Program Review In The Criminal Justice System Criminology Essay

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Criminal justice system is a government institution charged with the responsibility of maintaining social order and mitigating crimes, punishing those who break laws and providing correctional facilities. Besides ensuring that suspects have protection against abuse by investigating authorities, they ensure that justice is served to those accused and those affected by the criminal activities. Serge and Jacques (2010) notes that criminal justice system serves to investigate, prosecute and punish crimes. Investigation is one of the main roles of criminal justice system, it involves looking for evidence that could either incriminate if sufficient evidence points that an individual committed a crime, or exonerate a suspect if no enough evidence or if there is evidence that the suspect is innocent. It is normally done by law enforcement agents, for example, the federal police. Once there is evidence the case is referred to prosecuting attorney.

Criminal justice system has multimedia program as one of their several system programs. The program has been necessitated by the need to inform victims and suspects of their rights. Many suspects and victims are ignorant about the criminal justice system and its routines, processes and the need to participate in them actively.

Multimedia program is a standardized service that is being delivered personally to those affected by crime acts and crime victims at little or cost. Serge and Jacques (2010) recognize that multimedia program uses a scripted and filmed DVD to educate the victims and meet the knowledge deficits of those that have been affected by criminal act. The multimedia DVD is used in every field of crime not considering the seriousness of the criminal acts, it is used with almost every seriously injured victim not considering the kind of victimization or level of injury. The main objectives of multimedia are to inform victims about the criminal justice system and to relief them of the emotional problems they undergo. Multimedia program provides various definitions of terms that are often used in the criminal justice system including plaintiff, defendant, indictment, damage, victim impact statements among others. It also make victims knowledgeable concerning notification rights, right not be molested and other rights such as the right to be present at bond hearings and to be released on bond, to comment on plea bargains and a right to crime victim compensation program and how to access it. According to Fuller (2005), multimedia also focuses on common psychological responses to victimization and ways to do away with the distress of this response. It highlights various reactions that are common for example distress, depression, fear, guilt and anxiety. It also makes note of a victims behavior to avoid persons, situations or location that may make them remember the crime, there is the tendency for a victim to resort to drugs, potential for increasing use of alcohol. Multimedia recognizes the likelihood of development of the mention outcomes and difficulties and offers ways to deal with them.

Multimedia fills the knowledge gap of victims and the affected party by improving their knowledge about familiarity with the system of criminal justice, how their cases are relevant to their rights and the benefits of being involved in the criminal justice system for example victims’ compensation schemes given when a victim is innocent and his reputation was tarnished. Multimedia delivers the content to the victims in a way that is comfortable to them; it is not threatening and not embarrassing to criminal victims.

Multimedia program was initiated mainly to educate those involved in crime acts about various issues concerning the criminal justice system. According to Fuller (2005), criminal law and various corresponding processes that are related to the criminal justice system are complex and challenging. The criminal justice system does punish law breakers by using various judgments that are available in their system which may include fines, penalties, probation and even imprisonment. Apart from imposing punishments, correctional facilities ensure that individuals reform and rehabilitate; correctional system also accommodates prisoners. Among the rehabilitative agencies are the prison, education system, drug rehabilitation centers, half way houses, and employment commissions. The criminal justice system serves to protect its citizens while at the same instance punishing and rehabilitating law breakers. The criminal justice system in itself is composed of various aspects including entities, laws, procedures, and organizations.

The multimedia program will encourage and enhance those who deliver services to victims hospitalized to be effective and respond quickly to offer effective empathetic services. Criminal justice also plays a significant role in mentoring the law breakers, it assists them to come to terms and relate what has happened and what ought to be done to avoid such situations from happening again. It also enables them to come to terms with real life situations and learn how to lead normal lives after the event (Perri & Lichtenwald, 2009).

The impact of violent crime is devastating to victims, their family members and loved ones. Multimedia is a necessary program in informing the victims and general public about their rights and the steps one can follow in fighting for it. Even though informing the victims do not bring them into their state before, it is necessary that they understand their rights and claim them whenever possible so as to regain a sense of control. While it is necessary to prevail emotional and physical support to victims it is important that a community should understand and have access to the services and compensation they have a right to (Richard & Sharon, 2005). It is also very necessary for medical and psychological service professionals that are able to respond and identify the needs of suspects with information concerning feedback to trauma and the procedures of the criminal justice system.

Multimedia participants include all the stake holders in the media industry, ministry of justice, victims, affected parties, and the departments of criminal justice system. The role of media is largely to breach the gap of ignorance and educate the various victims that are affected by the criminal act. The Victims’ lack of knowledge concerning the criminal justice system, the processes that are involved, court processes and the need to participate and the available benefits of being involved in the processes, this lack of knowledge owe to be addressed. This shortage has however been improved through educational and sensitization campaigns that are mainly delivered through the multimedia presentations. Multimedia also uses images that are frequently related to the criminal justice system for example the law enforcement parties and courtroom experiences. Multimedia also highlights the various scenes of criminal victims that are involving themselves in positive activities and social behaviors that enable others to imitate the same and thus help reduce emotional disturbance and enable them to be associated with positive character.

The role of the ministry of justice is to ensure the provision of funds through the governments and ensure the formulation of appropriate policies that will ensure that the goal of educating and sensitizing victims on their rights is met (Perri & Lichtenwald, 2009). It is the ministry that ensures that policies formulated are implemented to the letter; it facilitates the working of criminal justice system and ensures that the criminal system functions as expected.

Multimedia program employs various data collection methodologies including interview, observation and use of questionnaires. Multimedia program needs to collect information from the victims and relevant parties involved in criminal activities that will help them form a picture of situations and understand the victims well. It also collects information from those patient victims that are admitted to the hospitals and the hospital staff as well.

Multimedia is playing an important role in the criminal justice system and therefore it is recommended that its work be supported by all the stakeholders in the criminal justice system. It should not be seen that multimedia jeopardizes the privacy of victims by airing their situations but its role in educating victims about the criminal justice system owe to be emphasized. Multimedia educates victims on their notification rights and other rights including the right to bond hearings attendants and the right to compensation in case one’s right is violated.