Not Guilty By Reason of Insanity (NGRI)

Not guilty by reason of insanity (NGRI) is a verdict issued in criminal cases whereby the defendant, determined to be legally insane, is held not responsible for his or her criminal actions. NGRI is a possible verdict following trials in which the defendant employs the “insanity defense,” arguing that the criminal behavior in question was caused by a mental disorder that existed at the time of the offense. Unlike a plea of “Not guilty,” a defendant entering a plea of insanity is admitting to the acts and harms alleged by the prosecution but claiming that he or she should not be held criminally responsible for such acts and harms. Also unlike a “Not guilty” verdict, a finding of NGRI is not an acquittal. Rather, defendants ...

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