The determinants of verdicts in a rape case were examined. Pretrial attitudes (rape empathy, juror bias, belief in a just world, and authoritarianism) were measured to ascertain both the intercorrelations among the attitudes and their predictive value of verdicts. The eye contact (staring, avoiding, or random) of the alleged rape victim with the defendant was also examined.

Results showed that rape empathy was predictive of verdict. The eye contact of the alleged victim with the defendant also affected verdicts of female mock jurors. Specifically, when eye contact was avoided, more guilty verdicts were rendered. Furthermore, interpretation of eye contact was found to be a function of mock jurors' reported rape empathy. Specifically, subjects who reported empathy with the victim tended to interpret the victim's behavior as consistent with being raped. Finally, differences were found between high and low empathizers for the rape victim in what aspects of the trial were important to mock jurors' decisions.