The authors are indebted to Mary K. Kulish for her assistance with the data collection and to Karl Hakmiller and Charles Lowe for their helpful suggestions.
The Effect of Several Types of Pretrial Publicity on the Guilt Attributions of Simulated Jurors1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 3, Issue 3, pages 267–275, September 1973
How to Cite
Hoiberg, B. C. and Stires, L. K. (1973), The Effect of Several Types of Pretrial Publicity on the Guilt Attributions of Simulated Jurors. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 3: 267–275. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1973.tb02802.x
Funds for the computer analyses of the data were provided by National Science Foundation Grant GJ-9.
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
The experiment (N= 312) tested the effects of two types of pretrial publicity (PTP) on the guilt verdicts of simulated jurors. Heinous PTP was manipulated by varying the degree to which the lurid details of a rape-murder were presented to prospective jurors. Prejudgement PTP varied in the extent to which it implied that the defendant was the perpetrator or the rape-murder. As predicted, PTP which was high in either heinousness or prejudgment increased the females' tendency to conclude-after the trial evidence-that the defendant was guilty of the crime. The biasing effect of prejudgment PTP, however, was significant only among females categorized as being of low IQ. In contrast, neither dimension of PTF' significantly influenced the guilt verdicts of male jurors. Several possible explanations of the sex's differential vulnerability to PTP were proposed. In addition, evidence was obtained that female jurors may have been derogating the rape-murder victim and defensively minimizing the gravity of her fate, as a result of motivations to believe in a just world.