Rational Choice Theory

Crimonology Chapter 4

Terms in this set (...)

Choice Theory
when criminal acts are based on rational decision making then the illegal act is a rational choice
Development of Rational Choice Theory
choice theory has its roots in the classical school of criminology developed by Cesare Becarria
Cost benefit analysis
criminals behave in a predictable or rational way when deciding to commit crime= COST BENEFIT ANALYSIS= reduced by increasing the costs and reducing the potential for gain
Rational Choice Theory
law -violating behavior is the product of careful thought and planning. Offenders choose crime after considering both personal and situational factors
Offense Specific
the idea that offenders react selectively to the characteristics of particular cimes (can i get away? how much will i get out of this?)
Offender Specific
the idea that offenders evaluate their skills motives, needs, and fears before deciding to commit crime
a specific event
a personality Trait
the excitement of successfully executing illegal activities in dangerous situations
Seduction of Crime
the situational inducements or immediate benefits (Psychological or Social) that draw offenders into violations of the law
when efforts to reduce one crime also reduce others
when crime control efforts in one local help reduce crime in surrounding areas
Crime moves or is redirect to another target area
Short-term positive effect but criminals always adjust to new conditions
Criminals try new offenses they had previously avoided i.e burglars become armed robbers
Beccaria's Theory
General deterrence theory holds that the greater the SEVERITY,CERTAINTY , and SPEED of legal sanctions the lower the crime rate
Specific Deterrence Theory
criminal sanctions should be so powerful that known criminals will never repeat their criminal acts
the rate of return to jail
The Incapacitation Effect
the shorter the span of opportunity; the fewer offenses can be committed so jail them during their prime offending years