SECTION 1 - COLQUITT
437 So. 2d 622 (Ala. Crim. App. 1983)
The defendant was indicted for the attempted murder of Lois Bray. A jury convicted him of assault in the first degree. Sentence was twenty years' imprisonment.
The trial judge did not err in refusing to give the defendant's requested jury instruction on insanity.
The defendant testified that he "blacked out" after drinking Listerine and whiskey and simply did not remember what happened the night of the crime. He stated that he had been drinking for over fifty years, that he had a "problem" with drinking, and that he "usually blacked out" when he "drank too much." However, the defendant also testified that, before he began drinking on the day of the crime, he had not had anything to drink for a year.
Although excessive intoxication may produce insanity, Beasley v. State, 50 Ala. App. 468, 126 So. 896 (1930), "legal insanity does not embrace every kind of mental disease and disorder that renders a person not responsible for his acts." Brackin v. State, 417 So. 2d 602, 604 (Ala. Crim. App. 1982). Alabama Code § 13A-3-2(d) specifically provides that "(i)ntoxication in itself does not constitute mental disease or defect within the meaning of § 13A-3-1" defining the defense of insanity. Here, there was no evidence that the defendant was not criminally responsible for the alleged conduct as a result of a mental disease or defect.
Voluntary intoxication is no defense to a charge of assault and battery, unless the degree of intoxication amounts to insanity and renders the accused incapable of forming an intent to injure. Maddox v. State, 31 Ala. App. 332, 334, 17 So. 2d 283 (1944). "Emotional insanity or temporary mania, usually due to causes such as intoxication, not associated with disease of the mind, does not constitute insanity." Johnson v. State, 43 Ala. App. 224, 226, 187 So. 2d 281 (1966). See also Beasley, supra; State v. Bullock, 13 Ala. 413 (1848). "(I)nsane conduct or mania resulting merely from present intoxication is not the insanity which excuses crime." James v. State, 193 Ala. 55, 69 So. 569, 572 (1915). "Temporary insanity which arises from present voluntary intoxication is no defense to a criminal charge. * * * On the other hand, if the accused is suffering from a settled or fixed insanity, even though caused by long-continued alcoholic indulgence, the rule is the same as in the case of insanity arising from any other cause." 21 Am. Jur. 2d Criminal Law § 54 (1981). See also Annot. 8 A.L.R.3d 1236 (1966).
Here, there was no evidence that the defendant was suffering from any settled or fixed insanity.
The judgment of the circuit court is affirmed.
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