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For Book: Mental Illness and the Law
Old 10-27-2015, 11:16 AM   #1
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For Book: Mental Illness and the Law

Warning: If you plan to read my next book, this post contains spoilers.

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!
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Let's say you have a brain tumor that makes you go insane. You kill someone. You're arrested, and doctors remove the brain tumor. You become totally and obviously normal, sane, and not dangerous.

What is your legal status at that point?

I'm guessing that you would be committed but released once the shrinks give the okay.
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Old 10-27-2015, 11:40 AM   #2
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IANAL, but I think that the question of guilt or innocence would hinge on whether you were legally competent at the time of the crime. If you were deemed not mentally competent and if your violent outburst was found to be due to a medical condition, you would be judged not criminally responsible. You would be remanded in custody while the condition was treated. After successful treatment, you would be reassessed to determine whether you posed a future risk, and if not, you would be released with supervision.

Below is a very famous (gruesome) Canadian case (not due to a brain tumor):

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_of_Tim_McLean
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Old 10-27-2015, 12:19 PM   #3
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Thanks.

Wow, what a story! The best part was this: 'The week following the attack, Greyhound Canada announced it was pulling a series of nationwide advertisements which included the slogan, "There's a reason you've never heard of bus rage." '
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Old 10-27-2015, 04:26 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Meadbh View Post
IANAL, but I think that the question of guilt or innocence would hinge on whether you were legally competent at the time of the crime. If you were deemed not mentally competent and if your violent outburst was found to be due to a medical condition, you would be judged not criminally responsible. You would be remanded in custody while the condition was treated. After successful treatment, you would be reassessed to determine whether you posed a future risk, and if not, you would be released with supervision.
That's pretty much it.
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Old 10-27-2015, 07:29 PM   #5
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How will they prove that it was the tumor that caused the behavior?

(Asks the resident neuroscientist)


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Old 10-28-2015, 05:54 PM   #6
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How will they prove that it was the tumor that caused the behavior?

(Asks the resident neuroscientist)


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In the book, it's actually pressure buildup in the brain caused by a buildup of (CSF) fluid (NPH). They'll install a shunt to drain the fluid, and the patient will improve rapidly.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:28 PM   #7
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Hang 'em. Screw the lawyers.

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