skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 49935 Find in a Library
Title: FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST AS AN EXPERT WITNESS IN THE DISTRIC OF COLUMBIA
Journal: JOURNAL OF PSYCHIATRY AND THE LAW  Volume:4  Issue:2  Dated:(SUMMER 1976)  Pages:277-285
Author(s): J T SMITH
Corporate Author: Federal Legal Publications, Inc
Managing Editor
United States of America
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: Federal Legal Publications, Inc
New York, NY 10007
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: CHALLENGES TO THE USE OF PSYCHOLOGISTS AS EXPERT WITNESSES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA ARE CITED. CONTINUED USE OF THE PRACTICE AND PATTERNS OF CROSS-EXAMINATION OF SUCH WITNESSES ARE DISCUSSED.
Abstract: OPPOSITION TO PSYCHOLOGISTS AS EXPERT WITNESSES HAS COME FROM MANY DIRECTIONS, INCLUDING CHIEF JUSTICE BURGER WHO IN 1964 QUESTIONED WHETHER THE TESTIMONY OF PSYCHOLOGISTS AND PSYCHIATRISTS SHOULD BE REGARDED AS OBJECTIVE SCIENTIFIC FACT. THE AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC ASSOCIATION, THE AMERICAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION, AND THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL OF THE AMERICAN PSYCHOANALYTIC ASSOCIATION, IN REPRESENTING THE MEDICAL PROFESSION, PASSED A RESOLUTION STATING THAT THE MEDICAL PROFESSION ALONE HAS THE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF ILLNESS, INCLUDING MENTAL ILLNESS, AND THAT ALTHOUGH THE MEDICAL PROFESSION APPROVES OF THE USE OF PSYCHOLOGISTS, IT CONSIDERS THEM TO BE ANCILLARY TO MEDICAL PERSONNEL. IN SPITE OF THIS OPPOSITION, THE ACCEPTANCE OF THE ROLE OF THE PSYCHOLOGIST AS AN EXPERT WITNESS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA IS SOLIDLY FOUNDED ON THE RULINGS DELIVERED IN UNITED STATES V. JENKINS (1962), UNITED STATES V. BRAWNER (1972), AND UNITED STATES V. ALEXANDER AND MURDOCK (1972). THIS ACCEPTANCE IS BASED ON THE BELIEF THAT THE PSYCHOLOGIST HAS A DISTINCTIVE SKILL IN HIS ABILITY TO INTERPRET STATISTICAL DATA REGARDING THE HUMAN PERSONALITY. WHILE THE STATUS AS EXPERT WITNESS IS ACCEPTED, CROSS-EXAMINATION STILL FREQUENTLY TAKES THE FORM OF ATTEMPTING TO UNDERMINE THE VALIDITY OF PARTICULAR PSYCHOLOGICAL TESTING AS WELL AS THE PSYCHOLOGIST'S INTERPRETATION OF SUCH TESTS. (RCB)
Index Term(s): District of Columbia; Expert witnesses; Judicial decisions; Psychological evaluation
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49935

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.