attached photo shows the assignment paper. had it done originally and lost it. starting from scratch again. there are 2 examples that the teacher provided us. this is my first time ever doing anything like this. just on a huge time crunch. need this done asap. was due today. no more than 10 pages.
PLEASE NOTE, THIS STUDENT RECEIVED A “B” 125/150 DUE TO NEEDED MORE SPECIFIC DEPTH ON THEORIES AS WELL AS POLICY RELEVANCE AS WELL AS LACK OF INTERVIEW QUESTION SUBMITTED. FORMAT IS GOOD HOWEVER.
Some crime fighters are big, bulky, and masculine. Not this crime fighter. My aunt, a 5-foot 2-inch petite redhead has the least likely physique as a crime fighter, but can do her job well if not better then any big, bulky, and masculine man. She has been in law enforcement and security positions since she was nineteen years old (37 years). She worked for campus security at the Downtown Chicago DePaul campus, eventually achieving the rank of sergeant. She has worked with the FBI, famous individuals, and has received numerous awards for her work ethic. After twenty years of chasing rapists, doing murder investigations, and receiving death threats by convicted criminals as they are taken to jail, Angela decided to move to Elgin in 2001 after buying a home. She is currently a high-ranking security officer for Advocate Sherman Hospital. I see her as a very responsible compassionate person who is an asset to law enforcement, and this is why I choose her to interview for my debriefing assignment.
In my debriefing, I asked Sergeant a list of questions ranging from her duties of her professional to her personal thoughts on criminal behavior. I also asked questions such as, “Why do you think crimes happens. Do you feel the judicial system treats victims and criminals fairly?” These responses in my debriefing were followed up with research of 2 non-sociological theories and 3 sociological theories that helped further explain the experience of Sergeant and her personal thoughts on criminal behavior in her everyday professional life.
- Rational Choice Theory: Rational Choice Theory is a non-sociological theory that explains that people weigh their options rationally. Rational choices are based on punishment, rewards, cost, and benefits. For instance, Sergeant described some teens as individuals that weigh their options in such situations as joining a gang for protection even though they may not agree with the gang itself, meaning that these teens weigh that being in a gang is better than being shot for not joining a gang. Even when they are a part of a gang, most of the time they will not leave out of fear of being killed. In their eyes, this is a thought-out rational choice, kill or be killed; be the criminal and commit crimes in sake of survival or be the victim.
- Social Process Theory:
- Sergeant also explained that she sees criminals come from all different types of backgrounds, whether that be Caucasian nurses who steal drugs from the hospital, a middle-aged black women who steals a baby from the maternity wards, or young Hispanic teen who shoots at a rival gang. This type of thought derives from the non-sociological Social Process Theorythat everyone is susceptible to crime, but as stated by this theory, it all starts with the interpersonal relationships within institutions, family and surroundings (environment). All of these individuals come from different social classes, different economic standings, and different cultures or families. This is also connected to the process perspectivewhere crime is a function of upbringing, learning, and control. Peers, parents, and teachers influence behavior. Sergeant also sees this in most of the deviantand criminal activity in the hospital, whether that be misdemeanorsand or felonies,they come from environmental factors. Most of the time, “Family issues and their environment cause them to get involved in crime,” she says. This could also been connected to the school of thought that many times criminality is actually genetic. So, if your parent is a criminal, you are more prone to criminal activity.
- Strain Theory:
- A Sociological theory that states that society puts pressure on individuals to obtain social goals such as the “American Dream”.In my debriefing with Sergeant, she felt that many times criminals end up committing crimes out of desperation, and it is the fact that they lack education. Many people in poverty don’t even have the means to go to school. A high school diploma or less would have been fine 20 years ago, but now that corporations demand more education for their employees, people in need of a job cannot even find jobs, because they do not even have enough education to just flip burgers. Society makes it harder for people to even work, which then puts strain on individuals to find other avenues of income such as selling drugs, prostitution, or even white-collar crime.
- Control Theory In Control Theory, human behavior is controlled through close associations with individuals or institutions. stated, “I have a lot of compassion for youth, especially because they are victims of their environment. Their parents cannot straighten themselves out, so the kids have the same problems.” In one story, told the story or two gang member who were friends as children. They were both brought to her hospital, because they shot each other in a gang disagreement. The teens wanted to leave the gangs, but knew that they would be killed if they left. The staff secretly arranged the meeting of the two young men who ended up hugging each other. They were bound by the institutions, or gangs, even though they had been personal friends.
- Relative Deprivation Theory
This theory in caused by envy, mistrust, and aggression resulting from perceptions of economic and social inequality. shared that there is not enough help, money, and funding to help everyone. People in poverty lack insurance and the resources to get staffing that can help. said, “It would take me all night to talk about the vicious circle of people, lack of government, lack of state funding, poverty, drugs, and program cuts.” “You could interpret that strain on a lot of these low-income neighborhoods are could be breeding grounds for unconventional income and crime,” she added. also expressed the lack of legal defense results in a lot of low economically standing individuals going to prison for crimes they did not commit. They are constantly being victimized by the wealthy and even by their own neighbors. also believes these crimes are connected with drugs, poverty, and stated, “Un-education breeds that stuff.” In a side note, when asked about her personal thoughts on criminal behavior she responded with, “Oh my God!! All I can say is crime is so bad that I feel numb, but somebody has to stop it, and I guess that’s people like me.” She added, “The people that run these programs are pushed to the brink, and they need a mental bed at the end of the day. It takes its toll.”
When asked about policies that she needs to follow, three policies stood out from the rest. The first policy was firearm-handling policies. She shared how they have to remove weapons if they have concealed carry and put in a secure gun case and hold it in a gun safe. When they leave, if the weapon is registered, they cannot get the gun back in the hospital, but she has to walk them out. They have to put it in their trunk when they take it out for them, or they have to call the police if the weapon is not legal. This is because a hospital is a “No Gun Zone” to prevent a shooting in a hospital and to protect patients and employees. The second policy that stood out was the HIPA Law policies. HIPA Laws are laws designed to protect a patients’ privacy. “We have to follow HIPA laws, so we can’t share medical information with people inquiring. We can only tell them if the person is there or not. If you are on the VIP list, we tell them they are not here, for rape victims and famous people,” explained Vega. High profile people, their privacy, and the right to receive care are protected by security. The third policy is the most difficult. It deals with helping, protecting patients, and restraining those who are out of control. Vega shared, “At my job, I deal with a lot of psych patients, drug addicts and alcoholics. When they come in and are not violent, I have to follow a process. If they don’t follow directions and are violent, sometimes we even need to do chemical restraint to control their behavior.” She added that if someone has drugs or alcohol, the goods can be seized, and they have no rights. “We dispose of it with a witness watching, and a huge process to be followed. Big amounts are going to be turned into the police,” said. CPI Restraint used to be used. “We use a talking down process now unless they can’t be communicated with. If the staff sees my gloves on, they know I will be using pressure points,” stated . Pressure points are a lot better, because it does not cause damage to the person being restrained. It just temporarily disables them.
In conclusion, after debriefing Sergeant, I feel that these theories are easily applied to everyday life of anyone working or apart of the judicial system. I believe that after interviewing Sergeant, it is easy to see that there is not just one correct theory, but many that is used to define the reasoning behind criminal behavior. There are many reasons to explain criminal behavior, rather than because of their environment, rational choice, or economical strain.
My Debriefing Experience
For my debriefing assignment, I had the privilege of interviewing ————-who is the police chief for the village of. He has been working in law enforcement since 1996 and after talking with him for over an hour back in November, I could tell that he was very professional and good at his job. He was very kind and made sure to provide me with lengthy, detailed responses to every question that I had for him. For this paper, I will apply the answers that he gave me to five theories and concepts as well as talking about the policies that he’s under as the chief of police.
When I asked about his thoughts on why the recidivism rate is so high in this, he said that he thinks that it’s due to a lack of education and a learned criminal behavior from the bad influences that you attain when you hang with groups that may involve themselves in criminal activity. He pointed out that most teens and young adults that commit violent crimes don’t start that kind of behavior by themselves, and it’s not until they hang around other people with similar bad aspirations do things like violent crime occur. Also, he thinks that criminals such as gang bangers end up back in jail or prison again because he feels that people who engage themselves in criminal activity either grow out of it early or never will. The theory that I would apply to this circumstance is the differential association theory because a lot of what it states applies to what he told me. The three main points that this theory conveys are the process of learning criminal behavior by association with criminal patterns, the principle part of learning criminal behavior occurs within intimate personal groups, and finally when criminal behavior is learned, the learning includes techniques of committing the crime, the specific direction of motives, drives, rationalizations, and attitudes.
Because he believes that the recidivism rate is due to crime being a learned behavior, I also believe that the Behavioral or Social learning theory could also apply in this case. The social learning theory maintains that delinquent behavior is learned through the same psychological processes as any other behavior, and behavior is learned when it is reinforced or rewarded. His example of gang bangers works perfectly here because their criminal behavior is both reinforced and rewarded in some cases. For instance, for initiation into a gang, often times someone has to commit a violent crime such as robbery or worse. If they rob a certain place and come back with the money, they will then be rewarded by being able to be a part of this certain gang.
Another question that I asked the police chief was if the decrease in school funding has had any impact on the rise of crime in this area. He said that it has due to a trickle-down effect. If the schools make cuts to their funding, then the schools will have less money and be less efficient which impacts the kids that go there, and that may lead to more kids dropping out of school as a result. His explanation for why this was such a big problem was because people often turn to crime after dropping out of school because they have nothing to look forward to. The theory that I would apply to this example would be the social disorganization theory. This focuses on the conditions within the environment such as deteriorated neighborhoods, inadequate social control, law violating gangs and groups, and conflicting social values. Also, two characteristics of disorganization among institutions include being broken down and lacking authority to control behavior. I feel that this applies well to the school funding issue because if they laid off teachers in the schools, then there would be less authority to control kids’ behavior, and there may also be inadequate social control in those schools as well.
I also asked Him what kind of work his officers engage in when they are on patrol. He said that speeding is one issue in his town because there are a lot of country roads and back roads that people like to go fast on, so he will often assign officers to certain roads looking for speeders. He said that the main reason why he does this is mainly because he wants the people who live in Winnebago to feel safe and not have to feel threatened at all when they’re on the road. In my opinion, I feel that the people who are caught speeding in Winnebago are subjected to the rational choice theory because they are choosing to speed at their own risk and the risk of others on the road. I also believe that this type of behavior is the product of careful thought and behavior, is chosen by the offender after considering both personal and situational factors, and the people who speed generally weigh their options before making this decision, which is normally drive faster in order to get to their destination sooner but run the risk of getting pulled over by a police officer and being issued a ticket.
He also said that one of the most important jobs for his officers is to engage in community policing whenever possible. He thinks that the public perception of police has changed in the eyes of some people over the last couple of years, and he wants his officers to ensure the community that they are there to help them as much as possible. He also stated that it was important for his officers to place themselves in the community in order to know about any issues or complaints that the people may have. I used the subcultural theory to explain this viewpoint since it’s a collection of values and preferences which is communicated to subcultural participants through a process of socialization, and it also emphasizes the contributions made by the variously socialized cultural groups to the phenomenon of crime. Since the town of is very small, I feel that the officers here sometimes rely on what people say or complain about in order to improve the overall environment there and make it a safer place.
When I asked Chief about what he does as a police chief, I found out that he has a lot of policies that he’s under as well as others that he would like to enforce for his police officers. One policy that he included was being able to stay updated with the most recent technology available to him and his officers. He feels an obligation to give his officers the best equipment they could use to do their job efficiently, which includes a high definition dash-cam with sound that comes in clear, a laptop with internet in every car, a GPS system, police radios, and high powered walkie-talkies. He said that he keeps a high powered walkie-talkie on his desk that he can use to talk clearly to the police forces in both Chicago and Peoria. He also loves the serial number technology that is out there today as well. If something is reported stolen, he can call pretty much any pawn shop in the United States where that stolen item may have been sold to and if that item with the matching serial number is there, then he can find out the name and address of the person who stole it and sold it there within just a couple minutes. One policy that he is pushing to legalize currently is a requirement for every single police officer to wear a body camera to clear up any confusion in cases that involve cops in violent confrontations with people. He used the example with Officer Cox who had just recently been killed as an example where having a body camera would have been useful and stated that having them on every officer is actually cheaper than most people think.
Another policy that the police chief is under is which cuts to make when he is forced to make cuts to his police department. He said that his department, along with Rockford’s police department, now has less officers which is something he had a big issue with. The biggest problem he faced was changing how he would utilize some of his officers since he has less of them now than he did in the past, and each officer now has a bigger responsibility in order to make up for the ones that left. The other problem with having less cops on the streets was that since he has less man power, that in-turn makes the streets less safe. He made his displeasure known to me about Rockford’s situation as well because he said that the city is in need of more police officers to help protect the city and instead they made huge cuts to their police department which will make their streets more dangerous than they already are.
The last policy that he talked to me about was his requirement to monitor and keep a log in his computer of how many hours that each police officer has engaged in community service in his department. When I asked him what the favorite part of his job was, he mentioned that reaching out to the community was his favorite part because he loves interacting with the people in his town, and he wants his officers to do the same thing. He even admitted that isn’t known to have a whole lot of violent crime so it’s important to talk to the community to hear any complaints that they may have about the city. If he hears from someone that they witnessed a possible drug deal going on at a location, then he will try and gain more information on the matter from other individuals at that location, then send someone there to monitor the situation.
After meeting with Chief a few weeks ago, I realized that he is one of the nicest, most hardworking individuals that I have ever met. I could tell that he was very passionate about his job and cares a lot about both his community and his police officers. He answered every question that came his way in great detail so that I could apply the theories and concepts that were applicable to what he was talking about as well as the policies that he was under as a chief of police. I learned a lot from this experience and it greatly helped with giving me a better idea of what I want to do.
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