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A Framework for Understanding the Future of Criminal Justice The principal guide that informs our predictions of the future directions of criminal and juvenile justice is Herbert Packer’s model of the U.S. criminal justice process.
A Framework for Understanding the Future of Criminal Justice In his influential 1968 book entitled The Limits of the Criminal Sanction , legal scholar Herbert Packer describes the criminal justice process in the U.S. as the outcome of competition between two value systems:
The crime control model
The due process model
crime control model One of Packer’s two models of the criminal justice process. It reflects traditional politically conservative values. In this model, the control of criminal behavior is the most important function of criminal justice.
The Crime Control Model Advocates of the crime control model want to make the process more efficient—to move cases through the process as quickly as possible and to bring them to a close. Packer characterizes the crime control model as “assembly-line justice.”
The Crime Control Model Crime control advocates prefer plea bargaining to jury trials, which slow down the process.
The Crime Control Model The key to the crime control model is “a presumption of guilt”—if a person has been arrested and charged, they must be guilty.
due process model One of Packer’s two models of the criminal justice process. It embodies traditional politically liberal values. In this model, the principal goal of criminal justice is at least as much to protect the innocent as it is to convict the guilty.
The Due Process Model The due process model is based on the doctrine of legal guilt and the presumption of innocence.
Crime Control vs. Due Process Which of the models dominates criminal justice policy in the U.S. at any particular time depends on the political climate. Neither model is likely to completely control criminal justice.
The Future of Law Enforcement If the future of law enforcement increasingly reflects the principles and policies of the crime control model, then we might expect fewer limitations on how the police attempt to combat crime.
The Future of Law Enforcement Greater intrusion into people’s lives will be facilitated by advances in electronic surveillance. Technological advances will continue in the future.
The Future of Law Enforcement On the other hand, if we see a shift to the principles and policies of the due process model, we should expect existing limitations on how the police combat crime to remain intact or even be expanded.
The Future of Law Enforcement Regardless of which of Packer’s two models dominates in the future, community policing is likely to become standard practice throughout the country, as police officers becomes known as public service officers .
The Future of Law Enforcement One new development is DNA profiling, which will probably become a routine law enforcement tool in the near future. Perhaps the most thorny issue with DNA profiling is how the DNA database will be collected and used.
The Future of Law Enforcement If the due process model prevails, the DNA database will probably comprise samples taken only from booked suspects, as is the current practice with fingerprints. If the crime control model prevails, the DNA database may comprise DNA samples taken shortly after birth from all infants born in the U.S.
The Future of the Administration of Justice Due process model enthusiasts argue for the elimination of the grand jury, which they say has become a rubber stamp for prosecutors.
The Future of the Administration of Justice The crime control model would likely see expanded use of pretrial detention, which would encourage guilty offenders to plead guilty. Due process model supporters argue that pretrial detention should be used sparingly if at all, and that people should be entitled to remain free until they are found guilty unless they pose a threat to society.
The Future of the Administration of Justice If the crime control model dominates, it is likely that appeals will be strongly discouraged and limited. If the due process model dominates in the future, there will probably be no limitations on the right to appeal.
The Future of the Administration of Justice If the crime control model dominates, criminal courts will probably handle an increasing number of juveniles. Juvenile courts may be eliminated altogether. Ironically, if the due process model dominates, juvenile justice might be eliminated anyway, because of concerns about procedural rights.
The Future of the Administration of Justice It is likely that whichever model dominates, most conflicts will be handled differently, through alternative dispute resolution programs.
The Future of the Administration of Justice Restorative justice , an alternative to the punitive justice currently used in the U.S. may be used in the future
restorative justice A process whereby an offender is required to contribute to restoring the health of the community, repairing the harm done, and meeting victims’ needs.
The Future of the Administration of Justice Another form of restorative justice that may be adopted in the U.S. is reintegrative shaming .
reintegrative shaming A strategy in which disappointment is expressed for the offender’s actions, the offender is shamed and punished, but, what is more important, following the expression of disappointment and shame is a concerted effort on the part of the community to forgive the offender and reintegrate him or her back into society.
The Future of the Administration of Justice Technology will also change the administration of justice in the future:
Defendants can “appear” in court via interactive television, reducing transportation costs, and allowing jails/prisons to be built far away from cities.
Witnesses can provide videotaped testimony, or testify via interactive television.
The Future of Corrections In the area of corrections, crime control is, and will probably remain, the paramount goal, regardless of which model of justice administration dominates in the future.
The Future of Corrections Perhaps the most divisive issue that will confront correctional policy makers in the future is whether increasingly scarce resources should be devoted more to punishment or to rehabilitation.
The Future of Corrections Most people knowledgeable about corrections in the U.S. paint a rather bleak picture of the future:
The number of citizens under correctional custody will continue to increase.
Health costs will continue to escalate.
Increasing numbers of offenders will consume increasingly larger budgets.