From the initial investigation of a crime to the sentencing of an offender, many everyday practices within the criminal justice system involve complex psychological processes. This volume offers up-to-date, incisive analysis of a range of topics that are attracting the attention of researchers in the psychology/n-/law domain. Showcasing important advances in experimental social and cognitive psychology, the volume focuses on the implications of emerging knowledge for crucial forensic problems. For each topic discussed, contributors examine existing forensic practices and review their scientific bases. Presented are unusually detailed explorations of relevant theory, research methodologies, and major findings, along with directions for future investigation.
Coverage encompasses the breadth of tasks and issues facing law enforcement personnel and key courtroom players, including: *Interviewing witnesses *Detecting deception *Eyewitness memory in adults and children *False memories *Persuasion strategies used by lawyers *Juror decision making *Judicial instructions and sentencing Throughout, the book considers the challenges involved in bringing experimental science to bear on the real world of the police station, witness box, and jury room. Recommendations are provided wherever possible for improving the quality of evidence and the fairness of investigative and legal proceedings. The concluding chapter addresses factors that may impede collaboration between researchers and legal policymakers, and provides practical suggestions for overcoming them. Presenting cutting-edge perspectives at the interface of psychology and law, this comprehensive, timely work belongs on the shelves of researchers in social and cognitive psychology and criminal justice, as well as practitioners and researchers in forensic psychology. It will serve as a text in advanced undergraduate- and graduate-level courses related to psychology and criminal justice.
Neil Brewer, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at Flinders University in South Australia, where he teaches an upper-level undergraduate course on experimental psychology and law. The research programs in his laboratory span both cognitive and social psychology, focusing on issues such as confidence-accuracy and decision time-accuracy relationships in eyewitness identification, identification decision processes, eyewitness recall, eyewitness confidence effects on juror judgments, and improving comprehension of judicial instructions. Dr. Brewer's recent publications include articles in Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Law and Human Behavior, and Applied Cognitive Psychology. He is a current member of the editorial boards of Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied and Legal and Criminological Psychology. Kipling D. Williams, PhD, is Professor of Psychological Sciences at Purdue University. He is an experimental social psychologist and teaches undergraduate courses on psychology and law. Dr. Williams has conducted research on various topics focusing on psychology and law, including the biasing effects of judges' instructions, eyewitness accuracy and testimony, stealing thunder as a courtroom tactic, homonymic priming, and the effects of crime heinousness on lowering thresholds of beyond a reasonable doubt. He has also conducted research on social loafing and, more recently, on ostracism. His recent publications include articles in Science, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, and Law and Human Behavior. He is also author of Ostracism: The Power of Silence and coeditor of several social psychology books, including The Social Outcast: Ostracism, Social Exclusion, Rejection, and Bullying.