Have you heard of the latest criminal defence/defense plea in the USA? Unfit to stand trial because of caffeine-induced psychosis. And it appears to have worked in a recent case.
Defendant Daniel Noble ran over two pedestrians on the way to work then made a speedy getwaway. He had not been drinking but appeared anxious. He was charged with vehicular assault and hit-and-run, but his lawyer claimed his client had suffered from 'caffeine psychosis' and should not be held criminally responsible.(The average person consumes about 200 mg of caffeine a day and Noble may have been been drinking up to ten times the average.)
The judge agreed and dropped all charges, despite the fact that the victims both had broken bones and required lengthy treatments.
Experts have ratified this defence by stating the bleeding obvious quite frankly, - that coffee drinkers may experience nervousness, excitement, insomnia, flushed face and the like, if they drink too much. Ya think?
Here's what I think:-
Most people know that caffeine has some effect on humans. Some people can't even drink one cup without going all hyper. If you choose to drink large quantities of coffee, shouldn't you bear the responsibiltiy for any subsequent weird or deviant behaviour?
Over the years in both Britain and the States, drunkenness has not been allowed as a defence for most crimes. If you choose to down two gallons of vodka then beat someone up, rob next door's or get in your car, you can't stand there and say you didn't know what you were doing because you were pissed as a fart. (In most cases. It can get a bit technical with the "intent" bit). And that's as it should be.
So why the heck is it OK to rely on the over-caffeinated defence? I just don't get it.
There's another, more serious, case employing the same strategy. This time it's a Kentucky man accused of murdering his wife. The legal defence claim is that Woody Will Smith, (what a name) had so many sodas, energy drinks and diet pills that he couldn't have knowingly killed his wife; that the caffeine made him unable to commit the crime.
Fer cryin' out loud! I will be watching this case with interest and disbelief!
This in a country that recently executed a women said to be borderline retarded.