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Murder in the CourtroomThe Cognitive Neuroscience of Violence$
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Brigitte Vallabhajosula

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199995721

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199995721.001.0001

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Neuroscience and the Law

Neuroscience and the Law

Chapter:
(p.206) 10 Neuroscience and the Law
Source:
Murder in the Courtroom
Author(s):

Brigitte Vallabhajosula

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199995721.003.0010

The number of defendants seeking to admit evidence of brain dysfunction or mental illness, especially in the form of neuroimaging scans, to support a plea of, for example, NGRI, GBMI, or diminished capacity or to argue against, for example, competency to stand trial, competency to be executed, and/or competency to proceed pro se is increasing drastically. Research studies have shown that judges apply different Daubert criteria according to the kind of evidence under review and that the decision about which criteria to use is closely related to perceptions that some kinds of evidence are more scientific than others. The courts’ increasing attention to the validity and evidentiary reliability of proffered scientific evidence is clearly reflected in cases that have tried to admit expert testimony of cognitive, neurological, and/or psychological impairments (Ake v. Oklahoma, 1985; Ford v. Wainwright, 1986; Lockett v. Ohio, 1978; People v. Goldstein, 2004; Quick v. State, 2011).

Keywords:   brain dysfunction, mental illness, NGRI, GBMI, diminished capacity, competency, scientific evidence, expert testimony

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