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Children as Victims, Witnesses, and Offenders
Psychological Science and the Law
by Edited by Bette L. Bottoms, Cynthia J. Najdowski, and Gail S. Goodman

Grounded in the latest clinical and developmental knowledge, this book brings together leading authorities to examine the critical issues that arise when children and adolescents become involved in the justice system.

Full Description:   

Grounded in the latest clinical and developmental knowledge, this book brings together leading authorities to examine the critical issues that arise when children and adolescents become involved in the justice system. Chapters explore young people's capacities, competencies, and special vulnerabilities as victims, witnesses, and defendants. Key topics include the reliability of children's abuse disclosures, eyewitness testimony, interviews, and confessions; the evolving role of the expert witness; the psychological impact of trauma and of legal involvement; factors that shape jurors' perceptions of children; and what works in rehabilitating juvenile offenders. Policies and practices that are not supported by science are identified, and approaches to improving them are discussed.

"The fields of law and psychology have been moving toward a restructuring of justice for children-as victims and as offenders-that makes use of new, scientifically informed perspectives on child development. This volume is a definitive milestone in the progress of that movement. Above all, it is authoritative. Leading researchers have written succinct reviews of their respective areas of expertise, in a style that will be understandable to practitioners and policymakers. Offering updates on questions that have been asked for decades, the chapters also provide new information on issues addressed nowhere else. This book promises to both inform and organize our thinking about how law can best respond to children who are harmed or who harm others."
-Thomas Grisso, PhD, Director, Law and Psychiatry Program, University of Massachusetts Medical School
"Few topics in psychology and law have attracted as much attention as the challenging conflicts posed when children encounter the legal system as victims or offenders. This volume is both comprehensive and nuanced, assembling experts in the field to describe what we know and what we have yet to learn."
-Shari Seidman Diamond, JD, PhD, Howard J. Trienens Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology, Northwestern University School of Law; Research Professor, American Bar Foundation
"Although much has been written about child abuse victims and juvenile offenders in the last two decades, these literatures have not previously been presented together in such an authoritative, comprehensive, and accessible way. This book is both a resource for established scholars and a well-written introduction for students in applied developmental, forensic, and clinical psychology, as well as social work and juvenile and family law."
-Michael E. Lamb, PhD, Head, Department of Social and Developmental Psychology, University of Cambridge, UK

Bette L. Bottoms, PhD, is Professor of Psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She has edited four other books and published numerous articles about child abuse, children's eyewitness testimony, and jurors' perceptions of child victims and offenders. A past president of the American Psychological Association's Society for Child and Family Policy and Practice, she is a recipient of the American Psychology-Law Society Early Career Award and eight awards for teaching excellence.

Cynthia J. Najdowski, BA, is a doctoral student in social and personality psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her research focuses on understanding how childhood sexual abuse and rape victims cope with their experiences. She also studies perceptions of juvenile offenders. She has received several competitive grants and awards in recognition of her work.

Gail S. Goodman, PhD, is Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Public Policy Research at the University of California, Davis. She has received numerous awards and federal grants for research, and her studies have been cited in U.S. Supreme Court decisions. Her psycholegal research focuses on child maltreatment, trauma and memory, forensic interviewing, and juvenile delinquency.

416 Pages, 6x9

1. Children as Victims, Witnesses, and Offenders: An Introduction through Legal Cases, Jillian N. Ducker, Jessica M. Salerno, Cynthia J. Najdowski, Bette L. Bottoms, and Gail S. Goodman

I. Children As Victims and Witnesses

2. Abuse Disclosure: What Adults Can Tell, Thomas D. Lyon

3. Trauma and Memory, Andrea Follmer Greenhoot and Sarah L. Bunnell

4. Children's Memory in Forensic Contexts: Suggestibility, False Memory, and Individual Differences, Iris Blandón-Gitlin and Kathy Pezdek

5. Child Sexual Abuse Investigations: Lessons Learned from the McMartin and Other Daycare Cases, James M. Wood, Debbie Nathan, M. Teresa Nezworski, and Elizabeth Uhl

6. Contemporary Child Forensic Interviewing: Evolving Consensus and Innovation Over 25 Years, Karen J. Saywitz and Lorinda B. Camparo

7. Child Victims in Dependency Court, Jodi A. Quas, Alexia Cooper, and Lindsay Wandrey

8. Child Witnesses in Criminal Court, Natalie R. Troxel, Christin M. Ogle, Ingrid M. Cordon, Michael J. Lawler, and Gail S. Goodman

9. Expert Psychological Testimony in Child Sexual Abuse Trials, John E. B. Myers

10. Jurors' Perceptions of Children's Eyewitness Testimony, Jonathan M. Golding, Emily E. Dunlap, and Emily C. Hodell

11. An International Perspective on Child Witnesses, Kay Bussey

12. Child Victim Research Comes of Age: Implications for Social Scientists, Practitioners, and the Law, Bradley D. McAuliff

II. Children As Offenders

13. How Victims Become Offenders, Cathy Spatz Widom and Helen W. Wilson

14. Police Interrogation and False Confessions: The Inherent Risk of Youth, Allison D. Redlich and Saul M. Kassin

15. Challenging Juvenile Transfer: Faulty Assumptions and Misguided Policies, N. Dickon Reppucci, Jaime L. Michel, and Jessica O. Kostelnik

16. Therapeutic Jurisprudence in Juvenile Justice, Patrick H. Tolan and Jennifer Anne Titus

17. Girl Offenders: Special Issues, James Garbarino, Kathryn Levene, Margaret Walsh, and Sacha M. Coupet

18. Understanding Adults' Perceptions of Juvenile Offenders, Margaret C. Stevenson, Cynthia J. Najdowski, Bette L. Bottoms, and Tamara M. Haegerich

19. An International Perspective on Juvenile Justice Issues, John Petrila

20. Different Visions of Juvenile Justice, Christopher Slobogin

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