Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Guilty and Not guilty

From today's Providence Journal:

"Lawyers for Colorado theater shooting suspect James Holmes formally told a judge Monday that he wants to change his plea to not guilty by reason of insanity after outside experts diagnosed his mental illness."

If everyone agrees that an act was committed (the definition of guilty) by someone does it make any sense to say that the act wasn't committed, yet isn't that what the above verdict says?

I've always thought that instead of Not guilty..., the plea should be "Guilty by reason of insanity", but I'm no legal expert.

1 comment:

Bob H. said...

Good point. That language honors the victims of such tragedies. Isn't that an essential goal of criminal justice?