Criminal Intent Case Study

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Criminal Intent Case Study
Hope Autry
PSYC 210
Liberty University

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Criminal intent by definition means, “the intent to do something wrong or forbidden by law…intent refers to the state of mind accompanying an act…it is the outline of the mental pattern which is necessary to do the crime” (Criminal Intent). The question in this situation is whether it is or it is not possible for a child to commit a crime with criminal intent. I believe the answer to this particular question can be found in the argumentation within several of the factors that we have studied thus far in this course. These factors mentioned being biosocial, cognitive, and psychosocial growth. This particular little boy is considered to be in the stage of the ‘play years’, which is when children are between the ages of 2 and 6 years. As a 6-year-old child, his brain has not fully developed. The process of lateralization, which is when both the right and the left sides of the brain are being connected, has not yet been completed. The right hemisphere of the brain is engaged in reasoning, analyzing, and logical thinking and the left hemisphere of the brain is responsible for emotions, constant, and communication. According to the PowerPoint presentation, a child within this stage has insufficient muscle control along with lacking patience and the judgement in certain situations. In this particular case, injury control/harm reduction practices should have been set in motion so that the child would not have had access to the weapon in the first place. Piaget said that children between the ages of 2 and 6 years were considered to have preoperational intelligence, which means that the child is not ready for logical operations or reasoning. He also described children in this stage to be egocentric. If this is so, the child can only view the world solely from his own perspective. Piaget used a term, static reasoning, which basically means that nothing will ever change; whatever is now...
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