WITNESS STATEMENTS & HILLSBOROUGH 3: CONFIRMATION BIAS AT ITS WORST

Civil Litigation Brief

Much has been written and broadcast about Hillsborough. I am here concentrating on one small part of the process: the initial gathering of evidence.  It was the flawed nature of this process that led to problems for the next two decades.  This is one of the important issues in the Hillsborough story, but is also of general importance, particularly for those involved in the legal process. The failure to ask questions objectively, but instead pursue an agenda, meant that crucial evidence was not obtained or overlooked.

“Just a set of ­questions geared entirely towards the behaviour of people, like myself, whose only fault was that we saw fellow fans die.”

THE OBJECTIVE QUESTIONING OF WITNESSES

Again there were a number of simple objective questions that witnesses could be asked.

  • Where were you?
  • What happened to you?
  • What did you see?
  • What did you hear?
  • What did you do?

CONFIRMATION BIAS…

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