Effects of authoritarian, anti-authoritarian, and egalitarian legal attitudes on mock juror and jury decisions.

McGowen, R., & King, G. D. (1982). Effects of authoritarian, anti-authoritarian, and egalitarian legal attitudes on mock juror and jury decisions. Psychological Reports, 51, 1067-1074.

The students were classified as authoritarian, antiauthoritarian, or egalitarian in their legal attitudes based on their responses to the Legal Attitudes Questionnaire. An equal number (120) of each juror type was selected. They were grouped into six-person homogeneous mock juries and asked to render an individual decision prior to deliberation, an individual postdeliberation verdict, and a group decision. Prior to deliberation, the authoritarian student jurors responded more punitively toward a defendant to whom they were similar. The deliberation process exerted a moderating influence, and the egalitarian student jurors were especially susceptible to this influence. Finally, similarity to the defendant was the most salient factor in determining the decision, and student juries were significantly more punitive toward a defendant who was similar to them in race and socioeconomic status. Tendency for juries consisting entirely of high-authoritarian individuals to convict more, choose more severe verdicts, and give longer sentences than egalitarian and anti-authoritarian juries. All jury types (especially authoritarian) harsher on similar as opposed to dissimilar defendants.

https://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=86687