Lecture 1 What is Criminology

Lecture 1 What is Criminology - Lecture1WhatisCriminology?...

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Lecture 1 – What is Criminology? 21/02/2009 15:05:00 What is criminology? Interdisciplinary study of the causes of crime and the consequences of societal response to criminal behavior Similar to economics, poli sci, and sociology in that it focuses on social science methods to answer research questions Sutherland’s Definition (wrote 1 st book on criminology): o Criminology is the body of knowledge regarding crime as a social phenomenon. It includes within it’s scope the process of making laws, of breaking laws, and of reacting toward the breaking of laws (focus of this course) o The objective of criminology is the development of a body of general and verified principles and of other types of knowledge regarding this process of law, crime, and treatment Reactions of agencies of official social control – Criminal Justice Agencies Agencies of social control that handle criminals Describe, analyze, and explain the behavior of agencies Examine the policies and responses of key actors (police, courts, prisons) We invest a lot of money should we be getting better results? We often make decisions with very limited evidence Problems in criminal justice don’t get the same exposure as healthcare and education We will focus on the study of violations of the criminal law and the responses of agencies of social control Common elements of crimes Violation of criminal law Criminal justice involved Prevention (both in the first place, and for the future) Issues of treatment and punishment (offenders and victims) Criminal justice system ?
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The agencies charged with enforcing the law at each stage of the justice process A true system would be designed to maximize efficiency, but the government didn’t design a response to crime with the system in mind Major actors Police o Enforce law o Investigate crimes o Apprehend offenders o Reduce and prevent crime o Maintain public order essential, predates other police duties o Ensure community safety o Provide emergency and related community services o Protect the fundamental rights and freedoms of individuals Correctional agencies o Carry out sentences imposed by courts o Provide safe and humane custody and supervision of offenders o Protect the community o Rehabilitate, reform, and reintegrate convicted criminals back into the community (sometimes) Criminal courts o Conduct fair and impartial trials o Decide criminal cases o Ensure due process (right to trial, acquittal, double jeopardy, etc.)
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Lecture 1 What is Criminology - Lecture1WhatisCriminology?...

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