Swiftness, Severity and Certainty

What are the three major elements of crime deterrence?


The scientific approach to studying criminal behavior...

Scientific Approach

Observe a behavior, form an idea, test the hypothesis, conclude results.

Development of Principles

Studying crime allows us to learn and apply laws going forward

Criminal Justice

The study of the agencies of social control


Behavior that departs from the norm but is not always criminal


An act deemed as socially unacceptable or harmful or dangerous, that is specifically defined, prohibited, and punishable under criminal law

Classical School

School of thought that emerged from the middle ages, people who broke laws were seen as being possessed by the devil

Bentham Utilitarianism

Pain of the punishment should exceed the benefit of the crime


the application of the scientific approach to the social world

Cesar Lombroso

Biological Positivism - believed that serious offenders were BORN criminals

Chicago School

School of thought that directly challenged Positivism - Entailed a belief that the environment played a factor in criminal activity

Social Psychological

School of thought that began in the 1930s and 1940s, and held that human relationships played a factor in criminal activity (Group Dynamics, and Socialization Factors)

Conflict and Crime

Theory developed by Karl Marx, that the most powerful people will continue to use their power to further advance their positions

Developmental Criminology

School of thought that is inclusive of all others, believes that crime is a Dynamic process and can be looked at over the career life of a criminal

Mosaic Code

Laws of the Old Testament including the Ten commandments, is used as the basis for the U.S. legal system

Types of Crime

Felony and Misdemeanor

Ethical Issues

Picking what to study, whom to study, and how to conduct the study determine whether or not the study has...

Crime Data

Helps us formulate theories that explain onsets of crime, as well as devise social policies that facilitate the control or elimination of crime


Primary source of crime data?

Crime/Total Population * 100,000

Formula for Crime Rates

Less than 40%

Victims of many serious crimes do not report to the police, therefore crimes do not become a part of this data, what is the percentage associated with unreported crimes?

Witner vs. State of NC

Woman on trial for harming her unborn fetus.

Fox and Levin

Thrill, Mission, and Expedience are components of these criminologists theories pertaining to serial killers

Nature of Murder

More common in urban areas, typically male, and disproportionately african american...

Female Serial Killers

This group makes up 10-15% of the Serial Killers

Criminological Enterprise

The various subareas included within the scholarly discipline of criminology, which, taken as a whole, define the field of study.

Valid Measure

A measure that actually measures what it purports to measure; a measure that is factual.

Reliable Measure

A measure that produces consistent results from one measurement to another.

White-Collar Crime

Illegal acts that capitalize on a person's status in the marketplace. White-collar crimes may include theft, embezzlement, fraud, market manipulation, restraint of trade, and false advertising.


Subarea of criminology that focuses on the correction and control of criminal offenders.


Treatment of criminal offenders that is aimed at preventing future criminal behavior.

Mandatory Sentences

A statutory requirement that a certain penalty shall be carried out in all cases of conviction for a specified offense or series of offenses.


The view that people's behavior is motivated by the pursuit of pleasure and the avoidance of pain.

Classical Criminology

Theoretical perspective suggesting that (1) people have free will to choose criminal or conventional behaviors; (2) people choose to commit crime for reasons of greed or personal need; and (3) crime can be controlled only by the fear of criminal sanctions.

Biosocial Theory

Approach to criminology that focuses on the interaction between biological and social factors as they are related to crime.

Sociological Criminology

Approach to criminology, based on the work of Quetelet Durkheim, which focuses on the relationship between social factors and crime.


A lack of norms or clear social standards. Because of rapidly shifting moral values, the individual has few guides to what is socially acceptable.

Chicago School

Group of urban sociologists who studied the relationship between environmental conditions and crime.


Process of human development and enculturation. Socialization is influenced by key social processes and institutions.

Critical Criminology

he view that crime is a product of the capitalist system.

Developmental Theory

The view that criminality is a dynamic process, influenced by social experiences as well as individual characteristics.

Social Structure Theory

The view that disadvantaged economic class position is a primary cause of crime.

Social Process Theorists

The view that criminality is a function of people's interactions, with various organizations, institutions, and processes in society.

Critical Criminologists

Members of a branch of criminology that focuses on the oppression of the poor, women, and minorities, thereby linking class conflict, sexism, and racism to crime rates. Critical Criminologists examine how those who hold political and economic power shape the law to uphold their self-interests.

Criminal Law

The written code that defines crimes and their punishment.

Conflict View

The belief that criminal behavior is defined by those in power, in such a way as to protect and advance their own self interests.

Interactionist View

The belief that those with social power are able to impose their values on society as a whole, and these values then define criminal behavior.

National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS)

Program that requires local police agencies to provide a brief account of each incident and arrest within 22 crime patterns, including incident, victim, and offender information.

National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)

The ongoing victimization study conjoined jointly by the Justice Department and the U.S. Census Bureau that surveys the victims about their experiences with law violation.

Masculinity Hypothesis

The view that women who commit crimes have biological and psychological traits similar to those of men.

Liberal Feminist Theory

A view of crime that suggests that the social and economic role of women in society controls their crime rates.

Racial Threat Theory

As the size of the black population increases, the perceived threat to the white population increases, resulting in a greater amount of social control imposed on blacks.

Lifestyle Theories

Views on how people become crime victims because of lifestyles that increase their exposure to criminal offenders.

Deviant Place Theory

The view that victimization is primarily a function of where people live.

Victim-Witness Assistance Programs

Government programs that help crime victims and witnesses: may include compensation, court services, and/or crisis intervention.

Victim-Offender Reconciliation Programs

Mediated face-to-face encounters between victims and their attackers, designed to produce restitution agreements and, if possible, reconciliation.


The life instinct, which drives people toward self-fulfillment and enjoyment.


The death instinct, which impels towards self destruction. Psychopharmacological Relationships - In such a relationship, violence is the direct consequence of ingesting mood-altering substances.

Economic Compulsive Behavior

Violence committed by drug users to support their habit.

Systemic Link

A link between drugs and violence that occurs when drug dealers turn violent in their competition with rival gangs.

Subculture of Violence

A segment of society in which violence has become legitimized by the custom and norms of that group.

Virility Mystique

The belief that males must separate their sexual feelings from their need for love, respect, and affection.

Shield Laws

Laws that protect women from being questioned about their sexual history unless such questioning directly bears on the case.

Aggravated Rape

Rape involving multiple offenders, weapons, and victim injuries.

Felony Murder

A killing that accompanies a felony, such as robbery or rape.

Second Degree Murder

A person's wanton disregard for the victim's life and his or her own desire to inflict serious bodily harm on the victim, which results in the victims death.


Homicide without malice (the intention or desire to do evil)

Voluntary or NonNegligent Manslaughter

A killing committed in the heat of passion, or during a sudden quarrel that provoked violence.

Mass Murder

The killing of four or more victims by one or a few assailants within a single event.

Spree Killer

A killer of multiple victims whose murders occur over a relatively short span of time and often follow no discernible pattern.


Fighters who are usually located in rural areas and attack military, police, and government targets in an effort to unseat or replace the existing government.


Individuals or groups who confront the existing government for control of all or a portion of its territory, or to force political concessions in sharing political power.


Either nationalists who struggle against a sovereign power that controls the land, or local groups that battle the existing government over issues of ideology and power.

Situational Inducement

Short-term influence on a person's behavior, such as financial problems or peer pressure, which increases risk taking.

Constructive Possession

A legal fiction that applies to situations in which persons voluntarily give up physical custody of their property but still retain legal ownership.


Amateur shoplifter who does not self-identify as a thief but who systematically steals merchandise for personal use.

Booster (Heel)

Professional shoplifter who steals with the intention of reselling stolen merchandise.

Confidence Games (ConGame)

A swindle, often involving a get-rich-quick scheme, and often with illegal overtones so that the victim will be afraid or embarrassed to call the police.


A buyer and seller of stolen merchandise.

Enterprise Crime

Use of illegal tactics to gain profit in the marketplace. Enterprise crimes can involve either the violation of law in the course of an otherwise legitimate occupation or the sale and distribution of illegal commodities.

Organized Crime

Illegal activities of people and organizations who acknowledged purpose is profit through illegitimate business enterprise.


Using illegal means to cheat an organization, its consumers, or both, on a regular basis.


Repeated, excessive, unnecessary buying and selling of a client's stock.


Skimming customer trading profits by falsifying trade information.


Forcing victims to pay for services or contracts to which they have a clear right.

Influence Peddling

Using one's institutional position to grant favors and sell information to which one's co-conspirators are not entitled.


Systematic theft of company property.

Corporate (Organizational) Crime

Powerful institutions or their representatives willfully violate the laws that restrain these institutions from doing social harm or require them to do social good.


The process of creating transnational markets, politics, and legal systems and thus forming a global economy.

Etailing Fraud

Using the internet to buy or sell merchandise illegally.

La Cosa Nostra

A national syndicate of some 25 Italian-dominated crime families who control organized crime in distinct geographic areas.

Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act (RICO)

Federal legislation that enables prosecutors to bring additional criminal or civil charges against people engaged in two or more acts prohibited by 24 existing federal and 8 state laws. RICO features monetary penalties that allow the government to confiscate all profits derived from criminal activities. Originally intended to be used against organized crime, RICO has also been used against white-collar criminals.

Enterprise Theory of Investigation (ETI)

A standard investigative tool of the FBI that focuses on criminal enterprise and attacks the structure or the criminal enterprise rather than criminal acts viewed as isolated incidents.