How does a criminal mental evaluation work? - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

How does a criminal mental evaluation work?

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- You might be noticing many high profile court cases in the Tri-Cities involve mental evaluations, and you might not know what goes into their evaluation.

First is seeing if the patient is mentally ill and with what condition; for that they use a handbook called the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual for Mental Health, or DSM. Based on the book they ask the patient a variety of questions.

Only after they confirm the subject has a mental illness do they look at sanity. If they know what they did was wrong. And comes competency, if they know what the court room proceedings are and if they can aid in their own defense.  

To the right are the extended raw interviews with two forensic mental health evaluators, Dr. Bill Grant, with Eastern State Mental Hospital, and Dr. Richard Stride, a certified forensic mental health evaluator.