Aug 7, 2015

Use of Mental Health Evidence When the Insanity Defense is not Relied Upon

The state of Texas does not recognize diminished capacity as an affirmative defense in cases not based on an actual Insanity Defense. Despite this, there is a line of cases that suggest that mental illness can be used to defeat the proof of the allegation of the prosecution in the particular offense. The Judge has discretion to allow this evidence, and Code Crim. Proc. art. 38.36(a) provides that  "In all prosecutions for murder, the state or the defendant shall be permitted to offer testimony as to all relevant facts and circumstances surrounding the killing and the previous relationship existing between the accused and the deceased, together with all relevant facts and circumstances going to show the condition of the mind of the accused at the time of the offense."

For more information on mental health and Insanity Defense visit If you have been accused of a crime, please contact us today at (713) 224 - 3967 for a free consultation.

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