Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
A woman who stabbed her 15-month-old daughter more than 40 times in 2001 had her murder conviction reversed by the D.C. Court of Appeals in a unanimous Oct. 4 opinion. The court found that Norma McNeil’s constitutional right to remain silent was violated when prosecutors Kimberly Knowles and Rachel Carlson Lieber used it against her at trial. While experts from both sides agreed that McNeil was psychotic at the time of the murder, the major disagreement “was over the cause of the psychosis,” the ruling stated. The defense argued she suffered from a psychotic mental disorder, while prosecutors maintained that she was just high on PCP. The order for a new trial hinged on McNeil’s refusal to incriminate herself during questioning by police after being read her Miranda rights. At trial, D.C. Superior Court Judge Russell Canan allowed witnesses to testify and a prosecutor to claim during closing arguments that McNeil’s silence meant she was lucid at the time of the killing, which improperly undermined her insanity defense. On appeal, Corrine Beckwith of the D.C. Public Defender Service represented McNeil. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District says it will move to retry McNeil, who had received a 33-year sentence.
Brendan Smith can be contacted at [email protected].

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.