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Psychiatry Can't Predict Violent Behavior

In a 1982 amicus brief to the U.S. Court, the American Psychiatric Association concluded:

"...that the unreliability of psychiatric predictions of future dangerousness is by now an established fact within the profession...The large body of research in this area indicates that, even under the best conditions, psychiatric predictions of long term future dangerousness are wrong in at least two out of three cases." In a legal brief submitted to the California Supreme Court, the American Psychiatry Association pleaded:

"Study after study has shown that this fond hope of the capability accurately to predict violence in advance is simply not fulfilled."

The A.P.A. flatly denied that mental health professionals are in some way more qualified than the general public to predict future violent behavior.

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