August 4, 2014
One will learn the definition of a crime throughout this paper. Crime is an act of unacceptable behavior that is recognizable as a violation therefore granted the appropriate punishment. A criminal act can be described as an activity that involves breaking the law, or act considered morally wrong. Crime is an infringement of the law. Any of these examples is considered prohibited by law. In our society when you have crime we need laws to maintain order. Society uses models to see which acts are considered criminal acts. The two most common models of how society determines which acts are criminal are the consensus model and conflict model. Consensus model is defined as the justice system working together. Whereas the conflict model is distinct as justice agencies competing for promotions, pay raises and accountability. Conflict models show that there is no cooperation between agencies. The government structure applies to criminal justice because when a person commits a crime the government agency comes into play to take the necessary steps to justice. Different states can define which acts are acceptable and which acts are illegal. The state is allowed to have different laws between each state. Each state implements their laws. The structure of the government is to provide fairness and prevent people of becoming victims. Government upholds the laws to keep citizens safe. Federal, state, and municipal are the branches of law enforcement in the justice system. Choice theory is when a person commits a crime and consciously chooses to commit a criminal act. An offender will choose to break the law when benefits outweigh the cost of punishment. Cohan and Felson argued that lifestyles significantly affect both the amount and type of crime found in any society (Schmalleger, 2011). If a person was out late a person is more acceptable to injury rather than a person who is at home by dark. The three components of the criminal justice system are police, courts, and corrections. The departments require certain expectations when fulfilling its purpose. Police officers have requirements to uphold the law. Some of the requirements by law that a police officer must do is enforce the law, maintain public order, investigate crimes, and apprehend offenders. The courts system must maintain a fair and impartial trial, uphold the law, and impose sentences on the guilty parties. Correction system duties are to provide protection to the community, carryout sentences given by the court, and provide a safe facility for the inmates in custody. The criminal justice system has a process to ensure the offender is sentenced. The process has five steps. The five steps are investigation and arrest, pretrial activities, trial, sentencing, and corrections. Evidence is gathered that is when a warrant and booking take place. Then the offender gets his or her first appearance with a judge to hear the charges for the arrest. Next is the determining if there is enough evidence to accuse the person of the crime. A person waits for an arraignment to order a plea. The trial begins to determine a verdict. After the offender is found guilty, the sentencing will start. The last part is the correction stage. Not all offender are sentenced to prison. The five criminal justice goals are deterrence, incapacitation, retribution, rehabilitation, and restoration. Deterrence is a goal that reaches through fear and punishment. Incapacitation means to lock an offender to keep from society. Retribution involves incarceration, victim compensation, fines paid to public agencies, community service, and public humiliation or embarrassment. Rehabilitation is to help offenders cope with the world. Rehabilitation may involve treatments in some cases. Restoration involves repairing what is broken within a person or community. All these steps help protect the community and do what is right for the...
References: Schmalleger, F. (2011). Criminal justice today: An introductory text for the 21st century (11th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson/Prentice Hall.
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