Influences on the court process

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Edexcel Psychology

Storyboard Text

  • Less serious cases may be dealt with by the magistrates court. More serious cases are tried by a jury in the Crown court
  • Characteristics of the defendant, such as race, attractiveness, accent and how similar they are to the jury members all influence jury decision making.
  • Pre-trial publicity via the media can influence the schemas jurors have about the defendant, even before the trial begins.
  • We don't understand the technical information, legal language and scientific evidence.
  • The Jury. Do they have the necessary competence?
  • Eyewitness Testimony. Jurors tend to believe eyewitnesses, even when experts have explained why their evidence may be wrong.
  • Jurors prefer events to create a 'story' from the evidence, with a beginning, middle and end. They may just pick out facts that they can make a story from and disregard other pieces of information.
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