Criminal Justice vs. Community Justice

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Criminal Justice vs. Community Justice

Crime is defined as an act or omission that the law makes punishable. There are different ways in dealing with crime. One, our current system, is the criminal justice approach. Also known as retributive justice, this system is more offender directed than anything else. The other system, which many people think is better, is the community justice, or restorative approach. The restorative approach is much more victim oriented. There is a debate over which system should be used to deal with crime. The two differ in many ways.

One of the areas in which the two differ is the question of whom is the crime a violation of? The criminal justice system believes that crimes are a violation against the state and are punished by the state. On the other hand, the community justice system says that crimes are a violation of the offender, and the community directly affected by it. The focus of criminal justice is retribution. It is focused on the offender and punishing that person for their crime by imprisonment and other punishments. The community justice system is focused on restoration. Community Justice looks to help the victim deal with the violation and try to get back whatever, if any, possessions were lost in the crime.

The proceedings, in which a resolution is made, are entirely different between the two. At a criminal justice proceeding, the case is tried by a state prosecutor, in front of a judge and decided by a jury. Other than testifying and possibly a victim impact statement, the victim does not have much say in the case. But in a community justice proceeding it is quite the opposite. All parties involved (which include the offender, the victim, both families, any other p...

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... community. Church support groups help offenders who are trying to change there life patterns. One of the major advantages of these programs is that offenders leave the corrections system with greater skills than when they entered into it. As, for being more victim oriented, victims have the chance to shape the obligations the offender has to repair the harm. Also, with the many programs for the victim, including the mediation and government support for victims, they do not feel left out of what goes on after the crime.

An argument could last forever on which system is better and why. A better way to look at dealing with crime is to look at it not as this system versus that one , but how can we join the two for a better system. Each has attributes that are necessary , and combining them together would be a good start on the question of how to deal with crime.
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