The lawyer for a southern Idaho murder suspect is mounting an uphill fight to overturn the state’s ban on using an insanity defense, even though the Idaho Supreme Court has already upheld the prohibition on numerous occasions since 1990.
Marilyn Paul, Twin Falls County’s chief public defender, represents 32-year-old Damon Azure, who is accused of murdering his brother earlier this year. In March, the court found Azure lacked the mental fitness to proceed in the case and that he wasn’t competent enough to make his own treatment decisions. At the time, documents showed the court ruled Azure was dangerously mentally ill and presented a substantial risk to other people.
However, he’s since been declared fit enough for his case to proceed.
Late last month, Paul filed a motion asking a 5th District judge to declare the ban on the insanity defense unconstitutional. She says Idaho’s ban on the ability to use an insanity defense deprives Azure of his constitutional rights. (AP)