Criminal Psychology - Paper Example

Published: 2021-08-10
1761 words
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15 min to read
University of Richmond
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Criminal psychology is the study of intentions, thoughts, wills, and reactions of criminals. This is an important milestone in determining the course of criminal activities. Given its impressive record in solving forensic problems, criminal psychology has been used to solve different social issues. However, there have been questions whether criminal psychology is delivering effectively to the society; in relation to predicting the social issue. Social work surrounds practice legal issues, regulations, statutes, procedures, and processes that are unique to criminal psychologists. Forensic social work involves specialized social work that occurs legally and criminal justice contexts, such as prisons, forensic hospitals, and jails. Gubanski (2004) proves that forensic science can be misleading to the police force who might apply proactive police techniques useful in protecting against citizenry decisions for the right and appropriate conditions. The legal conditions attempt to balance between fair trials for effective investigations for the surveillance, police provocations and infiltration. The research is however centered on social work given that it involves neglect, termination, divorce, separations and parental rights that leads to implications spouse, juvenile and adult justice services, as well as correction and mandates of treatment. Social work further stretches to neglect, termination, parental rights, spouse abuse, juvenile, justice services and mandated treatment. Kupchik (2003, p. 440) notes criminal justice model is often outcompeted by the need for punishment for proportion for severity of offenses. The courtroom decision-making draws on specialized for criminal proceeding for bifurcating and incongruity that allows implementing a suitable model for solving criminal models that helps in case processing.

Justification of the Study

The research, therefore, draws criminal psychology social issues under the term forensic social work that are specialized social work practice occurring under legal and criminal justice which in this case is under prisons, jails, probation, forensic hospitals as well as the application of social work knowledge and skills. Holtzhausen (2011) provides multidimensional and multidisciplinary practice provide a general assessment of the crime and persuading harm while providing specialization and criminal for justice for distinctively for social work and generation. The question further trickles down to legal systems including administrative avenues of the social work practice. Forensic social work services surround ethical responsibilities, colleagues, client, and employers as well society within specialized training. We, therefore, note that the roles of social work are diversified reflecting on the affiliated subjects that abide knowledge and skills that help in tackling tasks and responsibilities of social work. The range of discipline and sub-discipline involved in criminal behavior surrounding forensic psychology discipline and training based on existing social norms. Tewksbury (2013) presents a case similar to the author, where crime elevates itself to the University Campus level. Based on the constructivist approach, the desire to prove crime exists, facts of crime presented.

Problems of Validating Information

Forensic social work revolves around specialized knowledge useful in validating the intersections of criminal justice and law. Research believes that criminal behavior as one related to business and scholarly findings that helps in identifying forensic achievements that are useful in psychiatry fields. There are failures towards the extent of the law that should be applied in a clinical setting. Using experimental studies, developmental psychology, social psychology, evolutionary psychology, and neuroscience researchers in the discipline of criminal justice, it has become possible to predict the sequence of crime, however, such results do not necessary means the person is guilty. The major challenge hears in predicting the failures of an individual based on the accounts presented.

Basing on the knowledge of the social construction of crime, there are various reasons why knowledge of psychological research into offending behavior and crime remains challenging (Henry, 2009, pg. 297). There is a thin line between claims of what is considered as true and real facts. In the court of law, this has always been the point of argument in that a lawyer has a task of weaving real facts and what the society has claimed to be a crime. While the society may construct meaning to an activity, such claims may not always justify that activity as a crime since the meaning may lack the aspect of underlying reality. Another important point to consider is the use of labels in the classification of social phenomenon such as rape. For instance, rape may be considered as a violent act rather than a sexual offense. This implies that both experts and non-experts may lack the adequate explanations pertaining crime. Therefore, it implies that the people who claim to produce knowledge such as criminologists are not exempted when it comes to criticism. The claims of such professionals may not always be considered to be more correct than those of the non-experts. One of the reasons for this claim is the fact that the society can construct and reconstruct meaning which may be different from that of an expert. For instance, a criminologist may describe fighting as a crime, but the society may present situation where controlled fighting is viewed as a sporting or competitive event rather than a criminal offense.

Lack of Enough and Qualified Personnel

Thoughts are an important milestone towards responding to lack of sufficient shortages of personnel. Given the growing diversity amongst social workers and clients as well as their families, it has become possible for criminal forensic to predict people who are most vulnerable to commit a crime. Such personnel is required to be familiar with the law. However, familiarity with the law is a useful approach to evaluating clients and situations. Since the forensic social worker is required to provide various services including consultation, education, and training to the personnel within the legal arena, it becomes important for training to be entrenched in based on the variety of the personnel related to issues involved disciplines as well as sub-disciplines. The major challenge involved is balancing between law and psychology, since the law relies on facts, while psychology relies on case studies and theoretical constructions to predict criminal sequence (White, 2012).

A look at the three models of moral panic further expands and contextualizes the idea of crime and criminal behavior, incorporating aspects of crime that might not necessarily be defined by the psychological approach (Goode & Ben-Yehuda, 1994, pg. 51). The grassroots model, for instance posits that anxiety that comes from societal stress often results in moral panic, which then results in the scapegoating of new categories of crime and criminal behavior (Goode & Ben-Yehuda, 1994, pg. 51). Another mode, the elite domination model, posits that people in positions of power, be they government, industry or religious leaders, are normally involved in the promotion of moral panic as a diversion from issues that when solved, would likely result in them losing their powerful positions (Goode & Ben-Yehuda, 1994, pg. 51). The interest group conflict model explains that moral panic is the result of moral entrepreneurs who seek to gain influence over the society through the definition of its moral domain (Henry, 2009, pg. 302). These theories explain why powerful interests can also play an important role in the construction of crime. A good example of this can be drawn from the points of view of capitalists. Laws are created to describe crime basing on capitalistic interests of parties or groups. Crime may be constructed to protect these interests which may not take into account the interests of the entire society.

Rules such as laws of strict liability, which aim to protect property, are examples of laws that have been developed due to the influence of powerful interests. From this point of view, some aspects that may constitute crimes are considered normal. Consider a situation where a landowner shoots a person trespassing a property. This situation has two different views where the society may view it as a crime, but the legal perspective may view it as a protective act. This makes the legal construction of crime as the unique approach to the social construction of crime. In some cases, most members of the society may fail to understand different natures of criminal offenses as described by law. Most people in the society may understand the common law but fail to understand constitutional laws. These people may at times find it hard to understand that certain actions are considered a crime while others are considered to be correct. Therefore, psychologists should not only base on the legal perspective to understand the nature of crime but should also base on a variety of social dimensions.

The nature of the law has influenced the usability of the of the social construction theory based on the bills of rights as phenomena. The bill of rights protects individual from unwarranted, searches, investigations and arrests procedures. The foundations of the social constructionist theory are, therefore, the challenge to the strength of the legal definition of the crime. The legal definition of crime posits as an intentional act or omission that happens in violation of criminal law. It is committed without justification or defense and is sanctioned by the state or authorities as a misdemeanor or felony (Tappan, 1947, pg 100). These strict legal definitions, which normally point to the psychological aspects or theories, have been argued in the past to exclude some elements of the white-collar crime. Others say they ignore historical and cultural contexts of the law, like those that surround laws on prostitution and gambling, which vary from one place to another (Henry, 2009, pg. 303).


Criminal psychology has also struggled with explaining and predicting crime given the social problem associated with crime. Integrity revolves around honesty, accuracy, and truthfulness. However, in the course of practice, these resources fail in the quality of treatment options surrounding forensic experts. The psychologist requires constructing vivid justifications that justify the course of events. In that case, the psychologists should present vivid examples of the guilt position of the individual. However, most psychologists do not make valid accounts of prediction, given that they try to explain or predict crime in an environment that does not exist. They in return use theories to justify the sequence of crime and not facts.

Besides, criminal psychology struggled as applied to explain crime given crime is, in general, a social issue; another major problem of integrity is how the forensic psychologists are questioned for general responsively through augmented through different assessment for the staff relationship, and possible structuring skills. Possible attention to integrity for management involves settings and selections for clinical supervision for correlations on the effects in reaching the required range. Given adherence to specific responsively and professional discretion explored for meta-analytical for the raised for databank for replication prevention and extension and treatment for programs reduction attending RNG principles. Actuarial instruments rely on few static information for the criminal.

Furthermore, recidivism rates help in drawing re-offense...

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