APA Forensic Psychology

July 30, 2016


Top Forensic Psychology

Cutler, Brian L. (Ed); Zapf, Patricia A. (Ed), (2015). APA handbook of forensic psychology, Vol. 1: Individual and situational influences in criminal and civil contexts. APA handbooks in psychology., (pp. 115-157). Washington, DC, US: American Psychological Association, xxii, 594 pp.

Competence, in the context of criminal justice proceedings, refers to a defendant’s capacity to meaningfully participate and make decisions during the criminal justice process. Competence is relevant at any stage of the process, from a defendant’s first words to arresting officers, through that defendant’s decision about pleas, until—in the gravest of cases—the moment of execution. Because questions about competence can be raised at any point in criminal justice proceedings, this chapter describes criminal competencies, and many scholars use broad terms such as adjudicative competence (see Bonnie, 1992) or competence to proceed, to cover the span from arrest to verdict to sentencing. Nevertheless, this chapter focuses primarily on the defendant’s capacities that comprise his or her competence to stand trial because this is, by far, the most commonly adjudicated competence (Melton, Petrila, Poythress, & Slobogin, 2007), and far more scholarly research literature addresses this particular competence. This chapter also addresses defendants’ capacity to waive their Miranda rights, that is, defendants’ capacity to knowingly, intelligently, and voluntarily waive their Fifth Amendment rights to silence and counsel during custodial interrogation. waivers have received increasing scholarly attention in recent years (e.g., A. M. Goldstein & Goldstein, 2010; N. E. S. Goldstein, Goldstein, Zelle, & Oberlander Condie, 2012) and appear to be the competence next most often examined after competence to stand trial. Finally, we give only brief attention to another criminal competence—competence for execution (CFE)—which is in proportion to its less frequent attention in legal proceedings and clinical practice. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved)


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Source: psycnet.apa.org

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