Witness Testimony

Witness Testimony : Psychological, Investigative and Evidential Perspectives

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Testimonial evidence remains the greatest source of information available to those who try cases in court.Witness Testimony: Psychological, Investigative, and Evidential Perspectives provides a comprehensive and easily accessible guide to the decision-making and actions of the complete spectrum of practitioner involvement in the criminal justice process, right from initial investigation through to court-room proceedings. It builds on the content and structure of its ground-breaking predecessor Analysing Witness Testimony: A Guide for Legal Practitioners and Other Professionals (Blackstone Press, March 1999), and consists of 25 chapters written by an expert author team of practitioner and academic lawyers, forensic psychiatrists, and psychologists. The team is led by criminal evidence specialist barristers Anthony Heaton-Armstrong and David Wolchover, chartered forensic psychologist Dr Eric Shepherd, and Professor of Forensic Psychology, Gisli Gudjonnson. The book is logically divided into three sections, looking in turn at each of the three inter-related perspectives upon a witness' account; psychological, investigative, and evidential. Section One explains and examines psychological issues, including; witness memory; the effect of learning disabilities; false allegations of sexual assault; and the effect of physical factors such as head injuries and drugs. Section Two covers the crucial investigative issues and concerns in respect of false allegations; the impact of investigative and questioning style upon children and vulnerable persons; memory performace of witnesses; and linguistic interpretations. Section Three explores evidential issues such as; visual identification procedures; the status of witness demeanour; the reliability of oral evidence; the relevance of information technology to presentation of evidence; disclosure; the use of expert evidence; and judicial training. The book will therefore be indispensable to all those involved in the resolution of contentious or disputed evidence, including; members of the judiciary and legal practitioners; crime investigators; and forensic psychologists and psychiatrists.

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  • Paperback | 498 pages
  • 170 x 242 x 32mm | 861.84g
  • 07 Dec 2006
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0199278091
  • 9780199278091
  • 707,666

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Author Information

David Wolchover was called to the Bar in 1971 and has practised criminal law ever since, being currently Head of Chambers at 7 Bell Yard. He has published numerous articles on evidence and procedure in criminal cases (usually with Anthony Heaton-Armstrong), as well as several books in the field including Analysing Witness Testimony: A Guide for Legal Practitioners and Other Professionals (Blackstone Press, 1999), and Bail in Criminal Proceedings (jointly with Neil Corre, third edition OUP 2004). He was previously instrumental, with Anthony Heaton-Armstrong, in persuading the Home Office to concede various significant changes in PACE Code C.

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Review quote

'I can think of no other book like it in terms of accessibility, breadth, relevance and perhpas most importantly ethos - to achieve truth.' ( John Cooper, Barrister, New Law Journal, 2008) 'This is a book great value and interest to anyone engaged in the practice or study of the law.' ( Justice of the Peace, October 2007) 'This highly original and relevant work signposts the way forward in the examination of witnesses. The area of how we should treat live evidence is a prominent and growing area of concern, and the publication of the book is both timely and essential. The empasis of the work is upon the victim. Indeed, the textbook is dedicated to "victims, whether of crime or miscarriage of justice". ( Criminal Bar Quarterly, April 2007) This Book is a worthwhile investment for investigation managers, those responsible for developing and delivering witness interview training and for investigators committed to professionalism'( Dr Harfield of the John Grieve Centre, 12 January 2007)

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