Elizabeth's new book titled Representing People with Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Practical Guide for Criminal Defense Lawyers will be published by the American Bar Association this Spring. Topics include:
  • Co-Occurring Disorders
  • Testing
  • Competency
  • Risk of Violence
  • Mitigation.  

Read an excerpt. This chapter is by Nicolas Dubin titled "ASD and Sex Offenses: A Son's Perspective":
"When my apartment was raided in predawn style by the FBI on October 6, 2010, it was the last thing in the world I thought would ever happen to me...

A "good cop, bad-cop" interrogation then began and went on for at least four hours. One agent promised that if I cooperated and told them everything they wanted to know, I would probably get a more lenient sentence. I didn’t know it then, but this was a lie. FBI agents can make their feelings known about a defendant to a prosecutor and/or judge, but they are not the ones who decide what a defendant’s sentence will be. A second agent led me to believe that if I didn’t talk, my silence would be used against me. I later learned that I had not been given my  Miranda  rights because technically, I was not in custody. Yet there were several police cars outside my apartment in case I decided to "make a run for it," as I was told by the FBI agents, which suggests I  was  in a custodial setting in my own apartment."
Understanding Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
When a woman drinks during pregnancy, the effect on the baby can be devastating. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) are a group of conditions that results from the consumption of alcohol during pregnancy.

Causes of FASD

When consumed during pregnancy, alcohol passes from the mother to the baby through the umbilical cord. There is no safe time to drink during pregnancy, and any amount of alcohol can be dangerous to the baby. Alcohol consumption can cause problems even before a woman knows that she's pregnant. FASD is preventable if a woman does not drink during pregnancy.
Research Shows Promise for New PTSD Treatment
Many members of the military return home suffering from the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder. Therapy and medication have been the main form of treatment for this disorder. However, now, a recent clinical trial has found that an injection may be an effective treatment for PTSD.
Clinical Trial
Results of an Army-funded  clinical trial  on 108 active-duty service members have found that an injection in the neck is an effective treatment for PTSD. The injection is called a stellate ganglion block or SGB. Two injections were given to the patients two weeks apart. Two-thirds of the patients received the SGB injection while one-third received placebos. All patients took the Clinician Administered PTSD Scale assessment before the treatment and eight weeks after the treatment.
Elizabeth Kelley
Criminal Defense Attorney
Elizabeth Kelley is a criminal defense lawyer with a nationwide practice specializing in representing people with mental disabilities. She is the co-chair of The Arc's National Center for Criminal Justice and Disability, serves on the American Bar Association’s Commission on Disability Rights, Criminal Justice Section Council, and Editorial Board of the Criminal Justice Magazine Learn more .
Further Reading
Persistent depressive disorder is difficult to diagnose and treat, but I found help
I knew early on that my normal didn’t feel like everyone else’s. Even as early as kindergarten, I could tell that my brain worked differently than others, and that I seemed more listless than other children my age. Other kids felt sadness when they experienced a loss or something upsetting. I always felt sad. I didn’t question the cloudy lens through which I viewed the world, because I had never seen clearly.
When the Police Stop a Teenager With Special Needs
People with autism or other special needs may repeat words, avoid eye contact and run from authorities.

A man in his mid-20s regularly roams the streets of my small town in the middle of the night. He looks angry and doesn’t communicate clearly.

Not everyone living in the area knows him. But the police do.
Pleas of Insanity: The Mysterious Case of Anthony Montwheeler
In the wake of a vicious murder, the state of Oregon wrestles with what went wrong in its mental health system

On the morning of January 9th, 2017, Anthony Montwheeler kidnapped his ex-wife Annita Harmon near her home in Weiser, Idaho, and drove 20 miles across the state border to Oregon.
Brain Injuries Are Common in Battle. The Military Has No Reliable Test for Them.
Traumatic brain injury is a signature wound of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. But the military still has no objective way of diagnosing it in the field.
The New R-Word We Should Use When Talking About Disability
My father is a high school counselor and primarily works with the students in his school’s expansive special education program. He could share countless stories of words and actions that have damaged these students’ confidence, but what hurts them the most? The overwhelming answer is the use of the word "retarded."
America's Mental Health Crisis Hidden Behind Bars
It's recreation time at a Los Angeles County jail known as the Twin Towers. Nearly a dozen disheveled young men stand docilely as they munch on sandwiches out of brown paper bags.

They're half-naked except for sleeveless, thick, blanket-like restraints wrapped around them like medieval garments.

All are chained and handcuffed to shiny metal tables bolted to the floor.
FREE E-Book! Families' Guide to Working with a Criminal Defense Lawyer

When your family member with a mental disability has been arrested or charged with a crime, it can be a confusing and challenging experience that leaves you unsure of where to turn for answers. Here are some key things families can do to help the defense attorney handling their case.
Representing People with Mental Disabilities: A Criminal Defense Lawyer's Best Practices Manual

Elizabeth’s book, Representing People with Mental Disabilities was published by the American Bar Association a little over a year ago. Response to the book has been overwhelming with many attorneys and activists happy to have such a resource.Topics include Competency, Sanity, Neuroimaging, False Confessions, and Prison Conditions.