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Lecture 19

PSYC 2400 Lecture Notes - Lecture 19: John Wayne Gacy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Ed Gein


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 2400
Professor
Julie Dempsey
Lecture
19

Page:
of 4
Thursday, March 21, 2013
PSYC 2400 - Winter 2013
Lecture 19
Fitness to Stand Trial and Criminal Responsibility
Comparison of NCRMD and Fitness (*IMPORTANT* - on exam, possible short answer question)
NCRMD: Common Myths
1. Large number of defendants use the defence
Less than 1% of cases use this defence in the US
2. Majority of times the plea is successful
Success rate is variable
Only 25% of the 1% of cases are successful
3. Those found NCRMD are released back in society quickly
4. Extreme dangerousness of NCRMD
Usually the re-offenses are not violent
Unsuccessful Attempts
Jeffrey Dahmer
NCRMD
Fitness to stand trial
Requires presence of mental disorder
Requires presence of mental disorder
Legal defense to criminal charges
Postpones trial process
Requires admission of crime
Does not require admission of crime
Focus on mental state at time of offence
Focus on mental state at any point during trial
process
Jurisdiction
Unfit
NCRMD
% of Cases found Unfit & NCRMD
PEI
4
8
0.1%
Quebec
399
3,378
44%
Ontario
1,151
2,059
37%
Alberta
94
306
5%
BC
216
1,036
14%
Nunavut
2
6
0.1%
Convicted in 1992
Killed 12 people
Would eat parts of his victims
Tried to “zombify” his victims
Was able to elude officers
Insanity defence failed because they were able to prove that he knew what he was
doing
Was killed in prison
John Wayne Gacy
Killer Clown
Arrested 1978
Kidnapped young boys, buried them in his basement
Many victims escaped
Executed in 1994
Sometimes in prison he made up stories, claimed to not have killed anyone
David Berkowitz
Son of Sam
Plead guilty in 1978
Killed individuals in NYC over 13 years
Targeted young couples in cars
Confessed to murders
Said his neighbour’s dog was telling him to kill
Decided not to use insanity defence
Found the lord in prison
Still alive
Mark Chapman
Convicted of killing John Lennon
Hung out a crime scene until police came and arrested him
Lawyers wanted him to use insanity defence, but he decided against it
Denied parole 7 times
Successful Attempts
Edward Gein
Graverobber
Mutilated bodies and used body parts as furniture and decoration
Collected organs
Many horror movies based on his story
John Hinckley
Assassinated Ronald Reagan
Francine Hughes
Endured 13 years of domestic violence
Pleaded not guilty for temporary insanity from the constant abuse
Lorena Bobbitt
Claimed boyfriend raped her
Dismembered said boyfriend
Not guilty for temporary insanity
Depression and PTSD said to have caused insanity
Jeffrey Arenburg
Happened here in Ottawa
Found to have paranoia
Discharged in 2006
Assaulted a border officer few years after release
Tom McClean & Vincent Li
“I believe that mentality ill or not, people who commit this type of horrific murder need to be
held responsible.” (Tim McClean’s mother)
Anyone who murders should serve life with no parole
Li stabbed and decapitated Tom McClean on a Greyhound bus
High Rates of Mental Illness
Individuals with a mental illness are arrested more often
Individuals with a mental illness are more likely to get caught
Individuals with a mental illness are more likely to plead guilty
Prevalence Rates of Psychiatric Disorders
Automatism
Unconscious, involuntary behaviour
the person committing the act is not aware of what they are doing
Premise
Voluntary conduct is essential to be found guilty of committing an offence
Types of Automatism
Supreme Court stated there are two forms of automatism:
Insane
Involuntary action that occurs because of mental disorder
Noninsane
Involuntary action that occurs because of external influences (i.e., get hit in the
head)
To address defences of automatism:
Type of Mental Disorder
Substance abuse
Antisocial personality disorder
Affective disorder
Anxiety/ somatoform disorders
Schizophrenia