Dealing with Mentally Ill Domestic Violence Perpetrators: A New Judicial Model
International Journal Law & Psychiatry, Forthcoming
32 Pages Posted: 12 Aug 2010
Date Written: August 10, 2010
People suffering from mental illness are increasingly referred to the domestic violence court. Yet the typical diversion programs available, including batterer’s intervention programs, are inappropriate for those with serious mental illness. As a result, the Miami-Dade Domestic Violence Court has developed a new approach for dealing with this population that applies mental health court techniques in domestic violence court. This Article will describe and discuss this pioneering model. It also will situate this model within the context of other problem-solving courts and discuss how the court uses principles and approaches of therapeutic jurisprudence. The paper presents some preliminary data that describe the social and legal characteristics of 20 defendants in the Domestic Violence Mental Health Court followed over a two year period.
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