Jan 4, 2023

Study finds psychopaths may not remember emotionally negative events accurately

Posted by in category: law enforcement

New research suggests that those with psychopathic personality traits are less susceptible to creating false memories of negative events. The findings indicate that individuals high in the psychopathic trait of fearless dominance were less likely to produce false memories when exposed to negative stimuli. Likewise, individuals high in the psychopathic trait of cold-heartedness tended to have fewer true memories of neutral and negative events. These findings may be relevant to law enforcement, mainly when gathering witness or suspect testimony from individuals high in psychopathic traits.

The new study has been published in the British Journal of Psychology.

A significant amount of memory research in the last few decades has focused on memory construction and retrieval. Of particular interest has been the formation of false memories. False memories can have consequences in the justice system, as eyewitness reports are often crucial to investigations and convictions. In addition, individuals with psychopathic personality traits often intersect with law enforcement, making research on how they process memories relevant to determining the reliability of remembered events.

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