Criminology Article Questions
Criminology Article Questions
- According to Allen (2017), the PREVENT program that was introduced in the UK in 2005 after a series of terrorist attacks on buses and trains was not only fruitful in reducing extremism, but it was also justifiable. Allen’s article is a response to Fradella and White’s frisk-and-stop review. According to him, there is a need by the police to stop and frisk someone who looks suspicious despite having no intentions of the arrest. By so doing, attacks planned on a city via bombs and gadgets transported by individuals in the pockets and backpacks can be detected and stopped beforehand. Yet, is this stop-and-frisk program justifiable? Does it respect the right to privacy? Does it appreciate that an individual is always innocent until proved guilty? But if the stop-and-frisk program is not in place, are the citizens in danger of more frequent terrorism attacks?
- Chin (2018), in his article on collateral consequences that usually follow an offender for the rest of his or her life, suggests that it is unfair to exclude such a punishment from the ordinary criminal conviction. According to him, an offender may suffer more from the effects of collateral consequences that he or she would suffer from imprisonment. A study has shown that in the United States, more than 77 million people have criminal records. Thus, this percentage of the population suffers from a criminal label and may have problems fitting in professional environments. Society already perceives them as criminals. However, perhaps the exclusion of these collateral consequences was for the best. What if one was a repeat offender? How are employers supposed to differentiate between a repeat offender and a conformer? Should the law of the United States include a section that makes it easier for such a differentiation? What would such a section include?
- According to Wright (2017), prosecutors form crucial figures in the criminal justice system of the United States. Yet, Wright explores two negative features attributed to prosecutors suggesting that they tend to ‘fly solo’ as well as ‘fly blind.’ He describes flying solo as that characteristic where the prosecutors work without consulting other key players in the criminal justice system. Flying blind refers to having collected insufficient evidence; they worry less about their inadequacy of information regarding case processing trends, correction costs, prevention programs, and public safety concerns. But what if, different from the perception that Wright tries to bring across, prosecutors are forced by a distorted system to work in the manner they do? What if flying solo or flying blind is the only way to ensure the justice system continues to be impartial? Are prosecutors justified by ignoring vital aspects of their profession? Is there a remedy to these two ‘negative features’?
- Welsh & Farrington (2009) analyze the increase in the rate of closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance camera installation in the United States and other western countries and its effects on crime prevention. Their analysis indicates that in the areas where CCTV cameras are installed and publicly visible, crime rates have reduced by an average of 16 percent. This decrease could be due to the fear by offenders of being detected, increased social cohesion, mostly due to community pride, and the high probability of fast arrival of the police in the area of the crime. Does a 16 percent decrease feel insignificant? Aren’t CCTV cameras reducing the rate of crime to the extent that they should? Should governments continue installing them, or should they seek a better solution to crime rate reduction?
- While CCTV surveillance cameras are meant to reduce crime rates, Welsh & Farrington (2009) suggest that they could cause crime to increase. For instance, offenders may develop new tactics that incorporate avoidance of the CCTV cameras, crime could shift to other areas, and victims may feel over secure and lose their guard, forgetting to take usual precautions. Perhaps that has led to a reduction in crime rates as small as 16 percent. Do you think CCTV cameras can increase crime rates? Why or why not? Do you think people would lose their precaution vigilance after CCTV cameras have been installed in their neighborhood? Why or why not?
Allen, C. (2017). Stop, Question, and Frisk: A Response via the UK’s Prevent Programme. Criminology, Crim. Just. L & Soc’y, 18, 65.
Chin, G. J. (2018). Collateral consequences of criminal conviction. Actual Probs. Econ. & L., 660.
Welsh, B. C., & Farrington, D. P. (2009). Public area CCTV and crime prevention: an updated systematic review and meta‐analysis. Justice Quarterly, 26(4), 716-745.
Wright, R. F. (2017). Prosecutor institutions and incentives. Criminology, Crim. Just. L & Soc’y, 18, 85.