Diminished Responsibility

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  • Created by: 10dhall
  • Created on: 22-05-17 23:24
What is diminished responsibility a defence to?
Murder, and reduces the conviction from murder to manslaughter
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What was the defence introduced as a response to?
To the M'Naghten rules to cover all situations
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What statute laid out the old law on diminished responsibility?
Section 2 of the Homicide Act 1957
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What were the problems with the old law?
The juries had to deal with technical medical definitions, some conditions were doubted, blurring of provocation and DR, some people should have had access to the defence but didn't, some conditions were not recognised medical conditions
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What are some facts and figures?
About 1/6 people will suffer a significant mental health problem, 80% of DR pleas are accepted at initial stage, 40% of DR claims are successful
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What statute lays out the current law on diminished responsibility?
Section 52 of the Coroners and Justice Act 2009
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What does the new law provide?
The D will not be convicted of murder if D was suffering from a mental condition which substantially impaired their ability to...
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What did the mental condition have to do?
It had to impair their; ability to make a rational judgement, to exercise self control, and to understand the nature of their conduct
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What are some of the procedural issues?
The D must prove the case on the balance of probabilities, medical evidence is crucial, the jury must accept a trial medical evidence, both parties can raise defences, the judge cannot but can suggest it
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What is a case regarding sexual impulses?
Byrne 1960 - he mutilated a girls body due to irresistible impulses
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What is a case regarding battered woman syndrome?
R v Ahluwalia - she poured petrol on her partner and set him alight which he died from due to him beating her up for several years beforehand
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What is a case regarding depression?
R v Seers - stabbed his wife on the basis of chronic reaction depression
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What is a case concerning alcohol dependency?
Wood 2008 - the D made an attack on the victim when he was suffering from alcohol dependency syndrome, he was not guilty
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What is a case concerning just alcohol?
R v Tandy 1989 - an alcoholic woman who drunk nearly a whole bottle of vodka when she strangled her 11 year old daughter, she was found guilty because she had control of her drinking and was not an abnormality of mind
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What is another case concerning depression?
R v Gittens - argued with his wife and beat her to death then ***** and killed his stepdaughter while suffering from depression - he was guilty of manslaughter and the defence was allowed
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What is a case apart from Ahluwalia concerning battered woman syndrome?
Hobson 1997 - D stabbed her alcoholic and abusive partner to death during an argument
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What are the reactions to the new provisions of the law on diminished responsibility?
They are narrower, position regarding alcoholism is clear and the new law makes it easier to differentiate between loss of control and diminished responsibility
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Card 2

Front

What was the defence introduced as a response to?

Back

To the M'Naghten rules to cover all situations

Card 3

Front

What statute laid out the old law on diminished responsibility?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What were the problems with the old law?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What are some facts and figures?

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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