Credibility

Credibility refers to the ‘quality in a witness which renders her evidence worthy of belief’. It  is central to determination of whether a rape occurred in the way the survivor said it did, as epitomised by the iconic “he said/she said” contest. Factors that can be used to undermine credibility include personal characteristics relating to moral character or reputation; ‘risk-taking’ behaviour; discrepancies in the victim-survivor’s account of the incident; and typifications about rape scenarios, rape reporting and behaviour after the assault.

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