What is crime? A crime is when someone breaks the law that is made by the federal, state, or local government with an unjustifiable reason. For example, if someone was trying to kill another person, the victim has a right to defend himself even if it results in the assaulter’s death. On the other hand it is considered a crime if you kill someone out of anger.
To decide on what is or is not a crime there are two common models of how society determines which acts are criminal. The consensus model deals with how the majority of people within a society have the same beliefs and value as to what is right and wrong, such as the right to bare arms or freedom of speech. The conflict model deals with an economic or political group decision; what is best for the economy or business or the party that is in power. For example, prohibiting robbery. (1) It is then important to understand how society determines what constitutes a crime. There are four main choice theories that society may use to determine what is a criminal act. The first theory is legalistics. This theory means if there is no law about a certain behavior, then it is not illegal. The next theory is political. This is a law made by a political party to benefit themselves or their constituents. Another theory is sociological which is an act that is not a crime but is offensive to a society. The last theory is psychological which is an act by someone who cannot function by social rules. In our society, if a crime does occur there are procedures that are put in place as a result of our government’s criminal justice structure. The departments that deal with the criminal justice system are the police, the court, and the corrections department. These bodies of the criminal justice system are what help with our government’s criminal justice process. The early stage of the process most often involves the police. The job of the police is to investigate the crime, collect as...
Citations: 1. 1. Criminal Justice Today. (n.d.). Retrieved August 19, 2014.
2. The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Please join StudyMode to read the full document