- Associated Press - Thursday, February 18, 2016

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Proposals pending in the Oklahoma Legislature would bar accused offenders who suffer from certain kinds of mental defects from using the insanity defense to avoid being held accountable for their crimes.

Pottawatomie County District Attorney Richard Smothermon says the measures would apply to defendants with mental defects like antisocial personality disorder. Smothermon says the insanity defense would still be available to accused offenders who suffer from other mental defects.

Smothermon says the legislation was inspired by the case of a former Oklahoma college student who was declared not guilty by reason of insanity in a classmate’s death and is receiving court-ordered treatment at the Oklahoma Forensic Center.

Similar measures have been adopted in other states. But Al Hoch Jr., president Oklahoma Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, questions whether it is constitutional.


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