TitleThe effect of attachment on jury decision making
NameMeloni, Allyson (author), Boxer, Paul (chair), Siegel, Harold (internal member), Kressel, Kenneth (internal member), Van de Walle, Gretchen (internal member), Veysey, Bonita (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - Newark,
DescriptionThe proposed research had two goals: 1) to examine the effects of attachment on the decisions that jurors make and 2) to investigate and replicate findings from previous studies that have shown a relationship, though inconsistent, to jury decision making. In Study 1, participants were asked to read three real life court cases and make decisions on them. Attachment style was assessed (Bartholomew & Horowitz, 1991; Brennan et al, 1998). It was shown that attachment was related to jury decisions in that highly anxious individuals tended to be more punitive toward the defendant in the cases. In Study 2, participants were primed into differing attachment categories and their decisions were examined to see if through temporarily modifying attachment style, jury decisions might also be amended. The results suggested that priming did not function in the expected manner as there was a general increase in avoidance scores across all categories. Despite these priming issues, attachment was related to jury outcomes. In order to remedy the confound in the Study 2, Study 3 was conducted to assess the same issue but with a change in methods. Unexpectedly, there was a decrease in anxiety across all priming conditions suggesting that an opportunity to emotionally disclose about a relationship significantly impacted the priming procedure. As in Studies 1 and 2, the results of Study 3 showed a relationship between jury decisions and attachment. Finally, Study 4 tested the effects of attachment on jury decision making in a mock jury atmosphere. It was shown that highly anxious individuals were more likely to be swayed during the jury decision making process. The implications for these findings in the realm of the jury decision making literature as well as other possible variables influencing jury decisions are discussed.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 95-102)
Noteby Allyson Meloni
CollectionGraduate School - Newark Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.