January 21, 2020 Feature

Dementia: An Overview for Criminal Law Practitioners

Arthi Kumaravel and Eric Y. Drogin

Client A, a 73-year-old indigent defendant, has been referred to you for representation after having been charged with a misdemeanor criminal offense. She is living independently on her own, although she requires some assistance with paying her bills each month. During her conversation with you, Client A demonstrates the ability to express a consistent choice of how she would like you to address her case, but occasionally has some difficulty remembering minor details. Although you feel that she is probably competent to stand trial, you worry about her memory issues regarding certain critical details of her arrest and subsequent questioning. What can you do to help this client?

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