Criminal Justice Criminal Justice 101
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This 6 page Class Notes was uploaded by Bailey Wilhoit on Saturday September 10, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to Criminal Justice 101 at University of South Carolina - Columbia taught by Therese Lee Clement in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 117 views. For similar materials see Criminal Justice in America in Criminology and Criminal Justice at University of South Carolina - Columbia.
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Date Created: 09/10/16
Criminal Justice Lecture and Textbook Notes Chapter 1, Week 1 ● Why do we have/need a criminal justice system? ○ Prevent chaos and maintain order ○ Government is attempting to control the population’s behavior and enforce social ‘norms’ ○ Norms are enforced via: schools, parents, religions, and the criminal justice system ● Substantive Criminal Law: ○ The “Do’s and Don’t’s” of law ■ Ex: don’t murder people ○ Substance of the law ● Procedural Criminal Law ○ Once someone is suspected of a crime, what methods are used to prosecute that person for the crime? ■ Investigation, interrogation, arrest, bond hearing, trial, etc. ● Crime Rates ○ Police Departments count crime throughout year, and report it to the FBI ○ The FBI then publishes the “Uniform Crime Report” ■ Used to develop crime statistics like: “A burglary occurs every 13 seconds in the United States” ○ Because some police departments gain funding from decreased crime rates, some information can be inaccurate or misreported ● When accused of committing a crime, ○ The lawyer will look at statutes, common law, and the Constitution to see which, is any, laws you broke ■ Statutes are passed by legislation ■ Common Law is case law ○ Laws change as time goes on based on time periods. ■ Ex: the 13th Amendment freed the slaves because when the Constitution was written it was legal to own slaves ■ These changes in law due to new, unique cases are called “Case Law” ○ The Constitution is antimajoritarian ■ Protects the rights of the minority from the majority (the accused from the abuse of the government) ○ The U.S. is governed by “established principles” ■ “Rule of Law” ○ Precedent or stare decisis: what was law yesterday is lae tomorrow until it’s overturned. ○ The Bill of Rights gives us our inalienable rights, but the government has power to temporarily suspend those freedoms to protect the common good, ensure societal order, and to protect us from each other. ● The Criminal Justice System has changed dramatically. Why? ○ The Vietnam War was the first war that was televised. Americans saw the horrors of war. College campuses started rebelling. It got way out of hand anf people were wondering why the cops weren’t doing anything to stop it. They poured money into law enforcement. ○ The Civil Rights Movement was peaceful, but cops made it violent. People asking why the cops couldn’t control it. They got more money. ○ 9/11 happened ○ Doubt in criminal justice system means more funding ○ “War on Crime” ● Two theories on how to deal with Crime: ○ Crime Control Theory: ■ Control crime at all costs ■ Focus on fighting crime and protecting victims rights ■ Efficient justice ■ Usually more proprosecution ○ Cue Process Theory: ■ “fair process” ■ Focuses on need to protect innocent’s rights ■ Procedural fairness must be protected ■ Come from constitution ■ Protect rights of accused from abuse of government ■ Idea of presumption of innocence ■ Usually prodefense ● Criminology studies cause of crime in order to try and reduce it ● Deviance: ○ Not all deviance is criminal but all criminal behavior is deviant ● Criminology theories (why people commit crimes) ○ Differential association theory: crime is a learned behavior, therefore it can be unlearned ○ Classical theory: “Rational Choice theory” ■ Committing a crime is by choice, based on pain/pleasure theory that people will commit crime to escape pain or they feel pleasure ○ Psychological theory: expressing feelings, mental illness,etc ○ Biological theory: committing a crime is in our genes ○ Phrenology: reading bumps on a skull to identify character ○ Sociological theories: “social determinism” ■ Social groups create conditions that cause criminal behaviors ■ Society is not the root of crime ■ People tend to think that “Better societies” are those that have less crime ● Bad environments, poverty, failing schools are characteristic of bad communities ■ Social disorganization ● Steps in a Criminal Case: ○ Before you have crime, you must have a law ■ Something might be immoral, but it isn’t illegal until there is a law saying so ○ Steps: ■ Has to be a written law ■ Has to be an act that violates the law ● Mala in se crimes: wrong in themselves; murder, rape ● Malum prohibitum: wrong because the law says so; stop signs ■ Investigation ● Develop suspect ■ Decision whether to arrest or not ● Can shoose not to go forward because it is a weak case, and they don’t think they’ll win or if it is a child ● Must arrest in a legal way ○ Must have probable cause that there was a crime and the suspect committed it ○ Law enforcement must accurately describe circumstances of arrest ○ Take all evidence into custody lawfully ■ Terry vs. Ohio ● 3 guys were walking around on a Sunday when everything was closed. They went back and forth looking in one store, conversing, looking in another store, going back to the original store. Cop witnessed this and suspected they were trying to rob the store. He stepped in, pats them down and finds weapons on two of them. Arrests and charges them with unlawful possession. Arrests them all. Terry’s (suspect) lawyer said the cop illegally searched him because there was no probable cause and moved to have the guns as evidence removed. Law came about that in S.C. if an officer has reasonable suspicion that crime is afoot the cop can pat down suspects to take weapons in order to investigate. ■ Booking ● Can hold for 48 hours or they have to let you go if they havent charged you ● Officer can decide to drop charges but usually the prosecutor drops them using discretion ■ First appearance ● Bond court ● Not trial; just in front of judge after you have been charged ■ Preliminary hearing ● Not everyone has one ● Held in front of magistrate ● Prosecutor has to prove that they have probable cause to arrest you. If the judge agrees they will continue in the process. If not, he will drop the charges. ■ Indictment ● Formal document stating there was a crime committed and the suspect was involved ● If there is no probable cause the jury will dismiss the case ● Plea bargaining starts at arrest ● Almost every case ends in a guilty plea ■ Trial ● Jury trial: jury decides ● Bench trial: judge decides ■ If guilty, sentencing ● Probation ● prison/parole ● If given prison time you must deal with ○ Institutional staff ○ Institutional corrections (guards/warden) ○ Community correction staff ● Parole deals with parole officer ■ Can appeal if accused does not like verdict ● Victimology: study of victims and patterns of victimization ○ who/wahy ○ Looking at demographics ○ Criminals and victims share characteristics ○ Differential Association of Criminals and Victims ■ Young tend to hurt old ■ Rich tend to hurt rich ■ Educated tend to hurt educated ■ People are likely to hurt those around them, and usually people are around other people like them. ■ Most murders are committed between people who knew each other ■ Gender studies ● Women are more likely to be sexually assaulted ● 15% of rapes are men, but less likely to be reported ● In every other crime women are less likely to be victimized than men ● If men are usually criminals (90%) then it makes sense that they hurt men more ● People who are married are less likely to be victimized to violent crime than those who aren’t ■ Age ● Young people are more likely to commit crime ○ 1224 most likely to be victimized ○ Elderly have lowest rate of victimization ■ Situations ● Weapons you won’t get shot if there are no guns around ○ Robbery is the most common crime committed with weapons ■ Individuals are more likely to be robbed than businesses or banks ● Time/location ○ More likely to be victims at night ○ More likely to be victims in an unprotected area ○ Urban people are more likely to be victims ○ National Crime Victimization Survey ■ Gather data about victims from victims ■ Lots of crimes go unreported; it helps fill the gaps ■ No data about homicide because the victim is dead ○ Theories of why people get victimized: ■ Victim Precipitation Theory: ● When person is victimized there is a social interaction between the victim and the criminal where victim played a role in their own victimization ○ Ex: prostitution. If a customer doesn’t pay her she can’t really sue because if she wasn’t prostituting herself it would not have happened. ● Limits: can’t always blame the victim, but there are instances where you can ■ Lifestyle Theories ● Some lifestyle activities enhance chances of being victimized ○ Ex: you decide to have a party go buy weed. When you get there they rob you. Well you did go to a crack house ● Who you hang out with ○ Ex: if you hang out with someone who shoplifts, don’t be surprised if they steal from you ○ Consequences of being Victimized ■ Primary victimization Impact: ● Financial: medical bills, lost/damages property ● Physical ○ Maybe someone beat you up and you go blind in one eye. ● Psychological ○ Trauma, PTSD ○ Loss of security ■ Secondary Victimization Impact: ● Inappropriate responses of individuals and institutions toward victim. ○ Ex: if you are raped, it isn’t your case. It’s the state vs. the defendant. The victim is only a witness. Makes victim feel forgotten, angry, violated. ○ In some rape cases the defending lawyers would slaughter the victim and bring up unnecessary and embarrassing things ● Rape Shield Laws ○ It got so bad that these laws were put in place ○ Lawyers can’t bring up irrelevant sexual information ● Media ○ Journalists want a juicy story and don’t have boundaries ○ Exploit victim ● Victim’s friends and family ○ Keep talking about it ○ People telling victims to get over it, not being supportive ● Victim’s Rights Movement ○ Crime Victims Act2004 ○ Money set aside to reimburse some criminal acts medical ○ Restitution: defendant must pay them back ○ Victim Participation program: ■ Victim has right to give victim impact statement ○ Victim offender venting ■ In controlled place, victim can cuss out offender ○ Victim offender reconciliation ■ Controlled place, victim and offender can talk with goal that the victim can forgive offender
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