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Crisis Debriefing of a Jury After a Murder Trial
Theodore B. Feldmann; Roger A. Bell
Psychiatric Services 1991; doi:
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University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, Kentucky 40292

© 1991 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Abstract

The importance of crisis debriefing for those involved in major accidents, violent crimes, and natural disasters has been demonstrated. Similar debriefing may be warranted for jurors exposed to disturbing material in criminal cases. The authors describe a debriefing session for jurors after the murder trial of a man whose truck had collided with a school bus, killing 27 people. The graphic evidence of the accident, the high levels of emotion of the survivors and the victims' relatives, and the intense community and national attention to the trial placed the jurors under considerable stress. The debriefing enabled the jurors to express their feelings of anger, guilt, and frustration and to begin to accept their role in the event.

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