Should Schizophrenics be allowed to plead insanity to crimes?

Term Paper, 2011

6 Pages, Grade: A



Insanity defense deals with a division of the assumption of insanity which describes the degree at which people accused of committing a crime might be excused of the responsibility of the crime because of their mental illness. The conditions of this kind of defense are based on the instructions which are presented to the jury by the trial judge at the closing of the case. The instruction on mental conditions can be based on any of the many rules which are used to determine mental illness. The last decision on mental illness depends fully on the jury which uses the information given from the testimony of a professional’ witness, normally expert in the psychology filed (Williams, 2006). The final result of such decision puts the person where he should be accordingly, can be in the mental institution, in jail, or direct release. Owing to these above mentioned aspects there are various problems which have been raised by the presence of insanity defense. In general I believe that people suffering from Schizophrenics should not be allowed to plead innocent on the basis of their condition, owing to the above factors and other which I am going to outline in details.

Insanity is not a medical definition but a legal one, thus, schizophrenics and insanity are not the same. Though schizophrenic is mental illness, it does not imply that a person suffering from schizophrenics is insane. As Bland and Orn (1986, p,126) explains, insanity entails mental illness as well as mental deficiencies, thus, there is a difficulty in precisely how to use a medical concept no a legal issue. The legal theories of mental illness as well as insanity raises issues in disagreement between what is known as legalistic criminology against what is known as scientific criminology: punishment verse treatment and prisons verse hospitals. This issue coils around a grey area involving law against science. The big problem with this kind of mental illness is the fact that this is merely a theory. To the scientists, theories are their usual way of existence; however when you apply these theories to the model of law, these theories becomes fairly risky. By application of a shaky theory like mental illness in to law and allowing people with schizophrenic the legal system in real meaning will be clogging the justice wheels with the proverbial ‘monkey wrench’.


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Should Schizophrenics be allowed to plead insanity to crimes?
The University of Liverpool
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should, schizophrenics
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Ellen Garcia (Author), 2011, Should Schizophrenics be allowed to plead insanity to crimes?, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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