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CRIM 2652
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Term Assignment, Adult Justice. Ryan Rankin Within the past few years, Provincial and federal incarceration rates have slowly but steadily been increasing, with actual number of adults being admitted to territorial, provincial or federal programs at 211,970 in 2006, and steadily climbing to 262,067 in 2010 1, with the rising crime rate comes different methods to attempt to combat crime, some focus on being more preventative, such as community outreach programs that focus on at risk youth or children who live in priority neighborhoods, while others are primarily used once a crime has occurred, such as police intervention leading to a civil suit or a criminal charge; this, is the concept of Crime Deterrence, sometimes Deterrence can be viewed as flawed for the fact it assumes that most humans think things out before they commit a crime [Mens Rea] Before I proceed, I think it best to delve further into to the basics of criminal Deterrence, and what it is. Deterrence is based on the concept that if the consequence of committing a crime outweighs the benefits of the crime, then the perpetrator will be deterred from committing said crime. This is all in the idea that as humans we all know the difference between right and wrong and that with criminal behavior, a penalty is bound to follow, when an individual acts, they’re doing so out of free will and they know what they’re doing, be it right or wrong. Ironically the deterrence model is flawed to an extent with it’s thinking; criminals are rational, a murderer may be a murderer for the same reasons I choose to work as a salesman for the time being: because the profession makes him better off than anything else available to them. The model fails to realise that murderers, or anyone who commits crime for that matter, are constantly outweighing the benefits and repercussions of any actions they may commit, not thinking of what may be a rational and sound decision to others. If it were the case that all robbers, murderers and conmen were rational then we wouldn’t have to make it impossible so as to commit their respective crime, but only make it unprofitable, for example if every woman in a priority neighborhood were to carry pepper spray after dark, so that two out of five robbery attempts puts a robber in the hospital or leaves them at risk to being caught, then the number of robbers within the area will decrease, not because of the being pepper sprayed but because they simply found a less dangerous or more profitable way to make a living. 1. Naturally, with deterrence being a less than perfect model, people commit crime, or due to other circumstances are considered criminals, and once caught and convicted will have to enter the criminal justice system, where they will be provided with a host of programs to help them become law abiding and providing members of society. In order to successfully intervene and rehabilitate an offender, three specific criteria must be assessed and focused upon: Risk – the higher risk the inmate, the more comprehensive courses offered Needs – behaviors that reduce crimes are to be targeted, focus on controlling impulses for crime Responsivity – Being aware of an offender’s style, and acting accordingly [let the punishment fit the criminal] These principles can potentially make or break an offender’s
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