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The Sentence Essay

769 words - 3 pages

Identity theft is the number one case of fraud in the United States (Smith, 2008). As a judge who is presiding over a case in which an individual has been convicted of stealing others' identities for monetary gain, one needs to gather specific information before imposing a sentence. The judge in a case such as this one would ask their self two questions, including "What specific information would you like to know before imposing sentence?" and "How would you incorporate the sentencing goals of retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, rehabilitation, and restitution in your sentence of this individual for this particular crime?"Need to know InformationBefore imposing a sentence in this case, a judge needs to know specific information. The first piece of information a judge would need before making a decision about sentencing would be how many identities the offender has stolen. The judge would also need to know how the identities were stolen. For example, did the individual steal the identities by going through the persons' garbage, or were they taken from information in the workplace? Another question the judge in this case would like to have answered is how this individual planned to obtain the money once the identities were stolen. Finally, and maybe one of the most important questions the judge would want answered would be whether the convicted individual has any prior convictions for identity theft, or other crimes.Incorporating Sentencing GoalsRetributionIn Contemporary Corrections, Mays and Winfree, (2002) stated, "Retribution refers to revenge or retaliation for a harm or wrong done to another individual" (p. 2). To incorporate retribution the judge would need to make sure the offender serves enough time that he knows that society disapproves of his or her actions. A reasonable sentence for this crime, one of which would serve as retribution, would be five years in prison for each count of identity theft for monetary gain the offender was convicted of.IncapacitationAccording to the Department of Justice, (as cited in Mays and Winfree, 2002) "Incapacitation involves 'separating offenders from the community to reduce the opportunity for further crime while they are incarcerated'" (p. 6). Therefore, by simply sentencing the convicted individual to time in prison the judge in this case would be incorporating incapacitation into the sentence. In this particular case with Identity theft not being a violent crime, the judge would sentence the convicted...

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