What is criminal psyhcology?
- focuses on the psyhcological aspcts of criminals/ criminal behaviour / sociall contexts of crime
- deals with teh psychological aspects of criminal investigation such as eye witness testimonys
What is an eye witness testimony?
- a reconstruction of witnessed events used in law courts as evidence
- however accuracy is varied becuse of many factors
What did the DEVLIN REPORT 1976 report?
- out of 2000 line ups 45% resulted in a perp being picked out
- out of this 45% - 82% resulted in conviction
- out of 2000 cases 350 had an eye witness - 74% of these resulted in conviction
so to sum up?
- eye witness testimonys are very importnat
- Jurors have great faith in them (PANROD AND CUTLER 1995)
(Because of this EYT is one of the most resaerched topics in criminal psychology)
Why is this dangerous?
- Innacurricies are very frequent
- EYT misindentifaction and innacurricies = leading cause for wrongful conviction in the US -more than any other causes combined (INNOCENCE PROJECT, 2005)
Give an example of EYT misindenditfication?
- JAMES CHARLES DE MENEZES 2005
What can effect EYT accuracy?
- biases in perception in and attention
- memory and expectations
- post event factors
- within event factors
BIASES IN PERCEPTION AND ATTENTION:
OWN ANCHOR EFFECTS - FLINN AND SHEPARED 1986
- study involved 588 particpipants
- found that their estimation of a targets height and weight differ depending on whether or not they themsleves are above or below average
- participants use their own physical charcteristics as a norm to base descriptions of others off
- aslso found that people have a tendancy to shy away from extreme judgements and regress towards the mean - e.g. underestimate height of tall poeple and over estimate height of short poeple
- "in regards to the criminals appearance, the most important determinant of this type of estimate is the witnesses own wieght and height" (MEISSNER, SPOROER, SCHOOLER 2007)
DISTANCE AND LIGHTING
- it is assumed that the majority of crimes takes place at night (MEISSNER, SPORER,SCHOOLER 2007)
- our vision is greatly reuced in low illumination
- distance and lighting can effect and influence facial perception and accuracy
- examined eye witness recall under different conditions
- day/ begining of twilight/ end of twilight/ night
- lighting had significant effcet an reall ability
- superior during the day
KOPPEN & LUCHUN 1997
- better illumination and a closer distance allows much greater and stronger descriptions
INATTENTIONAL BLINDNESS SIMONS AND LEVIN 1998)
- Observers lack a precise and complete visual represntation of their world ( SIMONS AND LEVIN 1998, P.64)
- We are paticularly unable to detect change
- we tend to focus on more importnat visual information
- and do not get a full representation
- we may not even perceive certain objects
GORILLA STUDY 1999
- 288 participants
- video of basketball being passed
- told to count passes
- 44 seconds in a gorilla walked through the game - lasted 5 seconds
- people with counted correctly and did not see gorilla / saw gorilla and counted incorrectly/ did not do either
- only 42% of people saw the gorilla
- this was a replice of…