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CCSRE Faculty Seminar Series | Antonio Puente | Hispanics, Neuropsychology & the Death Penalty: An Interface Among Science, Law & Politics
Is it ethical to execute inmates with intellectual disabilities? How are such decisions made and who makes them? In 2002, Atkins v Virginia made it illegal to sentence a person with an IQ of less than 70 to death. In this presentation, Dr. Antonio Puente will outline the history of three phases in dealing with "capital" cases involving intellectually disabled inmates and will present the role of clinical neuropsychology in helping make these determinations. He will pay particular attention to the role of Spanish in how IQ is interpreted in the courts, and will superimpose the limits of present-day science on the history of lynching and executions.
Speaker Bio: Antonio Puente, Ph.D., Professor of Psychology at the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW), was elected 2017 president of the American Psychological Association. He has taught at UNCW since 1981 and prior to that at St. George’s University School of Medicine (neuroanatomy). His primary teaching activities include Brain and Behavior, Clinical Neuropsychology and History of Psychology.
Puente is founding director of UNCW’s Centro Hispano. His research focuses on the interface between culture and neuropsychology and he collaborates regularly with colleagues in Russia, Spain and Latin America. Puente founded and edited the journals Neuropsychology Review and Journal of Interprofessional Education & Practice as well as a book series (33 books) in neuropsychology. He is the author of 8 books, 79 book chapters and 106 journal articles (in English, Spanish and Russian).
In addition to activities at UNCW, Puente maintains a private practice in clinical neuropsychology, ranging from clinical to forensic assessments. He also is the founder and co-director of mental health services at the Cape Fear Clinic, a bilingual health center serving the poor and uninsured. In his new leadership role with APA, Puente’s focus will be to erase the divide between physical and mental health care as well as help fortify the APA’s role as the preeminent leader in behavioral science, pedagogy, practice and service. Puente will hold the top leadership post during its 125th anniversary year.