PLS 200-05

Crime in the US

    Causes

  • 1960s-70s: Environmental (nature)
    • poverty/social deprivation (Great Society, War on Crime)
    • CETA, Head Start, Jobs programs
  • 1980’s: focus on indiv. responsibility — Nurture
    • tougher laws (mandatory sentencing)
    • victims’ rights
    • longer sentencing
  • 1990’s: mandatory sentencing expansion
  • 2000s: hybrid style of sentencing
  • state/federal balancing
  • focus on punishment rather than rehabilitation
  • 510 in prison::100k population

  • 80% of prisoners are incarcerated for nonviolent crime

    Genetic?

  • majority of crime committed by males
  • youth: first crimes generally committed under age 18
  • IQ a factor: behavior =/= consequences issues
  • temperamental impulsivity
  • YOUTH + MALE = higher incidence of criminal activity

  • boredom
  • peer pressure
  • few social programs
  • lower educational / employment opportunity
  • TYPES OF CRIME

  • drugs
    • illegal substance sale, manufacture, distribution use or possession
    • who to combat? producer, user or distributor?
    • WHITE COLLAR CRIME

    • corporate/financial crime
    • extortion, fraud, racketeering, embezzlement
    • “VICTIMLESS” CRIME (consenting adults)

    • prostitution
    • gambling
    • COMPUTER CRIME

    • use of computer to commit criminal acts
    • unauthorized access
    • fraud
    • ID theft
    • crimes against children
    • malicious software
    • GENDER-BASED CRIME

    • spousal abuse
    • sexual abuse
    • How to fight crime?

    • drugs: distrib, production, use
    • wh.collar: oversight, audits
    • victimless: enforcement, education, pressure
    • computer crime: forensics
    • gender/bias crimes: awareness, education
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