The Effects of Punishment and Sentencing

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Foundations of the Criminal Justice System February 27, 2011 Kevin Kolbe The Effects of Punishment and Sentencing There are four ultimate philosophies surrounding the purpose of sentencing. They are retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, and rehabilitation. Retribution is the philosophy that those who commit a crime deserve to be punished based on the crime that they committed. A wrongdoer that has chosen to violate the laws needs to be punished accordingly. There punishment needs to be in proportion to the crime that was committed. Deterrence is the philosophy of a way of preventing crimes by threatens a punishment. With this philosophy society is making a statement, they are setting an example that certain actions will not be tolerated. Incapacitation is the philosophy that preventing crime by detaining wrongdoers in prison. This is taking them out of society and reducing their ability to commit any other crimes. Rehabilitation is the philosophy that society is best served when wrongdoers are not simply punished but to also provide resources needed to eliminate criminal behavioral. These four philosophies provide us with a basic understanding of what the purpose is behind sentencing. Now that we have a basic understanding of what is behind sentencing let’s look at the structure of sentencing. Some of the things that determine sentencing are legislative sentencing authority, judicial sentencing, and administrative sentencing. Legislative sentencing authority has three bodies for passing the criminal codes that will end up to determine the length of a sentence. Indeterminate sentencing is a term of incarceration that a judge is allowed to determine. The judge also determines the minimum and the maximum terms for a punishment. Determinate sentencing is a period of incarceration that is fixed by the sentencing authority and the minimum and the
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