Increase in Violent Crime Term Paper

Pages: 10 (2585 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 7  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Criminal Justice

¶ … politician to use in his campaign with regard to violent crime in America. The writer explores several policy plans and describes them in detail as methods that the politician plans to push for when he is elected.

For the past few decades, the American public has voiced concerns about the crime rate in this country. Whether it was someone from the rural areas of the nation or someone who lived an urban lifestyle the problems with crime in America had grown to significant proportions. Political policies called for more prisons and as fast as thy were being built they were being filled with people convicted of everything from failure to pay traffic tickets to murder and mayhem. In recent years the nation saw a shift as prison overcrowding became a media issue. News show cameras depicted prison and jail populations that were illegal. Inmates were sleeping on floors, food was scarce and the state department authorities threatened serious financial penalties if the problems were not addressed. Fast forward to several years ago and the American public is back to square one. Jails and prisons spent several years releasing the inmates that they considered the least dangerous and many of them went into society only to commit crimes of violence or against public morals.

Recent statistics indicate that violent crime is once again on the rise and the public is demanding answers. The public has the right to demand answers. After all, they are the victims of violent crimes. How many more calls to mothers will be made that their child, or spouse or other loved one was gunned down, raped, or assaulted before politicians wake up and take charge of the problem?

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This proposes a five point plan to provide relief for the American public against violent criminals while at the same time providing relief for the overburdened jail and prison systems across the country.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Increase in Violent Crime Assignment

The Time is Now the time to take charge when it comes to violent crime is now. For two long politicians and government officials have taken the road of least resistance when it comes to crime. Unfortunately, defendants' rights groups have worked to tie the hands of the American public when it comes to protecting itself from crimes of violence. In the past few years inmate complaints and suits have brought the nation to its knees with regard to criminals and placed the criminals in charge.

This proposed five point plan is aimed at reducing the number of violent offenders that are released from jails and prisons as well as create policy to prevent early release for several of the most violent offenses. The way to handle this emerging crime problem is to get tough now and not let up.

For the five point plan to work and gain American support it is important that the American public have an understanding about current crime statistics.

The number of violent crimes in the United States rose for a second straight year in 2006, marking the first sustained increase in homicides, robberies and other serious offenses since the early 1990s, according to an FBI report recently released (Eggen, 2007)."

According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Report the nation saw a 1.3% increase in violent crimes during 2006. In addition there was a total six percent rise in robberies as well as an increase across the board in homicide offenses. This was the second year in a row that the violent crimes have increased. In 2005 there was a 2.3 increase in the overall incidence of violent crimes (Eggen, 2007).

Much of the increase was concentrated in medium-size cities, including the District of Columbia, officials said. Criminologists and law enforcement officials offer varying theories for the upswing, including an increase in the juvenile population, growing numbers of released prison inmates and the rise of serious gang problems in smaller jurisdictions (Eggen, 2007)."

This increase comes after several years of driving crime rates down, so in creating a five point plan to combat violent crime it will be important to address the issues that created the turn around in the recent years.

The number of violent offenses fell steadily and often dramatically from 1993 until early in this decade, when the volume of reports began to level off. The first significant increase came in 2005, driven by dramatic spikes in homicides and robberies in many mid-size and large cities, from Cleveland to Houston to Phoenix. The Midwest was hit particularly hard, with a violent- crime increase twice as high as in the nation overall (Eggen, 2007)."

One of the significant changes that may have contributed to the recent rise in crime was the decision by law enforcement officials across the nation to provide early release in the effort to alleviate overcrowding in the system.

This five point plan addresses that issue.

Five Point Plan

First- the time has come for America to get tough on crime again. While it is a motto that is often discussed and thrown about, the reality remains that the nation has gone soft on crime. Criminals are currently being sentenced to a certain amount of time in jail or prison but are only being required to do a percentage of that time.

In some areas they are only required to serve thirty percent of their sentence before they are automatically released. In addition many jails and prisons are providing the opportunity for inmates to achieve trustee status and allow them to receive two days credit for every one day that they serve, which then cuts their required 30% of the sentence to 15% of that sentence.

In reality a convicted inmate could be sentenced to 10 years in prison and actually serve approximately less than 18 months before being released.

With the high rate of recidivism in this country, the early release programs serve little purpose other than to place the violent offender back out on the street sooner to commit new crimes.

The first part of this five point plan is to revamp and re-evaluate the sentencing guidelines nationwide.

Every state has a set of guidelines in place that provide a minimum and maximum sentence for various crimes. One example of this guideline can be found in Tennessee, where a Class C felony conviction carries a sentence of three to six years.

In actuality the judge can sentence the criminal to the full six years however, he may only be required to serve few months and will do the rest of his sentence on paper, or probation.

The Justice Department also proposed to lighten some penalties against arms dealers for violations of the Gun Control Act, on grounds that the "additional flexibility" will give ATF an ability "to more effectively address violations (Eggen, 2007)."

The first step of this five point plan will be to provide a national standard of sentencing guidelines. Currently a person committing armed robbery in one state, faces a different possible punishment than if he or she commits the same crime in another state.

It is important for the nation to get together and provide a national standard for sentencing. There are several reasons for this initial part of the five point plan. The first reason is that it provides protection from several states that currently have lax sentencing guidelines and attract violent offenders to their areas because of that.

Violent offenders learn about the different statutes and sentencing guidelines and know to move to those states to avoid harsh penalties of caught.

A national standard of sentencing guidelines must be the first step to combating this issue. The standard will apply to all states equally.

Second- the second step in this five point plan to combat violent crime in America will provide harsher sentencing laws. At the same time a federal standardized plan is designed to provide the same and equal sentencing guidelines across the nation, the sentencing guidelines will be stricter and more harsh.

At the time a national standard is being designed, is the perfect time to throw out all sentencing guidelines currently being used in various states and instead start from the ground up with stricter, more harsh sentences when it comes to violent crime.

One example is the states that allow a three to six-year sentence for a class C felony. A class C felony can include robbery, aggravated robbery and other crimes of violence.

The second step to this five point plan will include much longer and tougher sentences for this and other violent crime convictions.

Violent crimes (murder, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault) were up in every size community, from those under 10,000 (+1%) to those over a million (+0.2). Violent crimes were up in communities the size of Macon and Warner Robins by 2% (Eggen, 2007)."

These statistics indicate that current punishments are not serving as effective deterrents to would be and habitual criminals.

One of the ways to prevent violent criminals from going back on the street and committing new crimes is to not let them out… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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