Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction

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9780130887290: Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction

Written by an author dedicated to making the subject of criminal justice interesting for students, this streamlined paperback focuses directly upon the crime picture in America and the three traditional elements of the criminal justice system: police, courts, and corrections. It uses real-life stories throughout that are designed to capture and sustain the attention of its readers and guide them towards achieving a meaningful and comprehensive understanding of the concepts covered in this dynamic field of study.

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From the Inside Flap:

PREFACE

Criminal justice is a dynamic and fluid field of study. Ever changing crime statistics, newsworthy events involving American law enforcement, precedent-setting U.S. Supreme Court decisions, and rapidly breaking innovations in correctional practice all challenge instructors and students alike to keep pace with a field undergoing constant modification.

As the floodgates to the twenty-first century open wider, and accelerated change engulfs American society, it is appropriate that a streamlined and up-to-date book such as this should be in the hands of students. The information age and all that it has wrought is here, and the quick dissemination of information has become a vital part of contemporary life.

Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction results from the realization that today's justice students need to have the latest quality information available to them in a concise and affordable source. The paperback format of this book has made it possible to quickly translate the latest happenings in the justice field into a pragmatic textbook that is both inexpensive and easy to read.

Criminal Justice: A Brief Introduction focuses directly on the crime picture in America and the three traditional elements of the criminal justice system: police, courts, and corrections. The text is enhanced by the addition of career boxes that can assist today's pragmatically minded students in making appropriate career choices. Colorful photographs, charts, graphs, and other visual aids help keep student attention and add variety to the text. Twenty-First Century Criminal Justice boxes, which are placed strategically throughout the book, draw attention to the many exciting possibilities facing the justice system as it realizes the possibilities held out by the new millennium. APB News! stories, an added feature in this edition, bring a true-to-life dimension to the text, and allow insight into the everyday workings of the justice system.

As the author of numerous books on criminal justice, I have often been amazed at how the end result of the justice process is sometimes barely recognizable to anyone involved in the process as justice in any practical sense of the word. It is my sincere hope that the technological and publishing revolutions that have contributed to this book will combine with a growing social awareness to facilitate needed changes in our system; and that will help supplant what have at times appeared as self-serving, system-perpetuated injustices with new standards of equity, compassion, understanding, fairness, and heartfelt justice for all.

Frank Schmalleger, Ph.D.
The Justice Research Association
March 2000

From the Back Cover:


* WebExtras! These hyperlinks, build right into the text, take students to crime and justice-related Web sites. Interspersed throughout every chapter, WebExtras! Include the FBI's home page, a virtual tour of the U.S. Supreme Court, an in-depth history of the Columbine High School shootings, a special Macromedia Flash® presentation on "Crimes that shaped the Twentieth Century," and much more!
* Library Extras! These end-of-chapter Web-based "additional readings" lead students to Web-documents that expand on materials and concepts found in the text in a new and fun way. Included among the nearly 100 Library Extras! Found in the new edition are documents such as the new Challenge of Crime in a Free Society (1998), Perspectives on crime and Justice (1999), and Race, crime, and the Administration of Justice (1999).
* Web Quests! Found at the end of each chapter, these Web-based assignments are designed to teach students how to use the Internet to research topics and to find information in the criminal justice area.
* Audio Chapter Introductions. These chapter-specific audio introductions have been recorded by the author to provide additional insight into the workings of the justice system, and are available to anyone with an Internet connection and free RealPlayer® or MediaPlayer® software.

The fourth edition includes new coverage of the Columbine High School shootings; the infamous hate-crime based Texas pickup-truck dragging death; the killing of Amadou Diallo, the 22 year old unarmed black West African immigrant who was shot at 41 times by white members of the NYPD; the Michigan murder conviction of Nathaniel Abraham, who was 11 years old at the time of the killing; the 1999 Wedgwood Baptist church shooting, and much more.

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