Crime Research Proposal

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RESEARCH PROPOSAL EXAMPLE 4. THIS PERSON RECEIVED A “9.8” INTRODUCTION Micheal Gottfredson and Travis Hirschi’s general theory of crime purports to be able to predict all crime at all time and that a person’s level of self-control is determined and unchangeable by age eight. This researcher saw this theory as an awfully broad statement and an extremely pessimistic view of human nature. By this logic, a person with a low score on the selfcontrol construct would be almost guaranteed to commit crime given the appropriate opportunity and little can be done to change that behavior. This researcher proposes that self-control can be learned and bolstered later in life through extensive behavior modification programs that work to curb the personality traits included in Hirschi and Gottfredson’s low self-control construct. Namely, this research will focus on first time sexual offenders. Sexual offenders are one of the most feared classes of criminals in U.S. society because of their seemingly random victims, the emotional charge associated with assaults on women and children, and the never-ending repercussions of a single assault in a victim’s life. There is a definite power struggle going on right now in U.S. society between the civil rights of sexual offenders and community safety. It is not always possible to lock a sexual offender away for life on a first offense so they are often let back into society under community control. But, highly publicized violent sexual crimes (Polly Klaas and Megan Kanka) have led to legislation that alert community members if a known sexual offender has moved into the neighborhood and attempts to incapacitate offenders in an institution following the completion of their prison sentences. The public’s fear is not unfounded as a percentage of offenders do recidivate. The number may not be large but the impact is devastating when it does occur. Gottfredson and Hirschi describe low self-control as the absence of a long range view and it is...
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