Judicial Decision Making About Forensic Mental Health Evidence
Richard E. Redding & Daniel C. Murrie, Judicial Decision Making About Forensic Mental Health Evidence, in Forensic Psychology: Emerging Topics and Expanding Roles 683 (Alan M. Goldstein ed., 2007).
25 Pages Posted: 22 Oct 2010 Last revised: 29 May 2014
Date Written: October 21, 2010
Judges play a central role in decision making in the justice system. This chapter reviews the extant empirical research on judicial decision making in criminal, juvenile, and civil cases. We discuss judges’ decision making about forensic mental health evidence introduced in these cases, judicial receptivity to various kinds of evidence, and their understanding of clinical and scientific evidence as well as the ways they make rulings about such evidence. We focus on decision making at the trial court level, in those arenas that are most relevant to the forensic mental health practitioner (psychiatrist, psychologist, or social worker) who is called on to provide testimony to the courts.
Keywords: Judges, Decision Making, Forensic Evidence, Mental Health Evidence, Mental Health Experts
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