From insanity to incompetence to mental retardation, mental health issues impact cases in the criminal justice system. Knowing how to separate the legally recognizable claims from those without merit can be tricky. "Mental Defenses" by Jane Starnes helps prosecutors, judges, police officers, and defense attorneys deal with issues of potential mental illness and incompetency at all stages of a criminal proceeding, from investigation of the crime through trial and appeal. Chapter 1 includes detail about what types of mental illnesses are recognized as significant in Texas’ criminal justice system and how officers should investigate crimes when they suspect the defendant has a mental health issue. Chapter 2 focuses on a defendant’s competence to stand trial. Chapter 3 details the legal issues surrounding insanity claims, and Chapter 4 discusses mental retardation and the stages of a criminal proceeding where that issue is relevant. Sample forms and charts help guide the reader through all chapters. Jane Starnes is an assistant district attorney in Williamson County and a former assistant district attorney in Harris County. She is board-certified in criminal law.