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Use of technology would promote public knowledge about the spread of confirmed criminal activity or patterns of behavior that might place people at risk, whether that risk involved theft, credit card scams or other behaviors (Farber, 2006).
Participation in shared networking technological programs would be required of private businesses, community agencies and policing authorities to ensure a true community policing structure is established. Communities would work to create neighborhood watch groups in response to "non-sensitive" security data that would help them better protect their community and collaborate with law enforcement agencies (Farber, 2006, p. 110).
Before a hearing is set, a judiciary authority should be appointed along with a trained criminal justice psychologist to determine what factors contributed to the criminal activity, the severity of criminal activity and whether prosecution is warranted, or whether rehabilitative measures would prove more helpful in the long-term. A meeting should be established where the offender meets with said authority and counselor, who will review the individual's criminal history, age, sex, family, environment and other factors contributing to crime. If the offender is accused of a non-violent crime, the offender should be offered the choice of making amends for his or her crime by engaging in comprehensive rehabilitation for no less than 4 weeks, and be offered the opportunity to then participate in a restrictive yet supportive probation, whereby the offender would meet with the criminal justice counselor weekly to talk about reform, lessons learned and what actions the offender is taking to become more actively involved in the community (Farber, 2006).
The goal of this program and system would be to reduce the overall levels of crime by introducing the concept of collaboration and rehabilitation. Offenders are often the victims of bad circumstance; thus in many cases, there is ample evidence suggesting that punishment and release through traditional systems does not act as an effective deterrent to criminal activity (Bouza, 1990; Johnson, 2003; Goold, 2004). Prior to prosecution, if non-violent offenders are given the opportunity for supportive counseling and community education, and if community representatives work diligently to embrace offenders and teach them how they can become participants of the community in a mutually beneficial way, there is likely to be a reversal in the rates of non-violent crimes in most areas (Goold, 2004).
For those accused of violent or federal acts of injustice, where evidence warrants, the individual should be imprisoned for a minimum, set period of time that focuses on rehabilitation and counseling again. The role of the community will be to stay abreast of criminal activity and report any malevolent threats to police or law enforcement agents at first detection, to improve the odds of prevention of such crimes. Should they take place, offenders should receive counseling throughout their sentence when sentenced, then allowed parole under strict terms that would require they give back to their community by becoming a member of established community support alliances. These alliances would include active participation among local businesses and other agencies whose role would be to provide meaningful work and support for criminals so they have the opportunity to survive and become active community members without the stigma associated with incarceration (Farber, 2006).
The perfect system is not a system that focuses on hostility, punishment or incarceration for non-malevolent crimes; rather the perfect system is one where communities actively collaborate with law enforcement, legal authorities, judicial bodies and offenders to build better communities and social networks. Only in cases where a criminal poses a true or severe threat to the community should there be grounds for hostile punishment. The vast majority of offenders in the perfect system will be offered the opportunity from the point of arrest for rehabilitation and community involvement, so offenders can learn to empathize and apologize for their actions.
American Law and Legal Information. (n.d.). Criminal justice system, structural and theoretical components of criminal justice systems, the systems of operation, the importance of viewing criminal justice as a system. American Law and Legal Information. Crime and Justice Volume 1. Accessed 22, May, 2007:
Bouza, a.V. (1990). The police mystique: An insider's look at cops, crime, and the criminal justice system. Cambridge: Perseus Books.
Farber, O. (2006, Jun). Positive SPIN on liaisons: Find out how the security police information network (SPIN) promotes public-private information sharing. Security Management, 50(6): 110.
Goold, B. (2004). Idealizing…[continue]
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