Navigation Links
Stanford's Hank Greely puts neuroscience on trial
Date:2/20/2010

A lawyer is trying to convince a jury that his client really is crazy. It's usually a tough argument to sell in a court of law. But what if the lawyer has a picture of his client's brain that shows there's something biologically wrong with it? Can that evidence help persuade a jury? Should it even be allowed as evidence?

Those are some of the questions that will be addressed during a presentation and mock trial scheduled from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Feb. 20 at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in San Diego.

Hank Greely, a Stanford law professor and expert on the legal, ethical and social issues surrounding the biosciences, will take on the role of prosecutor during a presentation titled "The Brain on Trial: Neuroscience Evidence in the Courtroom."

"The prosecutor's typical position is that brain scan evidence shouldn't be used because they say it's not scientifically useful," Greely said. "They say it will confuse the jury, that it's not relevant, that the technology isn't good enough yet. But most of all, they'll say that's fine that you found this person has an abnormal brain but how many other people have similar abnormalities and don't commit crimes? The answer will be: quite a few."

With no hard-and-fast rules on whether neuroscience evidence should be allowed in state and federal courts, Greely is studying criminal cases in California that have featured brain scan images to help prove guilt or maintain innocence.

He's so far found that defense attorneys are more likely than prosecutors to try using neuroscience evidence, but he cautions that the tool is a double-edged sword.

While an MRI result showing a deformed or malfunctioning brain could conjure empathy and a finding of innocence, it could also lead jurors and judges to opt for convictions and long sentences based on the assumption that such a damaged mind will only convince the person using it to offend again.

"Neuroscience evidence will probably mostly be used alongside behavioral evidence," Greely said. "There will always be behavioral evidence to show a defendant was crazy as a loon. Neuroscience will be able to further hammer home the idea that the person truly has a problem."


'/>"/>

Contact: Adam Gorlick
agorlick@stanford.edu
650-725-0224
Stanford University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. European Research Council grant for neuroscience research
2. Elseviers BrainNavigator research tool to launch new features at Neuroscience 2009 show
3. NTU, University of Warwick to collaborate in neuroscience research
4. Neuroinformatics special issue spotlights the Neuroscience Information Framework
5. Penn announces $50M Penn Integrates Knowledge neurosciences initiative
6. Stroke and SIDS in Alaska topics of neuroscience conference
7. Society for Neuroscience 38th Annual Meeting
8. News tips from the Journal of Neuroscience
9. Brains R Us: Neuroscience and education town hall
10. Shigetada Nakanishi receives $500,000 Gruber Neuroscience Prize
11. NARSAD presents 2007 prizes for outstanding achievement in neuroscience and psychiatric research
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/4/2017)... YORK , April 4, 2017   EyeLock ... today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark ... patent broadly covers the linking of an iris image ... same transaction) and represents the company,s 45 th ... latest patent is very timely given the multi-modal biometric ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... 2017  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com will host ... hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in Redmond, ... on developing health and wellness apps that provide a ... Genome is the first hackathon for personal genomics ... companies in the genomics, tech and health industries are ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... March 30, 2017 Trends, opportunities and forecast ... behavioral), by technology (fingerprint, AFIS, iris recognition, facial recognition, ... others), by end use industry (government and law enforcement, ... and banking, and others), and by region ( ... Asia Pacific , and the Rest ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... nourishing a range of emerging technology-based businesses, recently earned a $77,518 grant from ... , Founded in 2004, FITCI is Frederick’s first incubator. A non-profit corporation, ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... ... April 20, 2017 , ... Husson ... clinical research community’s growing body of knowledge during its Eighth Annual Research ... and the adjacent Darling Atrium. During the event, undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... ... April 20, 2017 , ... ... unique intellectual property (IP) sharing and commercialization model. , The Center for Advancing ... main component of this effort is bringing the IP to the attention of ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... ... April 18, 2017 , ... A number of new instruments have ... is part of the Protein and Cell Analysis Education Webinar Series , will ... technology fits in current and future applications. , Many flow cytometers have unique ...
Breaking Biology Technology: