The Cost of Detecting Deception: Judging Veracity Makes Eyewitnesses Remember a Suspect Less Accurately but With More Certainty
Article first published online: 17 DEC 2013
Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Applied Cognitive Psychology
Volume 28, Issue 3, pages 314–326, May/June 2014
How to Cite
Pickel, K. L., Klauser, B. M. and Bauer, H. M. (2014), The Cost of Detecting Deception: Judging Veracity Makes Eyewitnesses Remember a Suspect Less Accurately but With More Certainty. Appl. Cognit. Psychol., 28: 314–326. doi: 10.1002/acp.2991
- Issue published online: 6 APR 2014
- Article first published online: 17 DEC 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 25 NOV 2013
- Manuscript Revised: 13 NOV 2013
- Manuscript Received: 28 AUG 2013
The current study extends previous research demonstrating the detrimental effects of divided attention during encoding on eyewitness memory. Previous data indicate that judging the veracity of a suspect causes witnesses to scrutinize him or her carefully and requires relatively high cognitive effort. We therefore hypothesized that performing this task while simultaneously observing the suspect should impair witnesses' memory for his or her appearance and message while ironically inflating their certainty and other testimony-relevant judgments. Our results supported these predictions. Moreover, inducing witnesses to be suspicious about the suspect's truthfulness (Experiment 1) and motivating them to judge veracity as accurately as possible (Experiment 2) amplified the memory impairment effect and further increased several testimony-relevant ratings. Additionally, compared with witnesses who incorrectly identified the suspect in a line-up, those who made a correct decision expressed greater certainty about their line-up accuracy and also provided higher ratings on some other testimony-relevant measures. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.