Eyewitness Testimony

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Pages: 8

The purpose of this study was to determine whether eyewitness testimony is easily influenced by cross-examination. In this article, the authors used previous studies to support their evidence. The first study that was used was carried out by Zajac, Gross, and Hayne, in their study they examined court transcripts of cross-examination regarding the complaints of sexual abuse in children ranging from the ages of 5-13 years. The children in this study easily complied with the questions that were asked and didn’t ask for said questions to be explained further. The results were that over 75% of the children either changed one aspect of the evidence or retracted the allegations all together. In another study by Zajac and Haynes, children 5-6 …show more content…
The point of this study was to decrease the accuracy of the children’s testimony during cross-examination, even without misleading information. In yet another study by Zajac and Haynes reported that children of the ages 9-10 changed fewer accurate than inaccurate responses, although 40% of the children still changed their responses after being cross-examined. The research dome by Zajac and his colleagues showed that cross- examination had a negative effect on the accuracy of children’s testimony. The effect of what actually causes this vulnerability of testimony is questioned because there could be other factors.
The aim of this present study was to examine the issue using an ecologically valid scenario. The hypothesis of this study is that eyewitness memory can be distorted by suggestion from information that is gained after the relevant event takes place and by the style of questioning. The participants in this study were 30 students that participated for course credits.
However, eight of the participants failed to complete the cross-examination stage; hence they
Research Summary Assignment
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And the other six participants viewed the video from perspective B, which was from the door. The co-witness condition was also similar to this. The design of the study was set up as a mixed design with A vs. B and control vs. co-witness discussion was between the participant factors and statement vs. cross-examination was repeated measure. In this study participants watched a video of a simulated crime event for 90s. In the video, it showed a girl entering a room to return a book, and was filmed from two different perspectives to make it look like a real event witnessed from different angles. All of the girl’s actions were able to be viewed from both perspectives, except for four critical details. One being from perspective A: The girl throwing a note into a bin and the title of the book that she was carrying. The remaining details were viewed from perspective B: The girl checking the tie on her watch, and taking £10 from a wallet in the office. One detail in each version concerning the girl’s actions revolved around the actions directly relating to the event and peripheral