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PSY 622 3-1 Discussion Post.docx - 3-1 Discussion:...

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3-1 Discussion: Diminished Capacity andCompetencyHi everyone,TheDusky v. United States(1960) case involved a man named MiltonRichard Dusky, a 33-year-old man who had been previously diagnosed withSchizophrenic Reaction (the former diagnosis for individuals with symptomsof schizophrenia) and had no previous criminal record at the time of hisarrest (Dusky v. the United States, 362, U.S. 402 (1960)). The night beforethe offense, Dusky had vodka (two pints) and numerous tranquilizers andfell asleep in his car since his landlady kicked him out. The following dayDusky picked up two of his son’s friends to go meet a girl but ended uprunning into another girl along the way whom they took across state linesto Missouri where the two boys raped the girl (Dusky v. the United States,362, U.S. 402 (1960)). Dusky attempted to join in but was not able to andlater on could not remember what events had transpired. Dusky wasarrested for the crime but was admitted to the U.S. Medical Center forFederal Prisoners to be evaluated for competency and sanity. After thesecond assessment it was determined that Dusky was incompetent andmentally ill (diagnosed with schizophrenia) so they established that Duskywas unable to understand the lawsuit against him (Dusky v. the UnitedStates, 362, U.S. 402 (1960)). He was tried, found guilty, and sentenced,but the outcome was appealed and supported by the United States Court ofAppeals for the Eighth Circuit about the fact that “a federal court in whichcriminal proceedings are pending to make a finding regarding the mentalcompetency of the accused to stand trial, may not decide that an accusedis mentally competent merely because he is oriented to time and place andhas some recollection of events; the test must be whether the accusedhassufficient present ability to consult with his lawyer with a reasonabledegree of rational understanding and whether he has a rational as well as

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Term
Spring
Professor
Dr. Lynne Hill-Clark
Tags
Ackerman, Competency evaluation, United States Court of Claims, Richard Dusky

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