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The Supreme Court ruled Monday that states can prevent criminal defendants from pleading insanity without violating their constitutional rights. The decision could prompt states across the country to toughen standards for defendants who wish to plead not guilty by reason of insanity.
Officials are working to settle a federal court case in which Washington has racked up nearly $50 million in fines for not providing faster care to mentally ill defendants.
Last week, the first six people to go to trial in the case were acquitted by a jury on all charges, an outcome which illustrates the challenge for Washington prosecutors who are preparing for trials of more than 150 others picked up in the Jan. 20 mass arrest.
Two men have pleaded not guilty in the killing and beheading of a Montana man whose body was found on the outskirts of Billings.
A jury delivered an extraordinary blow to the government Thursday in a long-running battle over the use of public lands when it acquitted all seven defendants involved in the armed occupation of a national wildlife refuge in rural southeastern Oregon.
A federal judge has ordered Washington state’s mental health services agency to pay a civil contempt fine of $185,500 for failing to provide timely competency services to mentally ill defendants.