Changes in Criminological Approaches

Document Type:Research Paper

Subject Area:Criminology

Document 1

These strategies constitute crime prevention. Moreover, such strategies also include the initiation of particular actions to either reduce or remove criminal activities in the society. Crime causation has been explained using various traditional and contemporary theories and perspectives. Such theories have also been applied to strategize on ways of reducing and/or removing crime based on their perceived causes. Besides, because the nature of crime has changes over the years, the theories of defining crime and crime prevention strategies have changed with them. Moreover, the paper will also asses the implications of these crimes to the U. S in terms of human and economic costs. Literature Review Traditional and Contemporary Criminological Approaches Crime prevention is an effort that has been continuing over the years.

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Various theories have been used to design strategies of preventing crime. However, to understand the applicability of such theories, it is necessary to understand the theories and causes of crime. These include the defensible space theory, broken windows theory and routine activities theory. The defensible theory examines how the design or physical space relates to crime while the broken windows theory examines the how low level disorder is related to crime (Hayward, & Young, 2012). On the other hand, the routine activities theory examines how the opportunities to commit crime are influenced by peoples’ everyday experience through interacting and moving through space and time. Another sociological approach is the strain/anomie theory. This was developed by Emile Durkheim in seeking to explain how rapid social change causes a breakdown in social norms.

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Moreover, belief provides that if an individual is brought up law abiding then they are likely to maintain on that path and involvement concept provides that the more an individual is involved in law abiding behavior then they will have little or no time to break the law. Another sociological approach is the rational choice theory. This provides that individuals are rational actors capable of making their own choices including choosing to commit crime (Hayward, & Young, 2012). Based on this theory, individuals tend to weigh the potential benefits and disadvantages of every action. That is, and individual will not only choose to commit criminal acts but also make a decision on when and where to commit such actions. Besides, labeling theory relates the attachment of labels to specific persons in society based on the role they have in that society.

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For example, individuals who commit crime are labeled as criminals. Crime Prevention Theories Based on the crime causation theories, several crime prevention theories have been presented. These include; 1. Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) The CPTED was created by Ray Jeffery (Welsh, & Farrington, 2014).   Besides, this theory provides that crime can be prevented by improving visibility between homes/apartments by the residents as well as increasing the public areas which create spaces where the residents could gather thus increasing the potential for surveillance by the residence. Situational Crime Prevention This theory was proposed by Ronald Clarke. It borrows ideas from the defensible space and CPTED theories. Its main idea is that crime can be prevented by eliminating the opportunities for crime (Welsh, & Farrington, 2014).

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  Such strategies include implementing measures that reduces the opportunity for committing certain specific crimes. Moreover, when the routine activities are performed near or in the home then there a lower risk of criminal activities is expected since such conditions improve the potential for guardianship (Sutton, Cherney, & White, 2013).   This is because it will be easier for the guardians to monitor the potential offenders and step in to prevent the occurrence of crime. However, this theory is criticized since it ignores the offenders. In addition, it is almost impossible to verify this theory. Crime Pattern Theory This theory was proposed by Brantingham and Branhtingham (Welsh, & Farrington, 2014). Disorder factors include poorly maintained vacant spaces and abandoned buildings, loitering or fighting groups of people, litter in the streets, poorly lit streets and parking areas as well as lack of aesthetics in the neighborhood.

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This theory is applicable in preventing crime by helping in predicting emerging crime areas, implementing design standards, and determining alternative solutions to the problems in such neighborhoods (Sutton, Cherney, & White, 2013).   These theories have helped to explain the possible ways of preventing crimes. They have addressed the areas of potential threat and development of criminal activities and such it is possible to implement mitigation strategies before such crimes occur. The theories have adapted overtime to address contemporary crime prevention.  Block watches have been established in various neighborhoods to mark properties and minimize cases of stealing household items by marking such items. Other programs include constant police patrols, improved communication between the police and the community as well as improving communication between the community through various actions groups, and distributing newsletters.

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Using Technology To Prevent Crime Today there are numerous cases of cyber-criminal activities. Some of them include data hacking, and Trojan viruses. These are sophisticated criminal activities that are in most cases committed by expert offenders and thus preventing that would not be easy using the traditional theories and methods. Therefore, increasing diversity in the police force is a significant tool that has been applied in the contemporary society. International Terrorism, Drug and Human Trafficking 1. Drug trafficking Drug abuse is serious problem in America. The nation spends billions of dollars of tax payers’ money annually on efforts to mitigate illicit drugs trade. Moreover, families in the USA, also spend a lot of money in treating family members with drug related problems.

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This is also done in conjunction with other law enforcement activities such as addressing human trafficking. Human Trafficking Human trafficking has existed despite the numerous efforts made to mitigate the crime. Some of the challenges facing the fight against human trafficking are the law that addresses the problem (Anupam, 2016). There have been a lot of changes in the pattern of human trafficking and such the law need to keep pace with the changes. This crime is mostly perpetrated by organized groups who are sometimes connected to various corrupt officials spread across numerous jurisdictions (Castle, 2008). Terrorism: Effect of the rise of international terrorism on U. S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies into cooperating with each other despite frequent political differences The rise of terrorists attacks throughout the world an especially in the USA on September 11 2001 brought into the public domain the matter of interagency corporation both nationally and globally.

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This is due to the transnational nature of the many terrorist organizations led by the al Qaeda. This gave the implication that detecting, disrupting and eliminating terrorism could only succeed if the fight is done on a global scale. Through these efforts several al-Qaida cells have been dismantled worldwide. However, the Final Report of the House of representatives and the U. S senate’ joint inquiry staff that investigated the events that led to the September 11 attacks provided that; while interagency cooperation is good, the United States intelligence agencies have over relied on the cooperation with foreign intelligence agencies rather than recruiting, training and developing its own foreign intelligence (Perri, & Terrance, 2009). In the meantime though, due to its weak human intelligence capacities in the Middle East, the U.

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S. Bilateral liaison agreements have also enhanced the fight on terrorism. These agreements mostly work better since they involve major activities such as sharing of raw data, assessments, and training facilities besides conducting joint training activities (Dinev, 2014). The USA agencies appreciate the gaps that they have especially in their coverage and access. As a result they make use of bilateral liaison arrangements to cover up for such. On these ground the CIA has cooperated greatly with Germany’s Federal Intelligence Service (BND). This may result into a setback in the relationship between the agencies and the nations (Efrat, 2015). The USA government is very particular on this matter. However, it is tricky affair since the government bas to balance between its agenda to protect its citizens and fight terrorism while helping in addressing the issues of human rights violations through cooperating with a liaison partner.

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