On Friday, the criminal defense attorneys representing Julie Scheckner indicated their intent to use the insanity defense. Scheckner is accused of shooting and killing both of her children this past January, but her defense claims that she suffers from “bipolar disorder with psychotic features.”
An ABC Action News article claims that Scheckner told authorities she killed her children because they were being disrespectful and “mouthy”. Scheckner allegedly did not only struggle with a mental illness, but substance abuse as well.
In order for Scheckner to be found not guilty by reason of insanity, the jury must be convinced that she did not know right from wrong. Although it may be true that she suffers from bipolar disease, it has to be proven in court that because of her disease, she did not think she did anything wrong. With statements from Scheckner that she shot her children because of their behavior, her defense is facing quite a challenge to prove that she is not guilty by reason of insanity.
The jury selection process has begun for a Pinellas County man accused of killing his wife over 10 years ago. Robert Temple is facing first-degree murder charges and has announced that he will be representing himself in court.
With such serious accusations and convictions at stake, Temple is making a very bold move by deciding to act as his own attorney. Temple has no legal background, but according to a TBO article, he is finding encouragement from the recent acquittal of Casey Anthony.
“Nobody believed Casey Anthony, and I see she got found not guilty,” Temple said. “It’s a matter of what the proof shows, and I believe I have enough proof to show I didn’t kill my wife.”
It is not completely surprising that Temple finds encouragement from the Casey Anthony case, but it does seem unreasonable that he is going at this alone. Having the expertise of a criminal defense attorneyis certainly one of the key components that helped make Casey Anthony’s case. Although evidence is the major piece of the puzzle, the knowledge and experience that a defense attorney would provide is essential.
Temple has many forces working against him in this case; no attorney, a “forged” confession document, and his ex-girlfriend, who allegedly helped clean up the murder scene, is testifying against him. Will Robert Temple do himself justice or will he end up regretting the decision to act as his own attorney?
Tyler Hadley, 17-year-old male from Port St. Lucie, Florida has been accused of murdering his parents, Blake and Mary-Jo Hadley. Hadley allegedly bludgeoned his parents to death with a hammer Saturday night before throwing a party where 40-60 teens attended as guests.
Hadley was appointed a public defender before facing a judge from St. Lucie County Jail, in Fort Pierce, via closed circuit camera. He was first charged with two counts of first-degree murder which have now been reduced to second-degree. No reason has been given as to what Hadley’s motive was or why the charges were dropped from first-degree murder to second. See the story from WSVN News.
First-degree murder is considered premeditated while second-degree is categorized as a crime of passion. Given the murder weapon, and the events that took place afterwards, it’s hard not to wonder, why the drop in charges? Was there a fight between the parents and Hadley prior? Is it because of the suspect’s age? There are many questions to consider, and this is only a few days after the incident. It will be interesting to see what approach the criminal defense lawyertakes in this case. We don’t know much but this is certainly a case to watch as more develops.
The media plays an influential role in our life everyday, but will it play a role in the outcome of the very publicized Casey Anthony case?
Anthony is accused of murdering her two year old daughter in Orlando. A very public search was conducted to find the “missing” girl, who’s remains were found months later and fingers were pointed at mother Casey Anthony.
According to Anthony’s defense attorney Jose Baez, the standard microphones that are found in every courtroom are picking up private conversations between Anthony and Baez. Under the legal process, all conversations between the defendant and lawyer should be private. Baez requested that all the microphones to be removed excluding the Judge’s and the juror’s.
Judge Belvin Perry took many steps to make sure that the media was not an influence on the juror’s decision. Jurors pulled from Pinellas County were questioned more specifically about what they had heard about the case and how they felt about the death penalty. Perry decided to pull jurors from Pinellas County because the media coverage was not as extreme.
According to an article from the St. Pete Times, Jonathan Green really didn’t want to have jury duty. Green was fined $450 for contempt of court when he admitted to talking about the case to someone else. Green said, “I just wanted to get out of jury duty.” It is almost hard to blame Pinellas County citizens to not want to be a juror for this case. The jurors are expected to be in the Orlando courtroom everyday for 6-8weeks.