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LAWS 2301 (130)

7 mental illness in court.docx

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Carleton University
LAWS 2301
Diana Young

Mental illness Psychiatrists - Psychiatrists tend to look more for the cause and why people act self destructively - The idea of choice model of behavior isn’t really consistent with their beliefs in the discipline Mental illness in court - If you use the NCR, they are dealt with within the mental institutions - Not allowed acquittal, but are still criminally responsible • You are still going to get a punishment, but most likely sent to institutions for mentally ill - How the mental illness affects your emotional stability/understanding - Section 16 of the constitution does not provide grounds for acquittal but rather on grounds for being not criminally responsible. - The defense of insanity is not what we have in the Canadian System, if you fall within section 16 of the criminal code you’re not entitled to an act of acquittal but you can be held as not criminally responsible Informal ways law deals with mentally ill - Davis case - Informal • Police have discretion as to how they respond  Tend to be more sympathetic towards the mentally ill • Police can let the person go (warning) • Sometimes they can ask them if they want to go to a mental health facility • Sometimes have to arrest them and charge them - Like the majority of the population, most crimes they commit are minor, however they may be less likely to conceal their crime because of their illness. They also attract a lot of attention to themselves because they have a harder time controlling their actions. People are also afraid of them Mentally ill people - Hard time navigating once they are in the system - Detention (pre and post sentence) can be difficult for them for several reasons • (In the Davis article) the ill are incarcerated at a higher rate in the prison system but also once they’re there they get worse and have a much harder time due to stress, unpleasantness, alienating, level of stress, they have a hard time getting along in prisons; the reality is that in overcrowded detention centers they may be targeted by other inmates or hard to get along with/ have conflict with other inmates this makes it increasingly difficult to release bails and makes them look like poor candidates for non-custodial sentence/parole) • Targeted by other inmates because they seem vulnerable - Most don’t have jobs so it’s hard for them to get bail - Mental illness can lead to harsher sentence (hard time meeting hearings, meetings, etc…) - Most people still end up in prison and don’t get treated, and police don’t have the training to deal with the mentally ill - Lack of resources that will adequately deal with mentally ill people when they are released/deinstitutionalized  no housing, welfare, support, etc… • Increase in mentally il
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