Is the Insanity Plea Allowing Criminals to Avoid Justice

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Is the Insanity Plea Allowing Criminals to Avoid Justice

Is the Insanity Plea Allowing Criminals to Avoid Justice

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It is beyond doubt that an insane person is a sick person. No one can argue otherwise considering that anybody in similar circumstances is prone to act contrary to what the normal human person will act. Insanity defense refers to a claim of the defendant’s innocence since they were mentally incapable of realizing the wrong committed or understand why it is wrong. There are States which allow for the defendants to acknowledge the fact that they understood the criminal nature of their action but were not able to control. This kind of defense referred to “irresistible impulse” is one of the many defenses used to acquaint criminals on ground of their mental state at the time of committing the crime (Morse, 1985). In most cases however the people that commit murder are not in their senses. Some may not realize it at the time of committing, may be as a result of extreme anger, frustration, fear or anxiety (Fentiman, 1985). Most of these individuals after they have come to realize the seriousness of the crime may feign insanity. For this reason there has been a growing concern and public outcry regarding the number of criminals who are, in essence, left free after they are said to have been insane at the time of committing the offence. These criminals always escape the justice system as they are known to spend some time in a hospital prison only to be left free after serving a limited period of time. This has been perceived by many as a fairer punishment compared to capital punishment or life imprisonment. Nevertheless critics who advocate for the insanity defense are quick to point out that the public is generally misled