Social Deviance And Crime Analysis

753 Words 4 Pages
Social deviance is any transgression of socially established norms. Formal deviance, or crime, is explained as the violation of laws enacted by society. There are many types of crime, such as street crime, White Collar crime, and corporate crime. One example of a crime is murder. James Holmes was found guilty of first-degree murder killing twelve people in the movie theater shooting of July 2012. (2015) Holmes injured an additional seventy people during this time. He received two counts of first-degree murder for each of the twelve victims he killed. (2015) He was found guilty on all twenty-four counts by the jury. (2015) Holmes pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity and ended up facing a total of 165 charges. (2015) The jury also found him …show more content…
He is a human being gripped by a mental illness.” (2015) Holmes admitted that he thought about killing every day. (2015) The jury cut Holmes no slack, even after hearing his parents tells James’s life story and how he got diagnosed with Schizophrenia. After hearing this story, the jury debated if they could execute people with a mental illness. Jurors still considered the death penalty for Holmes, while his attorneys claimed that his mental illness was the cause of all the crimes he convicted. (2015) The jury said, “The aggravating factors outweighed all mitigated factors.” (2015) Parents of Holmes claimed that he was a normal, happy little boy, until middle school when he started to distance himself from people. Like his father who was a mathematician, he was very smart and an academic achiever. Along with that came his mother’s social awkwardness trait. He also grew into other family traits as he grew up and it showed as he got older. His close relatives, including his father’s twin sister were institutionalized from this mental illness. His parents told jurors that his deviant actions started after their family moved from Castroville to San Diego when James was …show more content…
His mental illness gave him no social integration. Instead it made him feel uncomfortable in large crowds and had a large influence on his social construction. As Durkheim says in mechanical solidarity, a part of that is punitive justice, when the violator suffers; James Holmes should have a part of punitive justice. In my opinion, I believe James Holmes should have been sentenced with the death penalty. If a man with a mental illness thinks about killing every day, he should have been in a mental institution for his own safety and the safety of others. Having Holmes commit this crime led him to have a social stigma. His criminal record and mental illness led people to change their behavior toward him. You could consider Holmes as a deviant from Merton’s strain theory. He could be labeled as a retreatist, since he rejected the goals and means of life and lived outside the norm, while not participating in society. The Labeling Theory also takes effect in this case. As a deviant, Holmes takes the labels that other people give him to be true. This would be considered primary deviance since this was James’s first act of rule breaking and his commitment of crime has affected how others think and act toward him. Holmes will be in the criminal justice system for the remaining time of his life and his sentence to life in prison. In this case, he cannot be considered part of recidivism since he

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