Can Your Mental Health Be a Defense?

Many states have explored using mental health as a potential defense during trial. In Massachusetts, it is possible to use your mental health as a partial or complete defense against criminal charges. Hiring an experienced attorney to help determine whether you can use your mental health as a defense can significantly impact the outcome of your case.

How to Plead Insanity in Massachusetts

The insanity defense is based on the idea that a defendant who was mentally impaired while committing a crime cannot be held responsible for their actions.

In Massachusetts, the courts evaluate whether or not the defendant could differentiate between right and wrong at the time of the crime. If it is determined that they could not because of their mental health condition, this might result in a not-guilty verdict or a lesser sentence.

What Must be Proven for a Person to be Declared Legally Insane

For the court to accept your plea of not guilty because of insanity, you must prove that when you committed the crime, you could not distinguish right from wrong because of a mental health issue.

This means you will need to prove you have a severe mental health concern that contributed to the crime. An experienced attorney might be able to help you prove this in a court of law, depending on the severity of the mental illness.

To do this, you will need medical evidence from qualified professionals that shows that due to your mental health, you were unable to know or appreciate the nature of what you were doing or what you were doing was wrong.

How a Massachusetts Criminal Defense Attorney Can Help

Attorneys are well-versed in the legal system and have the experience to argue that your mental health should be considered when it comes to lesser charges and punishments for those accused of crimes.

To mount a successful defense, a criminal defense attorney may take the following steps:

  • Review police reports, witness statements, and any medical records about your mental health.
  • Challenging evidence brought against you by prosecutors.
  • Presenting proof of your mental state at the time of the offense.
  • Negotiate with prosecutors for lesser charges if needed.
  • Represent you in court for a plea bargain or trial if your case goes that far.

Get in Touch with a Massachusetts Criminal Defense Attorney Today

If you would like to consider using mental health as a defense in Massachusetts, you should contact an attorney immediately. At H. Ernest Stone, Attorney PC, we specialize in criminal defense cases and how they are often affected by poor mental health. We will work closely with you to develop the best possible defense for your case. Contact our law office today for help building a solid defense strategy.

Contact us today to get a free consultation

Contact our team today for a free consultation. Contact us through our website or call (978) 705 4537.

We are available 24/7. We can help you through this storm.