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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 155639 Find in a Library
Title: Factors That Influence Jury Decision Making: Disposition Instructions and Mental State at the Time of the Trial
Journal: Law and Human Behavior  Volume:19  Issue:3  Dated:(June 1995)  Pages:283- 303
Author(s): K E Whittemore; J R P Ogloff
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 21
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Three hundred forty-nine undergraduate students read a trial transcript and jury instructions and completed a questionnaire to determine whether information regarding the disposition of persons acquitted under the insanity defense, and the defendant's mental state at the time of the trial, had a significant effect on mock jurors' verdicts.
Abstract: Two trials were used to assess whether results generalized across cases. The mental state included symptom free, neurotic symptoms, or psychotic symptoms, and the disposition instructions included no instructions, indeterminate disposition, and capped disposition. Participants then rendered a verdict of guilty, not guilty, or not criminally responsible on account of mental disorder (NCRMD). Results revealed that participants who thought that the accused was psychotic at the time of the trial were more likely to render a verdict of NCRMD than guilty, and they were more likely to render a verdict of NCRMD than those who thought that the accused was normal. No significant differences occurred for disposition, but a significant different for verdicts was found between trials. Tables and 60 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Court procedures
Index Term(s): Insanity defense; Jury decisionmaking
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