliable and repeat= find cause-effect relationship
  • standardised procedure= easy repeat= more reliable
  • artificial enviro and task= artificial behaviour = low ecological validity= increased risk of demand characteristics and experimenter effects

 

 

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Describe and evaluate methods

Field experiment

  • natural environment
  • IV directly manipulated by researcher
  • e.g. Yuille and Cutshall
  • high ecological validity = natural enviro = natural behaviour
  • less demand characteristics = participants unaware
  • less control= more influence of etraneous variables = less repeatable= less reliable
  • ethical issues = consent, deception, privacy

 

 

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Describe explanation of crime

Social learning theory

  • learning approach - Bandura
  • observation and imitation of role model = modelling
  • role model - same sex, influential to individual, higher authority and status (e.g. parents, celebs, teacher)
  • Attention - to role model in media / person
  • Retention - remember behaviour and store it
  • Reproduction- imitate (copy) behaviour
  • Motivation - why? - vicarious learning (punishment) - self reinforcemnt (internal/ psychological) - extrinsic (physical reward)

 

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Evaluate explanation of crime

Strengths

+ lot of experimental evidence to support SLT- e.g. bobo doll studies influence of role model

+ theory has practical applications  - real crimes  - e.g. Columbine High School Massacre wher eHitler was role model - rehabilitation -  give offenders good role models to copy

+ Young children copy what they see through media -  influenced by media icons - e.g. films with superhero moves

+ SLT theory has support from research into media effects - Bartlett found those who played videogame mortal combat longer and with high blood content were most agressive


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Evaluate explanation of crime

Weaknesses

- SLT ignores indiviual differences - ignores social factors behind crime - lack of money and oppurtunities  - ignores biological explanation - genetic (MAOA), hormones (testosterone), brain structure / damage (Raine et al), neurotransmitters ( low serotonin)

- Ignores possibility that watching agression is theraputic (cathortic) according to Freud - total opposite of SLT - at odds with SLT which says if watch agression, copy it 

- Can't explain oppurtunistic crime - SLt good to explain agression but not serious crime (murder)

- can't easily prove learning is cause of criminal behaviour - copy behaviour any time after observed behaviour

- ignores social approach - SFP - crime result of being labelled by others

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Describe other explanation of crime

  • social approach
  • labels can be result of stereotyping

1. phropecy set = label given to you by others

2. expectations of behaviour to fit with label

3. phropecy fulfilled = behaviour meets expectations of others

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Evaluate other explanation of crime

Strengths

  • Range of supporting studies
    • Jahoda - boys named after day born - Wed. agressive, Mon calm - Wed. child higher juvenile convcition rate (22%) - label 'agressive led to change in behaviour (crime) to fit label
    • Madon et al - mother's expectation of childs use of alcohol - overestimation led to those having drinking problem - label "drinker" affected later behaviour and so fit label
    • Flouri and Hawkes - mother's expectation of child's education - mums predicted daughter stay in schooll longer did - prediction was label 'academic' which affected behaviour
    • Rosenthal and Jacobson - primary school teachers told one group( although random) would be late bloomers other standard - comparitive IQ test at end showed bloomers improve IQ because teachers more attention- change in behaviour result of label attached
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Evaluate other explanation of crime

Weaknesses

  • only very limited number of studies on SFP and crime - e.g. Jahoda
  • Ignores other social factors causing crime - e.g. child rearing style, peer pressure, family environment discord/problems
  • ignores individual differences of specific person - e.g tempermant and personality
  • Can't explain why some commit crimes and others don't - e.g. individual differences/ impulsive crime/ chance
  • SFP only works if label creator and labelee don't know each other - weak - e.g paedophillia
  • reductionist (reduce behaviour to one simple cause) and determinist (ignores free will) - says behaviour set by others (pre-set) and no individual control
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Describe role of media and antisocial behaviour

  • link to context of question - crime
  • explain modelling and ARRM  and SLT 

Strength

  • Rideout - kids aged 2 to 7 estimate 25+hrs week TV - more liekly to copy because more oppurtunity
  • Bandura- bobo doll study shows imitation of agressive acts from rol 
  • Children high likely to copy recreate poses/ actions of superheros - seen in media
  • Anderson and Dill - compared violent games kids to non by giving punishment to actor - violent game kids more punishment and more severe 
  • Bartlett- mortal combat game with higher graphic blood content kids judged more agressive model

NO

  • Lovelace et al - media pro-social effect - US Mr. Rogers neighbourhood
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Comparison of two explanations of crime

Similarites

  • both explain criminal behaviour - either learnign or labelling
  • both ignore biological explanations - crime caused genes (MAOA), hormones (testosterone), brain damage/ structure (Raine) and neurotransmitters (serotonin)
  • both range of supporting studies - SFP: jahoda, rosenthal and jacobson ... - SLT: Bandura, Bartlett...
  • both ignore psychodynamic explanation - crime commited because watching agression theraputic - personality types
  • both have stages - SFP: 3 stages (set, expectation, fulfillment) and SLT: ARRM
  • both reductionist  reduce criminal behaviour to one single cause (label or learnt)
  • both ignore influences of individual - temperment, personality or discord in family enviro
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Comparison of two explanations of crime

Weaknesses

  • different approaches - SFP: social - SLT: learning
  • different what causes crime - SFP: fulfill expectation - SLT: observe and imitate role model (ARRM)
  • use of media - SFP: no media - SLT: media gives role models to copy
  • difference who shapes behaviour - SFP: label given by others (determinist) - SLT: observe and imitate (personal choice -motivation)
  • different methods - SFP: correlation - SLT: observation (Bandura)
  • more studies for explain crime for SLT - SLT: Bartlett, Anderson and Dill - SFP: Jahoda only
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Describe study in detail (named) / EWT lab study

LOFTUS AND PALMER

AIM:

  • how EWT affected by schemas (previosu knowledge/experiences)
  • if leading questions influence estimated speed of vehicle by witnesses 

METHOD:

  • 2 lab experiments
  • independent measures design 
  • I.V-  verb    D.V - estimated speed / glass

PROCEDURE 1

  • 45p. watch 7 video clips  of different car accidents played in different orders
  • in questionnaire asked estimate speed of car
  •  different verbs (each 9p.) hit, bumped, collided, contacted, smashed


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Describe study in detail (named)/ EWT lab study

RESULTS 1

  • high - smashed - mean 40 mph
  • low - contacted - mea 31mph
  • overall difference 9mph

CONCLUSION 1

  • verb altered memory of witness
  • p. didn't know answer so relied on judgement

PROCEDURE 2 

  • 150 p. shown 1 min clip of accidents (4 sec. each)
  • describe film and answer questionnaire - 3 conditions (50p. each) hit, smashed or not asked
  • 1 week later return and watch again
  • answer 10 questions - one broken glass - film no glass
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Describe study in detail (named)/ EWT lab study

RESULTS 2

  • all conditon p. answer correct - no broken glass = 121 p.
  • smashed higher incorrect (yes glass) compared to hit = 16:9

CONCLUSION 

  • leading questions do influence EWT
  • imply specific response which alters witness recall
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Evaluate detail study (named)/ EWT lab study

GENERALISABILTIY

  • small sample size - 195- not represent wider population of US
  • ethnocentric - all from USA

RELIABILTY

  • lab - control enviro. - less demand characteristics- standardised procedure (same film and question types) - repeat
  • experiment 1 and 2 similar findings
  • independent measures design - individual differences

APPLICATION

  • contribute to EWT reliability debate - changes in legal system - Devlin report (3+ witnesses for sole conviction)- change to interview techniques to avoid leading questions
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Evaluate detail study (named)/ EWT lab study

VALIDITY

  • low ecological - environment and task artificial - film and lab - lacks realism
  • lacks consequentiality - Furster found if outcome effect current case then higher accuracy

ETHICS

  • no informed consent - decpetion 
  • limited debrief - ethic guidelines new
  • no protection - mental distress - but not real witness accident
  • no right to withdraw
  • confidentiality
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Other study in detail / EWT field study

YUILLE AND CUTSHALL

BACKGROUND

  • recall of witnesses toshooting in Canada after  gun shop robbery
  • owner tied up in robbery, robber goes to get away vehicle and owner unties and chases after to get plates
  • robber turns around and fires at owner, owner returns fire six times and kills robber in daylight in front of witnesses

AIM

  • record and evaluate witness accounts
  • examine accounts word for word - check accuracy and errors
  • examine issues raised by lab research (Loftus)
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Other study in detail / EWT field study

METHOD

  • field experiment
  • independent measures design

PROCEDURE 1

  • 13 out of 21 witnesses agreed to take part
  • Police interview - describe event own words and asked series of questions
  • 4 to 6 months later Y+C interview included 2 leading questions:
    • a broken headlight v. the broken headlight
    • a yellow quarter panel v. the yellow quarter panel
  • witnesses also had to rate stress during on 7 point likert scale with 1 being calm
  • answers categorsied into action details, person details or object details
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Other study in detail / EWT field study

RESULTS 1

  • more accurate memory than Police interview = 650 vs. 1056
  • this is because researchers asked questions of no nterest to police (e.g. blanket colour)
  • variability in witness accounts because saw different amounts of incident

PROCEDURE/ RESULTS

  • 7 central witnesses and 6 periphial 
  • central 80% vs periphial 79% -  both equally accurate
  • 10/13 answered correctly as no or did not remember

CONCLUSION

  • EWT reliable- leading questions little effect - Lab and Loftus wrong 
  • research metods influence results
  • flashbulb memory - specific and relevant memeory remebered in detail
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Evaluate Other study in detail / EWT field study

GENERALISABILTIY 

  • very small sample size - 13 - not representative of population of Canada
  • ethnocentric- Canada - not representative of world

RELIABILITY

  • quantitative data - objective - no interpretation
  • precise scoring system - can repeat to find similar results
  • field - unique situation - can't deliberatley be repeated
  • different result to Loftus
  • real crime - media coverage could of improved witness recall

APPLICATION

  • EWT debate - is reliable - showed Police interview lower recall - change in interview techniques to avoid leading questions
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Evaluate Other study in detail / EWT field study

VALIDITY

  • field - natural environment - not artfical - more realism
  • no consquentiality - case closed before Y+C interview to not interfear
  • low experimental validity - lack of I.V control
  • life or death situation not everyday - not applicable to all crimes 

ETHICS

  • distress - emotional - real memories
  • deception - leading question
  • competence
  • right to withdraw - 13/21 took part
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Describe other EWT study

PICKEL

BACKGROUND

  • weapons focus - Loftus- focus on weapon (threat) using core vision, more than the person/ surroundings using periphial vision 
  • this is why remember more detail about weapon
  • Pickel extends Loftus' research (agrees)

AIM

  • is weapons focus due to weapon unusual or threat?
  • is poor witness recall due to high stress (threat) or look longer (unusual)

METHOD 

  • lab experiment
  • independent measures design


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Describe other EWT study

PROCEDURE 1

  • 230 p. (psych. students) watched 2 min reconstruction of hair salon robbery; man walks upto receptionist, gets money and leaves in get-away vehicle
  • p. were randomly allocated 1 of 5 condition : ht + lu = scissors, lt + lu= wallet, ht + hu = gun,      lt + hu + raw chicken, control = no weapon
  • 10 min filler task
  • p. then answer questionnaire on details, receptionist, man and what he was holding

RESULTS 1

  • poor recall = lt + hu = raw chicken = mean 7.2
  • best recall = lt + lu= wallet = mean 8.5
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Describe other EWT study

PROCEDURE 2

  • same except: 256p,setting electric repair shop and 5 contions - ht+lu = screwdriver, ht + hu= knife, lt+lu= sunglasses, lt+hu = doughboy figure, control = no weapon

RESULTS 2

  • poor recall = lt + hu = doughboy iigure = mean 6.7
  • best recall = lt + lu = sunglasses = mean 7.8

CONCLUSION

  • recall lowered by unusualness of weapon
  • weapon focus diminishes EWT detail - narrow attention on out of context item
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Evaluate other EWT study

GENERALISABILITY

  • large sized sample - 400+ p.
  • ethnocentric - all students, from same Uni and from US

RELIABILITY

  • lab - control of enviro - standardised procedure - footage
  • independent researhcers scored questionnaire - inter rater reliability - objective

APPLICATION

  • extends Loftus research on weapon focus which contributes to EWT reliability- high unusualness of weapon means poor EWT of offender
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Evaluate other EWT study

VALIDITY

  • lab - artificial envrio and task  - lacks realism and lacks consequentiality
  • demand charactersitics - psych students - understood experimetn more or paid more attention to footage

ETHICS

  • confidentiality 
  • limited distress  protection from harm- video not real life
  • no informed consent - deception
  • no right to withdraw
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Comparison named and other study in detail

LOFTUS & PALMER VS. YUILLE & CUTSHALL

SIMILARITIES

  • sample - small compared to wider population - ethnocentric
  • method - I.V on leading questions - independent measures design
  • generalisability - small sample size - ethnocentric
  • application - contribution to EWT reliability debate
  • validity - low population validity - no consequentiality
  • ethics - limited/ no informed consent - deception - confidentiality kept - protection from physical harm 
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Comparison named and other study in detail

DIFFERENCES

  • sample - LP psych students YC anyone - size LP 195 YC 13
  • method- LP lab YC field
  • results - LP EWT unreliable YC EWT reliable - LP leading questions do have effect YC leading questions no effect
  • generalisability - LP high (195) YC low (13)
  • reliability- unconsistent results because studies disagree - LP other supporting research YC no supporting research
  • validity - LP artifical (lab) YC real crime (field)
  • ethics - LP no right withdraw YC right withdraw - LP less distress (video) YC more distress (memory of real event)
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Describe named treatment

TOKEN ECONOMY

DEFINITION

  • system of behaviour modification
  • based on principles of operant conditioning - desired behaviour reward (token) - undesired behaviour punished
  • token is secondary reinforcer which exchange for primary reinforcer (basic human need)
  • control behaviour not solution to crime - back home revert to normal beahviour because no monitor, no consistent reward and desired beahviour not immediatley recognised
  • not rehabilitation - doesn't tackel cause of behaviour
  • up side down traingle 
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Evaluate named treatment

STRENGTH

  • change psychiatric behaviour - Milby found success in psych. hospital - TEPs can change behaviour
  • treat behavioural issues in young - Field et al found success b group work - TEPs help range of ages
  • change antisocial behaviour - Dickerson et al found success treat antisocial in schizophrenics- TEPs positive impact on mental illness
  • tokens given consistently - Basset and Blanchard - success in prison when consistent - criminal behaviour change when desired associaited with reward
  • reduce youth recidivism - Hobbs and Holt found sucess reduce r. rates than other treatments  - works better on males
  • permanently change adult criminal behaviour - Jenkins et al reduced r.rates after 18 month release- best method for long lasting results
  • training provided - Project START no training prison officers use unreasonable control - training essential
  • encourage self - controlled behaviour - prisoners oppurtunity to change behaviour for reward - change quicker with cooperation
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Evaluate named treatment

WEAKNESSES

  •  not only method - Girrodo and Morales found all behaviour change programmes reduced recidivism - TEPs not allways suitable
  • not best for reducing recidivism - Pearson et al found cognitive behaviooural therapies more successful - CALM should be used instead
  • shoort lived - Rice found psych. patients revert old behaviur after release and TEP end - real world desired behaviour expected as norm
  • only change small aspects of behaviour- Quinsey and Starbet found only some bbehaviour (co-operation) changed - TEPs no significant impact to be worthwhile
  • need to be changed to improve effectiveness - Kazdin said tailor tokens to individual values and allow tasters of rewards (exchange tokens for) - motivate more prisoners to change behaviour
  • only work if prisoners buy into it -users commited and believe - reinforces Kazdin point
  • only change behaviour when run - rarely real world substantial rewards - after TEP revert old behaviour 
  • only based on learning approach - ignore cognitive and social influences - no solutioon like restorative justice or AMTs
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Describe other treatment

ANGER MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES

DEFINITION

  • cognitive approach - cognitive behavioural technique
  • creatd by Ray Novaco
  • anger is strong emotion - physiological (hot, sweaty, heavy breathing) , cognitive (thought process, perception) and behavioural (actions, comments)
  • technique to reduce physiological changes by cognitve restructuring and adapting behaviour

1. COGNITIVE PREPARTION - with therapist identify  situation make angry and when likely - challenge way of thinking (cognitive restructuring) - think of negative consequences

2. SKILLS ACQUISITION - learn relaxation techniques to reduce physiological changes (self count, stop and think, progressive muscle relaxation) - anger and relax not exist same time - assertiveness training

3. APPLICATION PRACTISE - role play previous angry situation with therapist - only after sucess use in real life

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Describe other treatment

  • British example is CALM
  • Controlling Anger and Learning to Manage it
  • group programmes of 24 sessions
  • uses six stages 
  • stage 6 is identifying risky situations and either preapring for them or avoiding them
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Evaluate other treatment

Strengths:

  • reduce anger levels - Ireland found offenders less anger than control groupp after 10 wks - AMPs more effective than nothinh
  • work in prisons - McDougall et al found AMPs reduced recidivism after completion - prison AMPs work better in small groups
  • reduce anger related recidivism - Goldstein found only 15% reoffend - although don't completely stop recidivism it better than doing nothing
  • represent real life- self-report data from prisoners- valid because come from those directly effected
  • work with high risk offenders-Downdon et al found they reduce recidivism with high risk offenders - effectiveness varies for different level offenders
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Evaluate other treatment

Weaknesses:

  • less effective than restorative justice - Losel found oonly reduce recidivism by 10% comapred to  r. justice (50%) - AMPs not most effective
  • don't help violent offenders - Watt et al found no difference with violent inmates - AMPs only effective with emotional anger not physical
  • extent of lowering anger questionable - Towl and Dexter found drop in aner whereas Siz found extreme drop - results from studies unrelaible as not same
  • only effective in one setting- sucess in prisons- AMPs may not be transferable to other environments
  • not proven to reduce recidivism - lots studies not long enough - data based on short unreliable studies
  • don't include victim peerception - restorative justice lets offenders llisten to victim so increases morality - AMPs not  as effective at reducing recidivism as others
  • ignore influences learning approach - based largely on cognitive approach - ingores other treatments llike token economy
  • create other problematic behaviour - turns physical into verbal or emotional abuse - don't stop recidivism just change type of behaviour
  • self- report data - untrue if prisoners make selves look good- invalid and not real life
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Comparison of treatments

Similarities:

  • both reduce recidivism - aim of both treatments
  • both long set-up time and long completion time - can't be done quickly -> cost implication
  • both tailored to individual - AMP (cognitve prep- what makes angry) TEP (rewards personalised)
  • both try to control behaviour - aim to reduce criminal behaviour
  • both can be seen ineffective - some studies question effectiveness
  • both have studies to support - some evidence of effectiveness
  • behaviour changeafter end of programme - long term effectiveness not always good
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Comparison of treatments

Differences:

  • different approaches - TEP (learning and operant) AMP (cognitive)
  • effectiveness of applications to real life outside institution - TEP (not use real llife) AMP (use real life)
  • AMPs not use reward systems to change behaviour - AMPs use relaation techniques
  • TEP staff need limited training - AMPs need highlly trained therapists (cognitive prep and application practise)
  • AMPs use stage based theory - TEPs not stage based
  • TEPs don't identify cause of behaviour - AMPs more likely to identify cause of behaviour
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Practical/key issue

AIM: 

  • investigate key issue of effectiveness and reliability of EWT
  • reason why key issue is if unreliable can cause miscarriages of justice

METHOD:

  • researched and selected 2 articles from Innocence Project website on cases of Ron Cotton and Orlando Boquete
  • both individuals wrongfully convicted of crimes they not commit because of issues with EWT
  • read both articles before re-reading and hilghting facts and important details
  • used hilighted sections to create summary of each article
  • summaries used to make conclusion on relaibility of EWT
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Practical summary 1

Article 1 - Orlando Boquete

  • two men broke into apartment, one sexually assulted victim
  • soon officer stopped group of LAtinos inc. Orlando match description no hair no tshirt
  • victim postively I.D Boquete from 20ft away and edit desription to add moustache
  • convicted of sexual battery and burglary
  • conviction based on analyst testimony about blood type samples but fail mention evidence that could of excluded Boquete as offender
  • after appeal ***** tested and discovered Boquete not offender
  • after 12 years in prison convction overturned
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Practical summary 2

Article 2 - Ron Cotton

  • two appartments broken and had items stolen and victims sexually assulted
  • Ron Cotton arrested an convicted of one account of each before convcition of two accounts of both **** and burglary
  • failings include photo i.d by one victim before line-up
  • judge also refused accpet another inamtes confession
  • defense later requested DNA testing of swabs and showed not Cotton
  • samples sent to databse of violent offenders where inamte who confessed showed positive match
  • after serving 10.5 yrs of sentence cleared of all charges
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Practical conclusion

Overall

  • EWT is unreliable

Schemas

  • Cotton- previous convctions led to an expectation
  • Boquete - N/A 

Leading questions

  • Cotton - questions about photo before line up could influnced memory
  • Boquete - way suspect presented to witness (victim) 20ft away then w. add detail about moustache could influenced memory

Weapons focus

  • Cotton - tools for breaking and entering viewed as weapon so effect recall
  • Boquete - victim never saw other who broke in
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Practical conclusion

Emotional factors (Yerkes-Dodson)

  • Cotton-  high stress of situation could of resulted in poor recall of memory
  • Boquete - high stress of situation could of resulted in poor recall of memory

Race 

  • Cotton - cultural expectation (Afro- Carribean)
  • Boquete - cultural expectation (Latino/ Hispanic)

Retrieval cues

  • Cotton - witness interview took place at station - different location - less cues - poorer recall
  • Boquete - N/A
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Comments

rubycarter

thank you for this I've found it really useful :)

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