Delusional Compulsion in Georgia
In Georgia, there are two kinds of insanity defenses. One is found where the defendant does not have the ability to distinguish between right and wrong and the other is called Delusional Compulsion. These two defenses have subtle distinctions, and it is crucial to hire an Attorney that is familiar with Criminal Defense law. Our offices have over 50 years of experience in criminal law and are ready to help you with your case. Contact us today.
Georgia Law on Delusional Compulsion
O.C.G.A. §16-3-2 reads as follows:
A person shall not be found guilty of a crime when, at the time of the act, omission, or negligence constituting the crime, the person, because of mental disease, injury, or congenital deficiency, acted as he did because of a delusional compulsion as to such act which overmastered his will to resist committing the crime.
In short, Delusional Compulsion is when someone has a a mental disorder that compels them to believe something, that if it were actually true, would justify their actions.
Georgia case law has elaborated on this definition some and established a three-part test to support a finding that a defendant is not guilty of a criminal act. Delusional Insanity may be found when the will is so overmastered that there is no criminal intent in reference to the act, and it must appear not only that the defendant was actually laboring under a delusion operating as a causative factor, but that the delusion was such that it, if true, would justify the act. Biddy v. State, 138 Ga. App. 4, (1976).
A person who argues Delusional Compulsion as a defense has the burden of proving that defense by a preponderance of the evidence. Georgia law presumes every person is of sound mind and discretion, therefore; it is up to the defendant to prove that they are not of sound mind and discretion. Once the defense of mental health is raised, the Court may require the defendant to submit to a psychological evaluation.
The legal system is not designed for self-service. Delusional Compulsion is a difficult defense to prove, and you need a Georgia Attorney to help present evidence supporting this defense. Lawson and Berry and their team of Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyers have extensive trial experience so let their experience work for you. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.