The American Psychiatric Association is about to release the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, commonly abbreviated DSM-V and pronounced “DSM five.” This is important to criminal lawyers because mental health issues are litigated in so many criminal cases, and the DSM is the generally accepted authority on mental health diagnoses. By … Read more

The Supreme Court on Competency and Collateral Review

Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court decided an important competency case. Let’s start the discussion with a quiz. Which of the following statements is true? a. A trial may be conducted even when a capital defendant is incompetent. b. Federal habeas proceedings may continue even when a petitioner/former capital defendant is incompetent. c. An execution … Read more