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The Criminal Justice System Essay

901 words - 4 pages

The Criminal Justice System

The Criminal Justice System is one of the most important tools
available to society for the control of anti-social behavior. The
criminal justice system needs to prove a balance between punishing the
guilty and protecting the innocent being found guilty; however it is
not as easy to convict those who are guilty of committing crimes.
There have been many miscarriages to justice where innocent people
were sent to prison. Many people have been affected by crime, this is
due to statistics, which show the various number of crimes committed
in particular areas.

Crime statistics are compiled differently by different forces which is
notoriously unreliable. There are two ways of measuring crime, through
police figures, which reflect recorded crimes and through British
Crime Survey (BCS) figures, which questions people in England and
Wales about their experiences as victims. Neither system is entirely
reliable. The Home Office research, for example, show that out of
every 100 crimes, only 50 will be reported and around 33 recorded. The
Observer poll (2003) shows that 19% of those mugged and 14% of those
violently assaulted failed to report the crime, in comparison to the
BCS who offers a more reliable measurement of some crimes, such as
theft. A person may not report a theft of an old, cheap car but would
talk to a researcher about it.

As crime statistics are compiled in two ways, or maybe more, the
public do get affected, as they do not know what figures to accept or
believe. It is obvious that people would like to believe that the
statistics, which show the least amount of crime, is true in
comparison to statistics which show an increase in crime. However, to
improve the current system, the Government is trying to make all
police forces record crimes in the same way in order to make their new
figures comparable. Under the new rules, officers must record a crime
anything that is reported as a crime. In the past, if an officer
thought that someone was lying (hoping for compensation perhaps) or
thought that the crime was not as major as murder for example, then he
or she did not nee to record it. If the Government do succeed in the
new system of compiling...

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