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Computer Modeling of Influence in the Jury - The Role of the Consistent Juror

NCJ Number
Social Psychology Quarterly Volume: 40 Issue: 3 Dated: (1983) Pages: 200-212
S Tanford; S Penrod
Date Published
13 pages
A computer simulation was used to examine the effect of a consistent, uncompromising juror opinion on jury decisionmaking.
The factorial design was three (decision rule: unanimous, five-sixths, or two-thirds) by two (jury size of 6 or 12) by five (number of members voting to acquit: 0 to 4) by five (apparent defendant guilt/probability of voting to convict of .l, .3, .5, .7, or .9); 300 juries were simulated of .l, .3, .5, .7, or .9); 300 juries were simulated in each of the conditions. At low probabilities of guilt, when the consistent jurors were part of the majority, they had little effect on model predictions. At high probabilities of guilt, when the consistent jurors were in the minority, the amount of influence on acquittal rate was affected to a large degree by jury size, while the decision rule had almost no effect on acquittal rate but did increase the rate of hung juries. The results have implications for legal policy decisions.


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