What does it really take to qualify as, “Guilty by reason of insanity” in the State of Florida
Dr. Love is in jail again. This time, he was allegedly trying to buy a car in Virginia. Regardless of whether he was committing a crime buy using a family members information to purchase the car, I can’t help but question why he was even in Virginia looking to buy a car. There are plenty of Lexus cars for sale right here in Palm Beach County.
It is becoming more apparent that Dr. Love may be suffering from some form of mental illness as his previous lawyer suggested. Florida recognizes Insanity as a legal defense. The defendant has the burden to prove that he/she was insane when the crime was committed. What the person has to prove to establish the defense is contained below in the jury instructions:
An issue in this case is whether (defendant) was insane when the crime allegedly was committed.
A person is considered to be insane when:
- [He] [She] had a mental infirmity, disease, or defect.
- Because of this condition
- [he] [she] did not know what [he] [she] was doing or its consequences or
- although [he] [she] knew what [he] [she] was doing and its consequences, [he] [she] did not know it was wrong.
Give if applicable.
A defendant who believed that what [he] [she] was doing was morally right is not insane if the defendant knew that what [he] [she] was doing violated societal standards or was against the law.
All persons are presumed to be sane. The defendant has the burden of proving the defense of insanity by clear and convincing evidence. Clear and convincing evidence is evidence that is precise, explicit, lacking in confusion, and of such weight that it produces a firm belief, without hesitation, about the matter in issue.
In determining the issue of insanity, you may consider the testimony of expert and nonexpert witnesses. The question you must answer is not whether the defendant is insane today, or has ever been insane, but whether instead the defendant was insane at the time the crime allegedly was committed.
Give if applicable.
Unrestrained passion or ungovernable temper is not insanity, even though the normal judgment of the person is overcome by passion or temper.
Give if applicable.
If the evidence establishes that the defendant had been adjudged insane by a court, and has not been judicially restored to legal sanity, then you should assume the defendant was insane at the time of commission of the alleged crime, unless the evidence convinces you otherwise.
If you find that (defendant) committed the crime but you find by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant was insane, then you should find [him] [her] not guilty by reason of insanity.
If your verdict is that the defendant is not guilty by reason of insanity, that does not necessarily mean [he] [she] will be released from custody. I must conduct further proceedings to determine if the defendant should be committed to a mental hospital, or given other outpatient treatment or released.
It is important to note that the first part of the defense requires proof that the defendant had a mental infirmity, disease, or defect. That typically requires testimony from experts that the defendant is suffering for a defect, like brain damage, or a mental illness, like schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder, etc. Thereafter, it must be proven that because of that mental illness the person did not know what they were doing or did not know that what they were doing was wrong.
The first question for this case is what defect or illness did Dr. Love have when he committed the crimes with which he is charged. If he did not have a defect or an illness, then he can not prove this defense. Only time will tell what caused Dr. Love’s continued bizarre actions
If you have a case that involves mental health issues, contact my firm to discuss. At LeRoy Law we have the compassion and the understanding to handle a case involving mental illness here in Palm Beach County or anywhere in Florida.