Criminal justice is a set of institutions and practices established by the governments to uphold social control, deter and mitigate crime, or sanction of people who violate laws with criminal sentences and rehabilitation efforts. Both the accused and the victims have a right to legal protection. The accused can be represented by lawyers in courts of law. They can appeal to the cases if they feel they do not deserve the penalties imposed against them. Anybody who is accused of any crime is advised to remain silent so that what they say would not be used against them. They are assumed innocent until they are found guilty by the courts of law.
The aim of criminal justice is to punish offenders as well as accord justice to the offended. The punishments, sentences, and penalties are meant to deter criminals from repeating the same mistakes and discouraging would-be offenders. While at the prison, offenders are taught technical skills that can earn them income upon their release from prison. Juvenile drug addicts can be arrested for correctional and rehabilitation purposes.
They are treated and counseled. Criminal justice is important to any country as it sets the ethical and behavioral standards that the government of such countries should adhere to when deciding what is lawful and what is unlawful. The research focuses on the history of law, the purpose of the law, people in law careers, their duties, and qualifications.
Criminal Justice Research
A world without criminal justice would be chaotic. People would commit offenses with impunity. Criminal justice exists to restore lawfulness and orderliness in the society. In most countries, the parliament or the legislature is charged with the responsibility of making laws. The judiciary is charged with enshrining these laws in the constitution. The executive, through the police administration in the office of the president, is charged with maintaining law and orderliness, arrest suspects and offenders. The magistrates and judges hear out cases as well as pass verdicts and sentences.
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Studying law is important to interested individuals as they get exposed to law terminologies and systems. Law defends people from evil as they are enlightened on what is wrong and what is right. Law promotes the common good of people. It is not just concerned with the evil in the society but by the focus to stay lawful and pursue own interests. Law helps people to avoid revenge and seek amicable solutions to conflicts in the courts of law. It helps people resolve conflicts over resources that are limited (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 1982). The famous Solomonic ruling is an example of this. It encourages people to do what is right and moral since evil is punished and good behavior is rewarded.
History of Law
Law is as old as mankind. Law embodies wisdom and good morals. Law was needed to differentiate civilization and barbarism as well as to distinguish between barbarism and savagery. There was a need for society to regulate its standard and live according to accepted standards of ethics and values. The Greeks and the Romans are believed to have first introduced the concept of law. The initial forms of law were primitive, often presented verbally. With time the concept of constitution appeared and laws were written down. Organized criminal justice systems were formed to help enact and monitor laws (O'Connor, 23, 2010).
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People in the Law Career
The law career is mainly composed of lawyers, attorneys, judges, magistrates, solicitors, court clerks, juvenile carte takers, and other insubordinate staff. Law is a high profile that employs scores of people. The remuneration of these law experts is so good and comes with benefits such as hefty house allowances, motor vehicle schemes, medical schemes, insurance cover among other miscellaneous allowances. The pay is good so that they are not tempted into bribery. The number of lawyers and law practices has been on the rise. In the year 2011, the number had shot to 1,225,452 in the US alone. This number shot to 1,500,289 in 2013 census for lawyers. According to NALP salary reports of August 2012, recent law graduates earn between $40,000 to $65,000 in a year. Established lawyers (senior) earn up to $ 200,000 a year.
Duties of Law
General duties of law include restoring order and sanity in the society and to uphold morals and shun evils in the society. Specific duties of law depend on specific fields of law. For instance, tribunal lawyers deal with land cases while divorce lawyers deal with cases of divorce and separation.
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General Qualifications for Lawyers, Magistrates, and Judges
- Any gender is eligible to apply to be a lawyer, magistrate, or judge.
- They must have studied law.
- They must meet the required medical tests and should be medically fit to take up legal careers.
- The disabled can also apply if they meet the above requirements
- They must be of sound mind, with known criminal conduct.
- Prior experience is required for higher and competitive posts like senior magistrates, high court judges, and Justices. Years of service and prior rulings and won cases are an additional advantage for individuals seeking to be appointed to these positions.
- Candidates must explicitly indicate good aptitudes and mastery of various fields of law.
Education requirements depend on different companies and organizations. To join law schools, candidates are expected to be good in languages, eloquent and assertive. However, the general academic expectations are diplomas, bachelors, masters as well as doctorate degrees.
Criminal justice is very important to any government and its people as it seeks to create legal standards for society. These laws are enshrined in the constitution. There is a division of labor in the dispensation of justice from the lawmakers to the law enforcers. It is evident that without law the society would be chaotic (Aebi & Stadnic, 23, 2007).