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Applying criteria based content analysis to assessing the veracity of rape statements

Critchlow, Nathan (2011) Applying criteria based content analysis to assessing the veracity of rape statements. Manchester Metropolitan University. (Unpublished)


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Rape is a serious crime and one of the most difficult to investigate due to a lack of witnesses. Therefore understanding veracity of a rape statement is of paramount importance. Police forces currently have no procedure to assess statement veracity therefore the aim of this investigation was to assess the application of Criteria Based Content Analysis (CBCA) to adult rape statements. This investigation applied (CBCA) to 28 rape statements equally divided into categories of veracity (genuine, credible, non-credible and confirmed false allegations). According to the Undeustch (1982) hypothesis, a genuine and credible statement will differ in content to a false or non-credible statement, suggesting CBCA could potentially be an investigative police tool. ANOVAs and post-hoc t-tests demonstrating genuine (M=18.86) and credible (M=15.57) statements showed significantly higher criteria presence than non-credible (M=6) and false statements (M=6.29), but no significant difference between genuine and credible statements, or between non-credible and false statements. Furthermore the percentage of criteria present in genuine and credible statements indicates CBCA can be used to tackle adult rape narrative. Results indicate CBCA could be used to assess veracity of adult rape statements, and have application as a police investigative tool.

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