Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Even More NCJRS Abstracts


NCJ 216758
Jim Sidanius ; Michael Mitchell ; Hillary Haley ; Carlos David Navarrete
Support for Harsh Criminal Sanctions and Criminal Justice Beliefs: A Social Dominance Perspective
Social Justice Research Volume:19 Issue:4 Dated:December 2006 Pages:433 to 449

Results indicated that support for group-based social inequality (dominance) was positively correlated with support for all three types of harsh criminal sanctions as well as support for the dominant criminal justice beliefs that are used to justify criminal justice practices. The findings also revealed that support for harsh criminal sanctions was at least partly motivated by the desire to establish and maintain group-based dominance, which was then justified in terms of moral norms such as retribution and/or causal beliefs such as the belief in deterrence. Participants were undergraduate students who participated to fulfill a course requirement. Participants completed a Likert-type questionnaire measuring three criminal justice beliefs: (1) belief in general deterrence; (2) belief in specific deterrence; and (3) belief in retribution. The questionnaire also measured support for harsh criminal sanctions (support for the death penalty, general punitiveness, and support for torture) and support for group-based dominance and social hierarchy. Structural equation models were used to analyze the relationship between support for group-based dominance and support for harsh criminal sanctions. Future research should examine whether criminal justice practices contribute to the production and maintenance of group-based dominance. Table, figures, references

NCJ 216747
Alfred Blumstein
Crime Drop in America: An Exploration of Some Recent Crime Trends
Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention Volume:7 Issue:1 Dated:2006 Pages:17 to 35

There are two major components in explaining the crime drop in the United States in the 1990s. First, is the undoing of the rise in violence by young people with handguns between 1985 and 1993. Second, was the general continuation of the crime drop by people over 30 that had begun before 1980. The drop by the young people was significant and has consumed much of the attention. The crime decline of the 1990s largely came to an end by 2000. The period between 2000 and 2005 saw no significant change in aggregate violence rates. One issue that has attracted considerable attention in the United States and around the world has been the impressive decline in violent crime in the United States from about 1993 to 2000. In particular, murder and robbery rates both declined over 40 percent during that period. There has been a widespread search for explanations of this trend. This study examined the data on the crime decline and a variety of explanations that have been proposed. The focus is on murder and robbery because they are both well defined crimes and are well measured in police reports. The study examined the effects of incarceration, changing demographics, policing and control of guns, and the changing nature of markets selling crack cocaine. Figures, references

NCJ 216748
Serge Brochu
Evidence-Based Drug Policies
Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention Volume:7 Issue:1 Dated:2006 Pages:36 to 45

The question under consideration is which route should be used in treating drug abuse: prevention, punishment, or rehabilitation. Research suggests that drug abuse prevention and treatment have statistically and clinically significant effects. Studies clearly indicate that many drug treatment strategies offered in jails or prisons are more effective than incarceration alone in reducing recidivism. Research has made it possible to identify successful prevention and treatment programs for drug abusers. This paper addresses what scientific research tells us about effective programs and how this information could be used to guide drug policies. The paper addresses three types of drug policies: drug laws, drug prevention strategies, and drug treatment strategies that might be used to improve drug policies. For each of these areas, the paper discusses what criminological research tells us about the best practices. References

No comments: