The Criminal Justice System Essay

1107 Words Feb 16th, 2016 5 Pages
The criminal justice system maintains different goals when attempting to correct deviant and illicit behavior. In accordance to the sentencing guidelines established by United States Sentencing Commission (2011), punitive sentences are to incorporate a purpose for the sentence. Criminal sentencing can be categorized into six areas with distinctive goals: general and specific deterrence, incapacitation, retributive, rehabilitative, and equity/restitution. The sentencing goals are not exclusive and at times overlap in achieving its purpose. Furthermore, one goal is not better than another, but rather one would be more applicable in certain situations than another.
Deterrence can be defined as sanctioning convicted offenders to reduce crime by making the public and the offender aware of the certainty and severity of punishment for criminal behavior (Del Carman, 2014). An example of this would be the use of mandatory sentencing which limit the judge’s discretionary powers and therefore must impose the sentence set by law (Del Carman, 2014). The employment of these sentences is to show the individual and the general public just what is the result of the offence and that crime does not pay. There are two different types of deterrence, general and specific. General deterrence is meant to impact the general public with the idea that if one is punished severely, than others will be afraid to commit the same crime. However, the punishment cannot be disproportionate and unfair as to…

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