Sexual History Evidence in Rape Trials
Is the Jury Out
- Available for pre-order on February 23, 2023. Item will ship after March 16, 2023
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This book provides an in-depth examination of current, high-profile debates about the use of sexual history evidence in rape trials and presents original findings regarding the impact of this evidence on jurors.
The book presents findings of the first research in England and Wales that has examined how jurors interpret, discuss, and rely upon sexual history evidence in deliberations. It draws upon qualitative and quantitative findings of 18 mock jury simulation panels, to highlight the complex, nuanced and intersectional impact of this evidence. Findings highlight ongoing prejudicial impact of sexual history evidence, with jurors routinely drawing upon rape myths and stereotypes about sexual violence, to posit relevance of this evidence and undermine the perceived credibility of the complainant. These findings are embedded within broader discussions about evidential legitimacy in rape trials and use good practice observed in other jurisdictions, to make numerous recommendations for change.
Aiming to inform academic, policy and legislative discussions in this area, Sexual History Evidence in Rape Trails will be of great interest to students and scholars of Criminal Law and Criminology, as well as policy makers and legal practitioners.
Table of Contents
Chapter One - Introduction: Situating the Debate
Chapter Two – Mock Jury Simulations: Insights Through the Looking Glass
Chapter Three - Sexual History Evidence: The Canary in the Criminal Justice Mine?
Chapter Four - Taking Stock: S.41 in Operation
Chapter Five - ‘No doesn’t always mean no’: Socio-Sexual Stereotypes and Heteronormativity
Chapter Six - ‘Was she that type of girl?’: Sexual History Evidence and Constructions of Complainant Credibility
Chapter Seven - Sexual History Evidence – A Complicating Factor?
Chapter Eight - Lessons to be Learnt from Other Jurisdictions?
Chapter Nine - Back to the Drawing Board?
Charlotte Herriott is a Lecturer in Criminology and Policing at Anglia Ruskin University, UK. Charlotte's PhD, on which this book is based, was the first research in England and Wales to examine the impact of sexual history evidence on mock jury deliberations in rape trials. Her current research interests relate to sexual violence, particularly criminal justice responses, and sexual violence within the UK armed forces. Charlotte is working with colleagues within ARU’s Veteran’s and Families Institute, examining the service justice system response to sexual offending, and exploring military specific factors which may complicate responses to sexual offending. She teaches on a variety of modules across the criminology programme, focusing mainly on areas of violence, sexual violence, and the criminal justice system.