The "insanity" defense

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    Last post ago about 7 years by mistye81
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    PMM2008

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        PMM2008

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        Hi Gang:

        In criminal trials, the insanity defenses are possible defenses by excuse.  A affirmative defense by which defendants argue that they should NOT be held criminally liable for breaking the law, as they were legally insane at the time of the commission of alleged crimes.

        A defendant attempting such a defense will often be required to first undergo a mental examination. The legal definition of "insane" in this context is quite different from psychiatric definitions of "mentally ill".

        The insanity defense is based on evaluations by forensic professionals that the defendant was incapable of distinguishing between right and wrong at the time of the offense. In addition, some jurisdictions require that the evaluation address the issue of whether the defendant was able to control his behavior at the time of the offense.

        Now this is where I get confused. Some of the crimes were so awful you say to yourself, "Only someone crazy would of done that. Yet, are they really crazy? Are people abusing the system?

        What are some thoughts from out there on our excellent forum?

                                                                            PMM
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        drpsyce38

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        Okay...great, I get to be a psychologist again!  Yes, some people really can be "insane" thus not guilty by reason of mental illiness or defect. 

        But, many, many mental illnesses might be a hardship, but NOT an excuse for crime.  For example, most cases bi polar disorder. 
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        Lipstick

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        This is a interesting question....

        If a man goes out and slaughters 15 women......how is that not insane? At least for heinous crimes.

        Or a serial killer who eats body parts and keeps them in jars in his fridge, like Jeffery Dahmer. Lets deliberate over this......was he insane? Hell yeah he was insane.

        Now when it comes to temporary insanity........we are all capable of that. We all have triggers that blow our top at one time or another. What separates us from going off the deep end is self control.

        Do the crime.....pay the time.

        Lips
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        drpsyce38

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        Lips....you make a great point...as usual!  Even if one is "crazy" and commits a crime, that does NOT mean they should not be locked up.
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        mistye81

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        I have to disagree, what good is throwing a paranoid schizophrenic into lock up.  This is a disease of the mind, most people with this are unaware of just how unrational they are, until they are treated with the right medication, and have the right couseling.  I think that they need to be put in pysch hospital, not prisons. But I don't think that they need to treated and released back into public either, but put into a mental healthcare facility for long term care.  Just my opinion.   
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        drpsyce38

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        If a schizo murders someone, no they should not be put in the regular prison population.  But, we need to invest in quality "mental prisons" for such offenders. 
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        mistye81

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        Why waste any more money investing in prisons for the mentally ill, when they can be locked up in a psych hospital, its not like they are actually treated much different.  I do however believe that they shouldn't be released back into society.

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