THREE STRIKE LAW
CJ322 Criminal Justice in the 21st Century
January 30, 2011
The consequences of the three strike law are causing a strain on the criminal Justice system and the correction subsystem. Boot camps may be one of the solutions to the increasingly over crowded prisons. The challenges are increasing everyday for Correctional Officers, especially female officers who are already at a disadvantage. The three strike law became very popular in the 1990s. These statutes are enacted by state government and require the state court to hand down a mandatory and extended sentence to a repeat offender that has committed two or more previous offences. Between 1993 and 1995, 26 states and the federal government passed three strikes laws. The lawmakers were forced to take a second look at the punishment of repeat offenders after the kidnapping and murder of 12-year-old Polly Klaas by a paroled repeat offender. The consequences that the three strikes laws have for the criminal justice system is that not all crime warrant a life sentence. Under this law, the judges and jurors hand are tied. They have no control over sentencing if the offender is found guilty. A life sentence for a charge of theft may be considered cruel and unusual. This would be a clear violation of the eight amendment rights. The prisons are overcrowded as it, so this “cookie cutter punishment” will only intensify the situation. There definitely should be a law that deters repeat offenders, but the punishment still has to fit the crime. Boot camps are military-style, semi-penal institutions that use discipline, military exercises, and rigorous physical training. A defiant adolescent, after successful completion, supposedly return home willing to obey authority, follow rules, and improve behavior at home and school. There are no therapies at these camps. The idea is to break the juveniles’ spirit and build him back up in the way that is socially...
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