Category Archives: Criminology

Sociological theories to why juveniles become delinquent

Question

You are a sociologist, and you are noticing that the juveniles in your area are starting to cause legal problems and are beginning to overload the juvenile court system. Once you decide on the theory, describe how it relates to juveniles by explaining what the theory believes causes the juvenile problems. Explain what you could do in your position to aid in alleviating these problems.

Sample paper

Labeling Theory

Labeling theory holds that individuals come to identify and act as per their labels. The major tenet of this theory is that the behavior and self-identify of individuals is affected by the way they are described by other people (Vold, Bernard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2016). According to this theory, the act of deviance is not implicit in a particular act, but is hedged on the inclination of the majority to ascribe labels to minorities in society who deviate from standard behavior. Labeling leads to dramatization of a particular act – which propagates the behavioral clash between the individual and the community. Through ascribing labels, the individuals acquire a negative self-image. The individuals accept themselves as labeled by the community. Such people are likely to continue engaging in deviant acts because they become accustomed to the labels. Secondary deviance also arises due to the social rejection that deviants face in the community.

Labeling theory arose in the late 1930s. The development of the theory is attributed to Frank Tannenbaum in 1938 (Vold, Bernard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2016). The theory was developed because of the apparent conflict between the young individuals and adults within communities. In the 1960s, labeling theory became an important theory in defining crime. Howard Becker introduced the major concepts that define labeling theory in 1963. This was a period when the United States was undergoing significant cultural and political conflict. Of particular concern during this period is that it was a period of black emancipation. However, due to lack of jobs and high poverty, majority of African Americans engaged in crime and other forms of antisocial behavior. It was during this period that labeling was at its highest.

The founders of labeling theory contended that theories of crime causation at the time overemphasized about deviance being the result of personal factors, while ignoring the reactions of society towards crime. Tannenbaum observed that sociologists concentrated much on the deviant acts and the behavior of the deviant, while neglecting the influence of society (Vold, Bernard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2016). He noted that other sociological theories of crime believed that since crime is bad, individuals involved in crime are also inherently bad. Tannenbaum disputed the notion perpetrated by other sociological theories that crime was the result of the individual’s inability to adjust to the society. On the contrary, he argued that deviants view themselves as part of a particular group in the society, where their behavior is acceptable by other group members.

The “looking-glass self” clearly explains how deviant behavior arises among juveniles. Under this concept, the social self is seen as the image that one internalizes out of how others define him or her (Winters, Globokar, & Roberson, 2014). The society is thus like a mirror or the ‘looking glass’ through which one sees the self. According to the proponents of the labeling theory, the ‘looking glass’ have a significant impact on one’s behavior. For instance, when a person construes that other seem him/her as lazy, that person will likely act lazy in order to fulfill the ascription. This is the same as self-fulfilling. In line with this concept, when youths face arrests, they are kept with other criminals and are labeled criminals. This gives the particular youth different experiences. The youth may develop new friendships while in prison or join gangs. While the youth leaves prison, he/she is likely to continue with criminal behavior.

Labeling theory falls under the positivist school of thought. The positivist school holds that criminal behavior is the result of internal and external factors that individuals cannot be able to control. The positivist school has three segments that include social, psychological and biological segments. The sociological positivism argues that various societal factors such as membership of subcultures and unemployment can lead people to commit crimes, just like under the concept of labeling theory. According to the labeling theory, the individual becomes conscious or self-conscious depending on the labels attached. This occurs through a process of describing, defining, tagging, and through other mechanisms (Winters, Globokar, & Roberson, 2014). This leads to the stimulation or evoking of the particular traits that the society considers bad in the individual concerned.

Frank Tannenbaum is one of the greatest contributors to labeling theory. His article ‘crime and community’ published in 1938 provided great insights about antisocial behavior and labeling. Tannenbaum introduced the concept of ‘tagging’. During his studies, he found that tags attached to the youths influenced their involvement in the criminal acts. Another key contributor is Edwin Lemert, whom in 1951 introduced the idea of ‘secondary deviance’ (Vold, Bernard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2016). Secondary deviance arises due to the social rejection that deviants face. Howard Becker is another key symbol in the development of labeling theory. His work explains how people adopt deviant roles, and provides details about identity formation.

In order for labeling theory to hold, certain assumptions are inevitable. One of the major assumptions is that the initial deviant acts are the result of a wide array of factors. Primary deviance is considered unrecognizable or unnoticeable by other individuals. (Winters, Globokar, & Roberson, 2014). Another major assumption is that deviants move through a complex process to become secondary deviants. In order for to become secondary deviant, there must be a societal reaction to the initial behavior exhibited. This reaction leads to labeling.

Despite the seemingly success and wide acceptance, various criticism are leveled against the theory. The first criticism can be stated as the classical egg or chicken dilemma. In this argument, critiques question whether it is the label or behavior, which comes first among individuals. Another critique of labeling theory is that it puts more emphasis on formal labels. For instance, labels associated with school officials and those from police. There is also the concern about the individuals who obtain these labels. The question is do the powerful get labels just like the poor or the underdogs? Another criticism lies on the assumption that a person’s nature is more predicative of the reaction time comparing to the nature of an act (Clinard, 2016).

Individuals can alleviate the problems outlined by labeling theory by avoiding the labeling process (Winters, Globokar, & Roberson, 2014). Law enforcement officials should not intervene in matters regarding juvenile delinquency. Law enforcement officers should adopt a policy of radical non-intervention. Another implication of labeling theory is decriminalization, which involves the lessening of the severity of penalties relating to particular acts. This means that people should not criminalize simple bad behaviors by the youths. In this situation, I would encourage the community through educational campaigns to deal with minor deviance issues associated with youths in the area. For instance, youths who are caught stealing should not be handed over to juvenile courts since this would lead to labeling. Instead, it would be better to talk to the youths and establish their motifs for stealing. Counseling the youths about why it is wrong to steal would also be of help.

References

Clinard, M. B. (2016). Sociology of deviant behavior. Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.

Vold, G. B., Bernard, T. J., Snipes, J. B., & Gerould, A. L. (2016). Vold’s theoretical        criminology. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Winters, R. C., Globokar, J. L., & Roberson, C. (2014). An introduction to crime and violence.    CRC Press.

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Federal and State Drug Statutes PowerPoint

ETHICS AND MORALITY IN THE WORKPLACE

Most of the employers in the world we live today are more concerned about how their employees behave at work. Often, business ethics are the social responsibility that a business is supposed to have or to show towards the members of the community especially the community in which they operate. A business showing high levels of ethics and morality both in work and towards the surrounding community is likely to enjoy a greater level of success compared to those organizations with no ethics and morality in their operations.  Ethics is the personal choice, and as a result, the manner in which individuals or groups behave at work widely depends on the personal ethics of those who are in power over that workstation as well as those individuals who work in that environment (Resick, 2013). Ethics and morality in the organization are very crucial and paramount, and the effective management of ethics is a sound and an excellent business practice that should be adopted and practiced by all organizations as they go about their daily businesses. Through ethics and morality in the workplace, managers and supervisors stand a better platform and an opportunity to boost their morale, improve bottom-line performance. This assignment will focus on shedding more light on morality and ethics in the workplace.

Distinguishing what is right and what is wrong when there is large of individuals or group to consider is an absolute in life.  Large Corporation and enterprises should be well aware of the consequences, both the positive and negative of doing the right and the wrong thing. However, one of the important lessons that these organizations need to understand in their course of operations is that doing the right thing does not always guarantee success in their business.  On the other side, there is a high likelihood of these organizations failing if they compromise their ethical standards both at the workplace and to the surrounding environment communities included. Below are some of the reasons as to why morals and ethics are crucial in running a business.

One of the importance of maintaining high levels of ethics and moral standards in a workplace is to boost the trust of the employees. Without trust in the workplace, miscommunication, dishonesty and high employee turnover the business is likely to fail or stagnate. An untrustworthy employee keeps his or manager in doubts while a trustworthy employee makes their employees satisfied and secure that they will complete their responsibilities and duties with ease and on time (Cohen, 2014). Trust is always referred to as reliance on the integrity, strength, ability and surety of the employees and this prompts the employer or the manager to give trustworthy employees a degree of freedom as they perform their duties. Thus, through high levels of ethics and morals employees can develop trust amongst themselves as well as with their seniors.

Additionally, business corporations and organizations should have moral obligations towards the employees as well as the community in which they operate. The ethical duty of the business is honest with their customers about the quality and quantity of goods and services they sell to them and in the process forbid and eliminate perjury, robbery, forgery, fraud and defamation. As a result, there are certain laws, rules, and regulations that all business organizations are required to follow and adhere to ensure that they remain true and loyal to their esteemed customers.  Despite the fact that these laws are almost similar to individuals’ laws, they hold great intensity and capacity and failure to perform in a lawful manner; the organization can be held accountable and be prosecuted. On the same note, business and enterprise have a moral obligation to honor all their promises both to the community and to their employees. This goes way beyond cooperative social responsibility considering that it is through these promises that the businesses and organizations can create a strong and bigger customer base.

Ethical and moral in the workplace are crucial in avoiding legal problems with the authority of the jurisdiction they operate. Most of the times, the company management is tempted to cut corners to increase the profits of the organization given the fact that the organization is out in the field to make a profit. In such cases, the organization may find itself in trouble of not complying with important legal requirements such as complying with environmental regulations or labor laws, ignoring work safety hazards or using substandard materials in their products. In some countries, the penalties and punishment for not fully complying with the law can be severe and can lead to losses in the form of legal fees and fines or sanctions by the government agencies and worst cases; the government can revoke the business permit (Ciulla, 2014). The resulting publicity is likely to cause long-term damage to the company’s reputation that is even more costly than the legal fees and fines considering that the business will no doubt lose their trusted customers. Companies and enterprises willing to maintain high levels of ethics and morals will always take their time to train their employees on what is needed of them and how to be ethical and moral in the workplace.

Besides, through ethics and moral the organizations stand a better chance to build and maintain customer loyalty. Consumers are likely to forgive their company and organization to slip once but not twice. Thus, any suspicion that the company is treating them unfairly or rather overcharging them, they are likely to lose their trust and loyalty to the company. Creating and maintaining a loyal customer base is one of the paramount keys to the success of any organization as well as guaranteeing an organization a long-term business success considering that serving existing customers is far much cheaper compared to new customers since there is no marketing involved. As a matter of fact, each customer is likely to enjoy any association with a company that has a good reputation which can only be created through ethical behavior which turns into a positive image in the marketplace bringing more and more customers through referral by the existing customers. On the other hand, a reputation for unethical behavior is likely to send more and more customers on their way which may cripple all the chances for the company to attract new customers especially in this current era where customers like using social platforms (Cohen, 2014). Thus, ethical behavior of the employees and the business, in general, is likely to affect its relationship with their customers in a significant manner.

Ethics and moral standards of any organization are crucial when it comes to making strategic decision making mainly because all their decisions have to be based on the code of conduct adopted by the organization. Through the code of ethics, the company stands a better chance and opportunity to make the right decisions affecting the company either internally or externally. All business organizations have a moral responsibility that goes beyond making profit considering that their decisions are likely to affect the lives of the employees working in the organizations as well as their customers. As a result, good and relevant strategic decisions are likely to guarantee the company a going concern as opposed to decisions that are made based on opinion. Corporations should have a responsibility not only to make a profit for their shareholders and stakeholders but also to obey the laws of the country and be truthful and straightforward to all their financial dealings.  Any wrong move and decision made by the organization may signify trouble to the organization as it may fail to recover and expand regarding profitability, market share and customers.

In conclusion, it is correct to say that code of conduct and moral standards act as the blueprint of the behavior displayed by all employees in an organization. All employees have an obligation of strictly following this code of conduct to guarantee the success of the organization by attracting more and more customers as well as creating a public image and to avoid legal fines and sanctions. From the above discussion, it is easy and correct to point out that ethical and moral standards are part and parcel of any organization and they can determine the success or failure of any enterprise (Ciulla, 2014). The leadership of any organization should be on the front line to lead all other employees in acting and behaving in an ethical manner.

References

Ciulla, J. B. (2014). Ethics, the heart of leadership. ABC-CLIO.

Cohen, T. R. (2014). Moral character in the workplace. . Journal of Personality and Social                       Psychology, 107(5), , 943.

Resick, C. J. (2013). Ethical leadership, moral equity judgments, and discretionary workplace                  behavior. Human Relations, 0018726713481633.

Wrong Convictions -Criminal Justice

Question

The issue of wrongful convictions is a problem that has haunted court systems throughout the United States. The news depicts individuals being saved from death row when new evidence arrives or when evidence that was provided is proved to be false. Judges have always been expected to decipher and correctly judge every case, specifically pertaining to criminal acts. The expectations derive from the nature of individuals’ lives being in the hands of the judgment of the particular judge.Please write your paper to answer the following questions. The answer or opinion must be supported by an academic source or real-life criminal justice finding.

  • How common is it for an individual to be wrongfully convicted in the criminal justice system?
  • Is the United States court system judged fairly in this manner by the public?
  • What do you think is a reason why an innocent person is convicted of committing a crime that he or she did not commit? Are there rules or measures that can be put in place to prevent future wrongful convictions?
  • Does the court system have adequate protections in place minimizing the risk that innocent people could be convicted and then punished even though they are innocent? What additional protections would you recommend?
  • Are wrongful convictions an issue common only to the United States Judicial system, or are they common in the judicial systems of other countries? Look at 3 other countries to compare.

Sample paper

Wrong Convictions

It is uncommon for a person to receive a wrong conviction in the United States criminal justice system. A large number of studies suggest that there is a 1% likelihood of a wrongful conviction in the U.S., comparing this to the total number of convictions (Olney & Bonn, 2014). Bearing in mind that about 2 million people are convicted annually of various crimes, it is possible to see that at any one time there are about 20,000 people convicted wrongly in the U.S. each year. Majority of the cases involving wrongful convictions involve homicide, with 47%, while sexual assault comes second with 31%. Violent and nonviolent wrongful convictions are 13% and 9% respectively (Williamson, Stricker, Irazola, & Niedzwiecki, 2016). The high cases of wrongful convictions under homicide indicate that wrongly convicted defendants are more likely to face death or life sentence. Between 1989 and 2014, 1,325 convicts were exonerated of any wrongdoing after new evidence was brought to the table.

The public does judge fairly the United Courts system in the manner. The public expects that judges should prove “beyond reasonable doubt” that a person is guilty of a crime convicted. This is especially important when dealing with crimes involving capital punishment. From the 1980s onwards, the public has increasingly become alarmed over wrongful convictions in the criminal justice system. This has led to a debate about the suitability of the death penalty, with one faction urging for the abolishment of the death penalty since it is a cruel and inhuman form of punishment especially for the innocent. Serious cases may require a higher degree of certainty before court judges can make a verdict (Evianne & wilsem, 2014). Most courts observe the Blackstone ratio, which asserts that the criminal justice system is better off acquitting 10 guilty persons than jailing a single innocent one.

There are a number of reasons why innocent men are convicted of crimes they did not participate. Vast literature details eyewitness misidentification as the major reason behind most wrongful convictions. Balko (2013) argues that eyewitness testimonies are unreliable and may lead to wrongful convictions in the criminal justice system. A common challenge in using eyewitness testimonies in the criminal justice system is that judges tend to be overly-dependent on eyewitness accounts, while neglecting other factual matters. Another issue regards the need for expert testimony during criminal proceedings. Expert testimony is critical to help judges differentiate accurate and faulty evidence. There are rules that can be put in place to curb wrongful convictions in the future, for instance, use of expert testimony. Expert testimony involves use of trained psychologists who examine the reliability of eyewitness testimony (Balko, 2013). Another possible measure is the application of forensic evidence in criminal proceedings. Forensic evidence, such as DNA evidence is accurate in tying suspects to crimes.

The court system has adequate protections that aim at minimizing the risk of jailing innocent persons. One of the protections is the enactment of stringent rules guiding attorneys. Attorneys have the ability to influence the admissibility of evidence through different ways, for instance, by eroding the defendant’s account of facts. Another protection in place is the adherence the admissibility guidelines, also known as the Daubert standard. The Daubert Standard provides judges with a basic framework for admitting witness and expert testimony during trial (Daubert, 2013). Some states have adopted mandatory electronic recording rules or policy that guide the process of custodial interrogations involving capital punishment. Lastly, courts are allowing certain scientific procedures such as DNA testing following conviction in order to prove innocence. Drawing from above, the court system has adequate protections for minimizing the wrongful conviction of innocent persons. One of the additional protections that I may recommend is leveraging on technology to improve on accuracy of convictions. Application of modern technology and forensic science can greatly improve the decisions made by court judges.

Incidences of wrongful convictions are not limited to the United States criminal justice system, but are widespread across the world. For instance, these incidences have become contentions issues in places such as China, Australia, and even in the United Kingdom. Jiang (2013) examines the history of wrongful convictions in both the U.S. and China. Jiang (2013) contends that both countries have experienced a history of wrongful convictions, and especially involving the death penalty. China judicial system of China is at a higher risk of wrongful convictions owing to the nature of investigations, which involve torture. The Australian judicial system has also witnessed wrongful prosecutions. The issue of wrongful convictions came to the limelight after Andrew Mallard was incarcerated for almost 12 years for a crime he did not commit. The study notes that Australia is yet to adopt new measures that can curb the problem of wrongful convictions (Weathered, 2007). In the United Kingdom, the problem of wrongful convictions still exists. In England, the Criminal Cases Review Commission  (CCRC) is an organization mandated to examine court decisions and whether there are miscarriages of justice (Weathered, 2007). The commission investigates cases where there is purported miscarriage of justice.

References

Balko, D. (2013). Justice delayed is justice denied: wrongful convictions, eyewitness-expert         testimony, and recent developments. Suffolk University Law Review, 46(4): 1087 – 1095.

Evianne, J. & wilsem, L. (2014). Wrongful convictions and the Blackstone ratio: an empirical      analysis of public attitudes. Punishment & Society, 16(1): 32-49.

Jiang, N. (2013). A comparison of wrongful convictions in death penalty cases between China     and the United States. International Journal of Law, Crime and Justice, 41(2): 144 – 166.

Olney, M. & Bonn, S. (2014). An exploratory study of the legal and non-legal factors associated with exoneration for wrongful conviction. Criminal Justice Policy Review, 26(4): 400-  420.

Weathered, L. (2007). Does Australia need a specific institution to correct wrongful convictions?             Australian and New Zealand Journal of Criminology, 40(2): 179-198.

Williamson, E. J., Stricker, J. M., Irazola, S. P., & Niedzwiecki, E. (2016). Wrongful        convictions: Understanding the experiences of the original crime victims. Violence and             Victims, 31(1), 155-166.

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Criminal Justice-“True Detective”

Criminal Justice-“True Detective”

Question

Crime and justice are subjects that are frequently presented on television. Primetime television shows, soap operas, music videos, and cartoons often portray images of crime and criminal justice in a sensational manner or one of negativity. The pictures of police brutality and mistrust of law officials is prevalent because of the reality of cases that exist, especially in an era where information can be dispersed quickly and immediately via technology.For this assignment, please list and discuss at least 6 television shows that you have seen that depict the police, courts, and correctional components of the criminal justice system (2 television shows for each component: 2 law enforcement, 2 judiciary, and 2 corrections; for a total of 6 shows).  there must be 2 examples that you must use to depict each of the 3 components of the criminal justice system for a total of 6 illustrations. (or for example, Law & Order SVU can count as both 1- police & 1-courts, but you will need another police (e.g. Cops), and another federal court TV show (e.g.: Boston Legal), Corrections (e.g. Prison Break and Orange is the New Black)

*Note: Courts are not Judge Judy, Judge Mathis, etc.  These are civil courts.  Assignment for courts is for federal courts (e.g. Murder, rape, robbery)

  • How do these shows or events present each component?
  • Are the images positive or negative concerning criminal justice professionals? Why?
  • What stages of the criminal justice process are depicted in these programs? Why do you think the focus is on these stages?
  • Do you think these images are fair representations of criminal justice? Why or why not? Are the shows realistic with current-day criminal justice activities? Why or why not?

Sample paper

Criminal Justice-“True Detective”

“True Detective” is a crime drama TV series that premiered in 2014. The drama series revolves around the lives of Rustin and Martin, who work as homicide detectives with the Louisiana Police State Department (Stubbs, 2015). The series presents law enforcement officers as hardworking. It focuses on the challenges that law enforcement officers often encounter in their work, such as utilizing scant evidence. The show portrays a positive image of the law enforcement officers. For instance, they are committed to fighting crime through all means, which includes risking their lives and staying away from their family for lengthy periods. The stage of the criminal justice system represented in this program is investigation stage, which entails probing crime (Cole & Smith, 2008). The focus is on this stage because the series focuses on uncovering people behind a series of murders who remain a mystery. The series is not a fair representation of the criminal justice system. This is because it presents a criminal justice system that is highly endowed with technological resources and other amenities. In reality, most of the departments lack such advanced technological resources. Shared resources such as desks are far more common.

“Cops”

The TV series focuses on the lives of law enforcement officers. The reality series follows the life of various law enforcement officers as they conduct their duties. The show is positive concerning criminal justice professionals. This is because it depicts law enforcement officers as the heroes who fight crime. The stage of the criminal justice system depicted is arrest. The program features officers apprehending suspected offenders. The focus is on the arrest stage since it often involves a lot of action and use of force. This is appealing to viewers. The images are a fair representation of the criminal justice system. Law enforcement officers conduct arrests on occasional basis as presented in the TV series. The TV series is not realistic with the current-day criminal justice activities. This is because it depicts law enforcement officers as inherently power and easily able to subdue offenders while making arrests. In reality, law enforcement officers face difficulties arresting offenders.

“Law & Order: Criminal Intent”

This series focuses on major investigations involving Major Case Squad. The Major Case Squad represents a division in select police departments that is involved in investigation major crimes that beyond the level of average law enforcement officers. This show depicts the federal courts as handling complex cases involving sophisticated criminal networks and conspiracy theories. Some of the images concerning criminal justice professionals are negative. For instance, Mayfield and Darren harass and bribe a judge in season 6. The common stages in the criminal justice system depicted in the show are arraignment, plea bargaining, sentencing, and appeal (Cole & Smith, 2008). The focus is on these stages since the series aims at portraying how investigations and sentencing are conducted in the criminal justice system. The images are accurate representations of the criminal justice system. The TV series depicts the actual situations involving major crimes such bribery, coercion of judges, and other negative aspects. The show is realistic with current-day criminal justice activities since it bases its stories loosely on real crimes that occurred.

“Silk”

This British legal drama follows the life of a barrister involved in a series of high profile cases. The series highlights the challenges and dilemmas that current-day barristers face in the criminal justice system. The show portrays a positive image of barristers. The series portrays barristers as highly intelligent and capable of solving various dilemmas. The stages of the criminal justice system depicted are arraignment, plea bargaining, trial, sentencing, and appeals. The focus is on these stages because the show aims at debunking the federal court proceedings. The series accurately represents the criminal justice system. This is because it shows all the courtroom drama involved in various cases ranging from robbery, rape, murder, terrorism, and other high profile crimes. The show is realistic with current-day criminal justice activities. This series portrays various courtroom drama that is characteristic of the modern society. For instance in episode 4, Martha defends a man who is wanted for extradition because of involvement with terror activities.

“Prison Break”

Prison Break is an American drama series that depicts life in prisons. The series shows negative images concerning criminal justice professionals. The series depicts prisons as a place where corruption is rampant. In addition, other vices exist, such as drug use, violence, sexual abuse, and others. The stage of criminal justice presented is punishment or rehabilitation. The series aims at portraying the challenges that inmates experience in various correctional facilities across the country. The images are fair representations of the criminal justice system. This is because sexual abuse, corruption, drug use, and other forms of abuse are documented in correctional facilities (Stoher, Walsh, & Hemmens, 2013). This show is realistic with current-day criminal justice activities because victimization is rife even in modern correctional facilities.

“Wentworth”

This TV series drama provides an explicit view of life in Australian correctional facilities. The series portrays a negative image concerning criminal justice professionals. This is because law enforcement officers in prison facilities are depicted as contributing to some of the social ills such as rape and assault. The stage represented is punishment or rehabilitation. The focus is on this stage because the series aims at highlighting the social ills in correctional facilities. The images are a fair representation of the criminal justice since the film is a mirror of life in prison facilities. The show is also realistic with current-day criminal justice activities since it exposes current rot in prison facilities.

References

Cole, G. F., & Smith, C. E. (2008). Criminal justice in America. Belmont, CA:      Thomson/Wadsworth.

Stoher, S., Walsh, A., & Hemmens, C. (2013). Corrections: A Text/Reader. Sage 2nd.  ISBN:             9781412997171.

Stubbs, D. (2015, June 16). Watching the detectives: why the police procedure is more popular    than ever. The Guardian.

Criminal Justice      

Question

Previously in Chapter 2 of the textbook, you learned about the doctrine of Selective Incorporation of the Bill of Rights, which outlines the rights contained in the Bill of Rights that pertain to the state governments via the Fourteenth amendment.

When a trial is occurring, the defendant can exercise his or her rights and also argue the violation of his or her rights during due process and prior to his or her arrest. Explain how these rights and due process can be the basis for an appeal of a criminal trial, as shown in your reading assignment for this lesson.

To which court can the verdict from a state trial be appealed? (Use your state as an example.)  Illinois:

To which court can the verdict from a federal trial court be appealed? (Again, use your state as an example.) (25%)

Which court in the nation is the highest and its decisions cannot be appealed to any other court? Does this court have original jurisdiction over any criminal actions? (25%)

Sample paper

Criminal Justice

The law is one of the fundamental in a country or a state to ensure there is a peaceful existence among all people across all levels in the society. The police force is usually given the mandate to enforce the law, rules and regulations that are made by the state organs. Whoever breaks the law is taken to court to answer for his violation. Without the social control, a country can be chaos all through. Criminal justice provides systems of practices and governmental institutions that have the sole duty and responsibility of upholding social control, deterring and mitigating any form of crime. Moreover, the court systems have the power to sanction those who violate laws with penalties and rehabilitation efforts (LoPucki, 2008). However, the court cannot implement laws that have not be put in place and thus the laws of a country have to comprise of the system of rules that can be enforced through social institutions to govern the behavior of individuals in a country.

Question 1

Not all the rules of the court that goes in our way or the way we wanted and at times the accused may feel that he was judged unfairly. As provided in the Constitution, the accused has the right to appeal. The party that loses in a verdict by a trial court in state court has the right to appellate court. The Illinois courts are divided into three levels beginning with Circuit Court Level. This court has the responsibilities of listening to civil lawsuits and criminal complaints. The role of the appellate court in the state of Illinois is keen to examine the records of the lower court proceedings to establish whether there was any irregularity. However, the appellate court does not conduct any new trial but instead it listens to oral arguments from both parties to arrive at a verdict.

Question 2

Usually, the federal and the state courts of Illinois work hand in hand to settle legal disputes among the citizens in this region. The federal courts have the power, duty, and responsibility to listen to both criminal and civil cases. The federal court system has three levels of the court system: a trial court level and two appellate court level.  The losing bench in this system has the right to file an appeal to the next level court usually referred to as the court of appeals.  The court of appeal examines the evidence presented at the trial stage to determine whether there are any reversible errors (Schmalleger, 2009). Just like in the case of the state courts, the court of appeal in the federal court decision does not conduct new trials but rather listens to oral arguments from the attorneys of both benches to give their final verdict.

Question 3

The supreme court of the United States of America is regarded as one of the powerful courts in the world, and it is the highest court in the nation. Moreover, the verdict given by the court is final and cannot be appealed in another court in the nation. Usually, the court has the duty to lead the judicial arm of the federal government. It consists of nine justices, and the chief justice is the leader of these justices.  The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court is provided by article III, section II of the Constitution. In addition, the court has its original jurisdiction over certain cases and administers justice to all citizens in America (Schmalleger, 2009).

References

LoPucki, L. M. (2008). Court system transparency. Iowa Law Review, , 07-28.

Schmalleger, F. (2009). Criminal justice today: An introductory text for the 21st century. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Intelligence and Delinquency

Intelligence and Delinquency

There are a number of questions and concerns raised in the reading on intelligence and delinquency. The first question regards the nature of study findings. The main concern here is whether theorists have been keen on the results obtained from the research. Hirschi and Hindelang (1977) questions whether theory opposes research and whether research disregards theory. For instance in the period when research shows a strong link between IQ and delinquency, theory disregarded these assertions. On the other hand, theories drawn from the period that IQ was disregarded show a weak correlation between IQ and delinquency, but one that can hardly be ignored. In the early 20th century, most researchers supported the hypothesis about the strong correlation between IQ and delinquency (Vold, Bernard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2016). However towards the mid of the 20th century, this hypothesis lost ground, only to gain support again from the 1970s.

Another key question raised in the readings concern the association between IQ and class, which could have a significant impact on research findings. It is worth noting that class and culture may have a significant impact on the IQ level of an individual. This could in turn be interpreted to mean that the IQ differences between delinquents are purely the result of class differences. A number of studies detail the link between class and IQ. For instance, Woodward (1995) asserts that there is a significant difference in IQ between children of individuals engaged in formal practice and those involved in manual work (as cited in Hirschi & Hindelang, 1977). Almost similar to this assertion is that children who come from large families have relatively low IQ scores compared to those from smaller families.

Another set of questions relate to measurements of IQ. Researchers are yet to reach a consensus about the ultimate or unbiased IQ test. There are concerns that IQ tests given to delinquents could be biased because of cultural and class factors (Hirschi & Hindelang, 1977). Some authors argue that intelligence tests focus on test knowledge rather than examining innate intelligence. This group maintains that IQ tests are highly influenced by the socioeconomic status of the individual concerned, rather than giving a true reflection of the innate intelligence, that one has. Another question raised in the readings concern the cultural influence in IQ tests, which may significantly contribute to biased results. Existing literature indicates that IQ tests show biasness towards minority and low income groups. For instance, some questions asked during IQ tests favor individuals from rich backgrounds (Hirschi & Hindelang, 1977). Considering that, IQ tests discriminate against individuals from poor backgrounds and coincidentally, these groups have high delinquency rates, then it is logical that this hypothesis is true.

Questions emerge concerning the methods used in measuring delinquency. Some past studies have largely focused on the self-report methods of obtaining data about delinquency (Hirschi & Hindelang, 1977). The initial findings on IQ rely on the self-reporting method of collecting data. This raises major concerns about the data used to measure the link between IQ and delinquency. For instance, concerns have been raised about imperfections in measurement that may arise when an intelligent delinquent intentionally avoids detection. There also questions concerning the stability of IQ test scores. Researchers agree that a number of social factors can influence IQ scores. As such, IQ scores may not withstand the test of time. However, a number of studies have disputed this claim, showing that there is a high correlation in IQ test scores measured during a particular period at those taken later or after several years.

References

Hirschi, T., & Hindelang, M. J. (1977). Intelligence and delinquency: a revisionist review.            American Sociological Review, 42(4):571-587.

Vold, G. B., Bernard, T. J., Snipes, J. B., & Gerould, A. L. (2016). Vold’s theoretical        criminology. New York, NY: Oxford University Press

Related:

Life-Course-Persistent Offenders Theory

Life-Course-Persistent Offenders Theory

Life-Course-Persistent Offenders Theory

Major Principles

The life-course-persistent offenders’ theory classifies individuals into three groups. The first group comprises of non-offenders or people who do not engage in criminal activities. The second group comprises of adolescent-limited offenders. These individuals engage in criminal activities during adolescence. The last group comprises of the life-course-persistent offenders. This group of individuals begins engaging in antisocial behavior in early childhood and continues through adulthood (Bernard, Snipes, Gerould, & Vold, 2016). The theory attributes antisocial behavior to result from neuropsychological problems that affect the unborn child. These problems could stem from poor nutrition, drug use, or other complications during pregnancy. The neuropsychological problems lead to impulsivity, and consequently involvement in antisocial behavior.

Historical Context

The life-course-persistent offenders’ theory developed from studies by Wolfgang, known as Philadelphia birth cohort studies (Blokland & Nieuwbeerta, 2010). The study published in 1972 examined delinquent behavior among boys up to 17 years of age. The findings indicated that only a small fraction of chronic offenders engaged in most of the antisocial behaviors in a particular birth cohort. This study sparked a lot of interest, prompting many researchers to conduct studies aimed at examining this active antisocial group. Another important group of studies were conducted by Eleanor Glueck and Sheldon Glueck in 1950 to investigate the development of delinquent behavior among 500 adolescent boys in various Massachusetts reform schools (Blokland & Nieuwbeerta, 2010). The 1980s and the 1990s were a period of increased longitudinal studies, which yielded robust data and helped in the development of the life-course perspective.

Major Contributors

The major contributor to the development of the life-course-persistent offenders’ theory is Terrie Moffitt, through the development of Moffitt’s taxonomy. Earlier works on life-course persistence can be traced to the works of Wolfgang, Figlio, and Selling (1972) (Skarohamar, 2010). In their work, the three established that a small fraction of chronic offenders committed over half of all recorded offenses in a particular birth cohort. In 1980, the Panel on the Research on Criminal Careers conducted a study dubbed the ‘criminal career paradigm’ (Skarohamar, 2010). This study focused on the nature of offending with regard to frequency, onset, cessation, and duration. This study also identified a pattern of chronic offenders among the cohort. The study categorized criminal tendency into ‘innocents’, ‘desisters’, and the ‘chronics’.

Major Theories

The life-course-persistent offenders’ theory falls under the category of psychological theories of criminal behavior. The psychological theories of behavior examine the psychological aspects of behavior. Psychological theories are broadly categorized into two: personality theories and those based on intelligence. The origin of the psychological theories can be attributed to Richard Dugdale. In 1874, Dugdale conducted a study that tried to unravel the family history of ‘Jukes’ with regard to crime. At the time of commencing the study, 6 members of the Juke family were in prison. By tracing the family back to over 200 years, he discovered that it had a history of antisocial behavior. Personality studies emerged strongly during the 19th and 20th centuries. In the 19th century, there was a great interest among scholars such as Sigmund Freud to learn more about the unconscious, individuality, and irrationality. In 1896, Sigmund Freud published the book ‘Studies in Hysteria”, which became a major hallmark in psychology.

Criticisms

The theory argues that adolescent-limited offenders are likely to engage in less serious crimes compared to the life-course-persistent offenders. This is not entirely right since in some cases, even the adolescent limited offenders commit serious crimes. Another criticism of the theory is that it fails to account for various factors that may influence individuals to engage in crime from a younger age. Another criticism is that it is difficult to pinpoint the reasons why those who start offending early are more likely to encounter more serious consequences in life than those who start late.

Policy Implications

The policy implications of this theory is that it is possible for researchers to identify individuals at high risk of engaging in crime by analyzing particular personality characteristics such as hostility, jealousy, lack of impulse control, and others (Bernard, Snipes, Gerould, & Vold, 2016). Individuals who engage in crime have problems controlling their impulses or their negative emotional states. Moffitt’s theory identifies the source of impulsivity to neuropsychological issues. The implication of this is that expectant women should avoid using drugs and other substances that may affect the child.

References

Bernard, T. J., Snipes, J. B., Gerould, A. L., & Vold, G. B. (2016). Vold’s theoretical        criminology.
New York : Oxford University Press,

Blokland, A. A. J., & Nieuwbeerta, P. (2010). Life course criminology. In P. Knepper, & S. G.    Shoham (Eds.), International Handbook of Criminology. (pp. 51-94). London.

Farrington, D. P., & Loeber, R. (2001). Child deliquents: Development, intervention, and service             needs. Thousand Oaks, Calif. ;London: SAGE.

Skarohamar, T. (2010). Reconsidering the theory on adolescent-limited and life-course persistent             antisocial behavior. Retrieved from: https://www.ssb.no/a/publikasjoner/pdf/DP/dp587.pdf

Related:

Parole and Prisoner reentry

 

Parole and Prisoner reentry

Question

Examining the Predictors of Recidivism Among Men and Women Released from Prison in Ohio by Matthew Makarios, Benjamin Steiner, and Lawrence F. Travis III

Prisoner Reentry: What Works, What Does Not, and What is Promising by Richard P. Seiter and Karen R. Kadela

Prisoner Reentry in A Small Metropolitan Community: Obstacles and Policy Recommendations by Brett Garland, Eric Wodahl, Julie Mayfield

Sample paper

Parole and Prisoner reentry

It is the dream and the desire of every community to live in a peaceful environment free from any kind of crime. However, this is not always the case, and this is the main reason as to why the court system and police forces are introduced in any area of jurisdiction. Courts and police forces are meant to restore order, justice as well as enforce government laws to discourage criminal activities. On the same note, criminology as part of the court and police force focuses on the study of crimes, their causes, economic impacts and social impacts citizens in a state. A criminologist has a responsibility to analyze data and information to determine why crimes are committed and project ways in which can be utilized to prevent further criminal activities in the society. This essay will attempt to elaborate on a various aspect of criminology.

 Question 1

Human being is prone to behavior change and adaptation after being exposed to certain living conditions for some time. This is the main reason as to why the good character is either corrupted or preserved when a person is imprisoned depending on the conditions and the influence around them. However, lack of education, limited social integration, limited freedom, lack of employment and lack of housing are some of the factors that can be used to predict recidivism among inmates. Lack of treatment programs poses a significant challenge for these individuals to re-enter the society after spending some time in prison (Makarios, 2010). After getting out, they may find new ways of doing things as well as a change of norms, and this limits their degree freedom to integrate with the society as well as meeting their basic needs. In extreme cases, these individuals lack support from their families and the society at large and may end up going for long without employment.

 Question 2

In the recent years, there has been an increase in the number of offenders being released from prison as a result of factors surrounding their release. Some of the reentry programs designed to help these workers settle in the community while others have not worked.

  • What works – this group represents those programs that are effective in helping inmates settle in the community. Such programs as vocational training or work release programs have been effective considering that they prepare a prisoner both mentally and physically to work after getting out. Other programs in this category include drug rehabilitation for drug addicts, educational programs and half house programs which reduce the possibility of future crimes(Jonson, 2015).
  • Not working –this group represents ineffective reentry programs such as when prisoners are just left on their own to find the best method and technique to integrate with the members of their community.
  • Promising – this category represents programs that have not been fully adopted but presents positive results such as sex and violent offender programs where they are taught and trained how to live with other individuals peacefully.

Question 3

Despite being in a rehabilitation center, most prisoners find it difficult to settle back into the society after serving their terms due to strains such as lack of fund to finance their activities and rebuilding their lives and in most cases, they are forced to rely on their family, members. Other strains include difficulties in reconnecting with their families, negative aspects of religious components and psychological challenges (Herbert, 2015). However, to help overcome these challenges, these individuals are encouraged to attend trainings and undertake education programs to help sharpen their skills as well as seeking psychological help from a qualified therapist.

References

Herbert, C. W. (2015). Homelessness and housing insecurity among former prisoners. . The                     Russell Sage Foundation journal of the social sciences: RSF, 1(2), , 44.

Jonson, C. L. (2015). Prisoner reentry programs. Crime & Just., 44, , 517-557.

Makarios, M. S. (2010). Examining the predictors of recidivism among men and women released            from prison in Ohio. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 0093854810382876.

Correctional Programing and Treatment

Correctional Programing and Treatment

The article by Andrews, Bonta, & Wormith (2006) examines the progress of risk assessment in the criminal justice field. The three examine progress of risk assessment based on fourth generation of offender assessment. The article describes the fourth generation of offender assessment as those who “guides and follows service and supervision from intake through case closure.” The investigation aims at not only to improve management information systems in the corrections but also to improve the human service treatment systems and assessment systems. The article also examines clinical judgement and the need for change, with an emphasis on structured clinical judgment. The article also examines those challenges that forensic mental health approaches encounter from the general correctional instruments. The article examines additional principles of effective service that may be applicable in the case of offenders by analyzing the meta-analytic evidence. The last segment of the article evaluates the consequences of RNR and the challenges facing the need assessment field, and derived from the humanistic perspectives, feminism, and critical criminological perspectives. The article conducts an empirical analysis using diverse offender groups to identify the risk and/or risk factors.

Robbins, Martin, & Surratt (2009) investigate the risk of recidivism and relapse among women-inmates who were previously substance abusers as they go back to the community. The main aim of the article is to examine the effectiveness of work-release therapeutic community programs among substance-abusing women inmates who reenter the community. In order to do this, the three examines the impact of the therapeutic community programs from three perspectives. First, the article examines the impact of the program on women who enter and successfully complete the program. Second, the article examines the impact of the program on those who embarked but failed to complete the program, and finally on those who did not participate in any form of work-release therapeutic community program. Robbins, Martin, & Surrat (2009) also compare the impact of having children on the risk of recidivism and relapse into substance abuse. In order to do this, the study examines the risk of women who anticipated joining their children on leaving prison and those who did not have any children. The findings of the study indicate that women who participated in work-release therapeutic programs were less likely to recidivate or use drugs in the first one and half years following their release.

Zhang, Robert, & McCollister (2011) examine the impact of inmate participation in prison-based therapeutic community programs on their behavior once they leave prison. The study involves a quasi-experimental analysis of the prison inmates for 5 years after they leave prison. The study also utilizes a comparison group of inmates who did not participate in the program. The study gives contradictory findings to previous studies on the role of prison-based therapeutic community programs. The findings indicate no significant difference in recidivism rates and involvement in drug and substance abuse for inmates that participated in the prison-based therapeutic program and those who did not participate. In both groups, there was a 60 percent recidivism rate in a span of two years after inmate reentry into the community. In 5 years’ time, the return rate to prison was 73 percent for both groups. The study involved 395 participants who underwent the prison-based therapeutic program and a comparison group totaling 403.

References

The Recent Past and Near Future of Risk and/or Needs Assessment by D. A. Andrews, James Bonta, J. Stephen Wormith

Substance Abuse Treatment, Anticipated Maternal Roles, and Reentry Success of Drug-Involved Women Prisoners by Cynthia Robbins, Steven Martin, Hilary Surratt

Therapeutic Community in A California Prison: Treatment Outcomes After 5 Years by Sheldon Zhang, Robert Roberts, Kathryn McCollister

CRIMINOLOGY -Reaction Essay

Question

Write a reaction essay

1 Who Has The Body? The Paths To Habeas Corpus Reform by Cary Federman

2.Sex Offender Laws: Can Treatment, Punishment, Incapacitation, And Public Safety Be Reconciled? by Mary Ann Farkas and Amy Stichman

Sample paper

CRIMINOLOGY

Introduction

The court system is very vital for the maintenance of law and order in any country as well as the implementation of policies that are formulated to ensure that citizens live in harmony and peace. To be able to perform this duty, lawyers and judges have to undertake train which helps them to fully understand the laws of the country thus forming a strong foundation and base to make decisions. Moreover, criminology is an area of sociology that focuses on the study of crimes and their cause, effects, and social impacts (Taylor, 2016). Moreover, a criminologist has the duty and responsibility to analyze data to determine why crimes are committed and to examine and determine ways to predict, deter and prevent further criminal behavior. This paper will seek to give a reaction based on the text who has the body by carry Federman.

Question 1

The text says that the primary purpose of this article is to place the Antiterrorism and Effective capital punishment act within the political and historical framework. Moreover, the article says that the Supreme Court and other interested parties strive to restrict prisoner’s access to the federal court by way of habeas corpus. However, this is against the constitution which states that all individuals have freedom of expression and right of movement and thus prisoners should be given freedom to access federal court in the attempt to find justice. Moreover, the Congress is not fair to the humanity considering that the Congress seized the opportunity presented by terrorism acts to restrict death row prisoners from obtaining habeas corpus review. All individuals have a right to access to justice irrespective of the crime they have committed. Thus, a fair trial and access to federal court services should be made available to all prisoners and suspect. They also have a right to defend themselves in a court of law in the attempt to bring justice to all individuals.

Question 2

Section 2250 of title 18, United States Code makes it a federal offense for sex offenders required to register according to the sex offenders registration and notification act. Moreover, sex offenders who fail to register properly may face fines up to 10 years in prison. However, this is not fair to the defendant considering that he may fail to register and yet turn out to be innocent. As a matter of fact, sex offenders should be subjected to fair trials registered or not registered. Moreover, it might have been a one-time mistake and the offender may be a changed person and taking him to prison for ten years just because of incorrect registration is not fair. Sex offenders are viewed by the public and legislators as more objectionable, less treatable and more dangerous and more likely to recidivate than most other types of offenders, and this makes it easy for individuals to prejudge them (Stohr, 2012). As a result, they end up in prison without a fair trial, and they are separated and shunned out of social circles, and they are viewed to be more dangerous than murderous. Despite the crime committed, they are still human and should be treated with respect. Moreover, a show of little compassion would change the lives of these offenders to make them better people and change their ways. Psychological treatment of these offenders should be helpful as they are mostly cut from social circles.

References

Stohr, M. W. (2012). Corrections: A text/reader (Vol. 3). Sage.

Taylor, I. W. (2016). Critical Criminology (Routledge Revivals). Routledge.