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Canada (510,872)
Psychology (3,528)
PSY328H1 (73)
Huggons (5)
Lecture

Chapter 8

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSY328H1
Professor
Huggons
Semester
Winter

Description
Chapter Eight The Role of Mental Illness in CourtPresumptions in Canadas Legal SystemTwo elements must be present for criminal guilt to be established o Actus reus a wrongful deed o Mens rea criminal intentBoth of these elements must be found beyond a reasonable doubt for a guilty verdict to be reached Fitness to Stand Trial Unfit to stand trial refers to an inability to conduct a defense at any stage of the proceedings on account of a persons mental disorder Ex If a defendant is experiencing an episode of schizophrenia and lacks the ability to understand the situation and tell the lawyer the facts of the caseRv Prichard3 criteria were delineated o Whether the defendant is mute of malice ie intentionally o Whether the defendant can plead to the indictment o Whether the defendant has sufficient cognitive capacity to understand the trial proceedingsBill C30many problems with it and a number of changes were instituted with the enactment of it o A defendant is unfit to stand trial is her or she is unable on account of mental disorder to conduct a defense at any stage of the proceeding before a verdict is rendered or to instruct counsel to do so and in particular unable on account of mental disorder to a understand the nature or object of the proceedings b understand the possible consequences of the proceedings or c communicate with counselRaising the Issue of Fitness o The issue of a defendants fitness may be raised at various points from the time of arrest to the defendants sentence determinationWhen a plea is entered when a defendant chooses not to be represented by counsel and during sentencing o The defense or Crown may raise the issue of a defendants fitnessHow Many Defendants Are Referred for Fitness Evaluations o 5000 fitness evaluations were conducted annually in CanadaWho Can Assess Fitness o Only medical practitioners have been allowed to conduct courtordered assessments of such aspects as fitness to stand on trial and criminal responsibility o Psychologists are excluded from conducting courtordered assessmentsNot in USAustralia o The medical practitioners need not have any background in psychiatry or experience with forensic populations
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