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UA - CJ 240 - Class Notes - Week 4

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UA - CJ 240 - Class Notes - Week 4

School: University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa
Department: Criminal Justice
Course: Juvenile Delinquency
Professor: Joshua Wakeham
Term: Summer 2015
Tags:
Name: Chapter 3 Notes
Description: These notes cover everything discussed in chapter 3 of the textbook.
Uploaded: 09/19/2016
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background image Individual Views of Delinquency: Choice Theories Looking Ahead Theories of delinquency o Systematic, rigorous explanations of delinquent, criminal  behavior o Different assumptions about Human nature (motivation, cognition, etc.) Causes of criminal behavior (choices, traits,  situations, etc.) o Different theories suggest different kinds of interventions  and policies Individual Theories Next 3 classes  examine individual level explanations of 
delinquent behavior
Two major schools of thought o Choice theory
o Trait theory
Biological Psychological Choice Theory Choice theory: people choose to engage in criminal activities o Individuals have free will o Crime is simply the result of someone exercising their free  will to rationally pursue their self-interests An Old Idea 1764: Italian philosopher and economist Cesare Beccaria 
publishes On Crimes and Punishment
Classical criminology o Key assumptions Free will Hedonistic principle o Criminal activity: weigh benefits of crime against the costs  of punishment o Intervention/policy: punishments must be sufficiently  severe, swift, and certain to control crime Updates to an Old Idea Today: Rational Choice Theory o Broader social scientific theory of human behavior
background image o Patterns in human behavior are the result of individuals  pursuing their preferences and self-interests in a largely 
rational manner
Crime is simply a rational choice for some individuals Choices, choices… Beliefs, preferences, constraints  shape choices Some influences on delinquent decision-making o Personal problems
o Financial needs/rewards
o Parental controls/supervision
o Control, retribution, deterrence, reputation
o Creating scripts
Routine Activity Theory Lawrence Cohen and Marcus Felson: Volume and distribution of 
predatory crime (violent crimes or theft) reflect the routine 
interaction of three variables
o Capable Guardians Police officers Homeowners Security systems Neighbors Parents o Suitable Targets Unlocked homes Expensive cars Easily transportable goods Cell phones, iPad, laptop o Motivated Offenders Teenage boys Unemployed Drug addict gang member From Theory to Practice If delinquent/criminal behavior is the result of rational choices, 
then how do we prevent delinquency/crime?
o Increase the costs of crime (ex: punishment) o Increase the constraints on the choice to commit crime (ex: make crime more difficult) Four resulting strategies of crime prevention o General deterrence
background image Choices to commit crime is structured by the threat 
of punishment
If delinquent believes they’ll get away with it  
CRIME!
If delinquent believes They’ll be apprehended They’ll be severely punished NO CRIME! KEY: do general deterrence strategies work? Evidence mixed results Positive: Low-rate vs high-rate offenders
Greater police presence vs harsher 
sanctions Informal sanctions/shaming Why doesn’t general deterrence strategies work with 
adolescents?
Teens are NOT RATIONAL! Punishments not a deterrent for highest risk  offenders Actual experience of CJS undermines threat Adaptation to deterrence strategies o Specific deterrence Specific: targets those already apprehended Same logic: increases punishment to deter future  misbehavior Does it work? No- prior arrest, conviction best predictors of 
future arrest conviction
Why not? o Incapacitation Basic logic: if they are locked up, they can’t commit  more crime Strict incapacitation policies are not necessarily  worth it “Schools of crime” Incarcerated criminals are replaced by the 
demands of criminal enterprise
Incarceration occurs too late in crime lifecycle Expensive Contributes to community disruption o Situational crime prevention Preventing crime by focusing on the key situational 
elements of crime

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School: University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa
Department: Criminal Justice
Course: Juvenile Delinquency
Professor: Joshua Wakeham
Term: Summer 2015
Tags:
Name: Chapter 3 Notes
Description: These notes cover everything discussed in chapter 3 of the textbook.
Uploaded: 09/19/2016
11 Pages 13 Views 10 Unlocks
  • Better Grades Guarantee
  • 24/7 Homework help
  • Notes, Study Guides, Flashcards + More!
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