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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 99131 Find in a Library
Title: Proof of Fact in Criminal Trials
Author(s): M Stone
Date Published: 1984
Page Count: 409
Sponsoring Agency: W Green and Son Ltd
Edinburgh, EH1 1PU, Scotland
Sale Source: W Green and Son Ltd
Law Publisher
St Giles Street
Edinburgh, EH1 1PU,
United Kingdom
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This book, intended to assist practitioners in British courts, analyzes how facts are proved in British criminal trials.
Abstract: An analysis of the sources of errors in observation and memory which flaw testimony considers the relevant findings of psychological research and draws implications for the assessment of evidence. Errors of observation caused by the crime situation itself are identified, as are errors in observation caused by the witness. How the characteristics of eyewitnesses affect their capacity to collect and present accurate evidence is also considered, along with problems associated with lying and its detection. Issues associated with suspect-identification evidence are explored, followed by a discussion of how facts about which the prosecution and defense disagree emerge before and during the trial. Attention is also given to the techniques of examining, cross-examining, and reexamining witnesses. Throughout the discussion, the book explains how evidence is assessed by the court. This theme culminates in a consideration of the factors involved in verdict decisionmaking, with a focus on consistency and inconsistency in the evidence, assessment of witnesses, mental processes in judgment, and determination of probability. Chapter references and a subject index are provided.
Index Term(s): Cross-examination; Evidence; Eyewitness testimony; Great Britain/United Kingdom; Perjury; Suspect identification; Testimony
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