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Rational choice theory

theories of criminology

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Rational choice theory

  1. 1. Definition: “Punishment should fit for crime”.
  2. 2. CHOICE THEORIES  RATIONAL CHOICE (law-violating behavior occurs after offenders weight information on their personal need and situational factors involved in the difficulty and risk of committing a crime.)  Strategies for controlling crime flow from premise. 1. GENERAL DETTERENCE (people will commit crime and delinquency if they perceive that the benefits outweigh the risks. Crime is a function of the severity, certainty, and speed of punishment.) 2. SPECIFIC DEDERENCE ( if punishment is severe enough, criminal will not repeat their illegal act.) 3. INCAPACITATION (Keeping known criminals out of circulation will reduce crime rate.)
  3. 3. CONCEPTS OF RATIONAL CHOICE THEORY • Law violating behavior is product of careful thought and planning. • Offender choose crime after both personal and situational factors. • Before deciding to commit a crime the reasoning criminal evaluates risk of • apprehension, • seriousness of expected punishment, • the potential value of the criminal enterprise, • his/her ability to succeed, • the need of criminal gain.
  4. 4. OFFENCE & OFFENDER SPECIFIC CRIME  OFFENCE SPECIFIC CRIME:  OFFENDR SPECIFIC CRIME:  Offender react selectively to the characteristics of an individual criminal act.  E.g. the decision to commit a burglary.  To commit crime individuals must decide whether they have the personal needs skills, and nuts and bolts to commit a crime.
  5. 5. STRUCTING CRIMINALITY Economic need/Opportunity:  People commit crime because they need money or  Misled about financial reward  They know the people who are quite successful at crime. Evaluating personal traits and experiences:  Career criminals may learn the limitation of their powers.  They know when to take chance and when to be cautious.  Experienced criminals may turn away from a life of crime when they believe that risk of crime is greater then any potential profit.  Criminal is more impulsive and have less self controlled.  Typically they are under stress and facing serious personal problem Criminal enterprises:  They learn techniques to help them avoid detection while making their own illegal profit.
  6. 6. STRUCTURING CRIME Choosing the place of crime  Criminal carefully choose where thy will commit crime. Choosing target  Criminals locate there target in such a way
  7. 7. IS CRIME RATIONAL? IS THEFT RATIONAL? IS DRUG USE RATIONALS  Crimes are the product of careful risk related assignment including environmental, social, and structural factors.  Target selection seem highly rational.  Criminal believe that drug will provide them fun, exciting and thrilling experience.  They choose what they consider safe sites to buy and sell drugs. Their entry into substance abuse is facilitated by their perception,  Research seems to indicate from it onset drug use is controlled by rational decision making.  Drug dealers show signs of rationality and cunning in their daily activities
  8. 8. IS CRIME RATIONAL? Can violence be rational?  Market related robberies emerge from disputes involving partners in trade, rivals, or generalized predators.  Status-based violations involve encounters in which the robber’s essential character or value have been changed.  Personalistic violations floe from indicates in which the robber’s autonomy or sense of value has been jeopardized. Robbery in this instance is an instrument used to settle score, display dominance, and stifle potential rivals. Jacobs and Wright conclude retaliation certainly is rational in the sense that actor who lack legitimate access to the law and rize respect above everything else will often choose to resolve their grievances through a rough and ready brand of self-help.
  9. 9. SITUATIONAL CRIME PREVENTION  To reduce criminal activity public official must be aware of the characteristics of the sites and situation that are conductive for crime, the things that people toward these and what equips people to take the advantage of the criminal opportunities offered by these sites and situations and what constitute the immediate criminal actions.  This approach was popularized in the united state in early 19thcenturies by Oscar Newman. Who coined the term defaceable space the idea is that crime can be prevented or displaced through the use of residential design that reduce criminal opportunities such as well-lit-housing projects that maximize surveillance.
  10. 10. CRIME PREVENTION STRATEGIES  Increase the afford needed to commit crime  Increase the risk of committing crime  Reduce rewards of crime  Induce gilt and increase shame  Deduce provocation  Remove excuses
  11. 11. COSTS OF SITUATIONAL CRIME PREVENTION  Hidden Benefits:  Diffusion  Occurs when efforts to prevent one crime unintentionally prevents another  When crime control efforts in one locale reduce crime in other non-target areas  Discouragement:  Occurs when crime control efforts targeting a particular locale help reduce crime in surrounding areas and populations
  12. 12. BENEFITS OF SITUATIONAL CRIME PREVENTION  Hidden Costs:  Displacement  Crime is not prevented but simply re-directed, deflected, or displaced to a more vulnerable area  Extinction:  Phenomenon in which crime reduction programs may produce short-term positive effects but criminals adjust to new conditions  Dismantling of alarms  Trying new offenses previously avoided Replacement:  an effect that occur when criminal try new offences they had previously avoided because situational prevention program neutralized their program choice.
  13. 13. 1. GENERAL DETERANCE  A crime control policy that depends on the fear of penalties, convincing the potential law violator that the pains associated with crime out weigh its benefit.  Theory holds the greater the severity, certainty, and speed of legal sanctions, the lower crime rate.  Theory not only actual chance of punishment but also the perception that punishment will be forth coming, influences criminality.
  14. 14. CERTAINTY OF PUNISHMENT  If people believe their criminal transgressions will almost certainly result in punishment, then only truly irrational will commit crime.  research shows a direct relation ship between crime rate and certainty of punishment.  Increasing the number of police on street should cut the crime rate.  Police officers should active, aggressive and fighter.  Improving response time and increasing number of patrol cars that response one crime.
  15. 15. SEVERRITY OF PUNISHMENT  Threat of severe punishment should also bring the crime rate down.  Little consensus that strict punishment alone can reduce criminal activities.  Certainty of punishment has greater deterrent effect then its severity.  Fear of death penalty should significantly reduce crime rate.
  16. 16. CRITIQUE: Some experts believe that the purpose of the law and justice system is to create a threat system. Rationality System  Criminals can be desperate people and commit crime effectiveness because of no alternative.  Criminal may be suffering from personality disorder  Threat of punishment involve not only its severity but also its certainty and speed.  Not every crime can be discouraged, nor is every criminal deterrent. Research shows that deterrent measure may be have greater impact on some people and leaser effect on other.
  17. 17. SPECIFIC DETERRENCE  The theory of specific deterrence holds that criminal sanction should be so powerful that known criminals will never repeat their criminal acts.  In principles, punishments works when a connection can be established between the planned action and memories of its consequence if these recollection are adequately intense ,the action is unlikely to occur again  Incarcetion  confinement in jail or prison.  Recidivism  repletion of criminal behavior.
  18. 18. INCAPACITATION  Keeping known criminal out of circulation will reduce crime rates.  There is little evidence that incapacitating criminals deters them from future criminality  Stable crime rates may be controlled by:  The size of the teenage population  The threat of mandatory sentences  Economy  Gun laws  The end of the crack epidemic  The implementation of aggressive policing strategies
  19. 19. INCAPACITATION  Research focus:  Prison population and crime rate  Sentence length and crime