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NCJ Number: 200787 Find in a Library
Title: Post-Atkins Problems with Enforcing the Supreme Court's Ban on Executing the Mentally Retarded
Journal: Seton Hall Law Review  Volume:33  Issue:3  Dated:2003  Pages:773-810
Author(s): Alexis Krulish Dowling
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 38
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article focuses on the legal problems associated with the varied definitions of and ways to test for mental retardation.
Abstract: In the past, the stereotyping, discrimination, and mistreatment of the mentally retarded led to the institutionalization and sterilization of many people with mental retardation. However, both public acceptance and awareness of mental retardation has grown in recent years. Addressing a series of United States Supreme Court decisions concerning individuals with mental retardation, the article discusses the use of the death penalty against several mentally retarded individuals. Noting that there are multiple definitions of mental retardation, the article presents the United States Supreme Court's statutory definitions for mental retardation including the possession of minimum IQ requirements; the American Association on Mental Retardation’s definition of mental retardation, a disability characterized by significant limitations both in intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior; the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual’s definitions of mental disorders; and the American Psychological Association’s definition of mental retardation. Discussing methods of assessing mental retardation, the author cites both intelligence testing and testing of adaptive functioning before suggesting that there is an absence of a uniform definition of mental retardation and a lack of uniform testing requirements to be used in assessing mental retardation for the purposes of legal cases.
Main Term(s): Law reform; Offenders with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities
Index Term(s): Courts; Definitions; US Supreme Court; US Supreme Court decisions
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