Diminished Responsibility

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Definition
A person who kills or is party to a killing of another is not to be convicted of murder where suffering from an abnormality of mental functioning
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Act that sets out Diminished responsibility as amended
Coroners and Justice act 2009
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What is an abnormality of mental functioning
State of mind so different from ordinary humans beings that reasonable man would term it abnormal
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case that sets out what abnormality of mind is?
Byrne (1960)
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causes of abnormality must be?
from a recognized medical condition
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Act setting out recognized medical condition rule
S 2 (1) Homicide act 1957
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What is substantially impaired
Substantial does not mean total (Lloyd) nor trivial or minimal but some where in between.
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what is an ability to understand nature of conduct
D is in an automatic state and doesn't know what he is doing. Covers people with learning difficulties
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What is an ability to make a rational judgment
If D understands conduct but lacks capacity to judge his actions
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Case that relates to ability to exercise self control
Byrne (1960) Sexual psychopath
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What provides an explanation for D's conduct
some causal connection between abnormality of mental functioning and killing. it may not be only factor but has to be significant factor.
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Can intoxication alone constitute diminished responsibility
NO (Di Duca 1959)
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If defendant is intoxicated and has pre-existing abnormality of mental functioning.
YES
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Disrespect to aunts grave. killed V D suffering from adjustment disorder in form of depressed grief reaction. also drunk whisky and cider before killing.
Ditschmann (2003)
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D drunk. evidence of brain damage and psychopathic disorder
Hendy (2006)
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D really drunk suffering from acute stress disorder
Robson (2006)
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can Intoxication due to addiction create diminished responsibility
YES
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Explain Tandy (1989)
Tandy is alcoholic. Drunk bottle of Vodka and strangled daughter. tandy argued abnormality as result of alcoholism. Appeal dismissed because brain not show to be injured (OLD LAW)
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Rules on ADS set out in Stewart (2009)
ADS not automatically amount to abnormality.of mind. nature and extent of ADS has to be considered. was D's abnormality caused by ADS. If so was D's mental responsibility substantially impaired, can drinking be controlled.
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Reforms?
changing to recognized medical condition to keep up with medical advances.
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Law commission report on reforms called?
Murder, Manslaughter and infanticide (2006)
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Problems?
Burden of proof on D not V. Developmental maturity not considered.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Coroners and Justice act 2009

Back

Act that sets out Diminished responsibility as amended

Card 3

Front

State of mind so different from ordinary humans beings that reasonable man would term it abnormal

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

Byrne (1960)

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

from a recognized medical condition

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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