Flashcards in 1 Court Processes Deck (34):
Why do we need laws?
- Regulate behavior
- Resolve conflicts between people
- Balance our own desires and rights
Explain a criminal court process?
1) Presumption of innocence
2) Prosecution bears burden of proof
3) Penalties serious and proportional
4) Defendants afforded rights
Explain a civil court process?
1) Two or more parties (plaintiff & defendant)
2) One party alleges violation of a law
3) Standard of proof is a balance of probabilities
4) Fewer rights for parties
Which court process (civil or criminal) has the least amount of rights?
What are the two court systems?
Explain the adversarial system?
1) opposing parties present contradictory information
2) outcome is determined by judge or jury
3) judges role is to be the final arbitrator (listen to evidence)
4) lawyer's role is to be an advocate for their client
Explain the Inquisitorial system?
1) Judges hear witnesses and suspects
2) Judges order searches for further investigations
3) Goal is not prosecution. Goal is to find the truth.
4) Duty is to look for incriminating evidence
What are the three dilemmas in the law?
1) Rights of individuals vs. the common good
2) Equality vs. Discretion
3) Discover the truth or resolve conflicts
What are the two models used in the dilemma: rights of individuals vs. the common good?
- Due process model
- Crime control model
Explain the due process model?
Places primary value on the protection of citizens, including criminal suspects, from possible abuses by the police and law enforcement.
1) Everyone is protected by the constitution
2) Miranda rights to silence and counsel
3) Rights to trial by jury
4) Many appeals are based on due processes
What is the crime control model?
Seeks punishment of lawbreakers and emphasizes detection of suspects and prosecution to defendants to reduce and contain criminal activity.
What is the dilemma: Equality vs. Discretion?
Equality - All people who commit the same crimes should recieve
the same consequences.
Discretion - Using judgements about the circumstances of certain
offences and responding to the offences accordingly.
What is the dilemma: Discover truth or resolve conflicts?
- Adversarial system requires battles in court, but does the truth
always come out?
- Plea bargaining is cheaper, and resolves cases quickly.
How many cases are resolved using plea bargaining?
90% - 95%
Why is plea bargaining used?
- Pleading guilty to a lesser charge saves time.
- Pleading guilty even if innocent avoids risking more severe
punishment from jury.
What is forensic psychology?
Any application of psychological knowledge or methods to a task faced by the legal system.
What are the range of jobs one could get as a forensic psychologist?
- Private Practice
- Prison Psychologist
- Policy Evaluator
- Advocate of the law
What are the two types of Scientist/ Researcher roles in forensic psychology?
- Non-Clinical / Experimental
What is the role of a non-clinical scientist/ researcher?
- False confessions
- Eyewitness identification
- Jury decision-making
What is the role of a clinical scientist/ researcher?
- Insanity reports
- Risk assessments
- Child abuse
- Domestic Violence
- Sex offenders
What is a policy evaluator?
"How does policy affect society?"
- Does the death penalty work?
- Should juveniles be rehabilitated or punished?
- Should sex offenders receive treatment?
- Should the insanity defence exist?
What is an advocate of the law? (what does it entail)
Supports a specific argument.
- Eg. Write a report that juveniles under the age of 18 who
commit murder should not be executed.
- The experts have to support findings impartially. They do not
support either side.
What is the big deal about testifying?
Psychologists derive the truth from empirical studies whereas
judges want to establish truth based on evidence in a single case.
What are the four criteria to decide is a psychologist can testify?
1. Relevance - Relevant to issue. No biases.
2. Necessity - Outside expertise needed?
3. Absence - of any exclusionary rule
4. Qualification - Relevant knowledge, skill, training, education, etc.
What is the 'ultimate issue'?
Not whether that "is he guilty?" but more "is he insane? was he abused as a child? did the police use coercive tactics to gain a confession?"
Who determines the ultimate issue in a court room?
The judge or jury
What main points did the book "whores of the court" make?
- Do not allow psychologists to testify
- Judge and jury should decide on issues of criminal responsibility
- We must stop pretending psychology can do what it obviously
In the book, "whores of the court," what is the issue of 'promising too much?'
- Some psychologists promise a level of success that they can't
- Psychologists need to acknowledge the potential error of their
- Psychologists should use tests that have support/ evidence for
for their validity.
In the book, "whores of the court," what is the issue of 'substituting advocacy for scientific objectivity?'
- Expert witnesses are hired by one side (bias)
- Some judges see experts as "hired guns"
- They should be a "friend of the court" and provide all findings
(including conflicting findings)
In the book, "whores of the court," what is the issue 'letting values overcome empirically based findings?'
Temptations for values to determine conclusions in a court of law.
- Psychologists must not make statements that go beyond
In the book, "whores of the court," what is the issue 'unreliable forensic assesements?"
Temptation to be less than thorough in one's work for the courts.
- Reliability of some forensic assessments may be questionable.
In the book, "whores of the court," what is the issue 'dual relationships and competing rules?'
That a psychologist engages in more than one professional activity with the same person. Eg: therapy AND an assessment. Not ethical.
What is "voir dire?"
A meeting to decide whether the expert's testimony can be used in a court. (Is it reliable to the case.)