First, the similarities, both victimology, and criminology increase the effectiveness of the system of criminal justice. This increased speed results from the varying approaches that both take since they both focus on two most critical aspects of criminal justice. These aspects are victims of criminal offenses and the criminal offenses. Further, both victimologists and criminologists are strict on following appropriate ways of collecting and interpreting data. They also use similar methods of collecting and interpreting their data. These methods includes among others, use of survey, questionnaires, tabulation, use of graphs, and the use of pie charts. Also, both criminology and victimology guarantee flexibility since due to falsification; victims can sometimes become criminals (Downes, Rock & McLaughlin, 2016).
The main difference between criminology and victimology is in their meaning. Criminology refers to the scientific study of crime and criminals. It entails looking into the causes of crime, responses towards these crimes by the law enforcement, and the methods of mitigating these crimes to the extent that normalcy are regained. It employs such fields as statistics, biology, psychiatry, anthropology, psychology, and anthropology in fulfilling its objectives. On the other hand, victimology is the scientific study of the relationship between the victim of a particular crime and the perpetrator. The law enforcement bodies employ this field in trying to arrive at the reason why the victim was the target of the offender.
Some of the research topics that interest victimologists include the resilience with the victims of violence, social factors and social profile of victimization, sexual abuse and the victims of underage sexual harassment, victim stories and victim policy, methods employed in crime victims rediscovery et cetera. Victimologists are involved in the development of the typologies of the crime victims. They also study the relationships that exist between the victims and criminals as well as between victims and criminal justice.
The critical advantage that came about as a result of crime victims’ rediscovery was the naming of the laws after the victims who suffered severe damage as a result of the crimes committed against them. This decision enabled the victims to receive proper attention that they deserved. This action, in turn, resulted in exposing these individuals to various forms of help from different people.
According to Karmen (2012), another advantage of the rediscovery of victims is that it resulted in laws that empowered the victims against the perpetrators of the crimes. Some of these enactments include the Caylee’s law. This law was named after a reported missing of a two-year-old girl for over 31 days. This Act guarantees a felony for a parent or a legal guardian who fails to report any cases of a missing child. Therefore, it made clear that the offender of this law receives media attention throughout the nation. This guaranteed that the parent or legal guardian who abscond their duties of watching over a child is punishable for the same. These laws have given the victims a voice in the cases concerning them. They, therefore, have the capacity to influence determine the direction that their case may take. Further, the victims stand a chance to influence their representatives concerning the clear information surrounding their cases.
Key among the disadvantages of the rediscovery of the crime victims include the exploitation of the victims through the commercial companies who take advantage their situation to sell products to these victims at a higher price than usual. These companies market much more excellent selection of various products. They end up bolstering that their products are the best to dupe the victims of crime. They, therefore, make the victims to buy their services and products without having a second thought about the price of the product and its effectiveness.
The data about white-collar crime and corporate crime available in the Uniform Crime Reports include counterfeiting, fraud, embezzlement and all other offenses. The only information available on these offenses includes the sex, age, and race of the arrestee. Moreover, there is a limitation in all other offenses arrest to be used in measuring the white-collar offenses. This is because these offenses result in the difficulty in differentiating between other offenses that fall into this category and the white-collar offenses.
On the other hand, the data concerning white-collar crime and corporate crime found in the National Crime Victimization Survey include among others fraud, forgery, bribery, and embezzlement. All these offenses fall under the Group A category of offenses. Under group B offenses, bad checks fall under white-collar offenses as measured by NIBRS. Under NIBRS, fraud is further broken down into five sub-branches. These small categories include swindle, credit card, welfare fraud, impersonation, and lastly wire fraud (Simpson, 2010).
The reason why these offenses cannot be categorized as ordinary street crime is that of the extensive effects they cause to the more significant republic. These effects result in crimes that affect the whole nation. Further, these crimes end up in large sums of money being swindled into the pockets of a few at the expense of the whole public. It is no doubt that this information is important. It goes a long way in aiding Federal Bureau of Investigations and other law enforcing agencies in tracking the level of different crimes and therefore, cracking down on them.
This information is important in various ways. It helps the law enforcing agencies with clear information regarding which crime needs first-hand attention. This information also works to help the community to cooperate with the policing officers in fostering law. Therefore, the role played by this information cannot be underestimated in any manner.
Cohen, (2010) defines murder as the act of unlawfully and deliberately killing a human being which in most cases takes place in a premeditated manner. It only becomes murder if the perpetrator of the action did it willfully. Therefore, not every killing is murder. Murder is further subdivided into justifiable homicide, first-degree murder, manslaughter, second-degree murder, and other homicides.
First-degree murder involves the offender being accused of killing the victim after planning to do so. It, therefore, involves an evil intent and prior planning. The first-degree murder falls under the category of the most heinous acts. As a result, the criminal receives the most severe punishment. Among the punishments of the perpetrator of this inhumane act include life imprisonment or even death penalty.
Another form of murder is the second-degree murder. This type applies in a situation where one person had intentions of killing another person but had no time to plan the killing. A perfect example is where a wife hits her husband on the head with a crude weapon and kills him when she runs into him having sex with another woman. Further, second-degree murder may apply in situations where a person carries himself so recklessly to the extent of endangering others even if they had no intentions of causing deaths. In most cases, this type of murder attracts life imprisonment to the criminal (Cohen, 2010).
Further, manslaughter applies where the victim neither had no intentions nor prior plans of causing another person’s death. It mostly arises from accidental happenings. The charges in this crime vary depending on the laws of the specific state. On the other hand, justifiable homicide applies in a situation where killing resulted from an effort for self-defense. The killer is, therefore, not criminally liable for the death. However, civil penalties may still apply.
The federal government exercises control over some critical areas that have a relationship to the crime prevention via social development. It has entire jurisdiction over procedures and legislation of the criminal law. It also has control over the spending on social and health development transfers to the provinces. Further, the federal government plays a fundamental role in areas including industrial planning, environmental regulation, and cultural funding. Being in control of these resources, it is effective for the prevention of crime to be undertaken right away from the government level (Bullock et al. 2010).
Moreover, as opposed to just encouraging individuals to incorporate victimization prevention strategies, the national strategy in curbing crime is instrumental in building safer communities. This is possible through reducing the fear of crime amongst the citizens. This is because the government tends to operate on the principle that the most efficient way of countering crime is through putting the focus on the factors that tend to expose individuals to risk. On the other hand, encouraging individuals to incorporate victimization prevention strategies may tend to expose individuals to more risks of crime.
Also, according to national strategy, crime prevention through social development (CPTSD) approach helps to strengthen the quality of life communities, families and even individuals. Studies across the different countries prove that programs of social development that target families, individuals, and even communities which are at risk bring about social cohesion hence reducing criminality.
Let us relate the above-discussed benefits of employing risk prevention that is based on the government and the risky action of encouraging individuals to incorporate strategies for preventing victimization. It is clear that surely the government-based approach to crime prevention is socially viable than any other approach. This is because the government-based crime prevention guarantees a social fabric within families and the entire community.
The police play a significant part in the lives of the crime sufferers. The crime victims form a majority of the contacts that the police encounter every day. Hence, enhancing the response of the law enhancing to crime victims forms a critical logical step in community policing. The police can better serve the crime victims through establishing a baseline of gauging information on how police departments respond to victims of crime. This baseline should also incorporate a benchmark on how the police offer assistance to these victims. Therefore the police departments should hold focus groups with the advocates of crime victims and providers of services in the process of establishing their data baseline.
For better service delivery to the crime victims, the police must strive to improve communication with them and their advocates and service providers. Therefore, the police officers and entire staff members of the police departments ought to thoroughly undergo training to acquaint them with better communication skills. Lack of proper communication between the police and the victims of crime made the latter to feel left out of the entire criminal justice. These resulted in them losing their case due to lack of relevant information (Bradford, Jackson & Stanko, 2009).
The police also have to engage in crisis counseling. There is need to have a personal response to individuals in crisis who are impacted by the crime that occurs in variant ways. The police officers must, therefore, move with speed to assess immediate safety needs. The police must also have a way of providing access to crisis support by telephone at all times regardless of the time and the day. Further, the police officers must be willing to listen, validate, and honor experience of individual victims regarding victimization. The police department should be in a position to inform about resources and provide referrals according to the plans of the crime victim.
At the core of the Supreme Court decisions that affect the crime victims is the case pitching Kelly v. California of 2008. During the declaration of the decision, Justice Stevens said that the cases presented before the court raised queries regarding the admissibility of victim impact evidence at the phase of the capital trial. He further alluded that the evidence that was before the court did not provide the impact that the crime portended on the victim. He went on to say that instead, the evidence described the impact of the death of the victim to the third parties which mainly constituted of the victim’s family. In the first case, Douglas Kelly (the petitioner) was convicted of murder. In the second case, Samuel Zamudio (petitioner) was convicted of robbery with murder. These two cases have a lot of bearing on the victim of crime. They told the crime victim that it does not matter before which court the case is taken, some happenings (death) cannot be overturned (Dobbs, 2008). Only people close to the crime victim can sense a little sense of the court decision.
Another important court decision was the case involving Lebron v. State. In the ruling, the Supreme Court of Florida affirmed the convictions of the defendant of the first-degree murder. O contrary to the obvious expectation the court did not issue him with a death penalty. Instead, he was remanded for a new phase of penalty. And at the end, the court declared that issuing the criminal with the death sentence violated another case that pitched Hurst v. Florida. This move by the court was unhealthy on the side of the victim’s family. It risks leading people to make more detrimental decisions that may affect society at large with the knowledge that the Supreme Court is somehow lenient.
The minimalists define child abuse as such cases that involve clear excessive and inappropriate use of force on a child. They, further, argue that the problem of child abuse is not that serious to the extent that it can be termed as an epidemic. They are skeptical of the contention and suggest that most cases are minor and ought not to be treated as child abuse. They further allude that there are some punishments to the children which fall short of being categorized as child abuse but the maximalist count them as such. An example of such punishment, they suggest, is spanking. The minimalist’s lobby for definitions of child abuse those are clear. They also push for the exclusion of cases which were closed or dismissed due to lack of evidence from the official statistics (Karmen, 2012).
On the other hand, maximalists allude that the menace of child abuse is more severe and widespread than what meets the eye. They stand with the allegation that child abuse is an epidemic. They, therefore, call on the society and the institutions therein to take this problem with a lot of seriousness it deserves. They allege that most crimes happening in the society go unreported. They assert that in a case where all the vices going on in the society are recorded, their statistics will by far override the current ones. They say that many children undergoing abuse are afraid to tell due to mistrust of the government service workers.
While the approached taken by the maximalists may contain some elements of exaggerations, it is true that the cases of child abuse are more than what is reported. Many vices are going on in the society against children. As suggested by the maximalists, these children due to one reason or the other find it difficult to expose these vices and their perpetrators. Therefore all concerned people must team up to unravel and end these uncouth handling of children.
To a large extent, culture has created a woman as a property of a man. This misconception has bestowed a lot of power on a man over a woman. To a considerable extent, women have also believed this myth and therefore carry themselves as the properties of men. They, therefore, cannot raise their voice even in the midst of mistreatment by their men. Some of these myths are discussed below.
Nettleton, (2011) suggests that many women believe that if they stick to their men things might change for the better. This is because many tend to associate their partners’ abusive behavior to the current tough times in the family status. Some believe that they can change their men’s behavior if theirs is good. They, therefore, end up sticking in an abusive relationship while trying hard to be perfect.
The culture has created a notion that marriage is for the mature who can solve their problems. While this statement may sound plausible, it is a killer statement especially when a woman is in an abusive relationship. While this woman may be striving to create a perception that “I am mature, I can handle my problems,” on the inside she may be wasting away. Such misleading statements make women not to want to look like they not “mature” enough. They, therefore, rather stay in an abusive relationship.
However, things seem to be changing. Women are realizing that they are not any less of human beings than men. They have found their voice. They can voice their plight in the midst of mistreatment. They can walk out of an abusive relationship. They no more find shame in being free from animal-like men. They now find pride in single parenthood than in a marriage that brings them closer to their grave every passing second.
Over time, whenever cases of rape occur, the society finds a punching back in women and girls. The people complain of how indecent and seductive the women and girls clothe such that they lure men and boys. The culture has taught us to levy all blame on the female gender. However, given that rape takes place in the context of both a male and female mates, the two have a role to play to prevent this vice from occurring in future. Below are some of the behavioral adjustments that a man can embrace to minimize the chances of occurrence of rape (Zehr, 2015).
Men and boys ought to establish a clear verbal consent from a sober partner. It has been shown that men and women interpret cues (clothing, non-verbal signals, and behavior) differently. To men, these cues may readily mean sexual aggression. However, to women, these cues may that mean an expression of friendliness or flirtation. Hence, unless a man receives a clear “yes” consent to sexual intercourse, he has to be patient with the woman.
A male person has to manage alcohol and other drugs. It has been proved that most of the rapes that occur on campuses is as a result of alcohol and drug abuse. Research sources that the use of alcohol leads to increased aggression of the man’s original functionality. This is because alcohol intensifies the effects of testosterone. Plus, intoxication impairs hearing and managing of one’s strength. The combination of all these anomalies may easily result in rape in the presence of people of opposite sex (Edwards et al. 2011).
A male person ought to take a firm stand against sexism. They have to shun making or laughing at sexist jokes. The discussion seeking to show disrespect or dishonor against women should be dismissed by male people. Jokes, pornography, comments, and other ways that sexualize women foster a culture of rape. These things should not be entertained by men and boys.
A retributive justice refers to the criminal justice system that is founded on punishing the perpetrators. It has no time for putting the offenders under the rehabilitation process. This form of justice is committed to the three values as put in the list below. (i) Those that obligate certain classes of wrongful deeds that are paradigmatically grave criminalities; they merit undergoing the punishment of the same proportion. (ii) It is essentially ethically decent if some genuine righter of wrongs provides them the chastisement they warrant; and (iii) it is justly impermissible deliberately to discipline the blameless or impose unduly large punishments on transgressors.
On the contrary, restorative justice acknowledges that crime causes harm to society. It, therefore, seeks to restore healthy relationships that existed in the society before the occurrence of the crime. It insists that justice has a way of repairing the injuries caused by the crime in the society. Therefore, it seeks to bring those injured by the crime and the perpetrators of the crime into communication. Hence, it enables those affected by this crime to play a part in mitigating the arm thereof.
The restorative justice is the best form. This approach to finding a solution, in contrary to retributive, seeks to bring back the human dignity and worth on both sides involved in the crime. On the other hand, the retributive justice treats the criminal as a person who does not deserve another chance of correcting his actions. Therefore, it works on the principle that “once a criminal, forever a criminal.’ This is not healthy for societal healing (Zehr, 2015).
Incorporating restorative justice will require that different departments involved in dealing with criminals are thoroughly engaged. These departments include prisons, judicial courts, orphanage homes, and even homes of the widows and widowers who might have come into such status due to crimes in society. There will require being a more personal and interactive session of equipping such that those who will be involved in administering this form of justice are fully aware of what is expected.
Changing organizational culture requires commitment, tools, understanding, and time. The essential steps involved in this process include a deep understanding of the current culture, clear definition of the strategic direction, and deliberate decision by the members of organization o change behavior. A clear plan of where the organization intends to go must be put in place. This entails the mission, values, and the vision of the organization. The organization also has to determine key happenings within and around the organization that will guarantee a change in culture. After these questions receiving their appropriate answers, the organization can now initiate the process of changing its culture (Heathfield, 2008).
The process of creating a new culture within the organization entails two elements. They include executive support and communication, training, and mentoring. Executive support demands that the process of cultural change must receive support from the executives within the organization. Therefore, the executives should lead in this transformation by beginning with their own behaviors. On the other hand, change of culture within the organization results from the change of behavior of the members of the organization. Therefore, the employees need to be brought to a position where they have a clear grasp of what is expected of them. for this to be realized, training, mentoring, and communication play a fundamental role.
More ways of arriving at organizational culture change include considering moving employees and teams, creating statements of values and beliefs of the organization, embracing effective communication at all levels of leadership, and redesign the approach of the organization to recognize and rewards. The full implementation of these strategies assures the effective transition to the organizational culture.
There is no doubt that these ideas are feasible in Criminal Justice organization. The CJ organization follows the same structure of leadership with a few variances in it the professionalism as the organization described by Heathfield. Therefore, these ideas will work in a CJ Organization.
The assertion of the author is meant to drive a point that in a setting where there seems to be no legitimate and trusted form of leadership, any plans to forge forward successful seem not to work. These plans may be agreed on by a few people who may jump into leadership roles, try to steer them forward, and implement. However, when the general organization fails to embrace these plans due to a feeling that there is a void in leadership, these plans are deemed to die prematurely.
In the provided video clip, when there seemed to be no trusted and legitimate leader in Ferguson area, some people in the name of “community leaders on the ground” jumped into the void to try to persuade the citizens of the Ferguson not to protest for the five consecutive nights. However, the general public seemed not to buy into this idea. The people alluded that there is nobody mandated to address them and therefore were willing to proceed with their night protests regardless of directives issued by the “leaders on the ground.”
In such a scenario as presented in this video clip, the void in leadership tends to leave individuals to follow their instincts. The perfect example is expressed by those who instigate battles with the police officers while carrying placards and tree branches and leaves that end up dirtying the environment. On the contrary, there are others who, without the leadership of anybody, wake up very early to help cleanse their neighborhood. These changing trends of happenings describe an organization that is desperate for leadership. However, it cannot be stated without saying that amongst these two factions there are those who are indecisive on their own. This group of individuals ends up following on whatever others are doing (Witvliet et al. 2008).
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