Synopses & Reviews
Excerpt from Reports of Cases at Law and in Chancery, Vol. 255: Argued and Determined in the Supreme Court of Illinois; Containing Cases in Which Opinions Were Filed in October and December, 1914, and Cases Wherein Rehearings Were Denied at the December Term, 1914
Our statute does not expressly declare that no one shall be tried for a criminal offense while he is insane, but the provision of paragraph 28 5 that where a person becomes lunatic or insane after the commission of the crime he shall not be tried for the offense during the continuance of the insanity is not and was not intended to be an abrogation of the common law that no person can be compelled to plead to a criminal charge and be placed on trial for the crime while insane. The grounds for this rule of the com mon law, and for statutes where it has been expressly de clared by statute, are very well stated in Freeman v. Peo ple, supra. It has been held in a number of decisions that where it was claimed on behalf of a person who has been indicted for crime that he was insane when the time came for him to be arraigned and called upon to plead, the court might exercise some discretion, in view of the known circumstances and condition of defendant, in determining whether the issue of insanity should be first tried before the defendant should be required to plead and be placed upon his trial for the crime. (jones v. State, I 3 Ala. 153; State v. Reed, 41 La. Ann. 581 State v. Harrison, supra.) When the trial is ordered for the purpose of determining the defendant's sanity the inquiry is confined to his sanity at the time of the trial upon that question, for the purpose of determining whether he is sane and has the capacity to make a rational defense. His mental condition at the time of the commission of the alleged crime is foreign to the inquiry. That question is only competent to be considered and passed upon when the accused is placed upon his trial for the alleged crime. The provision of paragraph 285 of.
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