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http://calelawoffice.com/testimonialsTulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale explains the difference between the defenses of insanity and incompetency. If you’ve been charged with a crime, call the Cale law office at 918-277-4800 set up an appointment for your free initial consultation and your free defense strategy plan.
In Oklahoma, no one can be convicted of a crime if that person was insane at the time of the commission of the acts that constituted the crime. A person is insane when that person is suffering from such a disability of reason or disease of the mind that he does not know that his acts or omissions or wrong, and is unable to distinguish between right and wrong with respect to his actions or admissions. A person is also insane when the person is suffering from such a disability of reason or disease of the mind that he does not understand the nature and consequences of his acts or omissions.
This definition of insanity is derived from the M’Naughten test for insanity. This test has long been the test for insanity in Oklahoma. Under this definition, a person is insane if he or she is either unable to differentiate right from wrong or understand the nature and consequences of his or her acts.
Insanity may be induced by long periods of excessive alcohol drinking or drug consumption, which may cause a continuing mental disease that deprives a person of the capacity to distinguish right from wrong. Voluntary intoxication that results from temporary mania does not constitute a mental defect that is necessary for valid defense of insanity.
The defensive and consciousness apply to situations where the defendant’s otherwise criminal conduct results from an involuntary act totally beyond the control and knowledge of the defendant. This defense is not the same as insanity. In order to have the defense of unconsciousness, the defendant is not required to present evidence of a mental disease or defect.
Since insanity is a defense, the defendant has the burden to produce evidence of insanity, unless the evidence of the state raises the issue. If the defendant does not come forward with evidence of insanity, insanity as a defense issue never enters the trial and never enters the consideration of the jury. If the defendant brings forward evidence of insanity quit, the question whether sufficient evidence has been presented to require the trial judge to instruct the jury on the insanity defense is a mixed question of law for the trial judge and a question of fact for the jury.
If the jury determines that the defendant has presented sufficient evidence to raise the insanity defense, the state’s burden of overcoming the defense is a burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt.
Every person is presumed to be sane, and the less there is proof of insanity, the prosecutor may rely on the presumption of sanity and ought not to offer proof that the defendant was saying.
If a jury decides the a defendant was insane at the time of the commission the crime charged, the defendant is not released from confinement in a mental hospital until the court determines that the defendant is not at that time dangerous to the public peace and safety to be risk of harm to himself or others on account of a mental illness. The period of confinement in the mental institution may exceed the period of confinement in prison.
There’s a risk that a jury might confuse a verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity with other not guilty verdicts and think that the defendant would give free if they returned a verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity. Why risk your freedom? Get the best Tulsa criminal defense attorney.
Obviously, it will be helpful to have mental health and medical records to support a defense of either to insanity or incompetency. For either of those defenses judge often will order the defendant to undergo a psychological evaluation will determine whether or not the defendant is competent to stand trial or whether not he is legally insane. This will come in the form of a report. At a hearing, a judge will determine whether or not a defendant is competent to stand trial. Evidence can be introduced in the form of documents, reports, eyewitness testimony, family members, and medical or psychiatric professionals.
Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale has experience dealing with these issues or clients in the past. This kind of defense is rare but it does occur from time to time. It is important for family members to bring this to the attention of a defense attorney.
Insanity is different than incompetency, according to Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale. In addition to being a court defense to criminal liability, the abnormal mental condition of the defendant is relevant at two other stages of legal proceedings. One of the stages is to stand trial. Under the due process clause of the U.S. Constitution, the defendant may not be tried, convicted, or sentenced if, as a result of a mental disease or defect, the defendant is unable to 1) understand the nature of the proceedings being brought against him; or 2) to assist his lawyer in the preparation of his defense.
The due process clause prevents a defendant from brain declared incompetent without notice and a hearing. A finding of incompetence will suspend the criminal proceedings and invariably resulting commitment until such time as the defendant regains competence. The U.S. Constitution may demand that the defendant’s hospitalization be limited to a reasonable period of time necessary to decide whether there is a likelihood of recovery in the near future. You’ll feel a lot better hiring the best Tulsa criminal defense attorney.
The rationale for these defenses is that a person should not be held accountable for his actions if he does not have the mental capacity to distinguish between right and wrong. The idea is that you would not want to send a person to prison or jail for something that he legitimately does not understand is wrong. Further, the person committing the act he was insane is institutionalized until determined to be sane in order to protect the public.
Defendant the ground way this sort still important protect the public. If you’ve been charged with a crime give Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale a call at 918-277-4800 set up an appointment for your free initial consultation, and to get your free defense strategy plan.