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Forensic Psychology: Crime, Justice, Law Interventions



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We would like to dedicate this Third Edition of our textbook to our families, but also to those who have particularly influenced and supported our work in forensic psychology:

Graham M. Davies: Hadyn Ellis, John Shepherd, Beth Loftus, Gisli Gudjonsson, Ray Bull, and Don Thomson.

Anthony R. Beech: Kevin Creeden, Glyn Humphreys, Richard Laws, William (Bill) Marshall, Adrian Raine, and Tony Ward.


Anthony R. Beech, University of Birmingham, UK

Erica Bowen, University of Coventry, UK

Franca Cortoni, Université de Montréal, Canada

Leam A. Craig, Forensic Psychology Practice & the University of Birmingham, UK

Graham M. Davies, University of Leicester and University of Birmingham, UK

Louise Dixon, University of Birmingham, UK

David P. Farrington, Institute of Criminology, Cambridge. UK

Dawn Fisher, St. Andrews Healthcare and the University of Birmingham, UK

Heather D. Flowe, University of Loughborough, UK

Nathalie M. G. Fontaine, Université de Montréal, Canada

Nuwan Galappathie, St. Andrews Healthcare, Birmingham, UK

Steven M. Gillespie, Newcastle University

Michelle Ginty, St. Andrews Healthcare, Birmingham, UK

Pär Anders Granhag, University of Gothenberg, Sweden

Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis, University of Bath, UK

Leigh Harkins, University of Ontario Institute of Technology. Canada

Maria Hartwig, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York, USA

Ruth Hatcher, University of Leicester, UK

Clive Hollin, University of Leicester, UK

David J. La Rooy, Royal Holloway University of London, UK

William R. Lindsay, Castlebeck, Darlington and University of Abertay, UK

Erik Mac Giolla, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Lindsay C. Malloy, Florida International University, USA

Ruth Mann, Rehabilitation Services Group, National Offender Management Service, UK

James McGuire, University of Liverpool, UK

Amanda M. Michie, Lothian NHS Trust, Edinburgh, UK

Ian J. Mitchell, University of Birmingham, UK

Allison P. Mugno, Florida International University, USA

Benjamin Nordstrom, University of Pennsylvania, USA

Emma J. Palmer, University of Leicester, UK

Adrian Raine, University of Pennsylvania, USA

Hannah Ryder, University of Leicester, UK

Jagjit Sandhu, St. Andrews Healthcare, Birmingham, UK

Emma Sleath, University of Coventry, UK

Harriet M. J. Smith, Nottingham Trent University, UK

John L. Taylor, Northumbria and Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust and Northumbria University, UK

Max Taylor, University College, London, UK

Matthew Tonkin, Birmingham City University, UK

Maria M. Ttofi, Institute of Criminology, Cambridge. UK

Tim Valentine, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK

Tony Ward, University of Auckland, New Zealand

Jayson Ware, Offender Services and Programs, Corrective Services, NSW, Australia

Helen L. Westcott, Formally, International Centre for Comparative Criminological Research, the Open University, UK

Jacqueline M. Wheatcroft, University of Liverpool, UK

Daniel T. Wilcox, Wilcox Psychological Associates and the University of Birmingham, UK

Gwenda M. Willis, University of Auckland, New Zealand

Jessica Woodhams, University of Birmingham, UK

Preface to Third Edition

Welcome to the Third Edition of Forensic Psychology: Crime, Justice, Law, Interventions. Forensic psychology continues to be a popular option at undergraduate and higher degree level: interest in the interface between psychology and law continues to grow. In this new edition, we have sought to retain the focus on European and British models of justice, while acknowledging the rather different traditions of research and practice emanating from the United States.

This Third Edition builds on the success of the second and retains the same editorial team and many of the scholars who contributed to the earlier edition. All the topics from the Second Edition are retained but in some instances, a new writing team has brought a fresh perspective to the topics concerned. Examples include the treatment of eyewitness evidence, interviewing witnesses and suspects and the role of the psychologist as an expert witness. Two new chapters have also been added to address emerging issues in forensic research and practice: (1) an extended treatment of the concept of psychopathy and (2) interventions with female offenders. We have retained our policy of teaming established authors with younger researchers, who bring with them enthusiasm and knowledge of the needs of today’s students.

Given these changes, the structure of the text remains essentially the same. An introductory chapter by the Editors provides an overview of the history of forensic psychology, both in relation to the courts and the prevention and treatment of offenders and takes in career paths, as well as relevant organisations and societies. Part 1 covers the Causes of Crime from a range of different but complimentary perspectives, while Part 2 is devoted to Investigating Crime and the actual and potential role psychological research can play in assisting the police in their enquiries. Part 3 looks at psychological perspectives on The Trial Process, from the standpoint of both court officials and the witnesses who must give their best evidence. Finally, Part 4 considers the challenge of Dealing with Offenders, with separate treatments of important groups, including those with learning disabilities and the mentally disordered. Fittingly, the text ends on a positive note, looking at the impact of the “Good Lives” movement on steering offenders away from crime toward more productive and fulfilling lives.

As before, Forensic Psychology: Crime, Justice, Law, Interventions has been published under the aegis of the British Psychological Society’s Textbooks in Psychology series. The book’s dedicated website has also been thoroughly updated, with additional student quiz questions and links to forensic sites of particular interest to psychology students. Instructors and lecturers can also access PowerPoint presentations covering each of the chapters to augment their lectures. All the main chapters retain the popular “Case Studies” feature, where theory blends with practice, together with topics for essays and discussions, plus additional recommended reading. An added attraction in the new edition is that most illustrations and figures are now in colour.

During the production of this book, one of our lead authors, Professor William [Bill] Lindsay died unexpectedly. Bill was a prolific writer and researcher on issues surrounding intellectually impaired offenders; collaborative in his approach and generous with his time, he is a significant loss to the field.

Once again, it is our pleasure to acknowledge the help and assistance of our many authors in ensuring that the manuscript was completed on time and dealing tolerantly with our questions and queries. Andrew Peart at Wiley-Blackwell provided the initial impetus to undertake a Third Edition and Liz Wingett has seen it through to its conclusion. Matthew Tonkin and Chelsea Slater compiled the multiple-choice test questions and Nora Naughton and Grace Fairley prepared our book for publication by Wiley. We hope that students and teachers alike will find this new edition a readable, comprehensive and up-to-date guide to the world of forensic psychology.

Graham M. Davies and Anthony R. Beech

About the Editors

Graham M. Davies is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of Leicester and an Honorary Professor of Forensic Psychology at the Universities of Birmingham and Coventry. His research interests focus on the testimony of children and adults and the support of vulnerable witnesses at court, on which topics he has published some 10 books and more than 150 articles in scientific journals. He led the writing team responsible for the original version of Achieving Best Evidence, the standard guidance on interviewing vulnerable victims and witnesses in the English courts, and has considerable experience as an expert witness in court cases where the testimony of children or other vulnerable witnesses are a focus of concern. He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society and a former president of the Society for Applied Research in Memory and Cognition and of the European Association for Psychology and Law. He is the founding editor of the journal Applied Cognitive Psychology and co-edits the Wiley Series on Crime Policing and the Law. In addition to his academic and professional work, he was for 13 years a Magistrate on the Loughborough, Melton, Belvoir and Rutland bench.

Anthony R. Beech Professor Anthony Beech is Head of the Centre for Forensic and Criminological Psychology at the University of Birmingham, UK. He has authored more than 180 peer-reviewed articles, 50 book chapters and seven books in the area of forensic science/criminal justice. In 2009 he received the Significant Achievement Award from the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers in Dallas, and the Senior Award from the Division of Forensic Psychology, British Psychological Society. His particular areas of research interests are: risk assessment; the neurobiological bases of offending; reducing online exploitation of children; and increasing psychotherapeutic effectiveness of the treatment given to offenders. His recent research has examined: Internet offending; new approaches to treatment of offenders; and the neurobiological basis of offending.

About the Companion Website

There is a range of resource materials especially developed for the third edition of Forensic Psychology: Crime, Justice, Law, Interventions for use by students and instructors, providing for all your course lecturing and testing needs. These include: