CRIM 1447 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Arraignment, Nolo Contendere, Judicial Activism
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What is the Criminal Justice System?
Three primary components: Law enforcement, Courts, and Corrections
• Law enforcement: is charged with investigating crime and apprehending individuals alleged to
have committed crimes
• Courts: responsible for interpreting and applying the law cases
• Corrections: can involve incarceration, supervision in the community, parole, or probation, could
even be the death penalty
o Jails are local facilities managed by cities or counties that perform a somewhat
overlapping but distinct purpose from prisons and penitentiaries. Jails hold both people
convicted of crimes and those not who have not been convicted. Jails typically detain
individuals convicted of misdemeanors serving for less than a year
o Prisons hold individuals who have been convicted of crimes. Hold individuals who were
convicted of more serious crimes, serving longer sentences.
o Probation and parole are types of sentences
▪ Probation is a sentence that suspends or delays a full-time incarceration in
prison or jail. In return, for the suspended or delayed sentence, the judge orders
the offender to return to the community where they had to abide by certain
rules and conditions. Typically, a person given probation has not served time for
that particular offense.
▪ A person just released from prison may be placed on parole as a part of their
sentence. Parole operates like probation where the offender returns to
community but must follow rules and conditions, and if those are broken, they
must return to prison.
• The system is large because an enormous proportion of the juvenile and adult population is
under the control of the criminal justice system.
• A white women and a black man committing the same crime may be treated in the system.
• Powerful citizens who are wealthy and in the majority may receive lenient treatment, while the
poor and minorities are treated harshly.
How does the Criminal Justice System work? Page 9-11
1.Entry into the system (Reported and observed crime → arrest)
2.Prosecution and pretrial services (Charges filed→ information)
3.Adjudication (arraignment →conviction)
4.Sentencing and sanctions (sentencing)
5. Corrections (jail, prison, probation, parole→ out of the system)
1. Crime becomes known to law enforcement
2. Law enforcement agents investigate whether a crime has occurred
3. If a determination is made that a crime occurred, attempts to identify and apprehend the
offender(s) are made
4. Evidence gathered from the investigation is presented to a prosecutor, who, using their
discretion, determines whether formal charges will be filed
a. If no charges are filed, the accused is released from the system
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