The Criminal Justice System

Topics: Crime, Criminal law, Criminology Pages: 3 (757 words) Published: February 2, 2014
The Criminal Justice System
December 9, 2013

The Criminal Justice System
Crime is defined as conduct in violation of the criminal laws of a state, the federal government, or a local jurisdiction for which there is no legally acceptable justification or excuse. (Schmalleger, 2011, p.7) The relationship between crime and law is without the strict enforcement of the law, crime cannot be prevented. The two most common models of how society determines which acts are criminal are the consensus and conflict models. The consensus model assumes that the agencies of police, courts, and corrections work simultaneously for a common goal, making movement through the system as smooth as possible. The conflict model suggests that the three criminal justice agencies are self-serving and often conflict with each other. The United States Government has put into place a set of laws to guarantee that every individual receive fair criminal proceedings, known as due process. Due process is a right guaranteed by the Fifth, Sixth, and Fourteenth Amendments of the Constitution. The Fifth Amendment states “No person shall be…deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.” The Fourteenth Amendment requires state governments to respect and abide by these rights of United States citizens. There are eight general categories that explain criminal behavior; classical, biological psychobiological, psychological, sociological, social process, conflict, and emergent. The classical theory is simply that crimes are committed because the individual exercised free will. Under this theory it is possible to prevent crime by quickly punishing the criminal before they have anything to gain from it. This also will help prevent repeat offenders and deter others from committing crimes. Biological theories suggest that criminal behavior can be inherited or passed on through family genes. With this theory it is said that certain physical features can identify criminals....

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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