The angry juror

Sentencing decisions in first-degree murder

Leah Georges, Richard L. Wiener, Stacie R. Keller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A great deal of research in legal decision making has overlooked the influence of affect on the decision-making process. The present study measured the fluctuation of emotions across five time points of a capital trial and tested the overall relationship between changes in emotion and sentencing decisions. The results showed that across all participants, anger initially increased and then decreased during the course of a capital punishment trial. Most importantly, the more individual mock jurors' anger increased during any stage of the trial, the more likely they were to assign a death sentence. Furthermore, when jurors' anger increased, they rated mitigating factors presented by the defense as weaker and the weaker mitigation mediated the relationship between change in anger and sentencing. The paper ends with a discussion of theoretical explanations and policy implications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)156-166
Number of pages11
JournalApplied Cognitive Psychology
Volume27
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2013
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Homicide
Anger
Decision Making
Emotions
Capital Punishment
Economics
Jurors
Sentencing
Murder
Research
Emotion

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

The angry juror : Sentencing decisions in first-degree murder. / Georges, Leah; Wiener, Richard L.; Keller, Stacie R.

In: Applied Cognitive Psychology, Vol. 27, No. 2, 03.2013, p. 156-166.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Georges, Leah ; Wiener, Richard L. ; Keller, Stacie R. / The angry juror : Sentencing decisions in first-degree murder. In: Applied Cognitive Psychology. 2013 ; Vol. 27, No. 2. pp. 156-166.
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