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NCJ Number: 113425 Find in a Library
Title: Can Jurors Ignore Inadmissible Evidence?
Journal: Trial  Volume:24  Issue:9  Dated:(September 1988)  Pages:80-84
Author(s): V Cope
Date Published: 1988
Page Count: 5
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Two recent studies have found that jurors are in fact unable to disregard inadmissible evidence even when they are instructed to do so and are willing to do so.
Abstract: Often the judge's order to disregard the evidence may actually make matters worse by reinforcing the evidence's biasing effects. Neither of the studies reports that jurors stubbornly refuse to ignore evidence. Sometimes they try so hard to ignore prejudicial evidence that they slant their thinking in favor of the defendant. Even so, experts say that the established method of advising jurors to ignore inadmissible evidence, while flawed, would be hard to improve upon. Trial attorneys must be vigilant to ensure that opposing attorneys do not 'slip in' inadmissible evidence. Few verdicts are reversed for error on appeal if instructions to disregard prejudicial evidence are given to the jury by the court.
Main Term(s): Jury nullification instructions
Index Term(s): Jury decisionmaking; Rules of evidence
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