Forensic Psychology

Topics: Insanity defense, Mental disorder, Law Pages: 3 (992 words) Published: April 20, 2012
Assignment Unit 7

Civil Commitment and the Mentally Ill
CJ233-01: Introduction to Forensic Psychology
Sigrid Hess
Kaplan University
February 18, 2012

Civil Commitment and the Mentally Ill

1.How often is the insanity defense used and how successful is it?

I would like to answer this question, with the presentation of my opinion and the performed research. It is within my opinion, that the insanity defense is used over excessively and is taking part in almost every defense to any crime. Offenders seem to have the knowledge to the use of this defense and will often provide a plea to guilty by insanity or temporary insanity, within the faith, to receive a reduced sentence. While insanity has to be a proven fact and a psychologist has to conduct a variety of tests to confirm the offender is suffering from a mental incompetence or insanity, most offenders have the ability to mislead or deceive psychologists to receive the evaluation they seek. Such action, if discovered, would actually prove the sanity of such offenders, but in most cases, it cannot be ascertained. The success of such defense is, within my view, very effective. The performed research is revealing a different answer. According to the St. Joseph News Press (2007), it has stated the opposite to my opinion. This article within a study of the national mental health institute claim’s; “the insanity defense plea is used in less than one (1) percent of criminal cases in the United States and less than a quarter of those pleas are successful”. Retrieved from; St. Joseph News Press (2007). With these opinions and views in combination, one would have to conduct further studies on this subject, to establish the correct answer. Everyone has different sentiments, within the use of the insanity defense and the successfulness of such validation.

2. Identify and discuss the major criticisms of the insanity defense. It is my belive,the major criticism of the insanity defense could be the...
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