Psychiatric Aspects of Defence

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Transcript Psychiatric Aspects of Defence

Psychiatric Aspects of Defence
and of Mitigation of Sentence
A Clinical Forensic Psychiatrist’s Perspective
Dr F Ian Curtis MBBS FRANZCP FAChAM
Criminal Law Conference, 22 August 2005
Parliamentary Annex, Brisbane
Psychiatric Aspects of Defence
and of Mitigation of Sentence
This presentation is an overview by way of
revision followed by a detailed de-identified
case study.
Commissioning
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Better early than late.
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In some cases it is necessary to consult a
psychiatrist in order to discern the questions
to be explored in the Expert report
(Freckelton & Selby 1999).
DSM-IV-TR
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The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of
Mental Disorders (text revision, 4th Edition) is
not an infallible cookbook (APA 2000).
Defence
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Expert witness guidelines and responsibilities.
Diminished responsibility.
Intoxication.
Drug-precipitated psychoses.
Insanity.
Non-insane automatism.
Mitigating Elements 1
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Basis rule.
Type of expert required.
Relevance of an holistic backgrounding.
Past forms of behaviour.
Age.
Contrition remorse.
Rehabilitation.
Mitigating Elements 2
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Mental illness with and without “nexus”.
Stress/stressors and moral culpability.
Consequences of incarceration.
Illness vs disorder.
Case Study
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De-identified.
References
American Psychiatric Association (APA) (2000) Diagnostic and Statistical
Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition Text Revision (DSM-IV-TR).
Washington DC: American Psychiatric Association.
Freckelton I and Selby H (eds) (1999) Expert Evidence in Criminal Law.
Pyrmont: LBC Information Services.
Queensland Police Service & Queensland Health Alcohol & Drug Branch
(1992) The Nature and Extent of Alcohol Related Incidents Requiring
Police Attention in South East Queensland. Brisbane: Queensland
Police Service.
Shea P (1993) Psychiatry in Court. Sydney: The Institute of Criminology.