Battered Women Who Kill: Variables Affecting Simulated Jurors' Verdicts
Journal of Family Violence
The present experiment investigated the effects of situational, participant and defendant variables on simulated jurors' verdicts in a case where a battered woman has killed her abuser. One-hundred thirty male and female undergraduates from multicultural and African American samples read a trial transcript in which the battered woman was either Caucasian or African American, and had been either physically or emotionally abused. The hypothesis that the defendant would be judged guilty more often in the emotional abuse case was confirmed. No significant differences were found between African American and Caucasian defendants, and between male and female participants, innumber of guilty verdicts. Male participants, and those who had no personal experience with domestic violence, showed significantly less knowledge of the battering situation. Situational factors, such as type of abuse, rather than defendant or participant variables, such as gender, race or prior knowledge, affected number of guilty verdicts.
Braden-Maguire, Jane; Sigal, Janet; and Perrino, Carrol S., "Battered Women Who Kill: Variables Affecting Simulated Jurors' Verdicts" (2005). College of Liberal Arts. 59.