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LWSO201 - Social Control and Punishment_15.doc

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University of Calgary
Law and Society
LWSO 201
Marywyatt Sindlinger

Law and Social Control – Punishment 1) Law as Social Control a) Internalization b) External Pressures i) Informal ii) formal 2) Basic ideas re: Punishment as social control a) Crime as a public wrong b) Public process c) Punishment inflicted by the group against a group member d) Intentional imposition of pain, suffering, or consequences designed to achieve a desired result and justified by that result 3) Goals of Punishment in general: a) Retribution/social retaliation b) Incapacitation c) Deterrent 4) Canadian Criminal Code Principles of Sentencing : a) S. 718 – the sentence must be proportionate to eh gravity of the offence and to the degree of responsibility of the offender which is accomplished by looking at the following: b) Denunciation c) Specific deterrence d) General deterrence e) Incapacitation f) Rehabilitation g) Reparation to the individual or community 5) Types of sentences: a) Sentences that do not result in a criminal record – alternative measures, absolute and conditional discharges b) Sentences that result in a criminal record – fines, probation, jail terms c) Aggravating and mitigating circumstances 6) The Death Penalty a) Issue: how do we as a society morally justify killing someone because of wrong- doing? b) Possible justifications: i) Deterrent ii) Retribution iii) incapacitation 2) Issues: race and gender aspects as they relate to both the victim and the offender as well as class issues Litigants • parties involved in the lawsuit • people who have the legal dispute • civil law suit (plaintiff complaining against the defendant), criminal (crown complaining against the accused or defendant, if found guilty - offendent) • criminal case - party that is not the litigant = victim - you're not a litigant • the crown's job is to act on behalf of society as a whole • 1 - is there a reasonable likely hood of conviction and 2 - is it in the public interest to process (victim interest and broader social issues and circumstances of offender/crime) • victim often thinks crown represents them and that's not the case - they represent society as a whole • if you are the victim of a crime you can sue them in a civil court case (privite individual suing another private individual) - charged criminally - acquitted on the criminal side - glove did not fit • the family sued him civilly and won (it's more likely than not that this accured) Judges • two key things: judicial activism and judicial independence • judge's job is to administer that courtroom - how the court room is run • in charge of adjudicative process • judges 1 - make sure the process is fair and efficient (by following the rules of court and follow rules of fairness) 2 - assess evidence - credibility and value (credibility - how truthful do they seem to be - gut:knowing how to read people - do they contradict themselves?) • sometimes the lawyers can point out - weight of evidence • weight of evidence - how much importance it's going to have (someone who saw it and another who just heard the noise two blocks away) • 3 thing he does - determine the facts of the case (often in dispute - one party says it was green and the other says it's red - need to choose what the fact was) • sometimes they submit a paper with agreed facts on it - this way a judge won't have to decide • 4 - determine the applicable law • come to a decision • if plead guilty - you don't need to have a trial and it would go to sentencing in front of a judge • have to wait until issues come to them • judicial activism - judges changing the law as they go along - part of the common law system process (it evolves) - flexible • sometimes judges completely reverse the law - some people want this and some people believe those changes should only be made by elected officials Juries • origins - old England (started out with people who were local knowledge givers - judges travelled) • now they can be part of the decision making process • much more frequent in the United States • available in civil law cases and criminal cases • section 11(f) you have a right to be charged by a judge or a jury if the max. punishment is maximum 5 years • more serious crimes - required to have a trial unless you want a trial by judge alone • being a member of the jury - based on democratic principles • every member can be a member (over 18 years old, not have been convicted of an indictable o
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