Criminal Justice Models

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Criminal Justice Models
Jeff Clark
CJS/220
1/13/2013
Amy Griner

Most people that haven’t had much experience with police or the judicial system think that if you get arrested for anything then you will not only have a criminal record, but will be found guilty for the mere fact that they were arrested. That may be true in some cases but there is actually quite a few people that are let go before any of that happens. Many people that have researched this have said that half or even more of arrests for serious crimes end without a conviction (Meyer & Grant, 2003). The criminal justice system is a very complex process that sometimes makes it easier to abandon a case rather than take it to court. There are three models that describe this and they are known as funnels, cakes and nets.

The funnel model is based on crimes committed all the way down to convictions obtained. It starts with a wide top, illustrating crimes being committed, tapering to a narrow end illustrating convictions for crimes committed. The crimes in the top of the funnel have many different explanations to why they never make it to the narrow base. Some crimes are never reported and others may never get enough evidence to move forward with a case resulting in a case being thrown out or just abandoned (Meyer & Grant, 2003).. This makes the funnel take shape. Crimes not being reported will make the funnel get a little skinnier, evidence or lack thereof will make it smaller, the actual courtroom case or witnesses failing to testify make it even smaller and suspects being found not guilty make it even smaller at the end.

The cake model is based on a tiered wedding cake. The cake will start with a large base and each tier that is placed on top will get smaller and smaller the same as the funnel but this model is used to classify crimes rather than convictions. This model shows how cases or crimes are sorted into layers depending on their seriousness (Meyer & Grant,...
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