The purpose of this study was to test whether defendant and victim race (White, Black, Aboriginal Canadian) would jointly influence mock juror decision-making, and to test the effectiveness of making race a salient issue in mitigating bias. Participants (N = 558) read a robbery trial transcript in which race salience was experimentally manipulated via the defense’s closing argument (with defendant and victim race manipulated via photographs), then provided verdicts and indicated whether they perceived race to be a salient issue in the trial. Results demonstrated differential victim and defendant race effects as a function of experimental race salience manipulation and mock juror race, as well as effects for participants’ self-reported perception that race was a relevant feature of the trial. Overall, these findings suggest important differences in the impact of the race salience technique as a function of victim race.

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Keywords defendant race, juror decision-making, race salience, victim race
Persistent URL
Journal Justice Quarterly
Maeder, E.M, & Yamamoto, S. (Susan). (2018). Investigating Race Salience, Defendant Race, and Victim Race Effects on Mock Juror Decision-Making in Canada. Justice Quarterly, 1–25. doi:10.1080/07418825.2018.1460390