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Criminal Justice

One criminal justice concern of key importance pertains to the strategies that could be used to prevent crime before these events occur. Preventing young adults and children from engaging in crime and entering the criminal justice system early is likely to lead to better outcomes for their futures. Overall, criminal justice research has shown that it is difficult to achieve a reduction of crime and increased safety for the population through the use of conventional procedures. When to prevent crime in the sense that enacting large scale change within the police departments requires extensive research and training, and it is therefore costly and time consuming considering the impact that crime has on different communities, it is advantageous to consider the economic outcomes that are associated with these processes. Once these structures are in place, it is possible for them to be used to reduce the overall cost of policing and incarceration for the community as a whole. To implement the best possible solutions to prevent crime, it is beneficial to review what is considered to be effective in areas in which these preventative actions have been taken. In conclusion, it is important for criminal justice professionals to work to prevent crimes before they occur. Including information from theory and the peer reviewed literature could help inform these practices. Additionally, it is meaningful for professionals in the field to continue contributing to the literature to further clarify the steps that could be taken to improve crime prevention strategy in practice.

Introduction

One criminal justice concern of key importance pertains to the strategies that could be used to prevent crime before these events occur (Mazerolle, 2015). In particular, the main reason that people are punished by the criminal justice system is to ensure that they are aware that they engaged in behaviors that are not societally acceptable, and this means that they must therefore reform their ways to be permitted to enter society once again (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

However, law enforcement systems are more effective when they are able to remove more of the incentive that is present to commit crimes, as well as address the social issues related to the causes for people engaging in crime (Mazerolle, 2015). In addition, focusing on recidivism once someone is in prison is a beneficial goal because this could increase the safety of the public as well as reduce the burden that is generally placed on the criminal justice system (Welsh, 2019). As such, it is beneficial to emphasize the value of crime prevention as a part of criminal justice practices.

The Development Model of Prevention

As a part of practice, it is imperative for criminal justice professionals to take action in a manner that has the best impact on the community (Mazerolle, 2015). In particular, preventing young adults and children from engaging in crime and entering the criminal justice system early is likely to lead to better outcomes for their futures (Mazerolle, 2015). Lowering the rate of youth crime is associated with the application of the social development model, which is said to act as a combination of the social learning theory and the social control theory (Mazerolle, 2015).

This concept therefore proposes the value of considering the impact that positive socialization has on student outcomes (Mazerolle, 2015). The individuals who could offer this socialization vary, and extend to members of the overall community, as well as peers, members of the school community, and family members (Mazerolle, 2015). When children are involved with these groups and participate in activities with them that are said to be socially accepted, then they have the opportunity to develop an appreciation for social norms (Mazerolle, 2015).

This means that there is increased incentive for them to participate in those norms (Mazerolle, 2015). Doing so will help them develop the social skills that they require to be involved with these groups, and this will serve as a positive predictor of their success in fitting in with these social groups in the future (Mazerolle, 2015). These positive behaviors are reinforced when the group members acknowledge acceptance and offer other rewards for their participation in these activities (Mazerolle, 2015).

Overall, the creation of social bonds with the community has the potential to prevent people from engaging in crime (Mazerolle, 2015). The rationale for this is that they do not want to do harm to others, since they feel connected to those who would experience harm (Mazerolle, 2015). However, people who commit crimes are less likely to feel these connections (Mazerolle, 2015). This means that a primary goal of recidivism is that it is beneficial to help people understand how to connect or reconnect with their communities, and to facilitate the process (Mazerolle, 2015). As such, incarceration should be a temporary state, and enabling people to return to their communities after they have done wrong should be possible (Mazerolle, 2015).

When someone as a child or an adult associates him or herself with other individuals who are delinquent, they are more likely to conform and demonstrate this behavior (Mazerolle, 2015). It is beneficial for prevention approaches to be used to ensure that children don’t begin these negative patterns, because they are more likely to continue them into adulthood (Mazerolle, 2015). It imperative to advocate for the implementation of interventions that are effective in achieving these prevention outcomes for members of the youth population in the community (Mazerolle, 2015).

The Implications of the Neighborhood

It is beneficial to consider the role that the environment plays when criminal justice professionals seek to put forth efforts to prevent crime from occurring in the communities that they serve (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). Overall, criminal justice research has shown that it is difficult to achieve a reduction of crime and increased safety for the population through the use of conventional procedures (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). Simply imprisoning people or punishing them through fines and community service is not necessarily sufficient to prevent them from taking a similar action in the future (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). Crime prevention is likewise considered to be beneficial to the neighborhood as a whole because this contributes to an improved quality of life for members of the community (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

Ultimately, if the community and criminal justice systems run well, there should not be the opportunity for a high level of losses to the individuals who live there (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). For instance, a school that has a high level of academic success is associated with students who are less likely to have behavioral concerns, and violent or criminal incidents are less likely to occur within these buildings (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). When stores are profitable, they are more likely to attract customers and detract those who are present to commit crimes (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

It is therefore important for businesses and individuals in these communities to become involved in these efforts to make improvements, since the community as a whole could benefit (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). Police officers likewise play a key role for the loss prevention of stores, and this results in better economic output for the community (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). As such, it is beneficial to consider these aspects of community-based policing when seeking to reduce the incidence of crime (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

Economic Benefits and Costs of Crime Prevention

When to prevent crime in the sense that enacting large scale change within the police departments requires extensive research and training, and it is therefore costly and time consuming considering the impact that crime has on different communities, it is advantageous to consider the economic outcomes that are associated with these processes (Welsh, 2019). However, once these structures are in place, it is possible for them to be used to reduce the overall cost of policing and incarceration for the community as a whole (Welsh, 2019).

By making these investments, there will be more people who are returned to their communities and who will not commit crimes, thereby decreasing the need for overemphasizing arrests as a part of police practices (Welsh, 2019). In addition, there would be a lesser need for physical jail and prison space, and this will reduce the costs of operating these institutions and therefore the overall cost that crime has for society (Welsh, 2019).

It would be meaningful to engage in a cost-benefit analysis to determine whether it is a cost-effective choice to implement a particular crime prevention approach in practice (Welsh, 2019). It is beneficial to draw from the literature pertaining to existing intervention programs that have been developed, as well as whether the program would be beneficial for members of a particular community (Welsh, 2019). Information about the cost of implementation compared to the amount of money that could be saved should be calculated on a case by case basis (Welsh, 2019).

What Works

                To implement the best possible solutions to prevent crime, it is beneficial to review what is considered to be effective in areas in which these preventative actions have been taken (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016). Four decades ago, it was a popular opinion that nothing would work to allow for crime prevention, since no strategies that had been implemented up until that time were effective (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016). However, a large amount of literature on the topic has been published since this point in time, and it is therefore valuable to apply the evidence on this subject to the implementation of effective interventions. A majority of this evidence is collected into 118 systematic reviews that were conducted to gain an understanding of intervention practices in criminal justice as they pertain to action taken, policies, and programs created (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016).

These approaches demonstrate that there are methods available that are effective, but it is important to contribute to the growing body of literature to ensure that it is possible to determine additional methods to apply to practice, as well as those that represent best practices in criminal justice (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016). It would be beneficial for these works to involve case studies to demonstrate how the findings of such investigations could be applied meaningfully in practice (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016). It is likewise beneficial to incorporate evidence from qualitative and descriptive studies, since these types of research can help identify the importance of the lessons learned from the literature when applying this information into practice (Fagan & Buchanan, 2016).

The Use of Environmental Design in Crime Prevention Policing

The policing strategies that are applied in practice can often serve to decrease the likelihood that people will commit crimes (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). When there is an increased likelihood that they will be caught committing the crime and held accountable, this represents an increased risk and a reduce likelihood of benefitting (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). As such, when police officers are stationed in areas in which crimes are committed are frequently, they are placed in a manner that will enable them to respond quickly when crimes do occur (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). People in the area are likely to become aware of this, and this is likely to lead in a decreased level of crime overall.

Environmental design topics are beneficial to consider as a part of modern policing practices, since these approaches could be applied to ensure hat the distribution of human resources and surveillance technology could be utilized in a manner that promotes the responsiveness of the police force to criminal activity (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). When the police force is effective in this manner and able to respond to crime quickly, it is less likely that people will commit crimes in the area (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

When these plans are implemented in a manner that promotes the safety of the home as well as other establishments in the community, the community as a whole could become safer (Fennelly & Perry, 2018). Surveillance conducted by individuals with devices on their homes could likewise offer information to police officers that aids with their efforts (Fennelly & Perry, 2018).

Situational Crime Prevention

In addition to considering the factors that are relevant to a community and its surroundings, it is advantageous to consider what is needed to achieve situational crime prevention (Myer, 2017). The routine activity approach and the situational crime prevention approach are typically utilized to determine why people commit crimes (Myer, 2017).

However, a lot of theories do not focus on why the individual committed the crime, although the crime itself is directly related to the pressures that the individual who committed the crime faced in doing so (Myer, 2017). A positive outcome associated with committing crimes tends to reinforce the idea that committing crime would be good, since this may result in an ability to achieve survival as well as other social norms and expectations that are viewed as positive (Myer, 2017).

Severe punishment could be detrimental to some, and it is therefore important to offer a prevention strategy approach based on the crimes committed and the variables that are present in this scenario (Myer, 2017). A negative result could occur when someone thinks about or attempts to commit a crime, and this may make them less likely to do so in the future (Myer, 2017).

For example, if they are nearly caught, or don’t act because a police officer is nearby, they will be less likely to try this in the future because it wouldn’t be seen as worthwhile (Myer, 2017). As such, it is beneficial to consider the social as well as the environmental factors that play a role in the prevention of crime as a part of criminal justice practice (Myer, 2017).

Conclusion

Overall, it is important for criminal justice professionals to work to prevent crimes before they occur. Including information from theory and the peer reviewed literature could help inform these practices. Additionally, it is meaningful for professionals in the field to continue contributing to the literature to further clarify the steps that could be taken to improve crime prevention strategy in practice.

  References

Fagan, A., & Buchanan, M. (2016). What Works in Crime Prevention? Criminology       & Public Policy15(3), 617-649. doi: 10.1111/1745-9133.12228

Fennelly, L., & Perry, M. (2018). CPTED and traditional security countermeasures.        CRC Press.

Mazerolle, P. (2015). Developmental and Life-course Criminological        Theories. Routledge.

Myer, A. (2017). The Origins of American Criminology. Milton: Taylor and Francis.

WELSH, B. (2019). COSTS AND BENEFITS OF PREVENTING CRIME. [S.l.]:           ROUTLEDGE.