Testimonial Competence of Victims
doc. PhDr. Ludmila Čírtková, CSc., Faculty of Security Management PA Czech Republic in Prague, Department of Social Sciences
The article deals with credibility assessment of victim´s testimony about the crime. The author gives an overview about current research in forensic psychology and points out some problems in expert testimony about the credibility of traumatised victims. The credibility assessment is based on the central presumption made by Undeutsch. According to him the credible testimony has other quality characteristics than a story based on mental construction that is typical for lying. Empirical studies were successful in defining a list of content based criteria for authentic, memory based testimony. The initiative to modification of this list for vulnerable, traumatised victims has no scientific legitimization, because the current argumentation is based on confusion between credibility assessment and the assessment of victimisation impact and traumatisation.
Key words: general credibility, credibility of victim´s testimony, trauma memory, statement validity assessment, criteria based content analysis.