Saturday, 29 March 2014

CJA 354 Week 2 Insanity Defense Paper (Learning Team Assignment)

Resource: University of Phoenix Material: State v. Stu Dents Discuss the case as if your team was part of the defense team in State v. Stu Dents and the defendant wants to plead insanity.

Write a 700- to 1,050-word paper in which you answer the following questions as a team:

• Does your team believe the defendant is competent to stand trial? Why or why not?
• What is required in your state for an insanity defense?
• What steps must be taken to prove insanity?

Insanity Defense Paper

          On the night of October 18th, Uma Opee was stabbed thirteen times and bled to death at approximately 11:45p.m. Cuts and bruises were found on her body and skin particles were found under her fingernails suggesting that a struggle had occurred prior to her death. Stu Dents is being accused of this brutal attack ending in murder stemming from two eyewitnesses that saw the defendant walk into the victim’s apartment on the afternoon of the murder. (State v. Stu Dents, UOP material, 2012)

          Police searched the defendant’s home to find jewelry owned by the victim including a ring that was worn by Opee on a daily basis. Over 300 photos of the victim were found stapled onto the defendant’s wall, some of which were apparently taken without her knowledge. In addition, love letters to Opee and a journal were found in the defendant’s apartment. The journal had Dents’ name inside the front cover and detailed events from meetings with the victim from the day they met, six months prior to the incident, up to the night before the fatal stabbing. Finally, various drugs were found in the defendant’s home, including ecstasy pills with a “thumbs up” imprint which matched an ecstasy pill that was found at the victim’s home on the day her body was found. (State v. Stu Dents, UOP material, 2012)

          We believe that the defendant, Stu Dents, is completely competent to stand trial. Not only do we feel that Dents is responsible for the murder, we plan to prove that he was well aware that his actions were morally wrong, illegal, and understood the consequences that went along with his actions. We do not feel that the voluntary use of drugs has any impact on the state of mind of the defendant and we do not necessarily know that Dents had even used any drugs on the night of the stabbing.

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