Time Is Right to Revise the Texas Insanity Defense: An Essay

Date

2006

Authors

Shannon, Brian D.

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title

Publisher

Texas Tech Law Review

Abstract

In light of three Texas cases involving Andrea Yates, Deanna Laney, and Dena Schlosser, this essay discusses the Texas insanity defense and its application. It sets forth a brief history of the Texas insanity defense, discusses some legislative fine-tuning accomplished in 2005, and proposes and analyzes several alternative options that would, if enacted, modernize the Texas insanity defense so that it could better comport with modern medical science and become a useful tool in the Texas criminal justice system. In addition, a more modern or appropriate test for insanity would provide meaningful guidance to prosecutors in ascertaining whether to pursue a prosecution in a particular case or, instead, be more amenable to agreeing to an insanity finding.

Description

Keywords

Insanity defense, Texas

Citation

39 Tex. Tech L. Rev. 67