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CSI Effect

Definition - What does CSI Effect mean?

The CSI effect is a term used for the belief that modern TV crime dramas with an emphasis on forensic science, DNA analysis and so forth influence real-life jurors. Specifically, it is the belief held by some prosecutors that jurors who have seen these television shows have unrealistic expectations about the type and amount of forensic evidence that should be or is presented at trial.

Justipedia explains CSI Effect

Prosecutors frustrated by the CSI effect say it makes their jobs more difficult. They say that jurors who have seen crime dramas that stress the importance of forensic evidence are less likely to convict defendants in real life if little or none of that type of evidence is presented at trial.

While it is most prevalent in criminal cases, the CSI effect is also said to influence jurors in civil cases, where there is an abundance of complex and/or technical material.

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