The fifteenth in the series Bill of Rights Radio Education Project, co-sponsored by the Pacifica Foundation and the American Civil Liberties Union, with major funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. This episode explores the constitutional aspects of the insanity plea and diminished capacity defenses. Produced by Adi Gevins and Ginna Allison, with research and production assistance from Marie Ritzo, Kathy McAnally, and Sheila Ferrigan. Kathy McAnally, announcer; Ginna Allison, associate producer; David Rapkin, project engineer.
Folio notes: "Crazy and/or guilty as charged: constitutional aspects of the controversy over insanity and diminished capacity defenses.
In the light of public outrage over the verdicts in the John Hinckley Jr. and Dan White trials, savvy politicians have discovered a law and order issue attractive to the left, as well as to conservatives…and they are rushing to legislate the Insanity and Diminished Capacity defenses out of existence. This program analyzes the political use of obscure, academic issues (the insanity defense is used in .01% of criminal trials in the United States), and explores the historical, legal and ethical bases of the defenses. Produced by the Bill of Rights Radio Education Project."