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Criminal Law Keyed to Capers
Powell v. State of Texas
Citation:392 U.S. 514 (1968)
In late December 1966, appellant was arrested and charged with being found in a state of intoxication in a public place. The principal testimony was that of Dr. David Wade, a Fellow of the American Medical Association, duly certificated in psychiatry. Dr. Wade sketched the outlines of the ‘disease’ concept of alcoholism; noted that there is no generally accepted definition of ‘alcoholism’; alluded to the ongoing debate within the medical profession over whether alcohol is actually physically ‘addicting’ or merely psychologically ‘habituating’; and concluded that in either case a ‘chronic alcoholic’ is an ‘involuntary drinker,’ who is ‘powerless not to drink,’ and who ‘loses his self-control over his drinking.
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