Ethical Concerns In Criminal Justice

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1. Ethical concern. Describe and give examples of the concern. How is it pertinent to the field of criminal justice? o For example, the area of the courts and concerns over jury nullification  This concern stems from the larger issue of citizens serving as the conscience of the community and a jury’s ethical obligation to abide by law but its refusal to convict in a situation which would lead to an unjust result. One great ethical dilemma we face is sentencing juveniles to life-without-parole. A drastic punishment is to give a person a criminal sentence of life with no possibility of parole. What this does is banishes the person from having any social interactions in the world outside those cement walls. This punishment is viewed to be…show more content…
This contract is a set of rules that governs how people treat each other within a society. What we need to understand is that with this contract, there are still going to be those few who violate it. What contractualism justifies is that the state, its laws, and mechanisms of social control by arguing that those must be present in society to prevent from regressing into a state of nature wherein theft, violence, and other social issues would run rampant (Arrigo, 2012, p. 115). As these young children are developing, the social contract may be too difficult for them to understand until they have reached a certain level of maturity. Another way to better understand this would be to look at Kohlberg’s Moral Stages of Development. There are 3 levels and 6 stages in which a person can achieve throughout their lifetime. According to Kohlberg, most people advance to stage 4 which is termed law and order orientation, but many do not advance part this stage. This stage is a period of moral development in which one develops an interest in laws, codes, and commandments and a greater respect for authority (Arrigo, 2012, p. 124). This stage of moral development is relevant to everyone and can help us better understand as to why younger people commit criminal acts. Many juveniles will not reach this stage until they are between the ages of 16-20 years old. Knowing…show more content…
The child’s brain is developing over the years taking in critical information, getting to identify who he/she is, what they like, etc. Until full development is achieved, we cannot ultimately assume that the child knows what is right and what is wrong. He/she may not understand that certain actions come with consequences, some more severe than others. Throughout the articles I noticed that the juveniles who were sentenced to life without parole, did not completely reach/achieve adulthood where they could comprehend what they were doing. Each article mentioned how mens rea was never truly acknowledged throughout each individual’s case. They never took into account the mental state of the juvenile and/or what got them to that
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