Schizophrenia and Society Houston Born, Essay

Total Length: 1131 words ( 4 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 5

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Court Case and Trials

Confession of Andrea of drowning all of her five children came on the same day in the presence of her psychiatrist, Dr. Michael Welner. She confessed of locking her family dog so that it could not interfere with the killings or drowning.

The defense lawyer asserted that Andrea was insane while Texas law required that a proof must be given that at the time of crime, the defendant was unaware of the difference between right and wrong (Jason, 2010, p. 98). In March 2002, the court rejected the bargain based on insanity and proved Andrea guilty. The main option was the death penalty but it was clearly rejected by the jury. Thereby Andrea was sentenced to life imprisonment to Texas Department of Criminal Justice being eligible for a parole in the period of forty years.

On 5th of January, 2005, convictions proven on Andrea were reversed by the Texas Court of Appeals. The reversal was based on the confession of Californian psychiatrist Dr. Park Dietz of giving a false testimony during the trial. 6th of January 2006 was the date when Andrea was proven not guilty on the reason of insanity. The next month, Andrea was released on bail with the condition of her admission to mental health treatment facility. After a period of five years, Andrea was found not guilty based on the reason of insanity as defined by the Texas state law and was committed to the Vernon Campus of North Texas State Hospital. In 2007, Andrea was moved to a mental hospital with lower security situated in Kerrville, Texas.

The defense and the reports have shown that the main reason of psychosis of Andrea were the repeated warnings given by Woronieckis.
The psychiatrist highlighted a letter to Andrea from Woronieckis saying;

"You are evil. You are wicked. You are a daughter of Eve, who is a wicked witch. The window of opportunity for us to minister to you is closing. You have to repent now."

Evidences and proofs are present that have shown that the episodes of manic and psychotic depression were accelerated after Andrea's father's death and her conceiving fifth child. The story unravels great darkness that surrounds the mother of five children who is depressed, suffering from religious fanaticism and psychosis as proven by the statements of two of Andrea's psychiatrists. Thereby Andrea cannot be considered guilty of killing her children as she was insane and psychotic at that time (Riecher-Rossler, and.Karger, 2005, p. 83).


Andrea was under a great psychotic depression based on violent visions that she started to have after she conceived her first son. Seeing Satan in her dream and being stabbed were some of the violent visions that she decided to keep a secret from her family. An important fact that was cleared in the court during the trial was that manic depression was common the Andrea's family playing important roles in Andrea suffering from postpartum psychosis.


Jason, T.E. (2010). American legal injustice: behind the scenes with an expert witness: G - Reference, Information and Interdisciplinary Subjects Series. Aronson.

Miller, P.F., Vandome, F.A., and McBrewster, J. (2011). Andrea Yates. VDM Publishing House Ltd.

O'Malley, S. (2004). Are You There Alone? The Unspeakable Crime of Andrea Yates..Simon & Schuster.

Riecher-Rossler, A., and.Karger, S.M. (2005). Perinatal stress, mood, and anxiety disorders: from bench to bedside Issue 173 of Bibliotheca psychiatrica.….....

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