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Chapter 8

CRIM 103 Chapter 8: Chapter 8 Notes

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CRIM 103
Chantal Faucher

Chapter 8 Crime and Mental Disorder Defining Mental Illness Mental Illness: Any one combination of a large group of psychological states that impede health human development to varying degrees • Mental illness is a disorder of the mind that is judged by experts to interfere substantially with a person's ability to cope with life on a daily basis • SMI, not only deviates from normal conduct but also severely impedes, or has potential to impede, a person's functioning • Mental illness = mental disorder Intellectual Disability: Formally called mental retardation, it refers to limitations in cognitive capacity, determined by IQ tests and a variety of performance measures • Crazy behaviour: Behaviour that is obviously strange and unusual and cannot be logically explained The DSM Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder (DSM): The official guidebook or manual, published by the American Psychiatric Association, used to define and diagnose specific mental disorders • Psychologists are generally advised not to include clinical diagnoses in their psychological reports unless specifically asked by the courts to provide them. This is because diagnoses are often misconstrued and misunderstood by persons who are not mental health professionals • It must be stressed that: 1. Persons with these disorders are not "crime prone" 2. Even if an individual is diagnosed with these disorders, he or she still can be held responsible for criminal conduct Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic Disorders Schizophrenia: Mental disorder characterized by severe breakdowns in thought patterns, emotions, and perceptions • People often associate it with 'crazy behaviour' since it frequently manifest itself with highly bizarre action • It begins early in life, and often leads to social and economic impairment • Features included are delusions, hallucinations, disorganized thinking, and grossly disorganized or abnormal motor behaviour • Thought fragments become bizarre, and delusions Delusions: Improbable beliefs or ideas • The person with schizophrenia is typically inappropriate in emotion or affect, or reflects emotional flatness Hallucinations: Things or events that a mental disordered person, but no others, see or perceive. Characteristics of schizophrenia and some forms of dementia • The most common hallucinations is auditory • The proportion of violent crimes committed by people with schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders is small, however, when they do commit violent crimes, the level of violence may be higher than that of the 'typical' violent offender Delusional Disorder: Mental disorder characterized by a system of false belief Bipolar Disorder • Characterized by episode of behaviour that are alternately characterized by such features as euphoria, hyper energy, and distractibility (manic phase) and diminished interest or pleasure in all activities, and depressed mood (depressive phase) • In the manic phase, the individual may be excessively involved in activities that have high potential for painful consequences • Not usually implicated with violent crime Major Depressive Disorder Major Depressive Disorder: General label for symptoms that include an extremely depressed state, general slowing down of mental and physical activity, and feeling of self-worthlessness • "The presence of sad empty, or irritable mood, accompanied by somatic and cognitive changes that significantly affect the individual's capacity to function" • Depression is strongly linked with deviant behaviour, especially in teenage girls Antisocial Personality Disorder Antisocial Personality Disorder (APD): A disorder characterized by a history of continuous behaviour in which the rights of others are violated • Must be at least 18 and have a history of symptoms of conduct disorder Conduct Disorder: A diagnostic label used to identify children who demonstrate habitual misbehaviour • List of requirements (Pg. 220) • APSs lack empathy and tend to be callous, cynical, and contemptuous of the feelings, rights, and sufferings of others Exhibits aggressive sexual behaviour, excessive drinking, and the use of illicit drugs • • Fail to become independent, self-supporting adults Competency and Criminal Responsibility Incompetency to Stand Trial • Some person charged with a crime are considered so psychologically or intellectually impaired that they would be present in body but not in mind • To protect the right of individual and to preserve the dignity of the court process, the law states that a person who is incompetent must not be tried • Incompetence does not only refer to one's overall mental or emotional state o It refers to a lack of understanding of court proceedings, one's right's, or the functions performed by one's lawyer Adjudicative Competence: The ability to participate in a variety of court proceeding Competence to Stand Trial: The legal requirement that a defendant is able to understand the proceedings and to help the attorney in preparing a defense • Two distinct concepts: 1. The competence of proceed 2. Decisional competence • If a criminal defendant is found incompetent to stand trial, the court has essentially determined that he or she cannot understand the process that if occurring or effectively participate • Incompetence to stand trial (IST) is not the same a insanity • If found incompetent to stand trial, the defendant is typically sent to a mental institution until rendered competent Criminal Responsibility Insanity Defense: Refers to a person's state of mind at the time of an offense was committed • The law assumes that mental disorder can rob an individual of free will or the ability to make appropriate choices • Insanity defense are used in only 1% of all U.S. felony criminal cases Success Rate • The insanity defense rarely succeeds in serious cases Consequence of a Successful Defense • It is sometime used to obtain treatment for mentally disordered individuals who might not otherwise be eligible for institutionalization • Insanity acquittees are immediately confined to a mental institution, where they are kept for as long as needed to produce substantial improvement in their condition and assure that they are not a danger to themselves or others Insanity Standards • Three broad models to test insanity: o M'Naghten Rule o Brawner Rule o Durham Rule • Insanity standards are based on two criteria: o Irrationality o Compulsion • It can be established that a person was not in control of his or her mental process and/or was not in control of his or her behaviour M'Naghten Rule: An insanity standard based on the conclusion that if a defendant has a defect of reason, or a disease of the mind, so as not to know the nature and quality of his or her actions, then he or she cannot be held criminally responsible Right and Wrong Test: M'Naghten Rule • Emphasizes the cognitive elements 1. Being aware and knowing what one was doing at the time 2. Know or realizing right from wrong in the moral sense Brawner Rule: A standard for evaluating the insanity defense that recognizes that the defendant suffers from a condition that substantially 1. affects mental or emotional processes, or 2. impairs behaviour controls • It must be demonstrated that the disease or mental defect substantially and directly 1. Influenced the defendant's mental or emotion processes 2. Impaired his or her ability to control behaviour
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