Myths and Realities of Crime and Justice

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2008-06-30
  • Publisher: Jones & Bartlett Learning
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Americans are fascinated with crime, criminals, and criminal justice. For all the public interest, however, relatively little is known about these topics that dominate newspaper headlines each and every day in the United States. This book provides readers with an accurate and up-to-date picture of crime and justice in the United States. Myths and Realities of Crime and Justice: What Every American Should Know addresses the major topics in this broad field and presents recent findings from criminologists and criminal justice practitioners in a reader-friendly manner. Combining up-to-date facts with an engaging narrative, this book will dispel many of the preconceived notions and distorted pictures about crime and justice that continue to perpetuate in the United States. This one-of-a-kind criminal justice book offers everything you need to know about crime, criminals, police. Book jacket.

Author Biography

Steven E. Barkan, PhD, Professor of Sociology, The University of Maine, Orono, Maine George J. Bryjak, PhD, Former Professor of Sociology, University of San Diego, San Diego, California

Table of Contents

Prefacep. iii
Acknowledgmentsp. iv
What No One Is Telling You About Crime and Justicep. 3
Crime, Criminals, and Why We All Need to Know About Themp. 4
Getting Tough? The U.S. Criminal Justice System in Crisisp. 5
Who We Are and Why We Wrote This Bookp. 6
The Crime Problemp. 9
Fear and Loathing: Don't Believe Everything You See in the Newspapers or on Televisionp. 10
If You Build It, They Will Come (and Then Leave): The War on Crime and the Growth of Prisonsp. 15
Dirty Secrets of Criminal Justicep. 17
How Much Crime Is There and Who Commits It?p. 25
How Crimes Are Countedp. 26
Who Commits Crime?p. 31
Robbers, Rapists, and Serial Killers: Violent Crime in Americap. 43
Homicidep. 44
Serial Killersp. 47
Mass Murderp. 53
Rape: A Crime of Power, Not Sexp. 57
Robberyp. 62
The Churches and Sexual Abusep. 68
Hookers, Dopers, and Corporate Crooks: Economic, Exploitive, and Consensual Crimep. 75
Burglaryp. 76
Motor Vehicle Theftp. 78
Corporate Crimep. 81
Identity Theftp. 83
Illegal Drug Usep. 87
Prostitutionp. 101
Victims and Victimization: Will You Be Next?p. 111
Victim Characteristicsp. 112
The Cost and Consequences of Victimizationp. 116
Victims and Offendersp. 117
The Victims Movementp. 126
Crime Victims' Rights Act of 2004p. 132
Crime and Criminal Law: Order, Liberty, and Justice for All?p. 137
Order Versus Liberty in American Democracyp. 137
Types of Crime: Felonies and Misdemeanorsp. 138
When Is an Act a Crime and When Is It Not a Crime? The Elements of Criminal Behaviorp. 139
When Is a Defendant Not Responsible for Committing a Crime? Legal Defenses to Criminal Chargesp. 141
The Rights of Suspects and Defendants: Controversy and the U.S. Constitutionp. 145
Why They Break the Lawp. 157
Rational Choice and Deterrencep. 158
Biological and Psychological Explanationsp. 161
Sociological Explanationsp. 165
Theory and Policy, or How to Reduce Crime and How Not to Reduce Itp. 173
Taking It to the Streets: Cops on the Jobp. 179
The Organization of Law Enforcementp. 180
Police: White, Black, Male, Female, Straight, and Gayp. 181
The Police and Crime Ratesp. 183
Doing Police Workp. 184
Police Discretionp. 190
The Police and Profilingp. 191
Militarizing the Policep. 193
Police Deviance: When the Good Guys Are Bad Guysp. 195
Sexual Predators in Bluep. 198
Police and the Use of Forcep. 200
Policing the Policep. 205
Pretrial Procedures and Plea Bargaining: From Arrest to "Let's Make a Deal"p. 211
Pretrial Proceduresp. 212
The Courtroom as a Clubhousep. 220
Plea Bargainingp. 221
Criminal Trials and Courtroom Issues: Convicting the Innocent, Exonerating the Guiltyp. 233
The Criminal Trialp. 234
Jury Nullificationp. 246
Wrongful Convictions: Factually Innocent but Legally Guiltyp. 249
Fingerprints: Proof Positive?p. 257
"Is That All the Evidence You Have?" The CSI Effectp. 258
Prisons and Jails: Punishment at Any Cost?p. 263
Such an Ordeal: Prisons Yesterday and Todayp. 264
Life Behind Bars: Myths Versus Realityp. 271
Women in Prison: Sexism in Captivityp. 276
The Death Penalty Debatep. 279
Community Corrections and Juvenile Justicep. 285
Probation and Parolep. 285
Juvenile Justice: Youths at Risk?p. 292
Conclusion: What Every American Should Knowp. 303
What Do We Know About Crime?p. 303
What Should We Do About Crime?p. 306
How Can We Help Crime Victims?p. 306
How Can We Improve the Justice System?p. 307
Keeping Your Family Safep. 308
Keeping Your Family Off the Police Blotterp. 309
Referencesp. 311
Indexp. 347
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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