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Criminal Law Keyed to Lee
United States v. Freeman
Citation:357 F.2d 606 (2d Cir. 1966)
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- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
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- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
Charles Freeman sold heroin to undercover police officers. He was arrested and found guilty of selling narcotics after a bench trial. At his trial, he attempted to assert an insanity defense and argued that he did not possess sufficient capacity and will at the time he sold the drugs to be held responsible. He had an expert psychiatric testify that Freeman was a narcotics addict and a confirmed alcohol with episodes of toxic psychosis, delusions, hallucinations, epileptic convulsions, and amnesia. The expert also observed that Freeman had experienced “innumerable brain traumata” which destroyed his brain tissue. However, the expert did state that Freeman had an awareness of what he was doing when he sold heroin and that he was not in such a state of toxicity that he could not remember the dates.
The district court rejected Freeman’s argument based on the M’Naghten test. That test allows acquittal of the charged offense only when it is proved that, “at the time of the committing of the act, the party accused was laboring under such a defect of reason, from disease of the mind as not to know the nature and quality of the act he was doing, or, if he did know it, that he did not know he was doing what was wrong.”
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