Victims And Victimization

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Victims and Victimization Jessieca Omowele Keiser University Criminology September 18, 2011 Professor Colon Abstract Until the 1980s, the study of crime and deviance focused on the criminal or deviant, or on the social processes that labeled particular actions as criminal or deviant. From the 1980s onwards, there has been an interest in the study of the victims- who they are, the interactions between criminal and victim, and the effect of crime or other deviance on the victim (Abercrombie, Hill and Turner 2006). Victims and Victimization Victims were once viewed to be “in the wrong place at the wrong time” but that changed more than 60 years ago when studies found that, the victim’s own behavior is important in the crime process. Victims were found to influence criminal behavior by playing an active role in a criminal incident, such as when an assault victim initially provokes an eventual attacker. Victims can also play an indirect role in a criminal incident, such as when a woman adopts a lifestyle that continually brings her into high-crime areas (Siegel 2011). The discovery that victims play an important role in the crime process has prompted the scientific study of victims, or victimology. Criminologists who focus their attention on crime victims refer to themselves as victimologists(Siegel 2011). Victimization’s Toll on Society The costs of victimization can include such things as damaged property, pain and suffering to victims, and the involvement of the police and other agencies of the justice system. The pain and suffering inflicted on an individual can result in the need for medical care, the loss of wages from not being able to go to work, and reduced quality of life from debilitating injuries and /or fear of being victimized again, which can result in not being able to go to work, long term medical care, and counseling. There
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