List and discuss at least three reasons as presented in the textbook, as to why incarcerating delinquents may not reduce their crime rates.
Do you agree or disagree with the author?
What other reasons can you think of that might influence delinquent incarceration? What other alternatives might you suggest?
Make sure you use proper grammar and cite any resources utilized.
400 words minimum
Do not plagerize
J U V E N I L E D E L I N Q U E N C Y T H E C O R E 5E Ch a p t e r 3 : I n d i v i d u a l Vi e ws o f De l i n q u e n c y : Ch o i c e a n d Tr a i t Choice Theory • Classical criminology • Cesare Beccaria & Jeremy Bentham • Choice Theory • Argues that people weigh and consider the consequences prior to the commission of their behaviors • Holds that the decision to violate the law comes after a careful weighing of the benefits • Assumes that people have “free will” to choose their behavior The Rational Delinquent The view that delinquents choose to violate the law remains a popular approach to the study of delinquents In reality, many youths from affluent families choose to break the law Delinquent motives include:
Economic need/opportunity Problem solving False expectations Opportunity Routine Activities Theory Developed by Lawrence Cohen and Marcus Felson The view that crime is a normal function of the routine activities of modern living Predatory crimes Violent crimes against persons and crimes in which an offender attempts to steal an object from its holder are influenced by three variables: ① The availability of suitable targets ② The absence of capable guardians ③ The presence of motivated offenders FIGURE 3.1 Routine Activities Theory Helps Explain Fluctuations in the Delinquency Rate Choice Theory and Delinquency Prevention General Deterrence Crime control policies that depend on the fear of criminal penalties, i.e. long prison sentences for violent crime A guiding principle of deterrence is based on:
The severity of the punishment The certainty of the punishment The swiftness of the punishment There is evidence that adolescents who perceive they will be arrested and punished for a crime will often forego delinquent acts Choice Theory and Delinquency Prevention • Specific Deterrence • If young offenders are punished severely they will not repeat their illegal acts • “Learn from their own mistakes ” • For example, sending convicted offenders to secure incarceration facilities; punishment is severe enough to convince them not to repeat their criminal activity • However, in some cases experiencing punishment may actually increase the likelihood of reoffending Choice Theory and Delinquency Prevention • Problems with a strict deterrence strategy:
• Minors are not “ rational ” • Experienced offenders do not fear the legal consequences • high -risk offenders may not fear getting arrested • Many juveniles are under influence of drugs/alcohol • Juveniles often commit crimes in groups – “ co -offending ” • Most serious delinquents are not able to comprehend consequences • Punishment may produce defiance, rather than deterrence Choice Theory and Delinquency Prevention Situational Crime Prevention In order to reduce delinquency, crime control must recognize the characteristics of sites and situations that are at risk to crime Delinquency can be neutralized if:
Potential offenders are carefully guarded The means to commit crime are controlled Potential offenders are carefully monitored Situational crime prevention includes:
Hot spot and crackdowns Trait Theories: Biosocial and Psychological Views Origins of Trait Theory The school of thought is generally believed to have originated with the Italian physician Cesar Lombroso (1835 -1909) Father of Criminology Criminal Atavism Idea that delinquents manifest physical anomalies that make them biologically and psychologically similar to our primitive ancestors By the middle of the 20th century, biological theories had fallen out of favor Trait Theories: Biosocial and Psychological Views • Contemporary Trait Theory • For the most of the 20th century, delinquency research focused on social factors • Trait theories argue that a combination of personal traits and environmental factors lead to behavior patterns • Today ’ s trait theories: • Biosocial theory • Delinquency can be found in a child’s physical or biological makeup • Psychological traits and characteristics Mug Shot Study – Current Example Biosocial Theories of Delinquency Focuses on the association between biological makeup, environmental conditions, and antisocial behaviors Three areas of biosocial theories: ① Biochemical factors ② Neurological function ① Genetic history Biochemical Factors • Suspected relationship between antisocial behavior and biochemical makeup • Biochemical problems can begin at conception • i.e., maternal alcohol abuse • Environmental contamination, such as children exposed to high levels of air pollution • There is evidence that a child’s diet may influences his or her behavior • Hormonal levels, such as increased levels of testosterone, are also associated with antisocial behavior Neurological Dysfunction • Neurological dysfunction, such as minimal brain dysfunction (MBD) is associated with antisocial behavior • Teenage brains:
• Teenage brains can make them crime prone • ADHD:
• Condition in which a child shows a developmentally inappropriate lack of attention and impulse • Learning Disabilities (LD):
• Studies show that arrested children have a higher rate of LDs than children in the general population • Arousal Theory:
• “Thrill” and “sensation seekers” Genetic Influences It assumes:
Antisocial behavior is inherited The genetic makeup of parent is passed on to children Genetic abnormality is directly linked to antisocial behaviors Three approaches to test the association: ① Parental deviance ② Twin studies ③ Adoption studies Criminal Twins – Current Example Psychological Theories of Delinquency Many delinquent youths have poor home lives, and destructive relationships with people around them; this can indicate a disturbed personality One study of incarcerated youths found that at least 88% of males and 92% of females had a psychiatric disorder Three prominent psychological perspectives: ① Psychodynamic theory ② Behavioral theory ③ Cognitive theory FIGURE 3.2 Psychological Perspectives of Delinquency Psychodynamic Theory Psychodynamic Theory Branch of psychology that holds that the human personality is controlled by unconscious mental processes Originated by Sigmund Freud (1856 -1939) Personality consists of three major components: ① Id ② Ego ③ Superego The theory suggests that an imbalance in personality traits, caused by early childhood, can result in long -term psychological difficulties Behavioral Theory/Cognitive Theory • Behavioral Theory • Argument that personality is learned throughout life during interactions with others • “Behaviorism” concerns the study of observable behavior, rather than unconscious processes; focuses on particular stimuli and responses to them • Kids learn through reward and punishment • Cognitive Theory • Studies the perception of reality and the mental processes required to understand the world we live in Personality and Delinquency • Personality • The stable patterns of behavior, including thoughts and emotions, that distinguish one person from the other • Hans Eysenck’s two traits associate with antisocial behavior:
① Extraversion • Impulsive individuals who lack the ability to examine their own motives ② Neuroticism • Individuals who are anxious and emotionally unstable Personality and Delinquency Psychopathic personality Also known as: Sociopathic or antisocial personality A person lacking in warmth, exhibiting inappropriate behavior responses, and unable to learn from experience Is defined by persistent violations of social norms VA Tech Massacre – Current Example Intelligence and Delinquency Delinquents believed to be substandard in intelligence and thus inclined to commit more crimes Nature Theory:
Intelligence is inherited and is a function of genetic makeup Nurture Theory:
Intelligence is determined by environmental stimulation and socialization Trait Theory and Delinquency Prevention • Prevention efforts should be directed at strengthening a youth’s home life and relationships • Prenatal/Early Infancy Project (PEIP) • One of the best known home visitation programs • Individual approaches have been used to prevent adjudicated youths from engaging in further criminal activities • Rehabilitation methods include psychological counseling or prescribed psychotropic medications Summary Ability to distinguish between the 2 branches of individual – level theories of delinquency Know the principles of choice theory Familiarity with the branches and substance of biological trait theory The various psychological theories of delinquency