skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 115250 Find in a Library
Title: Insanity Defense for Sex Offenders: Jury Decisions After Repeal of Wisconsin's Sex Crimes Law
Journal: Hospital and Community Psychiatry  Volume:39  Issue:2  Dated:(February 1988)  Pages:186-189
Author(s): R D Miller; L J Stava; R K Miller
Date Published: 1988
Page Count: 4
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: In 1980, Wisconsin repealed the Sex Crimes Act, an indeterminate commitment law for 'sexual psychopaths.'
Abstract: To test the hypothesis that judges and juries may be more accepting of the insanity defense, statistical data from before and after repeal of the law and case reports for three insanity acquittees were examined. During 1978, 6 of 92 insanity acquitees hospitalized (6.5 percent) had been charged with sex crimes, as compared to 47 (or 21.3 percent) of insanity acquittees hospitalized in 1980. Further, a greater proportion of hospitalized sex offenders acquitted by reason of insanity were diagnosed as nonpsychotic (e.g., personality disorder, sexual deviance, developmental disabilities) than were acquittees charged with other crimes. In the three case studies, it is apparent that juries found the sex offenders guilty by reason of insanity but appeared to disregard legal definitions of insanity in making their decisions. These results suggest that the juries and courts reached their decisions by considering the defendants' need for treatment and the need to protect the public, but were not particularly influenced by legal criteria. 21 references, (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Sex offender treatment
Index Term(s): Insanity defense; Jury decisionmaking; Wisconsin
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.