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Forensic Psychology.docx

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PSYC 2400
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Chapter 7: Jury Decision Making 11/15/2012 12:11:00 PM Chapter 7: Canada: courts -> Civil & Criminal Cases - Criminal: act found in CCC - Civil: Tort & contract law Cases heard by Juries - Summary: majority in Canada  Jude alone - no right to jury Indictable offence -> low serious offence & high serious Highly serious; tried by judge and jury - attorney and defense agree; trial can proceed without Jury  some instances; accused can choose whether trial proceeds by judge/jury Hybrid; cross between indictable/summary - Crown decided how to proceed Jury Selection in Canada: - Juries Act: outlines how juries selected/eligible; legislation > criteria: age/career i.e. police Prospective Jurors: receive summons; court order: time, place to go for jury duty - Canada; Criminal trials: 12 > you can be rejected: lawyer presents challenge 1) Peremptory Challenge: Reject Jurors no reason “Cause I feel like it” 2) Challenge for cause: Must give reason. - In Canada; not much information given to lawyers about jury Jury function: 1) Representativeness; Composition; represents community in which crime occurred  Randomness: allow anyone equal chance  Lawyers can challenge if not 2) Impartiality : Lack of bias - judge case based solely on admissible evidence - ignore any irrelevant information; media attention  no connection to defendant; obstruction of justice (affair with defendant) Threats to impartiality; - The media; emotionally charged headlines - exposure to negative pretrial publicity; associated with more guilty verdicts - study: positive/negative pretrial publicity; had subsequent effects Keeping Potential Juror Impartial: - before case: preliminary hearing. Judge decides if enough evidence for case -> trial - preliminary hearing; judge; media ban - high profile cases: Information gets leaked What To Do? - Change of Venue: crown or defense argue trial should be moved; to obtain impartial jury > the party wanting this: must demonstrate local community is biased; - pretrial publicity -> small community -> heinous crime: word spreads - can get granted change of venue: unusual, but if happens: stays in province alternate: Adjournment - letting sufficient time pass; biasing wears off down side: witnesses memories, people die etc. Challenge for cause: - if we suspect bias judge has to grant; allow of challenge for cause - prospective jurors then probed with set of predetermined questions (relatively few); examine juror‟s state of mind (nothing else) Jury Functions: - #1 function: Come up with a verdict 1) use the wisdom of 12 (not 1) to reach a verdict 2) Act as conscience of community 3) To protect against out of date laws 4) To increase knowledge about justice system Nullification: ignoring the Law: - when jury ignores law; bases verdict on other criteria why do they do this? 1) law is unfair 2) punishment is to harsh - commonly seen in controversial cases How do we study juror and jury behavior - Post trial interviews:  talk to jurors after trial; ask how they reached verdicts  in Canada; confidentiality; if broken -> illegal - so we go to America and ask their jurors Archives: - look at transcripts Stimulation: - Simulate trial - Participants presented with trial information IV: manipulate trial information; example: race of defendant - After ask individual (juror research) or group (jury)  see if IV had effect high internal, low external field studies - using actual jurors while they are serving duty - receiving approval is difficult - confounding variables when you compare jury A Vs. jury B race, age of people etc. Reaching A Verdict - Jury listens to evidence - Lawyer Delivers closing argument - Judge provides jury with law - Jury - Deliberation; discuss evidence; private; reach verdict Listening to evidence: - two innovations proposed for juror aids; - each have advantages/disadvantages Note taking - taking notes may facilitate memory and understanding - jurors may be more attentive Disadvantages: - jurors who take notes exert influence over those who do not - if disagreement occur; they rely on who took notes to clarify issues  A review of research find “downfalls do not happen” and notes are effective  Trial judge decided whether jurors will be allowed to take notes Asking questions - Canada: Jurors submit questions to judge after lawyer‟s argue - Judge decides if permissible - Jury questioning promotes juror understanding of the facts and issues  judge determines if question is permissible Disregarding Inadmissible Evidence: - When judge asks jury to dismiss inadmissible evidence; does this really happen? - Jurors will disregard evidence: provided with logical and legitimate reasons  sometimes backfire; judge‟s instruction; makes more memorable Judge‟s Instructions - Jurors not good at understanding legal instructions - studies found; jurors do not remember/understand/accurately apply judge‟s instructions How to make more clear: - rewriting instructions - providing written copy of instructions - providing jurors with pre and post evidence instructions - having lawyers clarify legal instructions during their presentation to the jury Jury Decision Making Models - How jurors reach decision: mathematical / explanation Mathematical Model: - Reaching verdict; set of mental calculations Verdict: calculation of all relevant evidence Explanation Model: - Evidence organized into coherent whole: into story Create story; story consists with verdict - individual differences explain different stories - > different verdicts - Stories influenced by order of evidence presentation Deliberation: - sequestered after judge -> instructions - Jury gives verdict - Then dismissed What factors influence juror‟s position? - Polarization; when become more extreme in initial position following group discussion (social psychology) - Leniency Bias when jurors move towards greater leniency following deliberations Hung jury: - when jury can not reach unanimous verdict Final Verdict: - hung: crown must decide whether it will retry case Jury Styles - Evidence driven: start deliberation process by discussing evidence - Verdict driven: deliberation process by taking initial verdict poll  studies find pro-defense; more persuasive than pro-prosecution Study Guide: Chapter 7: Juries - Three types of offences; Summary: < 6 months Indictable offence: 3 types - less serious (Judge alone), highly serious (judge and jury- unless decided other wise) - remaining: the accused decides whether jury or alone Hybrid: mix of the two; crown decided how to play it (summary or indictment) Jury Selection: - Jury act: outlines the criteria serve on jury: Minimum age/career Random: phone/voters list - Selected -> Summoned (group of potential jurors) Pool of jurors -> lawyers: challenge 1) Peremptory challenge 2) challenge for a cause 1) Peremptory: Reject without providing reason 2) Challenge for cause: must provide reason - lawyers not good at using demographic information to make favorable jury Characteristics and responsibilities of Juries in Canada Representativeness & Impartiality - Representativeness: composition
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