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Swedish Legal Professionals' Opinions on Child and Adult Witness Memory-reporting Capabilities: Using the Method of Indirect Comparisons

Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift
Författare J. Knutsson
Carl Martin Allwood
Publicerad i Applied Cognitive Psychology
Volym 29
Nummer/häfte 3
Sidor 392-406
ISSN 0888-4080
Publiceringsår 2015
Publicerad vid Psykologiska institutionen
Sidor 392-406
Språk en
Länkar dx.doi.org/10.1002/acp.3117
Ämnesord EYEWITNESS TESTIMONY, SEXUAL-ABUSE, COMPARATIVE-OPTIMISM, RETENTION, INTERVAL, SOCIAL-INFLUENCE, LAW-ENFORCEMENT, EVENT RECALL, CONFIDENCE, SUGGESTIBILITY, JUDGMENTS, Psychology
Ämneskategorier Psykologi

Sammanfattning

Legal professionals' opinions about the memory abilities of child and adult witnesses are important in the legal process. We surveyed 266 legal professionals (Swedish police, prosecutors, and attorneys) and 33 lay judges about their beliefs about child and adult eyewitnesses' recall and metacognitive abilities. Prior research has usually asked for direct comparisons of children and adults but this may be rare in forensic practice. The respondents completed a story questionnaire (about a 9- or 45-year-old person witnessing an event), allowing indirect, or researcher-made, comparisons. In contrast to previous research (direct comparisons), our participants mostly rated children and adults to be on an equal level, but within-group consensus was low. Also, fairly few differences emerged between the groups' beliefs. Finally, the participants' opinions in our study were less in line with results from eyewitness research, compared with previous research using direct comparisons. Implications for legal and research practice are discussed. Copyright (c) 2015 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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