Exploring the Effects of Altitudes Toward the Death Penalty on Capital Sentencing Verdicts
Attitudes toward the death penalty are multifaceted and strongly held, but little research outside of the death-qualification literature has focused on the role that such attitudes and beliefs play in jurors’ capital sentencing verdicts. A single item is insufficient to properly measure attitudes toward the death penalty; therefore, a new 15-item, 5-factor scale was constructed and validated. Use of this scale in 11 studies of capital jury decision making found a large effect of general support of the death penalty on sentencing verdicts as well as independent aggravating effects for the belief that the death penalty is a deterrent and the belief that a sentence of life without parole nonetheless allows parole. These effects generally were not completely mediated by, nor did attitudes moderate the effects of, aggravating and mitigating factors.
- Document type Article
- Countries list United States
- Themes list Networks,