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Psychiatric Aspects of Criminal Responsibility

Insanity and Mitigation

Burrows, Maureen, MD, MPH; Reid, William H., MD, MPH

Journal of Psychiatric Practice®: November 2011 - Volume 17 - Issue 6 - p 429–431
doi: 10.1097/
COLUMNS: Law and Psychiatry

Forensic psychiatry expertise may be useful to criminal courts in several ways, including evaluating competence (e.g., to stand trial, waive Miranda rights, confess, plead, represent oneself, or be sentenced), assessing responsibility for alleged criminal behavior, and clarifying mental or psychosocial factors that may mitigate criminal charges or the form and severity of punishment. This column focuses on psychiatric/psychological aspects of mitigation in criminal matters. (Journal of Psychiatric Practice 2011;17:429–431)

Dr. Burrows is a clinical and forensic psychiatrist in Austin, TX. Dr. Reid is a clinical and forensic psychiatrist and a past president of the American Academy of Psy chiatry and the Law. This column contains general information which should not be construed as applying to any specific patient, nor as any form of legal advice

The authors gratefully acknowledge George Parker, PhD, for his contributions to this column.

Copyright © 2011 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.