In this critical review the author, by reference to some of the recent literature on the subject, illustrates the frequency with which persons suffering from mental disease are committed to prison for criminal acts. A number of personal observations (referring chiefly to general paralytics) are quoted to the same effect. To prevent such miscarriages of justice the author suggests that all persons accused of criminal offences should be submitted to examination by an alienist; and he quotes the opinion of Dr. Paul Gamier—an exceptionally competent judge in the matter—as to the practicability of such a plan, at all events in large centres of population. The author also advocates the Belgian system of frequent examinations of prisoners by alienist inspectors, and recommends certain modifications in the French procedure of expertise in criminal cases.
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