CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Monday, October 29, 2012

Schopp on Mental Illness and the Expressive Functions of Punishment

Robert F. Schopp has posted Mental Illness, Police Power Interventions, and the Expressive Functions of Punishment on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

The state exercises coercive force under the police power to protect the public order, security, and justice. When individuals who manifest significant psychological impairment harm or endanger others, police power interventions can involve several different institutional structures within the criminal justice system or the alternative institution of civil commitment. The analysis presented in this paper draws attention to the significance of the expressive functions of criminal punishment in selecting the most justified institutional structures for police power interventions intended to prevent impaired individuals from harming others. These functions arguably carry important implications for impaired individuals who harm or endanger others, for general categories of impaired individuals, for the public, and for the integrity of the process.

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