Criminal law and mental health

Thank you to Michael Birnbaum QC for coming to speak on the 6th October. We had a great introduction to the world of criminal law. Discussion focused around “diminished responsibility” the ethics of court reports.

Diminished responsibility as a defence:

  1. An abnormality of mental functioning caused by a recognised medical condition.
  2. Which provides an explanation for the defendant’s acts or omissions in being party to the killing.
  3. Which substantially impaired his/her mental ability to either:

­   Understand the nature of their conduct or

­   Form a rational judgment or

­   Exercise self–control

Something to think about: note that atypical mental functioning should be a “recognised medical condition”.

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