O Connor V. Donaldson 1975 Case Study

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A. O’Connor v. Donaldson 1975: In this precedent, the supreme court decided that the presence of mental illness alone is not enough to warrant involuntary confinement. If the patient is no longer found dangerous to him/herself or others, there is no justification to continue confinement. Commitment needs to be justified on the basis of mental disease and dangerousness. This precedent is applicable to the case of Mr. Y, because the statement above states dangerousness and mental illness as a basis for justifying continual commitment for Mr. Y. If the preponderance of evidence shows that Mr. Y is dangerous due to his mental disease, then deciding to civilly commit him would meet the requirement of this precedent case.

B. Addington v. Texas 1979: In this precedent case, the standard of proof for civil commitment was debated when the defendant, Mr. Addington appealed to the Texas Court of Civil Appeals, arguing that the court should have used the "beyond a reasonable doubt” standard of proof in his case. Although Texas is the only state where the preponderance-of-the-evidence satisfies due process, the court decided that the preponderance standard falls short because it increases the risk of erroneous commitment and does not fully consider the
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Foucha v. Louisiana 1992: The decision made by the Supreme Court in this preceding case was that the basis of dangerousness alone does not justify involuntary commitment. The standard for involuntary committed for civilly committed individuals should remain the same for reason of insanity acquittees. The case of Mr. Y, falls under this precedent. For one, in this precedent case, the acquitted has the burden of proving that he is not dangerous: as stated earlier Mr. Y similarly has the burden of proving that he is not dangerous. Also dangerousness only wouldn’t be enough to detain Mr. Y, and as you can see Mr. Y basis for continued civil commitment is tied to the presence of dangerousness as a result of his mental
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