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RACE, SOCIO-ECONOMIC STATUS, AND PERCEIVED SIMILARITY AS DETERMINANTS OF JUDGEMENTS BY SIMULATED JURORS

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Eighty-four simulated jurors judged a defendant on trial for armed robbery after reading trial transcripts and other background information in a 2 × 2 factorial design which varied the defendant's race and socioeconomic status (S.E.S). Higher S.E.S. (middle class) defendants were judged less guilty and assigned fewer years in prison than low S.E.S. defendants regardless of race. A race × S.E.S. interaction on attributed blameworthiness of the defendant, which was inversely related to the jurors' judgements of the defendant's similarity to them, was also found. Theoretical and methodological implications of these findings for jury simulation studies are discussed.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 January 1975

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