Measurement of Crime Crime- acts in violation of the law
How much crime is there in the U.S.? Increased sharply between 1960 and 1990’s Violent crimes are considerably higher in the U.S. than in most other industrialized countries
How are Crime Statistics Collected? FBI’s uniform crime reports Reports are submitted from departments across the nation –Reports are voluntary Nine types of crimes are tracked Murder rate in the U.S. has declined more than 27% since 1980’s
How reliable are UCR statistics? Overrepresent the lower class Some crimes are not reported Some are subject to arrest in public places, but not private places 2/3 of all U.S. crimes are not reported White collar crime is seldom included
Other Crime Statistics National Crime Victimization Survey –Helps to make up for unreported crime –Surveys are more scientifically sound
Juvenile Crime Crime of those under 18 3 rd largest category of criminals in the U.S. Teenage criminal activity includes theft, murder, rape, Juvenile delinquent behavior is deviance that only the young can commit. –Failing to attend school –Underage drinking and smoking
Juvenile Crime The trend in juvenile crime is that it is decreasing Why has it decreased?
Approaches to Crime Control Criminal justice system- comprised of institutions and processes responsible for enforcing criminal statues Draws on 4 approaches –Deterrence –Retribution –Incarceration –rehabilitation
Does Punishment Discourage Crime? Deterrence- discouraging criminal acts by threatening punishment Works if two things are present –They know they are likely to get caught –They know the punishment will be severe
Does Punishment Discourage Crime? Capital punishment is a special case 4,000 people have been executed in the United States If it were a deterrent, you should see a decline in the murder rate
American Attitudes and Death Penalty ¾ of Americans believe that the death penalty is a deterrent Feelings of revenge and a desire for retribution tend to fuel the support for the death penalty,
American Attitudes and Death Penalty Attitudes about the death penalty vary according ro race and ethnicity.
Retribution Retribution- a type of punishment intended to make criminals pay compensation for their acts. “An eye for and eye and a tooth for a tooth”
Rehabilitation Rehabilitation is an approach to change or reform a criminal through socialization Recidivism- Repetition or return to criminal behavior.
Recidivism Recidivism occurs due to –Basic nature of offenders –Influences from hardened criminals –Stigma of being an ex-convict
Alternatives to Prisons Combination of Prison and Probation Community based programs –Designed to reintroduce criminals into society Diversion strategy- aimed at preventing or greatly reducing the offender’s involvement in the criminal justice system
Identity Theft New crime Steals a persons credit information and commits fraud with it.
Incarceration Incarceration- a method of protecting society from criminals by keeping them in prisons.