Criminal Behavior and the Law

Criminology Vs Criminalistics

Criminology is the field of study that deals with crime and the prevention of the crime while criminalistics is the actual application of the studies in order to offer real evidence in cases of crime. Thus, criminologists and criminalists have different roles in the criminal justice system. While criminologists study the psychological and the social characteristics of an offender for identification, criminalists are the forensic scientists that focus on physical evidence relevant to the scene of the crime (Criminalistics vs Criminology, n.d. para. 2).

Criminologists are employed as teachers at universities, sometimes as prison administrators or managers of different projects on crime prevention. As said in Criminological Theory, it is better to prevent crimes than to punish them (Williams & McShane, 2013, p. 19). Very little percentage of criminologists are able to put their knowledge into practice and work at law enforcement. When it comes to the criminalists’ careers in the public sector, not all specialists work with the typical criminal justice careers. Some of them work at the U.S. Postal Service or U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service while some are employed at universities for teaching. Criminalists have smaller demand in the private sector, however, private colleges can employ them or insurance companies, as well as work in the independent forensic labs that provide private services (Criminologist Job Description, Career as a Criminologist, Salary, Employment – Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job, n.d. para. 3).

No matter if I were a criminologist or a criminalist, I will choose the career that is tightly connected with a practical application of my knowledge, both in private and public sectors. Working in law enforcement or in a private forensic lab or studying actual crimes from the criminological point of view are compelling jobs that will not only help the society on dealing with crime and preventing it but also help grow and improve as an individual.

Difference Between White-Collar and Blue-Collar Crime

It is a commonly known fact that when a person commits a crime, he or she violates the laws of the country or state and may be punished according to these laws. Although there is a variety of differentiations of crime types, the main one lies in the distintion between blue-collar and white-collar assaults. Initially, blue-collar crime was associated with crimes committed by a representative of a working or lower class. Nowadays, blue-collar crime is linked to those crimes that are caused by passion or other sudden emotions and crimes that have not been calculated.

When it comes to white-collar crimes, they initially referred to the crimes committed by a representative of a higher society class. Today, white-collar crimes have zero connection to violence, as they aere coined with various forbidden business operations. Some also caller white-collar crimes ‘paper crimes’ as they are connected with fraud or forgery (Henrickson & Sereebutra, 2012, para. 2).

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has taken serious actions in identifying white-collar crime and made steps toward preventing it. The Bureau defines white-collar crime the following way: “Illegal acts that are characterized by deceit, concealment, or violation of trust and which are not dependent upon the application or threat of physical force or violence. Individuals and organizations commit these acts to obtain money, property, or services; to avoid the payment or loss of money or services; or to secure personal or business advantage” (Federal Bureau of Investigation, n.d., p. 1). However, the true scale of white-collar crime remains unknown. UCR provided the statistics that is only able to show limited knowledge of a limited number of committed white-collar crimes.

While white-collar crime has become a serious subject of focus for FBI in the Uniform Crime Reports, blue-collar crime is almost glorified in modern media. From TV Shows like Dexter or True Detective to the brand new podcast phenomenon Serial or documentary Jinx, the public just craves to talk about crime and to know more about it. Crime as entertainment has a large appeal for the audience, as many accept crime drama as real. The popular culture created a very distorted picture of real-world crime and criminality as well as gave some individuals many crime ideas that could have some horrible consequences (Dowler, Fleming, & Muzzatti, 2006, p. 839).

Part-I and Part-II Offenses in UCR

The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program divided criminal offenses into two distinct groups, Part-I and Part-II assaults. All available information on the Part-I offenses is submitted my contributing agencies monthly while providing only arrest data in Part-II offense cases. According to the UCR, Part-I Offenses include murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, aggravated assault, robbery and burglary, motor vehcle theft and others. Murder, rape, and aggravated assault can be classified as Part-I violent assaults while theft, robbery, and burglary are definitely property crimes. Part-II offenses include forgery and counterfeiting, fraud, embezzlement, buying, receiving or possessing stolen property, vandalism, prostitution and others (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2004, para. 10).

References

Criminologist Job Description, Career as a Criminologist, Salary, Employment – Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job. (n.d.). Web.

Criminalistics vs Criminology. (n.d.). Web.

Dowler, K., Fleming, T., & Muzzatti, S. (2006). Constructing Crime: Media, Crime, and Popular Culture. Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice, 48(6), 837-865.

Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2004). Appendix II: Offenses in Uniform Crime Reporting. Web.

Federal Bureau of Investigation. (n.d.). The Measurement of White Collar Crime Using Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Data. Web.

Williams, F. P. III, & McShane M. D. (2013). Criminological Theory (6th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

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