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Prisons can prevent crime by creating a deterrent for potential criminals. The idea of being in
prison can persuade someone away from criminal behaviour. Prisons are known for being
`tough on crime' and prisons are used for purposes which the government describes as:
to prevent a person accused of a crime escaping before trial,
to prevent a violent person from causing harm,
to prevent people from committing crime because of fear of prison,
to punish a person who was convicted of a crime,
To re-educate convicted criminals.
In other words, this type of prevention works for those who are afraid of prison but may not
necessarily stop someone that is not afraid of consequences of their actions. Another point
is that you would perhaps be less likely to imitate a behaviour that is punished because of
the fear of the consequences. This can refer to the phrase `get what you deserve'.
Evidence has shown that people begin their criminal behaviour from a young age. This allows
a point for people in authority to intervene when vulnerable people are at risk of offending.
The programmes are designed to discourage criminal behaviour and reduce the risk of them
committing a crime in the future. The intervention will prevent young people witnessing the
behaviour which will cause them to imitate later on. This has been shown to reduce the
amount of crimes in at-risk individuals in the community, who have been identified by an
organisation such as: a school, youth services or social services.
Media is an easy way for information to be easily shared and viewed. This is a source of
criminal behaviour because you are able to imitate the behaviour you have witnessed. This
can be reduced by placing restrictions for viewing of the internet for young people. This is
very difficult to control as the media is so widespread and the internet is continually
expanding. This is most commonly known as a copy-cat crime because of the clear imitation
This links to the social learning theory as it uses the idea of imitation of behaviour and that
the behaviour is either encouraged or discouraged. They will imitate actions that they see to
be rewarded which would be linked to vicarious reinforcement. The acts that criminals
commit to be in this position would be known as a `copy-cat crime' and therefore would
have been committed by someone else, by who they are influenced by.
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Rehabilitation is the way to prevent criminals from reoffending again. It cannot replace the
offences they have already done, but can be used to teach them other way of learning so
that they are showing appropriate behaviour. There are many different types of offender
behaviour programmes and it depends on the offence and circumstances depending on
which one is required. It usually helps those who are in need or at risk.…read more