The prosecution expert Janeen DeMarte testified that Arias has a borderline personality disorder, based on a MMPI computer-scored true-false test, and some observations about inappropriate jailhouse behavior. I had to take this test for one of my child custody trials.
The typical juror may just conclude that psychology experts can be bought, and paid to say whatever the lawyers want her to say.
Usually a criminal defendant would not be subject to prosecutor expert psychobabble about how she has a criminal mental profile. But the defense has put forth testimony that she does not, so the prosecution can rebut it. Another except is where a man is accused of domestic violence, as California has a special law saying that the prosecution can present an expert saying that the man matches the profile of a domestic abuser even if his girlfriend denies it.
Meanwhile, leftist Democrats are on a campaign to destroy parental rights, and limit free speech thru the regulation of teachers and psychotherapists.
The San Jose California newspaper reports:
"Parents can teach their children whatever they want," said Guay, now 41, a pastor's son who lived 20 years in San Francisco until moving recently to West Hollywood. "What they don't have a right to is knowingly or unknowingly using the guise of psychotherapy to damage their children."Most psychotherapy is damaging to children. If psychotherapists were banned from doing anything damaging, then most of them would be out of business. California passed a law banning one type of psychotherapy, but there is no scientific paper saying that it is any more harmful than any other psychotherapy.
On Wednesday, a federal appeals court will review whether California's attempt to ban the practice on minors trampled on the rights of families to seek such counseling -- and also whether it improperly threatens professional therapists who risk the loss of licenses and livelihoods if they violate the law.
A group of therapists and parents challenged the law in January, arguing it interferes with religious practices and violates free speech rights by barring gay conversion discussions between young patients and their counselors.
The case has produced a legal standoff between a state's power to regulate what it considers harmful conduct by licensed professionals and supporters of the therapy who insist parents have a right to follow their beliefs in arranging such therapy for their children.
Two Sacramento federal judges have split over the issue, one upholding the law and the other finding it runs afoul of the First Amendment. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals put the law on hold while the case proceeds.
The showdown is being closely watched as other states, including New Jersey and Massachusetts, move to enact similar laws. Legal experts say the case poses tough questions because the U.S. Supreme Court has not established much precedent on a state's ability to impose such restrictions on the speech of licensed professionals.
"It hasn't really told us to what extent restrictions are constitutional," said Eugene Volokh, a UCLA law professor. "This is not clear."