Essay Racial Profiling And The Criminal Justice System

734 Words Oct 27th, 2015 3 Pages
In Modern day America racial profiling has become a major issue. According to Higgins (2008), profiling is a conglomeration of physical, behavioral, and psychological components that increase the probability of apprehending a suspect. During the 1980s, law enforcement began introducing race as a trait for profiling an individual. This was during the rise of drug use in the United States. Racial profiling allowed law enforcement officials to identify drug couriers. Since the introduction of this method, racial profiling has become a staple in the criminal justice field. Thus, the issue of racial profiling is important to understand because of the nature of the racial component attached to profiling. Race has become a major issue with the criminal justice system. A review of the empirical criminal justice literature reveals that race is a central issue in all areas of the criminal justice system (e.g., policing, courts, and corrections). Policymakers and officials in the criminal justice system must gain an understanding of racial profiling in order to establish a plan to put a stop to this derogatory practice (Higgins, 2008).
Criminal Justice officials have been given the right to exercise discretion. The law provides boundaries for officials to work within, however, it does not eliminate them from utilizing discretion. The decisions to intervene in a situation, cite, arrest, or prosecute the individual are all greatly discretionary (Greenleaf, Skogan, & Lurigio, 2008). A…

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