Is he fit to stand trial?

a c ourtroomIn a courtroom, a psychiatrist was called in to give an opinion on a person with schizophrenia, as to whether that person was fit to stand trial or not. Was the individual of sound mind when the crime currently being investigated, was committed?

Tell me, does this make any sense? If that individual was not taking his anti-psychotic medication regularly, the attending psychiatrist would have recommended medication but as it takes weeks to kick in, it adds to the problematic aspect of the case.  So, while being cross-examined in a court of law, the individual on trial was probably not speaking lucidly about what happened or did not happen, at the given moment.  If he had been taking his meds regularly, the incident might not have occurred.

It is tough to diagnose whether a person is normal at any given time and whether he/she has a mental illness or not. I doubt whether a psychiatrist can diagnose a mental illness after one short session with a person. And, I always return to the question, what is normal? How many of us are normal all the time? Chances are that the court will send the person to a psychiatric hospital for observation for a while in order to make a decision one way or another. My plea to the psychiatrist: As a mother who has been there, I sincerely hope that you realize what a major trauma it is to be forced to remain for even one night in a psychiatric institution.


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