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Law Hum Behav. 2000 Apr;24(2):149-71.

The "hired gun" effect: assessing the effect of pay, frequency of testifying, and credentials on the perception of expert testimony.

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Department of Psychology, Princeton University, New Jersey 08540, USA.


Three experiments addressed the proposition that jurors use short cuts in processing information when confronted with expert scientific testimony. The results of the first two studies demonstrated that experts who are highly paid for their testimony and who testify frequently are perceived as "hired guns." They are neither liked nor believed. The results of the third experiment replicated the hired gun effect and showed that it is most likely to occur when the testimony is complex and cannot be easily processed. The results were discussed in terms of the theoretical differences between central and peripheral processing of persuasive messages in a legal context.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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