Mental Health and Crime

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2009-05-01
  • Publisher: Cavendish Pub Ltd

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This book will be written during a period when the relationship between mental health and crime is likely to be perceived through a lens dominated by risk, fear and attributed dangerousness. It is likely that any new law will build on the recent trend of moving mental health law in the direction of penal law and away from medical law. This will make the position of mentally disordered offender more precarious than it has been: in the bulk of the years since 1959 our approach to mentally disordered offenders has been relatively liberal and humanitarian. If the government's new Mental Health Act reflects its most recent policy statements, as illustrated by the draft bill and the white paper, there will be a significant shift in policy and practice towards an approach which entails less understanding and more condemnation. Whether this approach is justified in terms of the available empirical evidence and our developing obligations in respect of Human Rights Law will be examined in the book. There will also be a prescription for an alternative evidence based approach.

Author Biography

Jill Peay is a Professor of Law at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Table of Contents

Forewordp. vii
Acknowledgementsp. viii
Acronymsp. ix
Table of casesp. x
Introductionp. xiv
Mental health and crimep. 1
Crimep. 7
Mental disorderp. 19
Are mental disorder and crime related?p. 33
Types of crimep. 44
Mental disorder and violencep. 52
Symptoms and causalityp. 78
Causal mechanisms, criminology and mental disorderp. 91
Human rights and mentally disordered offendersp. 99
Deprivation of libertyp. 111
Mental disorder and detention: a perspective from prisonp. 118
The intersection between penalty and therapeutic detention: indeterminate sentences for public protectionp. 125
Medical treatment: offenders, patients and their capacityp. 139
Individual and personal consequences: the case of smokingp. 147
Impossible paradoxesp. 153
Treatment, mental disorder, crime, responsibility and punishmentp. 159
Fitness to pleadp. 163
Dangerous and severe personality disorderp. 175
Culpability and treatment: chasing dragons?p. 187
Conclusionsp. 193
Referencesp. 202
Indexp. 220
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