FAIR PLAY / SUBSTANTIAL JUSTICE

multiple personalities

Posted in Uncategorized by Ryan Locke on May 12, 2009

I wrote a paper about dissociative identity disorder and criminal responsibility for a class this semester, synthesizing a framework for dealing with these unique and perplexing cases.  Imagine my annoyance when I read this footnote from a Third Circuit panel ruling that was released yesterday:

After a psychiatric evaluation, Hammer presented an insanity defense. A forensic psychiatrist testified that Hammer suffered from dissociative identity disorder (formerly known as multiple personality disorder) and that one of his alter personalities[FN2] killed Marti; therefore, the defense argued, Hammer himself was not legally responsible.

[FN2] The defense’s forensic psychiatrist testified that Hammer had four alter personalities: 1) Jocko, a violent male; 2) Tammy, a female; 3) Wilbur, a child; and 4) Jasper, a chimpanzee.  He contended that Jocko killed Marti.

Arrgh!  That footnote is perfect!  If I were a law professor, any paper on dissociative identity disorder that didn’t start off with Jasper the chimpanzee would be docked a letter grade.

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